The vampire genre has gained some reputation over the past few decades for more watered-down iterations that focus more on the romance than the horror aspect of these creatures. Why was it important for you to take the slow and terrifying path? And what do you think naysayers and vampire fans will like about the film?
Great question. Like I said, I love horror, but I need to take care of the characters. If it’s just a slasher… Don’t get me wrong, I like them a little, but [in] “Scream” or whatever [if] I don’t care about the characters, and I don’t care when they die. It was important to me that we really believed that Evie and Walter [are] fall in love. It’s not the monster under the bed. It’s about the monster in bed. For me, it’s much scarier – like The Shining, one of my favorite movies. There will always be haters, but there’s a lot to love about this movie if people just keep an open mind about it.
Also, I’m already seeing comments like “Why are they walking during the day?” The thing is, if you go back to real vampire lore, if you go back to Bram Stoker’s Dracula, vampires can walk around during the day. It’s really interesting to see how much we think it’s true, but it’s based on movies or books from the last 30 years, not something that’s based on original knowledge. i like to think [there are some] things are there for people living historically and later for modern audiences. I think there is a bit of everything.
The Invitation will hit theaters on August 26.
This interview has been edited for clarity.