The Horror Honeys: HH Interview: Fede Alvarez & Rodo Sayagues ~ DON'T BREATHE

HH Interview: Fede Alvarez & Rodo Sayagues ~ DON'T BREATHE

Ahead of the release of Don't Breathe (read Linnie's review HERE) on DVD and Special Edition Blu Ray, Horror Honey Kat Wells sat down with Fede Alvarez, writer and director of Don’t Breathe and Evil Dead (2013), and co-writer Rodo Sayagues, at the Culver Hotel in Los Angeles.


HH: You guys have worked with Roque Baños on both Evil Dead and on Don’t Breathe. I bought the [Evil Dead] BluRay the moment it came out; I’d seen it in theaters, [but] I didn’t watch it again for like two years, it sat on my shelf, because I couldn’t go through it again, as much as I loved it. But I listened to the score all the time, it’s so beautiful. The score for Don’t Breathe is so incredibly different from Evil Dead and that’s because you had instruments invented, right? Can you talk a little bit about how you got hooked up with Roque, and then also, how did that come about, all of this incredibly unique work you did with the music? 

 Fede: We’re really good friends with Roque, that’s for sure. And it started in the best way possible. I was a big fan of his work in the past — I mean, like, by the time he did Evil Dead he had made, like, 50 movies in Europe. And I wanted him to do the music, because both of us were big fans of his music.

Rodo: It’s funny because, it tracks down to - like, twelve years ago, we were working on what was our first script for a full feature film, and we didn’t have much, but the thing that we knew was that we wanted Roque Baños to do the score.

Fede: At that point it was impossible, we were never going to get him. And then when I was gearing up for Evil Dead, I was trying to get to him and he was trying to get to me because he was such a big fan of the Evil Dead movies that he was dying to do that movie. And one day I was talking with him and I was like “I want you to do the movie!” And he was like “I want to do the movie!” And it was just this really cute encounter that led to him doing the music for Evil Dead. And I think because we’re friends [now] and we have a really honest dialogue, when it was time to do Don’t Breathe we knew we wanted to do something completely different. And we didn’t want... we had done the big orchestra, and the big choir, with the music for Evil Dead and we thought, this time we’re going to be different. I mean, that’s kind of by default where you go, and every time we find ourselves going to a place by default, we just stop and go wait, is there a better place? Is there a better thing we can do? And Roque said “What if we made music that feels like it’s coming out of the house? Because I didn’t want this score that feels like it’s coming through the windows that’s just a movie score. What can we do that feels very organic? So he found this guy that has this orchestra called Anarchestra in Tucson that makes instruments out of metal and wood, just like stuff that you can find inside a house, and Roque being the genius that he is just like banged them together and turned all of that into a film score.

HH: Horror has always pushed the envelope, people want to feel things more deeply and watch things that are more extreme, and I think the fans reacted so incredibly strongly to your Evil Dead because it was just this orchestra of like blood and gore, it was just beautiful. Now, people are pushing more toward virtual reality; horror fans want to be inside the movie. Would either of you ever think about being involved in creating some kind of an immersive experience like that?

Fede: We are, we actually have. Actually, at our office, we’ve set up this VR system and we are developing stuff that we play with, and because I know how to do that stuff and can create a world in 3D if I have to. We’ve been...let’s say we’ve been playing with that, yeah... I can’t tell you exactly what it is…[laughs]. But we’ve been playing with that a lot, yes.

HH: What’s your favorite scary movie?

Fede: I’m going to say, an easy one for me right now: Don’t Breathe.

Rodo: For me it’s The Exorcist, and I think that movie helped both in Evil Dead, the process of writing Evil Dead and Don’t Breathe, because every time we feel we’re sometimes being too extreme, with the ideas and the set pieces we do, we go back to The Exorcist, which happened forty years ago. And there’s very extreme and shocking scenes, and like, that was forty years ago, and if they dared to do that...

Catch the full interview in the December issue of 
Belladonna Horror Magazine!

 Debuting on Digital November 8 On Blu-ray™ & DVD November 29 
 Bonus Materials Include Eight Deleted Scenes with Director’s Commentary and More! 

 Synopsis: From the twisted minds behind Evil Dead comes a new terrifying experience. Three young thieves (Jane Levy, Dylan Minnette, Daniel Zovatto) fight for their lives after breaking into the home of a blind man (Stephen Lang) who has a dark side. 

Blu-ray, DVD & Digital Bonus Materials Include: 

  • Deleted Scenes with Director’s Commentary 
  • Commentary with Director Fede Alvarez, Co-Writer Rodo Sayagues and Actor Stephen Lang 
  • Five Featurettes: 
    • “No Escape” 
    • “Creating the Creepy House” 
    • “Meet the Cast” 
    • “Man in the Dark” 
    • “The Sounds of Horror”