Exclusive: Dread Central Visits the Set of Hostel Part III
As in any flick, the protagonist is only as strong as the narrative’s antagonist (or vice verse), and in this capacity actor Kip Pardue (who portrays Hallisay’s best man and friend ‘Carter’) sat down with me to riff on his character.
“It’s weird,” said Pardue (who previously portrayed the lead in Jeremy Kasten’s underrated Wizard of Gore remake) of Hostel Part III, “and I want to hype it up, but at the same time I don’t want to give away any of its secrets. To be perfectly honest,” continued Pardue, “after the first two films I thought, ‘On what direction could they go with this franchise, and how could they take it any further?’ We’ve already kind of seen everything as far as the gore is concerned, and we understand the premise and the structure, and I told Scott when he approached me with the script, “I don’t know.’ And he told me to read it and that it took the story in a different direction, and what this one does is that it lets the audience behind the curtain. It shows them who are behind the Elite Hunting Club and what makes it tick, and that’s the kind of the direction that this one goes in. The audience will be able to see who is pulling the strings and who is making the decisions. So if the other films were seventy percent gore and thirty percent psychological thriller, then this one is the opposite, in my opinion, and that to me is much more intriguing purely as a viewer. Not to take anything away from the first two, because they are so stylized and created the genre, but this one stays true to it but also pushes it forward.”
Given that Roth’s films are known for their gore quotient, I queried Pardue on his prediction of audience response of the third in the series, given his statement.
“I think we’ll meet the expectations of fans of the first two Hostel films,” he expounded. “I think this film will pay homage to those films and will also push the boundaries, and I think any time you make a sequel, you have to be conscious of those things. The first two worked for a reason, and the fact that this one has a Hostel title means that we have to do certain things so hopefully the die-hard fans will be happy with it and we’ll also be able to make some new fans who may be more interested in the psyche behind the antagonists. But it doesn’t follow the same formula of the first two films. I mean, it has Eli’s fingerprints all over it, but it does go in a different direction.”
As for the gore, “It’s gonna look great, and while I can’t give much away, it does have its ‘money-shots,’” stated Pardue. “When I read them [in the script], I thought, ‘Jesus Christ, really? Wow!’ And then when we started to shoot and I started to see the props and the makeup and the layering of the visual effects and the special effects, the next thing I knew I’d been ‘Hostel’ed!’”
Concerning his character, “Carter is the best man, who is kind of driving this whole train and who gets us to Vegas, and obviously because it’s a Hostel film we know that the wheels are going to come off at some point,” mused the actor. “I think to make this one a little different, we get to know these characters a little bit more and develop more as people, and the audience will really understand the relationships, or at least think they do, and that’s where this one turns on its head. In this one the best man/groom relationship is pushed to its limits. As an actor you read what’s on the page, and I know what’s Scotty’s vision is and where he wants to take it, but at the end of the day it comes down to what happens in the editing room, and that’s the hardest thing as an actor - you do your work and wipe your hands of it and move on to the next one. But for me the most interesting thing was getting to know these characters and to figure out what makes them tick.”
As for its dark predecessors, a little levity has been added to break the filmic tension, and this time out that comes in the form of stand-up comedian and actor Skyler Stone, who’d been cast in the role of ‘Mike,’ the nefarious ‘Stifler’ of the bachelor party.
“When I read the script, it had me going so many times,” Stone stated, “and I don’t consider myself gullible, but it really focuses more on plot, and I think it’s an equal opportunity offender, and I think everybody will walk away from this movie feeling something in their stomach. It’s a horror movie, and you get what you sign up for. I mean, we aren’t making The English Patient here. I think it will offend some people. This third one takes more chances I think than the other two, which isn’t surprising, because if you are hired as a screenwriter, you have to take it in a different direction. Maybe it’s just because I’m excited (that I feel this way), and it’s that ‘new girlfriend’ feeling where it’s better than your ex.”
Regarding the "heavy" segment of the cast, actor Chris Coy (whose previous genre credentials include the Bill Moseley-starring horror feature Rogue River) told me of his character with a laugh, “It’s the first time I’ve worked with hookers and killed them.”
Portraying ‘Travis,’ an instrumental cog of the Elite Hunting Club, “There are no boundaries with this character, and I can justify it any way I want,” ruminated Coy. “I’m like the number one henchman at the hostel and the right-hand man of Thomas Kretschmann’s character ‘Flemming,’ who is the hostel’s manager. I’m the collector, the garbage man, and the number-one enforcer. My character goes out and tricks people into trusting him. I’m also kind of like insurance. If things go bad, I get the call and wipe everyone out and move on. It’s like every guy’s dream role because I’m like this bad ass, but in the beginning I’m just this awkward kid who you are sure is going to be fucked. It is fun to be the misdirect even though as an actor it’s a bit of a stretch. I mean, I’ve never shot a hooker in the face before or lured people to their deaths.”
I asked Coy what helped him slip into such a malevolent mindset, to which he replied, “I don’t think I would be as good at playing evil like this if it wasn’t for working with Bill Moseley on Rogue River because he had no shame on that whatsoever. It was like that was his job and that was his character and he didn’t care if he was creeping out the cast and crew because this is what needs to happen, and that’s kind of the attitude I approached my character with in this film.”