Kevin Grevioux recently spoke to Dread Central at New York Comic Con and when it comes to the convention circuit, this is definitely not his first rodeo. Grevioux has been a fan from an early age and was a large presence (literally) as Raze in Underworld and Underworld: Rise of the Lycans.
He’ll also be seen as Dekar in I, Frankenstein, the film version of his graphic novel starring Aaron Eckhart.
DC: My Dad was in radio and I worked on Fangoria Radio for awhile with Dee Snider, and I think both of us have pretty good radio voices. Were you ever in radio at all? You have such a great, commanding voice, you’d be pretty good for it, I think.
KG: No one ever led me down that path in school. It was always science. For a split second, I thought about broadcast journalism but that wore off after a week.
DC: So, how are you enjoying the con this far and how many years is this for you? How did the signing go?
KG: The signing went well. I’ve been coming to comic conventions since I was twelve. I go all the way back to the Creation Conventions.
DC: You were a fan at first, so, was it Underworld that started putting you on the circuit, so to speak, and doing it from the other end of the table?
KG: Yes, it was. Before that, I was just going as a fan. It was kind of surreal to start going to the Con as a professional. Then, after Underworld, I started working for both Marvel and DC, so that was fun.
DC: It was weird for me, too, to start going to conventions as a fan and then start to cover them. The way that people react to you and speak to you is very different.
KG: Yeah, exactly. Exactly.
DC: So where did your passion for horror come from? I love guys like you because you don’t look like the typical fan and that shows me that the love for this stuff is universal. Geekdom doesn’t just fill a void because you’re not the popular kid. Like you, you can play football in high school and still love to write and love escapism entertainment.
KG: I think my passion came from the fact that I’ve always loved science. I guess, the bridge between the two was probable dinosaurs because, if you think about it, dinosaurs are real monsters. That led to more monster movies, more sci-fi movies, more fantasy movies. As a career, especially growing up when I did in the ‘70s, what did it really mean getting a job doing sci-fi? I had no idea how I would go about that, so it was kind of a sublimation, in a sense, that I went into real science. I came full circle, after spending some time in the industry, coming back to making a living and actually writing science fiction horror.
DC: With I, Frankenstein, that was first a screenplay and then a graphic novel, correct?
KG: Yes, exactly. I actually pitched the idea to Lakeshore in 2007 but they didn’t understand it. So, it wasn’t until after I wrote the screenplay that they were like, ‘Oh, this is great!’ They thought they had another Underworld on their hands. I wrote the graphic novel to help illustrate the world because I realized, regardless of these producers say, a lot of them don’t understand these wild and interesting concepts that genre guys come up with. So, you create the graphic novel and the artwork to help illustrate the world that you’re trying to convey. Once they saw all that they were like, ‘Okay, we’re on board.’ Patrick Tatopoulos was part of it at first and we just went on from there.
DC: Speaking to that, can you talk about the evolution of the story and how it was changed from a lot of creatures and vampires to just demons?
KG: Lakeshore felt that the audiences wouldn’t really understand more than two monsters. We kind of went back and forth on that. Stuart Beattie was brought in to settle everything down and pair them down into just two – the gargoyles which were in my script and demons as well. My original screenplay, the protagonist was Dracula and they were trying to figure out a way to use the Frankenstein process to create a race of Frankenstein monsters to take over the world and rule over the monster clans. We kept that basic story but the vampires and Dracula were replaced with demons and the character Naberius [Bill Nighy] as a demon prince. So, that’s basically the evolution of what took place.
DC: That’s interesting to me. Have you been following the comic “Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E.” from DC?
KG: No, I have not.
DC: They have the Creature Commandos which are all these different creations that were failed experiments. It seems like it’s a similar idea and that’s such an interesting idea. I know when I first saw the trailer to I, Frankenstein I immediately thought this film is going to do great business in foreign markets. Do you think that you’re original vision has been simplified to appeal to the more international crowd? I don’t really like how if it’s a big-budget horror-action hybrid the powers that be tend to dumb things down a bit. Do you think that’s fair to say?
KG: That is the rub. That’s one of the things that you have to understand when you’re a filmmaker and especially a writer. You really don’t have the power. I hate to use the work capitulate but what you’re trying to do is get your vision on screen as best you can and film is a collaborative medium. What you try to do, which is why I maintained control of the comic book, is to make sure you keep your original vision’s integrity so you can always mine it for ideas and expand the universe. Hopefully, that will spawn other ideas. Already, in doing that, I have my next project and I can’t say too much about it now but it’s underway in terms of development. So, that’s just the way it goes. The goal is everyone wants to make a good film as best they know how.
I, Frankenstein, starring Aaron Eckhart, will be digitally re-mastered into the immersive IMAX® format and released into IMAX® theatres across the U.S. beginning January 24, 2014, as well as a number of international territories.
The IMAX release of I, Frankenstein will be digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience® with proprietary IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-mastering) technology. The crystal-clear images, coupled with IMAX’s customized theatre geometry and powerful digital audio, create a unique environment that will make audiences feel as if they are in the movie.
200 years after his shocking creation, Dr. Frankenstein’s creature, Adam (Eckhart), still walks the earth. But when he finds himself in the middle of a war over the fate of humanity, Adam discovers he holds the key that could destroy humankind. The action thriller I, Frankenstein is written for the screen and directed by Stuart Beattie from a screen story by Kevin Grevioux and Beattie. The film is brought to life by a cast that includes Eckhart, Bill Nighy, Yvonne Strahovski, Miranda Otto, Socratis Otto, Jai Courtney, Kevin Grevioux, Mahesh Jadu, Caitlin Stasey, and Aden Young as Victor Frankenstein.
Lionsgate / Lakeshore Entertainment / Sidney Kimmel Entertainment present a Hopscotch Features / Lakeshore Entertainment / Lionsgate / Sidney Kimmel Entertainment production.
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