Tuesday, December 5, 2023
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‘Thanksgiving’ filmmaker Eli Roth puts his twisted spin on the holiday

Stewart Cook/Getty Images for Sony Pictures

You may never look at Thanksgiving the same way again. The horror movie Thanksgiving opens this weekend, co-written and directed by Eli Roth.

The film started as a fake trailer for a movie in the 2007 film Grindhouse, and Roth tells ABC Audio for years people would tell him he had to turn that trailer into an actual movie.

Jeff Rendell, who I wrote it with, we grew up in Massachusetts, where Thanksgiving is a very, very, very big deal. I mean, there’s school plays,” he recalls. “So we would always think like, Oh, what if you roasted someone in a human oven? And what if at the parade … someone chopped off the guy in the turkey costume’s head and he ran around like a turkey with his head chopped off?”

A great starting point, says Roth, but it took him a while to figure out the actual plot.

Once we started seeing these videos of the Black Friday tramplings,” he shares … It’s about the perversion of the holiday. It’s about the greed of how we all pretend to be thankful but we really just want to kill someone for a flat screen television,” he explains.

Roth jokes that he wants to change the way people see the holiday, saying, “I want someone to go, you know, dinner is served and reveal to a human turkey. I just feel like it should be one of those things that people joke about and make reference to and make TikToks about at their own family dinner. I want to ruin the holiday. It’s time.”

Thanksgiving stars Patrick DempseyAddison RaeMilo ManheimJalen Thomas BrooksNell VerlaqueRick Hoffman, and Gina Gershon.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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