Q&A – Daybreakers’ Willem Dafoe Says He’s a Natural Vampire

Willem Dafoe is no stranger to vampire movies — he was nominated for an Academy Award for Shadow of the Vampire, for his portrayal of Max Schreck as a way-beyond-Method actor during the filming of Nosferatu. In Daybreakers, his vampire Elvis (no, not that one) is a little more subdued if no less colorful. Dafoe explains what attracts him to the vampire myth, and how he picks his many eclectic parts.

Q: If someone looked at your body of work, from your appearance in The Hunger to Shadow of the Vampire to Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant to Daybreakers, they might think you have a vampire fixation.

A: Ah! You could also say I have a war fixation. That also recurs in my work, soldiers. And religious people. But the vampire myth, it’s durable, it’s flexible, so the myth gets recycled, reused. And there’s lots of different kinds of vampire movies. I don’t have a fixation, but let’s face it: I’m a guy who’s a good type for these kinds of things. And this movie, while it’s not orchestrated to a particular message, it’s got stuff. It’s got content. It’s evocative. The father/daughter relationship, with all the vampirism, it’s all very sexual. There’s stuff about the drug company. And running out of blood brings everyone’s mind to oil. And even if you’re not talking about oil, on some level, you’re talking about using stuff up. It’s part of our fears, our psyche. So obviously the vampire myth can be used as a metaphor for lots of things: Sex, politics, and immortality. These are big themes for me!


“Spider-Man:” Who Will Play Peter Parker?

Yesterday, Sony Pictures sent out a press release announcing that director Sam Raimi and the cast of “Spider-Man 4” were no longer involved in making the next Spidey film, and a script from writer James Vanderbilt would reboot their Spider-Man franchise. With Raimi and his crew now out of the picture, Sony’s announcement provided few details about the project but did throw out one hint – the film that will replace “Spider-Man 4” when it hits theaters in 2012 will rewind to spotlight Peter Parker as a teenager.


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Willem Defoe is just awesome. What did you think of his performance in Daybreakers?

Do you like the suggested actors/actresses for Spiderman? Who are your picks for those parts and why?