James DeMonaco Interview

I had the pleasure of speaking with writer and director James DeMonaco, best known for his work with the Purge franchise, about a very different project he tackled that serves as a love letter to cinema called This Is The Night. The coming-of-age story was a passion project for DeMonaco and it’s easy to see during our conversation why it was. DeMonaco is devoted to the theatrical experience and he does not want to see it fade away like so many people think it will.

What immediately struck me is that DeMonaco is a true cinephile. He loves the art of making movies and he loves the pastime of consuming them. As we discussed This Is The Night, which uses the arrival of Rocky III in 1982 as a sort of beacon of owning one’s confidence, you can feel how personal this story is to him but you can tell that he wants the story to matter to those watching the film as well. In my review of This Is The Night, I alluded to the fact that a love of the movies makes the film resonate a bit more and I think DeMonaco really wanted to share that experience with an audience that has as much passion for the moviegoing experience as he does.

We covered a lot about the making of the film. He divulged that a lot of it was based on personal experience and he spoke of his very good relationship with Blumhouse Productions and Jason Blum as to why he was given the opportunity to make a movie that is a major departure from what he was done with the Purge franchise. We also talked about casting the film with its mix of proven veterans and a young cast he was largely unfamiliar with before but ended up being great choices for the role. I was able to sneak in one question about The Purge, after showing him my newly arrived copy of The Forever Purge that coincidently arrived a mere 15 minutes before the interview started. Even though The Forever Purge was promoted as the final film of the franchise, DeMonaco has already written a sixth film that can continue the story and it brings Frank Grillo’s Leo Barnes back into the fold which would be huge for the fans.

I hope you enjoy the interview and please check out This Is The Night which can be viewed on-demand or bought digitally by going here: https://uni.pictures/ThisIsTheNight

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