The Nerd Side Of Life

‘Suspiria’: Luca Guadagnino On Amazon’s Wild First Horror Pic

“We had great conversations about all the different shades of blood…”

“It’s amazing when a studio backs a movie as bold and auteured as Suspiria,” someone close to the Amazon and K Period Media-backed chiller admits. “It’s like ‘woah’, even as you’re watching it. There’s nothing quite like it.”

Deadline reports that Call Me By Your Name director Guadagnino’s $20M re-imagining of Dario Argento’s 1977 cult classic stars Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton, Mia Goth, Lutz Ebersdorf (perhaps), Jessica Harper (of the original) and Chloe Grace Moretz. Johnson leads cast as the American newcomer to the prestigious Tanze school who comes to realize it is a front for something very disturbing. The pic debuts at the Venice Film Festival on Saturday. But that’s only a slice of this movie’s story.

Comic-con footage left audiences reeling and buzzing at the same time. The first teaser was one of the best I’ve seen and Amazon’s marketing and artwork has been consistently compelling. Private screenings have had some squirming in their seats and others watching through cupped hands.

Guadagnino has crafted a movie which chimes deliciously with its original and a host of 1970s horror pics which were distinctive and intricately crafted but also unsettling and shocking. It speaks to a type of auteured genre film which rarely gets made by studios today. Don’t Look Now and The Wicker Man come to mind. As do controversial dramas Caligula and Pasolini’s 120 Days Of Sodom and more recent cult classics Under The Skin and Hideo Nakata’s Dark Water. Like some of those movies, Suspiria could divide opinion. Its box office potential is enigmatic. Given the more commercial direction Amazon has said it is going in, and the direction other studios have been going in more generally, we might not see its like again for a while.

When asked why he wanted to revisit Dario Argento’s 1977 classic, Luca Guadagnino said he first saw the poster for Dario’s movie when I was 11 in 1982. I saw the film two years later. It made an incredible impression on me. The idea of trying to transfer the explosive emotion I felt into a new movie began almost immediately.

Dario’s movie is evocative of so many things including of motherhood. It’s the story of a group of women united by an obscure agenda. There is something that I couldn’t stop thinking about. For all the violence of Dario’s movies they are also beautiful fairy-tales. There is something alluring about it for a young person.

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There is an incredible sense of unease permeating the movie. It is a very eerie mood piece. Dakota Johnson said she needed therapy after the production and described a very

We spoke about it constantly. We had fun with it. Dakota is very sharp and very witty. I very much doubt she has been permanently damaged by the movie. While there are some disturbing scenes, the director states that the actors had fun on set and were willing to do anything to make the Amazon film come to life.

The film contains a brutal dance scene which caused quite a stir at Comic-Con. 


The movie is being called Amazon’s most violent film to date. It is also Radiohead frontman Thom York’s first film score. He has said was very nervous about tackling it. At the beginning, movie executives and the Director were going to title the movie Suspiria: Part One but they didn’t want to give the impression of something that couldn’t stand alone.

When asked by Deadline what was next for director Luca Guadagnino, he simply stated “A long holiday. I’m scribbling things for it, yes. But I need to have a rest now.”

Are you excited for the Suspiria remake on Amazon? Were you a fan of the original? Tell Nerdbot about it in the comments!

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