First of all I would like to say that seasoning of the soul is a fantastic movie. The experience was thrilling to say the least. We would like to wish you all the best for the movie. How and when did you come up with a story like this? Tell us something about the origin of the movie. What were the thoughts that constructed a strange tale like this?
This storyline was written in 2016. The essence of power and control. The Gatekeepers who are able to give and take the power use their money and influence. The Players who desire power will do anything to gain and maintain a status of power. There is a song from David Bowie’s ‘Young Americans’ album called “Somebody Up There Likes Me” that is the inspiration for the character of Croix, the Ultimate Gatekeeper.
The story delves into the realm of the absurd. The absurd as envisioned by Gogol, Kafka and even Samanta Schweblin. The absurd in the movie however is bleaker and more ominous, closer to the stories of Schweblin than the ones by Gogol or Kafka. Was there a distant admiration and perhaps inspiration that you kept in mind while writing the story?
My inspiration is the human attribute that seems to be innate: to be known, idolized, admired. It crosses all phases of everyday life. There seems to be a genuine need to “be the best”, “make a difference”, “be rich and famous” in this one life that we are given. What if the normal way of acquiring power is not available? How far would someone go to achieve their goal. I love the phrase “sell your soul”. It seems to be a form of currency that has lasted through the centuries and is accepted everywhere.
The movie also reminded me of Eraserhead by David Lynch. Lynch dexterously explored the realms of the absurd in his movies. What is your favourite David Lynch movie? Did you like watching his movies? Did they ever make you feel uncomfortable?
I haven’t seen David Lynch’s movie Eraserhead. I have heard that there is a lot of symbolism in his style of writing and that is very appealing to me. I will make a point of watching some of his movies very soon. I am looking forward to exploring the absurd and feeling uncomfortable.
What would be that one movie that you don’t mind watching over and over again? Something that you are never tired of watching and even suggest it to friends.
I have favorite movies that fit that category. “Music Box”, “Constantine”, “The Professional”, “Boys of Brazil” are at the top of that list.
The story gyrates around a couple of politicians who are in the middle of a negotiation. However, one was them was surprised to meet a different person from the one she was supposed to meet.
Tell us something about the characters and what were the specific thoughts behind constructing these characters?
Senator Kean is a politician who has aspirations of becoming President. His brother currently holds that position. I wondered what it would be like to always be “second best” and stand in the shadow of an older brother. Senator Kean, his brother and his cousin have sold their souls for the taste of power. Croix wants Senator Kean to convince Deborah Shapiro to form an Alliance.
Deborah Shapiro is a top-notch lawyer who has aspirations to elevate her status to Attorney General. She has run three unsuccessful campaigns and in the last year lost major cases to Croix’s firm. I wondered what it would be like to keep trying to forge ahead on your goals but the “traditional way” doesn’t work. Deborah’s opinion of Croix is negative and could impede his reputation. He would prefer to give her what she wants so she will not hinder him from his goal to destroy the House of Man.
Tell us something about the title of the movie. There is a certain sense of razzmatazz attached to the title. Something that would immediately attract an intrigued mind, it would make the viewers curious about the nature of the narrative.
I think in the negotiation of the selling of the soul, the deal needs to be advantageous on both sides. Adding seasoning and sweetening the terms would satisfy both parties.
Tell us something about the performances in the movie. The characters are presented as apparent foils to each other at times and at times they are more similar to each other than they can imagine. They do an impeccable job in driving the narrative forward.
Matthew Tarricone (Senator Rolan Kean) and Kathryn Neville Browne (Deborah Shapiro) were excellent in playing the roles.
I needed Senator Kean to be under duress. He incorporated a nervous tick into his character that played well in the scene.
I needed Deborah Shapiro to be ready for an aggressive meeting with Croix. Although she was surprised to see Senator Rolan, she wasn’t “star struck” and didn’t fall for the sweet talk. She held her ground and even “rolled her eyes” at the Senator’s comments about her past cases.
A specific object plays the most important role in the movie. The dining table, wine glasses and empty dishes suggested a certain occurrence. However, little could be known about the appearance of the specific ‘object’ towards the end of the film. How would you interpret the appearance of the object?
After Deborah’s acceptance (initiated by Croix’s touch), a meal with a distinct taste that could only be served by Croix would make sure that the Alliance would be formed.
The human delicacy compliments their addiction for power and will keep them in line.
There is of course a domineering presence of symbols and metaphors in your movie. The most potent being the concept of power. Through the conversation between the characters did you present a critique of power and exploitation in the movie? Did the object serve a special metaphorical function in the movie as well? Tell us something about the dialogue between the two, about the alliance that they decided to form and their not so obvious ‘ meal ‘.
Senator Rolan Kean needs to convince Deborah Shapiro that she should form an Alliance with Croix. Senator Kean is a spokesperson for Croix but he is “in too deep” and has to bring Deborah to a “yes”.
It will be revealed later that they were not alone. The Senator knew that Croix was there and watching the conversation. He also knew that he needed to change Deborah’s mind or else he would be the next meal.
The movie can be classified as a brilliant take on modern horror. Where ghosts have been replaced by human beings because of the humongous amount of nefarious intent in them. You have spoken of a domain where powerful individuals feast on the cadavers of powerless people. The movie is a subtle take on oppression, corruption and exploitation. Don’t you agree?
I agree. Throughout the series, power is the dominating theme. Acquiring and rising to power, maintaining, and resolving to never lose it. The amount of energy on a minute by minute, daily looking over your shoulder and not trusting anyone – what a toll that must take on someone. It is a roadmap to losing your humanity and insanity.
“Croix – The Prequel”, part of the Amoral Collective that includes “Rise of the Acceniri”, Ombré Ma Fí”, “Eridiati – A Different Type of Vampire” and “Amoral”.