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Matarazzo and FugitPatrick Fugit & Heather Matarazzo | Soul Searchers
an emily blunt interview

 

 

This new film Saved! Is such a powerful "little" film. It's chock full of these great "indie" talents that you can always count on for delivering a quality film (well for the most part…). I sat down with Ms. Indie Heather Matarazzo and Patrick Fugit recently to talk about the film and basically the biz within the art-stuff.

Patrick has become quite the manlyberry studmuffin folks - who knew? And Heather is a blunt breath of fresh air. If you're not familiar with these singular talents, I suggest you head on over to the rental palace and hone up:

EMILY: Pat was it fun to be the new hunk in town?
PATRICK: Ya it was fun I don't know I didn't really know how to play it so…I guess we'll see how every one reacts
EMILY: did you base characters on people you know?
HEATHER: No, All of us became passionate about learning about religion and being born again- the whole Christian rock concert scene. I watched this film called hell house too.
EMILY: what's that mean?
HEATHER: there's about a Christian group that made haunted house- it was the most disgusting horrific thing I've ever seen. If you get an abortion "you're gonna go to hell" and they have the devil come up.
PATRICK: Yahe! A little scene where the girl's getting an abortion and the devil's there you know [laughter]
EMILY: Oh sounds fun! Is this something I can rent?
HEATHER: I'm sure- just go on Ebay! [laughter]
EMILY: what did you learn?
HEATHER: Can I tell you I went into it with almost anger- I was raised catholic and I just had this conceived notion what being born again was, what being Christian was, because the only way Christian are ever portrayed - especially by the media - is that they're right wing conservatives that are against abortion, homosexually and all these things. And through out the course of the film - even after the film meeting all these people religion's bullshit! I just kind of changed. It's not about religion it's about spirituality, and your own relationship with God.
EMILY: You learned that from the people you spoke with, or as an outcome of the film?
HEATHER: I think a mixture of both. There's two sides to every story you know?
EMILY: And how about you Patrick, what did you learn?
PATRICK: Not necessary…I was never really very religious. When I was younger it seemed to be more of a wrong or right situation. When I went to these youth rallies the kids were very religious and passionate about practicing their religion. We weren't and they were fine with that- telling us all what it was about and getting to know us. I kind of realized what you believe is your decision.
EMILY: you live in Salt Lake most of the time?
PATRICK: All my roots are there, my family- I'm more comfortable there.
EMILY: You saw extreme and good people?
HEATHER: Yeah each person individually what religion is? I met some born again Christian teenagers that were very religious. Because I was asked the questions" if a person is gay, and your beleif of being a born again Christian do you believe they'll go to hell?" Some said yes, and some said no. I asked the same thing about abortion. Some said yes and some said no.
EMILY: Some said no? Born Agains?
HEATHER: Ya! So it's just that I took religion out of the box. There are no rules and regulations. It's about loving. And it about faith. And your own relationship with God and no man on Earth can really kind of dictate what God wants!
EMILY: But they try!
HEATHER: They try but the thing is and that's what no body seems to understand -! EMILY: But there are leaders and followers in the world and you're always going to have people who follow.
HEATHER: Completely. You know but the good thing is at the end f the day they are going to be surprised. You know what I mean? When they get up home.
EMILY: You ever felt like an outsider? Or done something to fit into the group?
HEATHER: Oh totally! That's why I stopped drinking [laughter]
EMILY: What kind of research did you do for the roles?
PATRICK: It was actually- it's a lot of the way I look at things in my character. A lot of it was based off of me. That's the way the character was written and that's why I responded.
EMILY: PATRICK: Are you respective of women like your character?
PATRICK: [laughter] I guess.
HEATHER: He is! He's one of the nicest guys! Especially being in this industry where half of them just wanna get in your pants!
PATRICK: the part was written as a kid named Ryan who was this Christian surfboarder. I went in and said, "you know I skate board and I can't surf." So I'd like to skate it. And I got a re-write a month later, and the character's name was Patrick!
EMILY: Was it weird to play a character with your name?
PATRICK: It takes you out for a sec. It's something you have to get use to. It's like if Jena would call me Patrick as Jena I could tell the difference than if she was calling me Patrick as Mary.
