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Christian Slater Talks "Freaky" To Us

Freaky Deaky star Christian Slater emailed us the inside skinny on his latest film, based on the Elmore Leonard novel. We're hip to his jive.

Tribeca: What attracted you to Freaky Deaky? Were you a fan of Elmore Leonard to begin with?

Christian Slater: I was very excited to get the chance to be a part of Freaky Deaky. I’ve always loved the Elmore Leonard style and have always been a fan of his quirky style and the characters he creates. I haven't seen the final version, but we had a lot of fun recreating the ’70s and Elmore Leonard’s vision.

TRIBECAIn the film, you play Skip Gibbs, a former ’60s radical turned Hollywood dynamite expert. How did you prepare for the role?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: I concentrated more on being as freaky and fun as possible with the character of Skip. I've always been a fan of the time period, so I just immersed myself in the books I already owned.

TRIBECAWas creating the Skip Gibbs look a collaborative effort? Did you have input into the process?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: I did work with the hair, make up and wardrobe people to create the look. I was thrilled with the sunglasses the prop department had... and the recreation of the film crew jacket.

TRIBECAMany of your scenes include the lovely Breanne Racano, who plays the fiery Robin Abbott, though you get to work with other members of the fine cast as well. What was it like working with this talented ensemble cast?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: I just enjoyed every scene with all the actors. Plus, I have always been a huge Crispin Glover fan!

TRIBECAYou always bring so much energy to the characters you play, whether the venue is film or television. Were you able to improv at all in this role? Was there much (or any) rehearsal time?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: For me, it's all about the energy I bring to any project. I've been doing my best to bring as much of myself to everything I do, no matter what that is. During Freaky Deaky, we would improvise on set and we did have some rehearsal time. But these actors were all very professional, so it was easy to coordinate scenes with everyone. I only really needed to improv once, when I pretended to trip with the bomb.

TRIBECAWhat's the craziest thing (or "lightning strikes" moment) that happened during production?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: Michael [Jai White]’s reactions were the lightning.

TRIBECA: Freaky Deaky has such a wicked sense of humor. In one of my favorite scenes, Skip goes into the drug store to buy condoms and halfway through the transaction haphazardly decides to rob the place. Can you talk about filming that sequence?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: That was the first scene I participated in. We just went for it. Pretending to be on acid helped to justify whatever insanity we wanted to capture.

TRIBECACharles Matthau is such a talented writer/director. Did you enjoy your collaborative process?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: I did! I was really happy to get the chance to work with Mr. Matthau. He is a lovely man!

TRIBECAIf you could work with your “dream director” (alive or dead), who would it be?


TRIBECAWhat’s your favorite New York movie?


TRIBECAWhat would your biopic be called?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: The man who would be King.

TRIBECAWhat makes FREAKY DEAKY a Tribeca must-see?

CHRISTIAN SLATER: From what I understand, the Festival chooses risky and fun independent projects. That's what this is.


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