Exclusive: Director John Gulager Talks Piranha 3DD and More!
Just back from shooting Piranha 3DD in Wilmington, North Carolina (the flick opens nationwide via Dimension this coming November 23), director John Gulager, who’s currently knee-deep in post-production, took some time out of his busy schedule to chat with us regarding the shoot as well what fans can expect of his sequel to the 2010 Alexandre Aja-helmed Piranha 3D. Read on!
Following twenty-five days of wet and wild production with director of photography Alexandre Lehmann, the filmmaker (who directed from a script by long-time collaborators Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton) said of his first foray into the world of 3D, “It does take longer to shoot (in that format), although the company still wants you to shoot it in the same amount of time (you would film a traditional movie), and there’s no running off and just getting shots because there is a train (of equipment) which follows you around. Everything 3D is pretty big and pretty heavy, and it’s all on a crane, bipod or slider, although we did have smaller underwater hand-held 3D rigs.”
Gulager, whose previous horror works include the decidedly punk rock in tone Feast films (which he approached with an effective run-and-gun aesthetic), expounded self-deprecatingly of the challenges he faced on the 3D production, “I did the least amount of work of anyone on set! Everyone was working so freaking hard that I just sort of walked around and went, ‘Action! Cut!’”
Dread questioned Gulager of the tone he intends for Piranha 3DD, given his and the screenwriters’ subversive sensibilities which are invariably the hallmark of his Feast franchise, to which he replied, “I think here we are making more of a pop movie than more of a completely insane monster film. We are kind of making a big drive-in movie. It’s different than Feast. I think it’s good to appeal to people other than those that are just into the horror genre. I don’t mean that as a cop-out. I just think that’s what it should be, this particular film, like the first one was - which was a pretty straight film. It was basically the story of a working mother, her kid, a pornographer and man-eating fish,” he laughed. “I was happy they went there with all of the gore and the blood. In this case the piranhas have already happened, and now it’s a year later so as far as that goes, it’s not a total surprise. There is a bit of a mystery element to the film, though. What we intended to do was to make a fun movie."