Italian auteur Luca Guadagnino (“Call Me by Your Name”) has been a long time fan of Dario Argento’s famed 1977 cult film “Suspiria”. Now, over forty years after it hit cinemas, he has remade it and taken the cult film in a new and quite different direction to the original.
Set to have its world premiere in Venice this coming weekend ahead of an October release, the new film takes place in Berlin in 1977 and tells the story of a gifted dancer (Dakota Johnson) who joins a dance school run by a coven of witches.
Speaking with THR about his aims for the remake, he says the main goal is pure unadulterated fright:
“I hope that the movie comes across as a relentless experience that’s going to go deep into your skin all the way down into your spine. I want the movie to perform as the most disturbing experience you can have. The movie is about being immersed in a world of turmoil and uncompromising darkness.”
Guadagnino dismisses claims of actress Tilda Swinton playing the role of Dr. Jozef Klemperer in the film, saying it’s very much an 82-year-old German man with no previous acting credits:
“No, no. It’s Lutz Ebersdorf. There was all this talk about Tilda playing the role and it came out of nowhere and I don’t know why… I always like to cast people that are not necessarily actors. If you think of Call Me by Your Name, I asked this lady that I saw bicycling in the countryside, Vanda Capriolo, to play Mafalda, and now she plays a role in Suspiria. I like to think out of the box.”
He also confirms he and musician Thom Yorke started working on the soundtrack even before they started shooting, and Argento himself has seen the film.