EMILY: Were either of you concerned you were working for a first time director?
Heather in Princess DiariesHEATHER: That's pretty much the only directors I've worked with. It nice though- I mean I'm very choosey about the films that I do and the independents that I do are mostly done by first time directors. It's really a beautiful thing to watch! Somebody who is so impassioned by a script and just want to make such a great movie and having that love. And it just drips down to the crew to the actors and everyone. You know? It makes us all band together. And I think Brain [Dannelly] had such a vision- he had such a direct approach. He knew he wanted to do. The shots would be set up when we got there and that's rare! That's extremely rare! Usually the directors don't know what they're doing half the time and it takes ten hours to light one scene- you waste all this time. He was great.
EMILY: Do you have
PATRICK: They could on and on…Mandy and I when we were first trying to get to know each other we were at a dinner party and the food was awful. We were all trying to figure out who we should be hanging out with and who was goin' be an outsider, so Mandy and I are sitting there and I got these dumplings. And I tasted one and I was like GOD. And she was like "they're bad?" an I gave her one and she went, "Argh!" I went, 'We should just go through these off the fuckin' roof." [laughter] and then we did -
EMILY: You hit anyone?
PATRICK: YES! [laughter] Then we cleaned out…we went through all the chicken dumplings then we ended on the shrimp dumplings - the sad thing was the cook was like, "You guys really like my dumplings!" [laughter] He kept bringing out more and more. We 'd just get plates of dumplings throw them at cabs and stuff! So that started this obsession with us - whenever we were up high we all started throwing stuff of the balconies.
HEATHER: Some guy got all pissed off because we hit him
PATRICK: With mustard! A bottle of mustard it was like "splat" you know it was - he was under the canopy of a tree and we threw this mustard and got 'im. Then we went and got all these bags of marshmallows. It was like Marshmallow rain! It was pretty funny.
EMILY: You said you wanted to see who'd you'd be hanging out with- when you make a movie do you feel you need to do that?
PATRICK: Yeah. It's not that you spend time with everyone but you know if you're into them; a certain actor. Or getting to know the person you're Patrick as Patrick in Saved!connected to in the script- like Jena for me. That person you'll be hanging out with all the time- without the rest of the cast. Maybe the rest of the cast isn't gonna be quite compatible with you.
EMILY: What if someone's suppose to be your enemy in the movie? Do you not wanna hang with them?
PATRICK: It depends on - if they're somebody that I like Because if you like the person you're suppose to hate you can have a fun chemistry on screen but if you don't then think you could miss out.
EMILY: You've been doing this for a while. What's been you're biggest surprise in the business?
PATRICK: probably how the business works as opposed to the artform.sadly a lot of times the business takes over the art form unfortunately to get the art form you have to do a lot of the business. But I'm very happy with it.
EMILY: Are you more into independent movies?
PATRICK: It seems to be that way! I don't get many big budget scripts that are very good- if they are they usually don't want me in it! [laughter] I think Jake Gyllenhal and Orlando Bloom kind of have mainstream Hollywood taken care of right now! [ laughter]
EMILY: What about Princess Diaries 2 Heather? Does your character evolve at all?
HEATHER: To be honest with you I have no idea what I did in that movie! No, they have no script we got script revisions everyday! We did totally random scenes everyday. We do a one liner or two then be like, "bu du dump [cymbal]" I'd say, "Guys I'm going home."
EMILY: Not your favorite acting challenge?
HEATHER: No! [laughter] I read this biography that Sidney Poitier wrote and he said Hollywood can take everything from you and at the end of the day the only two things that are your human integrity and artistic integrity and you have to hold on to that for life! ~ I really believe that! I really hold on to that. I worked to hard to get to where I am not going to just do stuff because that is supposedly what Middle America wants to see which I don't agree with.

END

Well, that's the truth! James Woods once told me, as he was handing me a well-deserved ten dollar viewing refund for that crapfest Vampires, " They can't all be gems..." Saved! is - get out and support it.

This is the new generation of Sean Penns and Helen Mirrens. Up-and-comers with integrity - and an eye for the material. Blockbusters are fun, but sometimes smart films, with real-laughs, are the perfect entertainment - even if nothing blows up...

 


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