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Elias Koteas Discusses Matt Reeves ‘Let Me In’ And Much More!

Elias Koteas Discusses Matt Reeves ‘Let Me In’ And Much More!

Elias Koteas is part of a rare breed. It seems that he is one of the few actors in Hollywood today who is fearless when it comes to taking risks and seeking out challenging roles, all for the love of his craft. A veteran of stage, television and film, he is well into his third decade in his creative journey. In his latest film, Matt Reeves’ ‘Let Me In,’ Koteas plays an unnamed policeman who slowly discovers that he may be investigating a string of murders by no less than a vampire. Alongside newcomers Chloe Moretz and Kodi Smit-McPhee, Koteas breathes life in a character that could come across as two dimensional in less than capable hands.  Icon Vs. Icon’s Jason Price recently sat down with Koteas to discuss his career, his experiences while working on ‘Let Me In’, the process of bringing a character to life and his upcoming projects!

Tackling a career in the entertainment industry is not for the faint of heart. When did you decide to pursue a career as an entertainer as opposed to going in a different direction?

I used to watch a lot of TV and I was a huge horror movie buff growing up. It wasn’t like I excelled in school, so it was either that or end up as some kind of thief somewhere! [laughs] I don’t know, man. I was just lucky that God bestowed upon me the gift that he has. It was kind of like, “Here is what you should go do.” So I just followed that path. I don’t know if there was a moment that it all sparked but I just feel so blessed that I have had the opportunities that I have had and that I found that path early enough, ya know.

Growing up, and even today, who are some of your influences?

As far as in the movie business, I was, and still am, a huge Nick Nolte fan. Watching him on ‘Rich Man, Poor Man’ was probably the reason I wanted to become an actor. As a young acting student, you would see all of the guys from the ‘70s and I love Laurence Olivier and Montgomery Clift.

What was it about the script or the character in particular that drew you to your role in ‘Let Me In’?

Well, I could really relate to Owen’s character, being bullied at school and trying to cope with that and his dysfunctional home life. I think that is universal for a lot of us. I just really feel in love with that journey. I thought that Matt Reeves captured it beautifully in that script and I just really wanted to be a part of it.

You mentioned that you are a horror fan. Were you familiar with the book and the original film before filming?

No, I was not. I am going to try and catch it at some point. I hear that they are great and equally great in their own way. I hope that the fans of the original film are open enough to receive a different version that is equally as soulful.

For someone not familiar with the other incarnations, what can you tell us about your character?

I play a sort of broad strokes police officer who is investigating some very bizarre murders that begin to happen in his town suddenly. He is a little bit over his head perhaps. He has never seen anything like it. Metaphorically, he could be anything — perhaps a moral conscience of it slowly coming towards these to kids and what is happening to them.

With a role like this, what is your process for bringing a character that could have much less dimension in someone elses hands and make it jump from the page to the screen incorporating some of your own essence along the way?

That is a good question. What started occurring to me because the character, for all intents and purposes, could be taken out of the movie in some way, except for the last scene of the movie, and the narrative still happens. Over time, he very much started feeling like a ghost to me. This just has to do with my personalizing of things. In a lot of ways, I feel like he has gone back in time and is trying to retrace his steps to discover where he went wrong and is somehow baring witness in a very compassionate way, not only to the people around him but to himself as a soul. I started thinking of it in those terms and it started making sense to me and added relevance to me being in the room. You may or may not see that in the script, but it added a certain sort of weight to being there for me.

You mentioned the director, Matt Reeves. There is quite a buzz about him and the film itself. What was it like working with him and what do you think he brought to the project?

I have known Matt for a while. We worked together on a pilot years back. He is such a lovely soul. He is very inclusive. He has his ideas and is completely open to yours. He makes you feel that you can keep trying different things and the more the better. He created an environment that his actors could feel safe in and try a lot of different things. As an actor, that is all that you can ask for. He loved the project so much and believed in it. I think that he related the the journey of this boy as well and you knew you were in the hands of someone who had the right sensitivity for the story. It doesn’t get better than that. He is just a lovely human being.

You are also surrounded by some great young talent who play some dark roles in this film. How would you describe your experience performing with Chloe Moretz and Kodi Smit-McPhee?

