Who are your main influences within the genre, and what films do you regard as your favourites?
Certainly ‘The Shining’ has always been a favourite of mine, but I also love the Werner Herzog’s movies, he is one of the few remaining independent directors, a true artist. I also love the French horror scene, I particularly like Alexandre Aja, an amazing director.
The Perfect Husband is a fantastically emotional and terrifying premise. Where did the inspiration come from for such a storyline?
I decided to tackle head-on the fathomless darkness that can turn a couple’s relationship into a real nightmare, with the arrival of a still-born son, exorcising the anxiety and fear I was experiencing over the fact that I would soon become a father…
What is it that you wanted to achieve with this film?
A simple consideration that takes its cue from the facts of crime. No one knows anybody completely, not even those they are closest to.
The location is stunning; where was it shot?
Catania, Sicily, at the foot of the vulcan Etna. The Vulcan was actually erupting during all the shooting. I had to dub all the exterior scenes because the eruption noise!
I was impressed with the solid level of gore throughout, which took me back to the italian movies of yesteryear. What can you tell me about the FX on set, and was the level of violence an important part of the narrative from its inception?
Violence in this film is important for the audience to live a moment of madness. I wanted the scenes to be very strong and realistic so that the audience were quite taken by the protagonist, doing so, in the end the audience will be complicit wanting her to kill her husband.
The film successfully plays on the darkest side of human behaviour and fear, and I thought that the two main characters were superb. What was the hardest scene to shoot, and why?
The rape scene by the gypsy was not easy for Gabriella. It was very difficult for her, because she experienced real violence as a child.
I thought the film was a fantastic genre piece, with a disturbing twist that I didn’t see coming. How has it been received by fans, and are you happy with the finished result?
It wasn’t the finished movie it had intended to be. The beginning was planned to be much more complex, there were a lot of scenes that I had to cut due to lack of money, reducing the story to a few actors and a few locations, for the sake of the budget. As for fans, there were no compromises, there are those who hated it and those who loved it.
I have quite literally become a fan of your work overnight. What else can we expect in the future?
I have shot a new thriller called ALCOHOLIST in NY with BRET ROBERTS and GABRIELLA WRIGHTS, it also stars BILL MOSELEY (from The Devil’s Rejects). It is a story of a chronic alcoholic who spends all his time spying on his neighbour, waiting for the right moment to kill him. The movie was sold to a big distribution company, and it will be released later this year.