SXSW Interview: Director Abe Forsythe and Lupita Nyong’o talk about filming Little Monsters in Sydney

While at SXSW, I had the chance to catch up with Aussie director Abe Forsythe (Down Under) and Oscar winning actress Lupita Nyong’o talk talk about their new film Little Monsters – due out later this year.

You filmed this in and around Sydney – what was that experience like and Abe, how important was it for you to film it at home?

Lupita: I loved it, loved it, loved it. I didn’t know that I needed to go to Australia until I was there and I was like, “Oh my gosh how has the world kept this place away from me for so long!” It’s so beautiful, I loved the landscape, I really enjoyed the food and the beaches, yeah I had a wonderful time living there. The bugs in Australia are scary though. They’re very, very big.

Abe: It was really important for me to make this movie in Australia because even though it is set in Australia, it’s more of an international movie. I’ve tried to make a movie that would work for the audience over here in North America, because having made my last movie, which was about Australia and it was for Australian’s and I felt it was a really important movie for Australian’s to see.

It was called Down Under after all.

Abe: Well yeah, exactly, but it was like, it’s really hard to make movies for Australian audiences, the type of movies that I make anyway. So this time I wanted to make something that would work over here (in America), and then I think I’ve got more of a chance of it actually playing back home for us.

With Lupita and Josh Gad, you’ve got an incredibly international cast, but let’s not forget the amazing Australian cast, from small roles featuring Aussie musician Okenyo through to the starring performance Alexander England. Tell me a little bit about the cast.

Abe: There’s so many of my favourite actors in this movie from back home… Alexander England and Kat Stewart in particular play two very key roles in this movie and part of the joy for me was seeing them in their roles. They’re both really good friends of mine, but seeing them work with actors of the calibre of Lupita and Josh as well too, it was a great…

Yeah, I got to share that experience of what it was like to work with actors like Lupita, with these people that are really close friends and for me, Kat Stewart is and I think Lupita’s like the best actor in the world. But I think Kat Stewart is the best actor in the world as well too, so it’s been really lovely seeing her work get recognised over here in front of the audiences too, because her character in particular is very crucial to the movie working, as you’ll see.

Little Monsters will hit cinemas later in the year.

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Larry Heath

Founding Editor of the AU review. You can find him on Twitter @larry_heath or on Instagram @larryheath.