By: Orlok666
Date: July 18, 2012

Interview with Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (Intruders, 28 Weeks Later)

After some years of absence since his last full feature film "28 Weeks Later" Juan Carlos Fresnadillo returns with the psychological horror film "Intruders". It is a tale that essentially deals with primal fear and family bonds.
SlashingThrough had the opportunity to chat with the director of "Intruders", who is now attached to the "Highlander" reboot.

It’s been a while since your last film "28 weeks later".
Was it hard getting back to the front and making a new feature length film?

I think it is very important as a maker to invest time and I usually take my own time in making a film, and finding the right way to make a film.
You have to take time in writing a screenplay and then you see that it is a possible film. On the other hand you have to look for a lot of things when making a movie, especially in a movie like “Intruders” which is comes from some personal experiences. I needed to do it in a quite calm, quiet and easy way, which takes time. When you share something with the audience which is personal you want to do your best and for that you have to work a lot.

Juan Carlos Fresnadillo

What attracted you to directing "Intruders"?

It was the idea of sharing with the audience a very personal feeling that I ended up with when I was writing the screenplay. I have the feeling that when you were a child and you experience the first nightmares in your life sometimes those nightmare are connected with your family. It gave me the idea that fear is an inheritance, a legacy. Specifically, when I was a kid I remember that there were some secrets in my family that my father didn’t tell me and years later I realized that those secrets were affecting my life at that time. That disturbing feeling that my parents decided not to tell me, that they wanted to protect me from the ugly truth became a haunting thing for me.
As a child you are absorbing everything from your parents, including the dark things so I found a turning point in my life at that moment. And I think that was showing to me that there is a connection between your first nightmares and some dark places from your family.

How were you involved with the screenplay of “Intruders”?

The screenplay was written by other writers but I was completely involved in working with them because there was a personal feelings that get me into it. Because the film takes such a humanistic approach to fear. This way I got more close with the actors.

When you write you have a tendency to fall in love with everything you write and then this love becomes a resistance to change. In my previous movies I remember the idea of avoiding the change of lines or changing the setting because I was so I love with what I wrote. With “Intruders” that would be a mistake because the film was almost written again with the actors, I needed to do that in order to make the characters believable and to add some real flesh and bone to the film.

That is the reason I put myself a bit more away from the writing process in order to not being in love with everything that was written in the story. I have the freedom to change everything I need and everything that we did during the rehearsals.

Intruders Hollowface

Both stories show different ways how the parents deal with their children’s fears for ‘Hollowface’. The Spanish story uses religion and the English storyline psychology.
Was that also more of a challenge for you showing the 2 angles of dealing with ‘Hollowface’?

Yes, I loved the idea of showing different ways of dealing with a problem. Sometimes we go to religion or we go to science in order to cure or solve the problem. That was a very important thing to share with the audience: to solve some problems in your life these are problems you have to face yourself and in this particular case nor science nor religion can help. To get rid of the problem you have to visit your own dark places and the only person who can do that is yourself.

What was the process in creating ‘Hollowface’; how did you decide to give him the appearance?

The appearance of “Hollowface” in this movie comes from the concept of the film itself. I think this film is about a mystery, the identity of somebody. I was attracted by the idea so why not you use it in the visual appearance of the monster in the film. You don’t see the face, creating for the audience a the question ‘who is this?’.

The concept of the film was helping me creating the idea that sometimes the things in the darkness, the things you can’t see are often more scry that the things you can see. The darkness becomes the place where you put your worst fears. That’s why we ended up with the visual department creating a monster without a face because the idea was the play with the identity on one level and on the other level the scary thing in the dark.

Thank you very much for the interview!

Thank you as well!

Check out our review for Intruders


Monsters have dominated cinema history for years see what we found top of the line monsters. Check it out