peacock original movie they themPronounced “de-slash-them”, is a slasher horror film set in an LGBTQIA+ adaptation camp, and is executive produced, written, and directed. John Logan (“penny Dreadful”).
Whistler Camp is named after owner and director Owen Whistler, played by Kevin Bacon, a prolific actor unafraid to play antagonistic characters. And yes, an actor who has a history with the summer camp slashers.
Ahead of they them‘s release on peacock Friday, August 5Bloody Disgusting spoke with the actor about his deceptive character, playing the villain, and his enduring love of the horror genre at large.
Teased in marketing, Bacon’s Owen Whistler kicked off Logan’s slasher with a spirited, charismatic speech to the campers to come. It is a long monologue that impresses both the audience and the characters. That is by design; Owen is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
Bacon says of this and of his ability to portray opponents: “I feel like you put your finger on that, which is hidden under a mask because to me this is what happens when a character becomes complex. And gets interesting. I don’t necessarily always play with the bad guys. Some people go, ‘Well, aren’t they the funniest?’ And they are not necessary. But what if they’re complicated, and if what you see on the surface probably isn’t happening beneath it, that’s interesting to me. This character is a very good example of that.,
Owen Whistler comes across as very unusual from what you might expect from a conversion camp director. When asked about developing Owen, Bacon replied, “John Logan and I talked a lot about making him anything but what you would expect in terms of who ran this camp. That crew cut , long beard, Bible-thumping or not wearing a MAGA hat. He’s going to be soft, logical, gentle and soothing around the edges. What would ultimately be a lot scarier than being a drill sergeant in this position? So there we went. And we leaned into that in a lot of ways. I lean into the backstories in it, some of which you don’t see. Leaned into the rhythm, and the hair, and the makeup, and the wardrobe and everything about it.
The actor continued, “But personally, there was also a moment that had nothing to do with the character which was really very inspiring for me. That’s when I first stepped out. It was the first scene we did. The film was shot in. We have specially set it up so that it is the first thing that everyone experiences. I went outside, and I saw this group of all these young people, who are often presented in films with little to no authenticity, that John had brought together and a fairly extensive search in terms of finding them. that were authentic. A film is being made about him here. I found it, personally, very inspiring that it came together.,
The concept of Kevin Bacon in the summer camp slasher often calls for Friday the 13 Considering, one of the early roles of the actor. The slasher and horror have seen tremendous growth in the years since, and Bacon reflects on that. Bacon touches on the subversion of slasher tropes and maintains an unwavering worship of terror.
He explains to BD, “It’s definitely evolved. As you know, there are many different genres of horror. Monsters, slashers, psychological horror, religious-based horror, zombies, and all kinds of different things. But in slasher mode this movie is made very specifically, a lot of the people who die are people who society considered immoral in some way. They’re also, or dumb, or overweight, or gay. Or, in my case, I died because I had sex before marriage and smoked a joint. And you knew it was going to happen.
“In this case, you’re taking it and flipping it, turning it on your ear, and at the same time, delivering it in a package that, as you know, is where you work, He remains accessible and interesting and appealing to a very, very large audience. It’s a style I love, and I’ll keep coming back to it forever. Both as a consumer and as an actor.,