Freddy/Eddy was by far one of the best films of FrightFest 2017 (check out the 5 Star review right HERE) so we were delighted when we got a chance to talk to the director the amazingly talented Tini Tüllmann.
Below our very own Welsh Demoness gets the details behind the movie and more before its US Premiere at the Austin Film Festival which starts Oct 26th where they are in the competition in the Dark Matters category. If Austin knows horror they will most definitely win!
Welsh Demoness: What inspired the idea behind Freddy/Eddy?
Tini Tüllmann: It started out with a story I heard from a friend. He told me about his brother having an imaginary friend as a child whom he was not allowed to talk to.
So I asked him what would happen, if this imaginary friend would show up again today. Just like that. Ringing the door bell.
He looked at me quite shocked and said: Wow, that would be horrifying..
The same night I started to write the idea down.
Welsh Demoness: What kinds of research did you do into the subject of twinless twin syndrome; the core theme of the movie?
Tini Tüllmann: To be honest it kind of became the core theme while writing. Before it was just about this phenomenon that a lot of kids have imaginary friends that disappear somehow when they get around nine or ten years old. But then I had the idea that the imaginary friend should look the same as the protagonist and there was only one way for me to tell the story rationally. And that was the twinless twin syndrome. I had seen a lot of reports and read about these incredible stories about people who never met their twin because it died at birth but still feel a strong grief inside them. As if their other half was missing. There are even organisations to support people suffering from the twinless twin syndrome.
But there are also stories about twins who have never met for 40 or 50 years because they were adopted separately and when they met they found out they had very similar hobbies and sometimes even life structures. And a lot of twins tell about moments when they felt that something was going wrong with their sibling. It’s really weird, because you cannot explain it with normal medical knowledge but there has to be some deeper connection between twins. Maybe it’s supernatural, I have no idea.
Welsh Demoness: How did you become interested in filmmaking? Was directing always a passion of yours?
Tini Tüllmann: I always liked cinema and theatre and I love books. So at first I thought I’d do something with writing, but I also like being surrounded by people. That means sitting alone at a desk for the rest of my life was not an option.
And I love stories in general. I love watching people and their behaviour and reactions in different situations. I can just sit somewhere and watch. I like taking the night bus for example. You will experience so much more as when you’re just taking a cab. (But don’t take the night bus when you’re drunk. Very possible you fall asleep and wake up very very far away. Happened to a friend of a friend of a friend, you know? haha)
So I was acting in school theatre but I found out very soon that my acting skills are quite poor. And then I watched Lost Highway by David Lynch and I was so impressed that someone could create something so disturbing and impressive at the same time. I’ve never had this feeling after a theatre play. Till today I don’t think I completely understood Lost Highway but it stays one of my favourite movies of all times.
Welsh Demoness: Tell us about your experience in directing your first feature film?
Tini Tüllmann: This was quite a ride. I can’t tell so much about how I felt while directing because of the no budget problem I had so many issues the whole time that sometimes I didn’t even have time to be 100% prepared. But the last ten years I didn’t do only sound assistant for a living, I did also castings for commercials. And this really saved me in these situations. Because I’m so used to have only very few minutes to understand what the scene is about and what the goal is where I want the scene and the acting to go. And I wrote the script, that helped as well of course.
But all in all it was just awesome. I was lucky to work with fantastic actors and I had an incredibly professional crew eventhough they did not earn a dime on this project
Welsh Demoness: What has the reaction been like to the film so far?
Tini Tüllmann: The reactions exceed everything I’ve ever dreamt of. Since our premiere at the International Hof Filmfestival where Wim Wenders handed me the Heinz-Badewitz-Award for best Newcomer Director my life is a real rollercoaster ride. The film gets screened at so many awesome festivals and made me go to places where I’ve never been before. People even come up to me in the streets and shake my arms and tell me how much they liked the the film. It’s crazy. There are also people who don’t like the film of course, but they rarely tell me, so in my world nearly everybody likes it! haha
Welsh Demoness: What do you think it is about horror movies, psychological ones like yours for example that strike a chord with an audience?
Tini Tüllmann: I can talk only for myself but these films get me, because they make me believe that it could happen to all of us. Because of their realism they scare me much more than real horror movies with monsters and stuff. I remember the time after I watched COPYCAT with Sigourney Weaver. The film starts with a lecture of Weaver as an expert on serial killers and she says that nine out of ten serial killers are white males between the ages of twenty and thirty five. So from that moment on every time a guy wanted to guide me home, this sentence came back to my mind. I know this sounds stupid and none of them was a serial killer, but what I want to point out is, that this film really affected my life.
Welsh Demoness: What’s next for you? Any future projects on the horizon?
Tini Tüllmann: I’m writing on a new screenplay, also a thriller/mindfuck story, but right now it’s hard to find enough time for writing because I’m still working on getting a distribution in Germany for FREDDY/EDDY. Unfortunately when you fell out of the normal funding system (like we did because we produced it without fundings) it is nearly impossible to get back. So it was hard to find a distributor already because of the genre but now it is even worse because the chances to get fundings for the distribution are very tiny if you didn’t get fundings for the production. But it will work out somehow. I have stopped believing in people who say something was not possible.
Read our 5 Star Freddy/Eddy review HERE). Tini Tüllmann’s fantastic film gets its US Premiere at the Austin Film Festival which starts Oct 26th where they are in the competition in the Dark Matters category.