When Wolf Creek popped onto the international; film festival circuit in early 2005, film goers and critics were equally terrified and transfixed by the story of Mick Taylor (John Jarratt) – a psychotic serial killer who held backpackers captive. Marketed as a ‘based-on-truth’ film, the home-grown movie painted a chilling cinematic portrait of the desolated Australian outback, and unintentionally issued a timely message about trusting strangers. After eight years, the macabre Mick Taylor is back, and we exclusively caught up with director Greg McClean who shed (no pun intended) some light on what we can expect from the follow up.
The most challenging thing about making Wolf Creek 2 was… getting the screenplay to a point where we all believed it had the potential to be a genuine extension of what was cool about the first movie, but also absolutely had its own personality.
After the first movie I had a lot of interest in making a sequel right away… however my feeling was that it had taken such a long time to realise the script and method of making the first film, that popping a sequel out in only a few months just wasn't that appealing or even feasible creatively.
I really wanted to… further explore the character of Mick Taylor and work with John Jarratt again. Taylor is the swirling black hole at the centre of the Wolf Creek universe, and to take audiences deeper into the darkest corners of his twisted psyche was pretty compelling.
I wasn’t nervous about the pressure a sequel comes with…you'd think I would’ve been, but honestly I didn't really think much about the first film once we got started.
The audience response and early reviews for Wolf Creek 2 have been pretty encouraging… but no one can ever predict what will catch on in culture through art or movies. Some of the reasons something might be successful can never fully be understood, because they're abstract things like "timing" or hitting the "zeitgeist".
Wolf Creek 2 is… such an "Aussie" movie full of slang, phrases, jokes and local cultural references.
The best scenes in Wolf Creek 2 are… the “Kangaroo scene” and the “Mick the friendly Butcher” scene - I think they might be the ones people talk about for a couple of years. There's also one involving an angle grinder and a sing-along, but I don't want to spoil the fun!
I don't really focus on sending messages… my goal was simply to make an entertaining movie. I just hope people enjoy the movie we've made. This one's very scary but it's much more "fun" than the first movie – now, we can now really enjoy Mick's character in full, terrifying flight. He's out there, on the loose, and he's been a very, very bad boy.