Pretorius

A macabre story about a man and his love; a decomposing body in a red dress. But the more time he spends with her, the more control she gains.

Director’s Statement

My film career has followed a fairly simple mantra; make films that I want to see. In making Pretorius, this idea was followed right to the letter. In fact, the films that inspired Pretorius are the very stories that got me hooked on filmmaking in the first place. I’m obsessed with the Universal monsters. Frankenstein, Dracula, and the Mummy, to be specific. These films grabbed me by the collar as a young child, and they have yet to let go. I saw Pretorius as a way to pay homage to these films, all while implementing my own style onto the image.

Keeping those ideas in mind, it was also important for me to strain myself, to try something new. There is nothing worse in art than an artist who falls into complacency. So, my cinematographer and I brokered a deal to shoot with an Array Alexa and a kit of anamorphic lenses; a first for me. We wanted to give the space a sense of depth, even when the characters are so intimate. This juxtaposition is very interesting to me, and I feel like this story is the perfect canvas for that experiment.

Staying along with the experiment idea, there is one truth in regards to Pretorius that I cannot wait to uncover; whether or not people will actually like the film. I have no idea! Discovering the project along with the audience, and discussing new ideas is what art is all about is something that I welcome with open arms. I often find myself learning more about my projects long after they are completed.

I have had success with feature films and short films, but Pretorius is my favorite film to date. I hope audiences will be able to watch it critically, forcing new ideas and second viewings. Maybe next time I’ll make a project that’s a little more on the nose. But probably not.