You know what, I feel like kids have a real “bullshit barometer”. You can’t fool them, ya know. The kids were great. All I can do is learn from them because they are just so present. It is not like they are doing any acting because they are so young and they are so soulful that they can really imitate what they see and play. As an actor, with my so-called experience, that is really the state that I want to be in at all times. So, I had a lot to learn from them. At the end of the day, when I felt accepted by them, I felt like I had accomplished something. It was me who was humbled by them. They were effortless. Working with them, you can’t help feeling very protective of them because you are watching them at a time in their lives where they are going to change, in the film they will be forever 12 years old and it captures their essence that way. It is really something profound.

As an actor, what was the biggest challenge in making this film?

It may sound simplistic but to me sometimes just being present. I am a bit of a helium balloon and I tend to just kind of fly off, so to be in a room and be grounded and to look at things and observe them in a non-judgemental way with a passionate eye, all of those things were a challenge to me.

You have been in several films in recent years that have supernatural overtones. Being a fan of the horror genre, what has it been like for you as an actor exploring that genre?

Listen, man … I grew up watching all sorts of horror films! I could not get enough of them. I would be in front of the television as a little kid with the TV Guide in hand, just waiting for something to come on! ‘King Kong’ was my favorite. ‘Dracula,’ ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame,’ ‘Frankenstein,’ ‘The Wolfman,’ ‘Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,’ you name it! Vincent Price, Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney, he was amazing in ‘Phantom of The Opera.’ All of these guys, what they have in common is that they have so much soul that you can see their soulful struggle and somehow be part of their world. I love it! If I could fill Vincent Price’s shoes I would be a happy camper! Or more likely Lon Chaney and what he had to endure with the character he created, I love it. Not just for the sake of just slasher and horror films, you want these films to have soul. That is what I think these films have had and that is what I think ‘Let Me In’ has — a timeless soul, the need to just belong and to be a part of this world and somehow make sense of your life or why you are here. If I could carve my own little niche that way, I would be very lucky! [laughs]

You have played so many different roles throughout your career. Is there a particular type of film or genre that you are anxious to tackle in the future?

I don’t know how to answer that, man. That is a really good question. I don’t know. Just recently I just spent some time in South Africa playing in a movie called ‘Winnie’ which is based on Winnie Mandela’s life. I never in my wildest dreams thought that someone would wake up and say, “Ya know who we need to play the South African leader of the apartheid army? We need Elias!” The fact that somebody thought that is a good sign because I never thought someone would have cast me in that. It was a great time and a huge learning experience that challenged me, ya know? If more people think of me for parts like that, parts that you wouldn’t expect to see me in, that would be a blessing! I am open to anything, comedy, horror, drama, as long I feel that the character is something that I could help contribute to the storyline.

What is the best piece of advice that you have for anyone who would like to get involved in the film industry?

That is a great question. I just think that, not to be simplistic about it, you should live your life as fully as you can. Absorb and observe what is going on around you. Read voraciously. Learn an instrument. Learn as many different things as you can because the more you know about what is going on around you, the more you know about what is going on inside your heart, the fuller your instrument will be to draw from if acting and sharing a part of yourself with people is what you want to do. In retrospect, that is the biggest thing that I could say. Live your life with an open mind and a curiosity. The more the better!

I wanted to ask you about one of your early roles. You played Casey Jones in the ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ movie which is celebrating it’s 20th anniversary this year. Can you share any thoughts on your experiences with that franchise and was it as much fun as it looked?

It was a lot of fun, man! You know, you show up and you put on this outfit and you become a superhero that is talking to these Turtles! The people behind it, the creature shop, it was such a great experience. The people were so talented and friendly! At the end of the day you had to pinch yourself because you were working with these brilliant artists that were bringing these phenomenal beings to life! Seeing them brought to life was an amazing experience! I can’t believe it has been 20 years!

Well happy anniversary!

Thank you! It’s amazing!

What other projects do you have coming up that we should be on the look out for in the near future?

In addition to ‘Winnie’, there is a picture called ‘Dream House’ which is directed by Jim Sheridan and stars Daniel Craig. It is a great film that we just finished up. I will also be in ‘Harold and Kumar 3’. That was a lot of fun and it will be in 3D.

It seems you continue to have a full plate, which is great! Thanks for talking with us, Elias. We really look forward to seeing what you have in store for us in the future!

Thank you, man. It has been a pleasure talking to you!

