-Duffy, on whether or not his characters are "superheroes"
In 1999, Boondock Saints premiered to a tepid theatrical response only to go on to become a massive cult phenomenon. After a decade of scriptwriting, money-raising, lawsuits and countless fans beggin, Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day finally hit theaters making more money in it's opening weekend than the entire run of the original film. Creator and director Troy Duffy stuck with the film even through some hellish times and we say down with Troy to discuss the movie, his next projects and the potential for a third installment.
SHAKEFIRE: Did you feel an immense amount of pressure in making this sequel?
TROY DUFFY: I'd say I was more "anxsious" than nervous but sure. The fan base was looming over this one.
SF: Did you read comments, fan fiction, etc while working on this movie or did you stay clear of that?
TD: No time. Way too much work when you're making a movie, especially when you don't have enough dough or hours in the day.
SF: Without spoiling it for those that haven't seen it, the ending left things open for a third installment. Do you have a story in mind and do you see it ever getting past the ideas stages?
TD: Yes, I get ideas popping in there once in a while. I'd like to do a few others that I have written first, get some more mileage under my belt. Going for three is a beast.
SF: Can you walk us through what happens to Connor and Murphy after Boondock Saints II?
TD: That would be BDS 3 territory. We left them how we left them at the end of 2. I'll figure it out, I swear.
SF: It seems that the cast all signed on quickly, what was your biggest hurdle in getting 'All Saints Day' made?
TD: The lawsuit. The potential deals were always there. I even walked away from a few of them. It was a rights issue.
SF: What was easier, getting the first movie made or the second?
TD: First. Ain't no aggrivation like litigation.
SF: You don't have any other movies to your credit at the moment, did you have interest in working outside the Boondock universe or were you just wanting to tell this story?
TD: Yes. As I mentioned, I got a few other ones I've written that I'd like to knock out. Not very similar to BDS, different stories and characters all together. One is a serial killer thriller called 'The Blood Spoon Council' and the other is a perdio piece buddy comedy called 'The Good King.'
SF: In watching the first movie again, it sort of serves as an origin story for superheroes in a way. And, like Superman, your heroes disappeared for a while only to come back to fight crime again. Were you intending on these characters to be a different kind of superhero?
TD: Blue collar superheroes is what I was going for. They are a bit more accessible than guys who can fly and deflect bullets.
SF: A lot of sequels aren't able to get some core cast back and Willem Dafoe was seemingly replaced by Julie Benz in this movie. After watching the movie, it seems like it was NOT re-written to have Julie replace Willem. Was this the intention the whole time?
TD: Correct. She was part of the framework we were going for in terms of giving the audience the "new cool stuff" to bite into and not just simply rehashing the story of the first one to present some watered down version.
SF: Speaking of Julie Benz, there was a lot of apprehension by fans for having Julie take the place of Willem because they have only really seen Julie in her uber-sweet 'Dexter' role. How confident were you in the casting of Julie Benz before you saw her in character?
TD: Bingo. A female lead in BDS was like cold water in the face of the fan base. Julie was our gal though and now the fans can't live without her. It was almost like letting a chick pledge for a motorcycle gang. She got her patch.
SF: Where did you get the boys' prayer from?
TD: Made it up. Actually my Dad helpd me with it.
SF: Were you able to let out a 10 year sigh of relief when 'All Saints Day' made more money opening weekend than the entire run of the first film?
TD: You said it. We were all holding our breath there but I suppose I always knew Boondock fans were never going to miss this one. Hell, they were the ones who screamed for it for years and waited so long.
SF: Who would be your dream actor to be in Boondock Saints III?
TD: Don't know yet. That is part and parcel of what new characters come down the line.