This past weekend I was invited to “a journey into the Amazon with The Green Inferno” at the San Diego Comic-Con. It was a great and exiting event. In attendance was the cast and filmmakers. Displays were set up recreating the rainforest, and we were shown awesome exclusive video from the film.
I had a chance to interview both director Eli Roth and the star of the film Lorenza Izzo.
Here’s how the interview with Izzo went.
Louis Love: Is that you on the poster?
Lorenza Izzo: Yeah. Well, it depends on what poster because we have a lot of versions here today.
Louis Love: Can you talk about your character Justine?
Lorenza Izzo: Yes! I play the lead. I play the girl that leads the audience into the activism trip. She’s a very privileged girl that goes to an Ivy League school in New York and she wants to give back. She feels guilty. She finds this very attractive Latin leader of an activist group and she’s like that’s my chance. She follows him down to Peru, not knowing much about it. This happens in the real world and not just the movie. There’s these isolated tribes (who have no contact with modern civilization) and villages that live in the Amazon that are said to be cannibals. That we don’t know much of, but that are being killed by deforestation. They get their towns taken away and they don’t know how to deal with the normal urban life. That’s what we do in the movie. These kids are with a really good cause that goes down there. They actually go down there to protest. They tie themselves to bull dozers and everything. As they’re flying back to New York their plane crashes and lands in the middle of the Amazon on one of these tribe houses. They see them as intruders and get their asses handed to themselves.
Lorenza Izzo: Have you seen the movie yet by the way?
Louis Love: No I have not, but I’m really excited.
Lorenza Izzo: Just so I can say enough. I don’t want to ruin it.
Louis Love: The tagline is “No good deed goes unpunished.”
Lorenza Izzo: Yes!
Louis Love: I love that.
Lorenza Izzo: Right!
Louis Love: Who’s idea was that?
Lorenza Izzo: I’m half Chilean so it took me a while to understand it. It’s a social commentary, a bit on our society in general. There is a thing that has been going on for a few years of self righteousness. Slacktivism we call it slow activism. Which is I’m going to retweet this cause because it looks like I care about it. The problem is they have good intentions. Let’s respect that if you retweet something if you don’t know anything about it. This movie touches it’s like Kony in 2012. These guys go down there without doing all their research. Without understanding how this tribe works. They think that they’re higher. This is white privilege almost. We are going down and oh we’re going to save these guys because they need our help. Maybe they do need someone’s help, but I don’t know if it’s yours if you haven’t really researched your shit. You know what I mean? That’s what it alludes to when they say “no good deed goes unpunished.” They think they’re doing something good, but honey if you’re not going to do the real research it’s not going to work out. For me that’s what was so powerful about this script. It’s so alive. I’m glad that after 2-3 years now, this film really works. The self righteous level of this country especially, you can’t say anything without getting backlash of an immense amount. The freedom of speech has turned into something completely the opposite. That’s why I think this movie is very cool. It touches a nerve very alive now and it’s also a hell of a ride visually and the emotional experience. It’s a horror movie that is in day light in the amazon. I promise you there’s nothing like it. – Nothing!
Louis Love: Absolutely. Worth the 3 year wait.
Lorenza Izzo: Completely, even more.
Louis Love: Should I eat before the film? ( Laughs )
Lorenza Izzo: My only suggestion is do not eat before the film. You will not eat after either. Just wait. ( Laughs )
Louis Love: Is it true that this film has nothing on Jenny Craig as far as diets?
Lorenza Izzo: Nothing. ( Laughs )
Louis Love: If you want to go on the truth diet go Green Inferno!
Louis Love: Have you been a horror fan for a while?
Lorenza Izzo: I’ve done a lot of horror movies now. I’ve been called the “scream queen” even, which I love. I was actually not into horror until I met Eli and these guys. I’ve sort of dived into it and found so much interesting history. There’s a thing about genres. In genres it’s just different kinds of stories. That’s how I look at them in general, but there is a sort of awesome thing about horror in particular. It translates universally. A comedy from one particular country might not read in another one, where as fear reads everywhere. There’s something really cool about being able to be scared and scream in a safe realm. I feel like in society we’re so used tobeing outside and walking around (it’s all good). Where as now when you watch a football game or a soccer game you scream and you get excited and that’s accepted, but if someone comes and you cry because that’s not manly or you can’t scream because that’s too girly. You have all these but, where as in a movie theater if you watch a horror movie and get scared and scream all you want it’s all good. Horror, it’s one of the fastest traveling genres there are.
Louis Love: My last question is what’s next for you? I know Eli Roth is one of the top guys for horror films. He’s working on a film called Meg. Are you involved in that or what’s next for you?
Lorenza Izzo: Him and I are parting ways right now. I love working with him. We’re definitely going to work again. Right now we both want to take a step and dive into different things. Eli’s done horror. He’s the king of horror in my eyes, but he’s going in a different direction. Knock Knock was the last movie we shot together. It’s not a horror at all. It’s a thriller, very psychological, very erotic, and sexual. It’s a very cool movie and elevated in a different way. We’re slowing diving into different areas. I have a couple projects coming up. I have a movie out on Netflix right now. It’s a romantic comedy called SexEd with Haley Joel Osment. That was really fun. I actually do romantic comedies too.
The Green Inferno opens in theaters on September 25, 2015