Jordan Peele Explains Why He Picked A Black Family For ‘Us’, The Significance of Luniz’s “I Got 5 On It”
Director Jordan Peele‘s follow-up to the controversial “Get Out” is on its way! The trailer for Jordan’s newest horror story, “Us,” made its debut on social media on Christmas Day, and movie fans are losing their minds. “Black Panther” stars Winston Duke and Lupita Nyong’o star in the film, along with Elisabeth Moss and Tim Heidecker.
Think-pieces are already being written on speculation about the symbolism of the characters – but Jordan Peele is clearing confusion before opening day in theaters. The former “Key and Peele” star opens up about upcoming horror film”Us.” See the excerpts below.
On the significance of having a Black family as the lead characters in a horror film:
“I can’t think of a horror movie of this nature with a family in the center of it that uses a black family. So I knew just by putting an African-American family in the lead role, already we would be exploring cinematic uncharted territory…I love films like Poltergeist, I love The Shining, The Amityville Horror and I love Amblin films, those Spielberg films that brought extraordinary situations to a family unit, and even though this movie is not about race, I felt like it was an important piece of the project to have a black family in the center. Get Out was one missing piece of the racial conversation and this is another one and we’re seeing a lot of great strides being taken by great artists like Ava (Duvernay) and Ryan (Coogler).
On why he chose rabbits and scissors as key images for “Us:”
“I’m a filmmaker and film-lover that loves iconic imagery and what it could mean. When we talk about the scissors and the rabbits, for every choice like that, there are several different reasons that clicked to me but the first test that anything passed was the genre test. So does it conjure the horror genre to me, which is a limitation that I feel very dedicated to working within. I think rabbits and scissors, they’re both scary things to me, and both inane things, so I love subverting and bringing out the scariness in things you wouldn’t necessarily associate with that.”
On how Luniz’s “I Got 5 On It” made the official trailer:
“That song, it came pretty simple, I’m making a movie in Northern California, that’s a bay area hip-hop classic and I wanted to explore this very relatable journey of being a parent [and] maybe some of the songs you listened to back in the day aren’t appropriate for your kids. So that was one level, and another part was, I love songs that have a great feeling but also have a haunting element to them and I feel like the beat in that song has this inherent cryptic energy, almost reminiscent of the Nightmare on Elm Street soundtrack. So those were the ideas that that song hit the bullseye on for me, and also, it’s just a dope track.”
“Us” hits theaters on March 15, 2019.
Written by Miata Shanay