Nacho Vigalondo on Timecrimes, and How To Land A Car On A UFO

Cult genre savior and Sundance darling Nacho Vigalondo took time out to talk to us about his brilliant time travel movie, Timecrimes. There's a lot of buzz around this film and its time-looping main character Hector. We've got a deeper look at the movie, coming out next year in select theaters, with an exclusive clip here. Read on for an interview with Vigalondo, who breaks down his traveling hero and chats about his latest project Ramp, about one man's dream to jump his car onto a UFO.Why did you want to make a movie about time travel? I'm a devoted science fiction fan. I'm really into that kind of stuff from novels to films. Into the genre of science fiction this sort of genre, time travel it was one of the most challenging genres you can work. Because you can not repeat the same thing that has been done already you're forced to be original. And at the same time you have to work on scary stuff that is funny at the same time. This for me is the quest that is making this kind of film. What kind of science fiction inspired you to write this type of film? For example my inspiration from this film came from the books of Philip K Dick and other writers that took it to the edge. But as far as movies the movie I have on my laptop all the time is Psycho by Alfred Hitchcock. Most of his films they have situations that are both pretty dark but also pretty silly. The Birds is a movie that can be a pretty dark horror film but at the same time it is a comedy because it's about birds attacking people. But if you're looking for closer examples to this type of film I must say that I was in love with Twelve Monkeys when it first came out. I love that kind of structure and I love that kind of film and I was impressed with how it was such a depressing tale but the whole thing was filled with jokes. A lot of your previous work is very funny, is that necessary in your films? I like to work with comedy but not from the script. If you read the Timecrimes script there aren't any jokes in the script. But I love to shoot things as if they were a comedy. If I can use the camera or the elements to find the comedy element in a situation, that's something I can not avoid. I love to work with comedy but from the film making not from the script. Well in your opinion what was the best off the cuff moments in Timecrimes then? One of the funniest moments is when the character Hector falls onto his knees. And the second guy falls on his knees again, and when I was making the movie I could not help but find the ridiculous element in it. Was it difficult to take Hector down that dark path? I knew this wasn't going to be a great movie in terms of money or budget or in terms of special effects. I knew the special effect would be the script itself that was great. So I worked on it very many times it went through many different drafts. The character of Hector was pretty difficult to work with in the script. It was also pretty difficult to work with the actor because he's an average person and at the same time he's a psycho killer and at the same time he is something else. I think his work is brilliant because he managed to play different roles but at the same time he's playing the same role. You really beat the hell out of Hector, do you have a lot of fun doing that as well? Oh yes of course, if you don't have a lot of fun making films then you should not make films. Did you enjoy watching Hector commit crimes and become what he is in the end of the movie? I love it because when you are making a story (this is difficult to explain even in Spanish [Laughs]) when you are playing with a good versus evil idea in a story but in an obtuse way...I love the fact that a character that the character can be the good guy and the bad guy at the same time. I love it when you're dealing with that stuff. Instead of dealing with the traditional story where you have the good character and the bad character. I love to play with ambiguity and this kind of weakened psychology. Do you think that Hector is representative of any person, like that is inside of all of us? That's a good question because he is an average person but he is hiding something terrible. I think that a character with contradictions and ambiguity is a more realistic character plain good or plain bad. I'm afraid to say that Hector is a good representation of an average person. But at the same time I believe in complicated characters more than plain characters. This is such a time loopy story, did you have difficulty writing this script? I made a lot of drafts with the scripts. I made 12 or 13 different drafts of the script trying to put them all together. But the shooting was also difficult. You have to be very careful what you're showing and at the same time you have to be very careful as to what you're hiding. I read that Tom Cruises' United Artists purchased the rights to Timecrimes, have you heard anything about the remake? Are you worried about Hollywood getting involved with the project and changing everything? The people involved with the remake of the script are awesome. Timothy J. Sexton the writer from Children Of Men, one of my favorite films last year. I feel very honored, this is my first feature, this is my first experience in feature film making. I feel so amazed that these people want to do a remake. This will really help me with my career in the United States so I can not help but thank these people. How is work on the remake coming can you give us an update? I can tell you that I had the remake script in my hands, but I didn't read it. I can't even tell you the number of pages. I had it in my hands but I didn't open it yet. We're all really excited for your new UFO and car jumping movie Ramp, how is that going? I'm just writing the third draft right now and once I finish it I'm going to show it to the world, so let's cross our fingers and lets see what happens. But right now it's not a project that has been looked at by anyone yet, it's a project I'm writing but I have to finish it in less than a month. Seriously the idea for this movie could be one of the best ideas I've heard in a long time, can you tell our readers what it's about? It's about a giant ramp it's about a guy who is going to use the ramp with a car and he's going to jump off the ramp and land on top of a UFO. He's going to make contact. Think of the classic UFO shape it's ready for us to fall onto it. Oh yeah what kind of car are you going to launch? It has to be a very light car, it's a little car, if you use a Hummer you will destroy the UFO. What is your fascination with UFOs? Well not only in The Ramp but UFOs have appeared in many of my scripts I'm not interested in UFO-ology in in the real UFO or real close encounters. But I'm interested in UFOs as a pop culture icon. So do we get to see little green men? That is a question I'm not allowed to answer. I heard you were looking to work with zombies next? I made my time travel story and now I want to make my zombie movies my superhero story and my ghost movie. I want to be close to the horror to the scifi and to the thriller. The release date for Timecrimes is December 12.

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timecrimes had better rock. I've only been waiting for it for like a year already.