EXCL: Producer Talks Countess
Source: Ryan RottenMay 7, 2007
Last week, we told you about Julie Delpy's forthcoming sophomore outing behind the camera, The Countess, a script the actress has had in-hand for five years that concerns the true story of Erzsébet Báthory, the Hungarian noblewoman who supposedly bathed in the blood of virgins to retain her youth. The acts of murder she committed within her castle in the early 1600s provided inspiration for a number of films including Countess Dracula, Daughters of Darkness, Eternal and even teen horror drivel like Stay Alive (ugh).
Delpy - who snagged an Academy Award-nom for the Before Sunrise script - penned "Countess," of course, with an aim to cut a little deeper into the subject matter where other films have not. She's also pulling double duty as the film's director and star, as Báthory (natch). Already the film has attracted actors Radha Mitchell (Silent Hill) as Báthory's accomplice (it's said she had four, including a dwarf), Ethan Hawke (Training Day) as her husband, Daniel Brühl (The Edukators) and Vincent Gallo (Buffalo 66).
"'The Countess' is much more of a period, art house piece with allusions to the macabre life and times of Erzsébet Báthory versus a straight horror tale," says Chris Tuffin in a Shock exclusive. His Bloodworks banner is co-producing the flick with Matthew Chausse, Delpy and Martin Shore of Social Capital. "We think audiences will find it more akin to 'Perfume' or 'Quills' in that it shows how even the most refined individuals can lose their humanity when darkness or depravity consumes them."
The Countess is a return to, shall we say, "classic" genre material for Delpy after her stint in 2004's "Frankenstein" mini-series. Since then she has busied herself with Two Days in Paris, her directorial debut co-starring Adam Goldberg. "Julie Delpy is becoming one of the most respected young multi-hyphenate filmmakers in the world. Her intelligence, humor, passion and charm attract the best and brightest to her projects, which we're honored as producers to be apart of. Our hope is that this picture will stand out amongst next year's crop of award contenders as Julie's vision, coupled with a phenomenal ensemble cast and screenplay, has given us all a sense of excitement with respect to what may loom ahead."
Filming is said to begin on The Countess in Hungary and Slovakia late-October. Intandem Films has already picked the film up for international sales.