Interview with Ate de Jong (Drop Dead Fred) talking about his upcoming feature, Deadly Virtues being released by Artsploitation Films this coming February.
Genesis of the film-
In February of 2013 Raindance founder Elliot Grove discovered the script writt
en by an outcast from
a MA in screenwriting, Mark Rogers, who suffers from Cerebral Palsy and Asperger Syndrome
unlikely combination of afflictions for a screenwriter.
Ate de Jong, the cult director of classics such as
Drop Dead Fred
(Working Title Films) and
(starring Ben Stiller) immediately agreed to take this project on. It is de Jong
s 20th feature.
Director Ate de Jong:
"The script was so scary and haunting, I couldn't stop reading. And after I
finished I changed the locks on my door. Then I looked in the mirror and wondered, how much in me
is Tom, how much the intruder?
Ate de Jong is known as an
and spent the two weeks in the run up to production
work shopping with the lead cast.
De Jong says:
The script is probably the best I have seen in thirty years in the business. Mark Rogers
has managed to convey the angst of his own personal situation into a modern post-feminist morality
tale. My work with actors enables them to find their character in the story as
well as to learn to work
with each other. I am very pleased with the cast we have attracted to this project. "
On working with Mark Rogers, director Ate de Jong says:
"Mark is an extraordinary man in many more ways than one. Communication with him is
awkward. We never directly talked, accept for once for ten minutes. The word
shyness gets a new
meaning when you deal with Mark. We only
via e-mail. But then he stunned me every time
again with his deep understanding of the dark side of human behavior. Mark took a little time
before he dared to defend his work, in the beginning he was too much in awe of me (he worshiped
Drop Dead Fred
). Once he got over that hurdle we worked like equals. Whenever I suggested
something he either liked it or didn't and gave good arguments for both. I have a deep respect for
his talents which is the basis of good collaboration"