Final Destination: “If I die tomorrow I will be happy to have made a film that left a legacy”

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More than twenty years have passed since the premiere of the first film of Final destination. What was born as a script treatment for a potential episode of The X-Files it grew and had its own flight to become one of the most remembered sagas of the beginning of the millennium. Five films were released based on the idea of ​​what happens when someone “cheats” death. Jeffrey Reddick, a fan of A Nightmare on Elm Street, was the creator of this emblem of the terror in recent years, who spoke with Spoiler and you can see a fragment of the interview below:

After his directorial debut in the film Don’t Look Back (originally called The Good Samaritan), Reddick talked about his career and, of course, what it meant to have written Final destination. Reddick he devised the first film from a newspaper article he read where a woman got off a plane after thinking that she was going to have an accident, which indeed happened, and although the idea was to sell the story so that they would star in it Mulder and Scully, a friend convinced him that the idea was good enough to be a feature film.

The striking thing is that The X-Files ended up connected to Final destination hand in hand with two symbols in the series, Glen Morgan and James Wong, as screenwriter and director, respectively, in charge of polishing the idea of Jeffrey. The result was so good that he quickly had to sit down and think about a sequel. Thus was born Final Destination 2, the last in which he participated directly, of which everyone remembers the iconic scene of the logs on the road, something that occurred to him Jeffrey while he was driving home and was left behind a vehicle like the one in the film.

Reddick is friends with several horror filmmakers who go to the movies together. (Getty)

“I worked in New Line for eleven years and I loved it. You can’t work in a studio without thinking about sequels “, said Reddick for those who have not yet made the most of the idea of Final destination. In addition, he says that the perfect trilogy is made up of the first two films in the saga along with the fifth. The writer spoke of all the details behind this production and some creative details that were about to be very different for the franchise.

The first movie feels like an episode of The X-Files. What do you think Morgan and Wong contributed?

The X-Files it was my favorite show so it was perfect for an idea where people cheated death and death would come back after them. It’s funny because when we tried to sell the movie we had a lot of problems with people who didn’t understand how we could make a movie where we didn’t see the villain. You can’t see it and you can’t fight it and that’s the point. Luckily when James Wong and Glen Morgan they joined in, they fought to keep it that way. I think your experience working in The X-Files it helped the movie a lot. It helped them contribute a lot creatively. Bob Shaye, president and founder of New Line Cinema He asked me how I felt about them directing it and was like, “Are you kidding me? I wrote it as an episode of The X-Files and I love his job. ”

the x-files mulder scully david duchovny gillian anderson

Final Destination was close to being an episode of The X-Files. (IMDb)

Death has no form, but was there ever a moment when you gave in and designed some kind of character to embody it?

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In the final scene, the last fight between Alex, Clear, I made them see … I described it simply as a black figure, like a shadow in the dark but I did not delve. I put it there and thought, if I don’t describe it a lot and it’s a shadow … Because in the movie, Glen and James They put a shadow that moved around the bathroom and kitchen, but we never drew anything. At first there was something … Because if they can’t understand it, they will go find other people to give them solutions, and I remember there was a shot in which they had death as if he were an elegant person in a suit and a black hat, and a cane. Like it was something you would see in Supernatural, maybe. That thought crossed, but every day I appreciate that James and Glenn They made sure we never showed it. Because if you don’t show a specific reference to death with a religion or a culture, then anyone can see it. If he looks a lot like the devil, people will think of Christianity and anyone who is not a Christian will not be scared. I think that what is scary is what you do not see, and that is something of death, you never know when it will arrive. It is much more gloomy than anything you can show on the screen.

I read that they used recordings of a real plane crash. Did you have a problem with that?

It was not my decision. It was in bad taste, to be honest. It is something that we would not do today. But they were other times and we couldn’t pay for a fake plane crash. Afterwards, many people thought that we were based on that accident, but you can’t write movies that fast.

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Devon Sawa’s character died off-camera in the second film. (IMDb)

Why didn’t Devon Sawa return to the sequel?

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There were scheduling problems that bothered me. Originally, I kept them both in the script, I killed Ali Larter, but I kept the character of Devon Sawa alive at the end of the sequel. When they couldn’t square with Devon They killed him off camera in a ridiculous way. Then die Ali Larter, but if I had known that I was not coming back Devon I would have rewritten it in some way, because … It impacts and is effective, but not as much as if Alex was alive. Most films have a final girl and i wanted a final guy. I believe that Devon It gave the character a lot of depth. You never know how they will develop it. For me, if they didn’t die on camera, they aren’t dead. Devon he could have faked his death and still be there.

The second film has a much more spectacular beginning …

The funny thing is that both films had similar budgets, but I agree that the second one seems to have more money. The second was merit of David R. Ellis, which is no longer with us. He had experience with stunts. When we wrote the scene, it was three lines: “Carnage and chaos in the background”. We knew that David I was going to come up and create something much better than we could have written it. It is one of my favorite beginnings of any horror movie. Not just because it was my idea but because David did a great job. It’s not much CGI, maybe fire and bouncing logs, because you can’t orient them, but most capsizing can’t.

What was it like to think about that sequel?

When I wrote the sequel I wanted it to be an extension of the first, so you realize that the characters of the second are only alive because those of the first deceived death. My original story was that they were all adults in Final destination, he left Scream And killing teenagers was back in fashion and they said to do it with teenagers and we did it like that. With the second I proposed that I start with Kimberly and his friends, and then I kill them all except for Kimberly and you stay with the adults. That was me reversing expectations a bit and I had a lot of fun. I love that scene. You think that his friends are going to be the protagonists and then the crash.

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How do you feel to have written a film that has had such an impact on culture?

If I die tomorrow I will be happy to have made a movie that left a legacy. At 22 years old, people keep talking about her. They should give me a medal, I assure you I saved many lives with people driving. I want a medal (laughs). I definitely hoped there were sequels. They still send me pictures of trucks with logs by Twitter, I heard people in coffee shops have a “moment Final destination“You can’t imagine something like that. I thank the fans before anyone else. They shape our careers. I am also grateful to New Line, a Greg and James.

What do you know about the sequel that was announced?

I’m not involved beyond meeting the producers and the crew. I know what happens. I would love to go back if you would like to do a reboot, in my head death can have many designs. I think they didn’t get all the juice out of it like other franchises. They were developing it before the pandemic, the pandemic came and put a brake on it, and now they are developing it again. But they are finishing the scripts, they haven’t finished them yet. There’s one on the way, it’s not just rumors. We don’t know when it’s going to come out. The producer Craig Perry he really wants to have a scene with a revolving door. Surely he is, he said it already, I think it is not a spoiler. Craig He is like the godfather of the franchise.

Jeffrey Reddick’s current job

No longer direct connection to the future of Final destination, the work of Jeffrey Reddick continue on other roads. Some of them are not so tied to the world of horror and even have experience in the world of animation. But without a doubt, terror is the genre that attracts him the most and that is how it was born Don’t Look Back, the film with which he made his directorial debut. “It’s a mystery thriller about people who witness an attack in the park and don’t help, the victim dies and the witnesses are known. Someone or something starts chasing them. It is not known if it is paranormal or what. It is more mystery than terror “, he counted.

jeffrey reddick

Jeffrey recently worked with Netflix. (Getty)

The next film, as assured Reddick, will take him back to the world of terror and slasher. “I’m excited because I love the paranormal, but also the slasher. We are going to start shooting in 2022 “, revealed the director, who said that they are still in the process of searching for the cast. “They are asking me to keep the plot a secret. It has a great mystery in the middle, but there are very funny deaths “, advanced to Spoiler.

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