Interview: John Jarratt - Wolf Creek 2
Wolf Creek 2

Interview: John Jarratt – Wolf Creek 2

Nine years after Mick Taylor terrorised the outback and slaughtered innocent backpackers, the villain returns with a long-awaited sequel, but more surprising than this overdue sequel is the fact that actor John Jarratt seems to think Taylor is a fun guy to have a drink with!

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Wolf Creek 2
John Jarratt in Wolf Creek 2

Nine years after Mick Taylor terrorised the outback and slaughtered innocent backpackers, the villain returns with a long-awaited sequel, but more surprising than this overdue sequel is the fact that actor John Jarratt seems to think Taylor is a fun guy to have a drink with!

Wolf Creek 2 is not your typical franchised sequel. The film stands firmly on its own for plot, characterisation, cinematography and fright value. As the film’s leading anti-hero, Australian actor John Jarratt explains Wolf Creek 2 is “more of a chase thriller from the beginning of the film, as opposed to the slow boil of the first one where the monster doesn’t come out until half way through.”

He goes on to reveal “there is a lot of chasing going on until he gets to his quarry and takes his victim Paul (Ryan Corr) back to his lair.”

While the character of Mick is torturous and sadistic, Jarratt describes his character as “a funny larrikin; just an Aussie guy who is fun to have a drink with. There’s really only those few things about him that are not good,” explains Jarratt.  Furthermore, playing a three-dimensional baddie is important to Jarratt. “Just because someone is evil doesn’t mean they have to walk around being nasty all the time. I think that is bad acting.” The result is a scary yet entertaining villain who oozes black humour.

Wolf Creek 2 is a very “Australian” film, projected through the music of Slim Dusty, beautiful outback imagery and the frequent use of real Aussie slang. Jarratt explains that the use of Aussie-isms such as “That’ll do, Pig” and “Where the bloody hell are ya?” is “homage to the Australian vernacular and humour. I think in real life in Australia, we tend to walk around and say ‘where the bloody hell are ya’, ‘that’s not a knife’ and ‘keep Australia beautiful’. It is natural for us, whether you are an Aussie in a film or an Aussie in the street, to throw them into your everyday speech. Mick is a very Aussie bloke, so it’s not surprising that he was full of Aussie-isms.”

Jarratt is confident this character and humour will pose no barrier to an international audience.

“Bugger ‘em. They expect us to get their jokes!”

The performances of all cast members are memorable and believable, described by Jarratt as being “on the money”.

“Ryan (Corr) had a larger part of the film and his performance is exceptional. Shannon (Ashlyn) is breathtaking and while Philippe (Klaus) doesn’t have a lot to do, what he does is fantastic.”

Like any good Aussie, each actor during filming “gave as good as they got… there wasn’t a slack-ass amongst them!” explains Jarratt.

Launched at the Venice Film Festival in September 2013, critics and fans have praised this film for its beauty and horror, and are already begging for a third film in the franchise. In great news for Wolf Creek fans, Jarratt intimates this could be on the cards.

“I think we will do a third one. Wolf Creek 2 looks like it will be very successful and the only way it wouldn’t happen is if Wolf Creek 2 tanks.”

Wolf Creek 2 is a highly original, very “Australian” film that almost out-Tarantino’s Tarantino for black comedy, horror, scripting and cinematography. Jarratt summates it has “a little bit more than you would expect from a Wolf Creek film, but everything else you would expect.”

Interview by Bree Downs-Woolley

Wolf Creek 2 opens in cinemas everywhere from 20 February 2014
Rated MA15+. Contains strong bloody violence and coarse language.

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