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Two New Interactive Games For Matt Reeves’ ‘Let Me In’ Debut!

Two New Interactive Games For Matt Reeves’ ‘Let Me In’ Debut!

Overture Films has announced that two new interactive games are bringing the bone-chilling terror of “Let Me In,” the haunting and provocative thriller based on the best-selling Swedish novel Låt den Rätte Komma In (Let The Right One In), to life for iPhone and Facebook users before the movie comes to the big screen on October 1.  The games, which were developed for Overture Films by Jet Set Studios, use actual footage from the film to immerse players in the dark world of Abby, a 12-year old vampire responsible for a series of grisly murders in a wintry New Mexico town.

For as little as one friend a day, Facebook users can feed a little girl and help her live for another hundred years with the “Feed a Friend” game for Facebook. But when they sign into Facebook Connect and select one of their friends, their seemingly good deed quickly turns deadly and they are shown a series of newspaper stories featuring their friend’s face and chronicling their demise. In the “Let Me In” mobile game for iPhone/iPod, players are in a race against the clock as they solve a collection of word scrambler puzzles.  If time elapses before they correctly identify all of the words, they’re treated to a first-hand view of what it’s like to become one of Abby’s victims.  Footage from the film lends to a very realistic- and very creepy- atmosphere in both games.

The “Let Me In” mobile game is a free application available in the iTunes App Store (itms://itunes.apple.com/us/app/let-me-in/id390575930?mt=8), and is compatible with both the iPhone and iPod Touch.  The “Feed a Friend” Facebook game is available at http://www.letmein-movie.com/feedafriend

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Two Very Cool New Theatrical Posters For Matt Reeve’s ‘Let Me In’

Two Very Cool New Theatrical Posters For Matt Reeve’s ‘Let Me In’

Overture Films has released two new theatrical posters for their upcoming film, LET ME IN, which will open in theaters on October 1st, 2010. The film is directed by Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) and stars Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Road), Chloe Moretz (Kick-Ass) and Oscar® nominee Richard Jenkins (The Visitor). Check it out below and weigh in with your thoughts on the highly anticipated flick! While you are at it, be sure to check out our recent interview with Chloe Moretz at this location >

Synopsis: An alienated 12-year-old boy befriends a mysterious young newcomer in his small New Mexico town, and discovers an unconventional path to adulthood in Let Me In, a haunting and provocative thriller written and directed by filmmaker Matt Reeves (Cloverfield).

Twelve-year old Owen (Kodi Smit-McPhee) is viciously bullied by his classmates and neglected by his divorcing parents. Achingly lonely, Owen spends his days plotting revenge on his middle school tormentors and his evenings spying on the other inhabitants of his apartment complex. His only friend is his new neighbor Abby (Chloe Moretz), an eerily self-possessed young girl who lives next door with her silent father (Oscar®nominee Richard Jenkins). A frail, troubled child about Owens’s age, Abby emerges from her heavily curtained apartment only at night and always barefoot, seemingly immune to the bitter winter elements. Recognizing a fellow outcast, Owen opens up to her and before long, the two have formed a unique bond.

When a string of grisly murders puts the town on high alert, Abby’s father disappears, and the terrified girl is left to fend for herself. Still, she repeatedly rebuffs Owen’s efforts to help her and her increasingly bizarre behavior leads the imaginative Owen to suspect she’s hiding an unthinkable secret.

The gifted cast of Let Me In takes audiences straight to the troubled heart of adolescent longing and loneliness in an astonishing coming-of-age story based on the best-selling Swedish novel Lat den Ratte Komma In (Let the Right One In) by John Ajvide Lindqvist, and the highly-acclaimed film of the same name.

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New Viral Marketing For Matt Reeve’s ‘Let Me In’ – Help Crack The Code!

New Viral Marketing For Matt Reeve’s ‘Let Me In’ – Help Crack The Code!

The very unique viral marketing campaign for the upcoming film Let Me In continues! A few weeks back we reported that we received some crime scene evidence and revealed that it was tied in with the film. Today, we received a new piece of this developing puzzle in the form of a post card from the Otowi Station Science Museum in Los Alamos, New Mexico. On the back of the card is a message written in Morse Code. You can see a photo of the postcard below.

