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Exclusive: Nora Arnezeder On the Maniac Remake With Elijah Wood

Nora Arnezeder on ManiacOut on the press circuit for the upcoming thriller Safe House, starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds, actress Nora Arnezeder spoke to Shock Till You Drop about her turn in Maniac.

The film is the latest remake from Alexandre Aja and Gregory Levasseur – the team behind The Hills Have Eyes, Piranha 3D and Mirrors.  Here, with director Franck Khalfoun, they tackle the William Lustig ’80s splatterfest, also called Maniac, which originally starred Joe Spinell.  

The redo, which was shot last month in Los Angeles, stars Elijah Wood (The Lord of the Rings).

You’ve taken the role of Anna in the Maniac remake. Have you seen the original?

Nora Arnezeder: You know what, I’m gonna watch it. I didn’t want to watch it before I did this because the movie we shot with Elijah Wood is going to be a very different direction. I didn’t want to be stuck in the first version, you know what I mean? It’s going to be so different, shot in POV. Elijah Wood is something that is half-angel/half-devil, so you don’t expect him as a killer/maniac, but I’m telling you, he’s the man! He’s the man for that movie, it’s going to be fantastic. Also, I love Alexandre Aja [the screenwriter] and horror movies when they’re well made. Aja did all my favorite horror movies. Also, Franck Khalfoun is the director, very talented, very modern rock ‘n roll guy. It was so cool. We shot it in downtown LA, and it’s kind of a psychological movie with a maniac. You’re inside the maniac, and it’s very interesting. 

I watched the original recently, and the main character as played by Joe Spinell was unbelievably scuzzy yet winds up going out with Anna (Caroline Munro), this drop-dead gorgeous woman. It was almost absurd how she would be at all interested in this freak. Is the relationship your character has with Elijah a little more plausible?

Arnezeder: They’re friends in the beginning, and he’s very intrigued by her work. She’s an artist, and that’s all I can say right now because [laughs] maybe the producers will say, “Ahh! You don’t have to say anything about the movie!” All I can say is it’s the horror movie genre but with many psychological sides. That’s what interested me in that project, because if you have a movie with only blood and screams it’s not interesting, I don’t like that.

(Photo Credit: Tony Clark/WENN.com)