When typed out, the code appears as:

.. / –..- …- / -… . / –.— -.. /
.–. -.. / .-.. .. …- .– .– /
— .-. /…- .- -.– /
.–. -.. / -.. .. . .-.-.-

Post up with your thoughts and suggestions!

While you get those wheels turning, visit the official Let Me In website for more more information or check it on Facebook page and Twitter @letmeinthemovie.

Synopsis: “Chloe Moretz (Hit Girl from Kick-Ass) stars as Abby, a secretive 12-year old girl, who moves next door to Owen (Kodi Smit-McPhee, The Road). Owen is a social outcast who is viciously bullied at school and, in his loneliness, forms a profound bond with his new neighbor. Owen can’t help noticing that Abby is like no one he has ever met before. As a string of grisly murders occupies the town, Owen has to confront the reality that this seemingly innocent girl is really a savage vampire.

Let Me In, a haunting and provocative thriller written and directed by filmmaker Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) and produced by legendary British horror brand Hammer Films, is an astonishing coming-of-age story between a young girl and an alienated young boy unlike any other you have seen. Based on the best-selling Swedish novel Lat den Ratte Komma (Let the Right One In) by John Ajvide Lindqvist and the highly acclaimed film of the same name, Let Me In takes audiences straight to the troubled heart of adolescent longing and loneliness.”

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UK One Sheet For Matt Reeves’ ‘Let Me In’ Unveiled!

UK One Sheet For Matt Reeves’ ‘Let Me In’ Unveiled!

Overture Films has released a UK theatrical poster their upcoming film, LET ME IN, which will open in theaters on October 1st, 2010. The film is directed by Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) and stars Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Road), Chloe Moretz (Kick-Ass) and Oscar® nominee Richard Jenkins (The Visitor). Check it out below and weigh in with your thoughts on the highly anticipated flick!

Synopsis: An alienated 12-year-old boy befriends a mysterious young newcomer in his small New Mexico town, and discovers an unconventional path to adulthood in Let Me In, a haunting and provocative thriller written and directed by filmmaker Matt Reeves (Cloverfield).

Twelve-year old Owen (Kodi Smit-McPhee) is viciously bullied by his classmates and neglected by his divorcing parents. Achingly lonely, Owen spends his days plotting revenge on his middle school tormentors and his evenings spying on the other inhabitants of his apartment complex. His only friend is his new neighbor Abby (Chloe Moretz), an eerily self-possessed young girl who lives next door with her silent father (Oscar®nominee Richard Jenkins). A frail, troubled child about Owens’s age, Abby emerges from her heavily curtained apartment only at night and always barefoot, seemingly immune to the bitter winter elements. Recognizing a fellow outcast, Owen opens up to her and before long, the two have formed a unique bond.

When a string of grisly murders puts the town on high alert, Abby’s father disappears, and the terrified girl is left to fend for herself. Still, she repeatedly rebuffs Owen’s efforts to help her and her increasingly bizarre behavior leads the imaginative Owen to suspect she’s hiding an unthinkable secret.

The gifted cast of Let Me In takes audiences straight to the troubled heart of adolescent longing and loneliness in an astonishing coming-of-age story based on the best-selling Swedish novel Lat den Ratte Komma In (Let the Right One In) by John Ajvide Lindqvist, and the highly-acclaimed film of the same name.

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International Trailer For Matt Reeves ‘Let Me In’ Unveiled

International Trailer For Matt Reeves ‘Let Me In’ Unveiled

Overture Films has released an international trailer their upcoming film, LET ME IN, which will open in theaters on October 1st, 2010. The film is directed by Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) and stars Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Road), Chloe Moretz (Kick-Ass) and Oscar®nominee Richard Jenkins (The Visitor). Check it out below and weigh in with your thoughts on the highly anticipated flick!

Synopsis: An alienated 12-year-old boy befriends a mysterious young newcomer in his small New Mexico town, and discovers an unconventional path to adulthood in Let Me In, a haunting and provocative thriller written and directed by filmmaker Matt Reeves (Cloverfield).

Twelve-year old Owen (Kodi Smit-McPhee) is viciously bullied by his classmates and neglected by his divorcing parents. Achingly lonely, Owen spends his days plotting revenge on his middle school tormentors and his evenings spying on the other inhabitants of his apartment complex. His only friend is his new neighbor Abby (Chloe Moretz), an eerily self-possessed young girl who lives next door with her silent father (Oscar®nominee Richard Jenkins). A frail, troubled child about Owens’s age, Abby emerges from her heavily curtained apartment only at night and always barefoot, seemingly immune to the bitter winter elements. Recognizing a fellow outcast, Owen opens up to her and before long, the two have formed a unique bond.

When a string of grisly murders puts the town on high alert, Abby’s father disappears, and the terrified girl is left to fend for herself. Still, she repeatedly rebuffs Owen’s efforts to help her and her increasingly bizarre behavior leads the imaginative Owen to suspect she’s hiding an unthinkable secret.

The gifted cast of Let Me In takes audiences straight to the troubled heart of adolescent longing and loneliness in an astonishing coming-of-age story based on the best-selling Swedish novel Lat den Ratte Komma In (Let the Right One In) by John Ajvide Lindqvist, and the highly-acclaimed film of the same name.

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‘The Twilight Saga: Eclipse’ – First Photos From The Film Revealed

‘The Twilight Saga: Eclipse’ – First Photos From The Film Revealed

Earlier in the week, images from ‘The Twilight Saga: Eclipse’ began circulating on the web from People’s New Moon Collector’s Edition . The issue features the first pictures taken from the highly anticipated third film in the saga.

The collectors edition of People magazine hits newsstands Friday and will be available until November 30. Take a look at the latest photos below and be sure to weigh in with your thoughts on all things Twilight!

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‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ Soundtrack Release Moved Up, To Hit Stores 10/16!

‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ Soundtrack Release Moved Up, To Hit Stores 10/16!

new-moon-soundtrack-1The release date for ‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ has been pushed up a week, to October 16th, 2009. The change is due, according to label Chop Shop/Atlantic, “to overwhelming and unprecedented demand.” The original release date was slated for October 20th, 2009.

The tracklisting is as follows:

1. Death Cab For Cutie – Meet Me On The Equinox
2. Band Of Skulls – Friends
3. Thom Yorke- Hering Damage
4. Lykke Li – Possibility
5. The Killers – A White Demon Love Song
6. Anya Marina – Satellite Heart
7. Muse – I Belong To You (New Moon Remix)
8. Bon Iver and St. Vincent – Rosyln
9. Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Done All Wrong
10. Hurricane Bells – Monsters
11. Sea Wolf – The Violet Hour
12. Ok Go- Shooting The Moon
13. Grizzly Bear – Slow Life
14. Editors – No Sound But The Wind
15. Alexandre Desplat – New Moon (The Meadow)

According to Nielsen SoundScan, the soundtrack to the first movie in the Twilight saga sold 2.2 million copies.

‘New Moon’ is currently slated for a November 20th, 2009 release. ‘Twilight Saga: Eclipse,’ the third film, will begin shooting in Vancouver, Canada on August 17th, 2009. The shoot is scheduled to run until October 31st, 2009. The third film in the francise currently is slated for a June 30, 2010 release.

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‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ – New Photo Surfaces Via Twitter!

‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ – New Photo Surfaces Via Twitter!

A new image from the highly anticipated ‘The Twilight Saga’s New Moon’ has hit the web and it features the sequel’s three major characters, Robert Pattinson’s Edward, Kristen Stewart’s Bella and Taylor Lautner’s Jacob. The production photo was put out through the newly-launched official Twitter page for “Twilight”. You can follow them at www.twitter.com/twilight.

Untitled Sports Movie

‘New Moon’ is currently slated for a November 20th, 2009 release.

‘Twilight Saga: Eclipse,’ the third film, is curently shooting in Vancouver, Canada. The shoot is scheduled to run until October 31st, 2009. The third film in the francise currently is slated for a June 30, 2010 release.

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‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ – Over 70 Photos Hit The Web!

‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ – Over 70 Photos Hit The Web!

Fans of ‘The Twilight Saga: New Moon’ are once again in luck as over 70 new photos from the film have now hit the web, thanks to the good folks over at www.filmofilia.com! Check out a few key shots below and visit www.filmofilia.com for the rest of the goods!

‘New Moon’ is currently slated for a November 20th, 2009 release.

‘Twilight Saga: Eclipse,’ the third film, is curently shooting in Vancouver, Canada. The shoot is scheduled to run until October 31st, 2009. The third film in the francise currently is slated for a June 30, 2010 release.

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