After it's recent theatrical run, Brightburn is now available on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, and DVD. This superhero horror film stars Jackson A. Dunn in a role that mirrors the Superman origin story, but takes a VERY dark turn. I had a chance to catch up with Jackson, who told me about his experience filming the movie, working with Elizabeth Banks and David Denman, and what he's like to see in the sequel.
Brightburn combines a superhero setup with more traditional “evil child” horror tropes. Do you consider yourself a horror fan? What are some of the horror movies that you enjoy watching?
Jackson A. Dunn: Yeah, I'm a big horror fan. I loved A Quiet Place, Hush… and The Babadook is one of my all-time favorites.
When approaching the character of Brandon, did you find yourself gravitating more toward superhero or horror characters when it came to inspiration?
Jackson A. Dunn: I tried to take inspiration from the possessive, demonic types, and inspiration from some general superheroes. But I wanted to make Brandon's character in Brightburn a little different than just a typical super-villain. I wanted to make it a little less black and white, and more a [type of] possession.
When I was auditioning for the role, I was trying to incorporate some more demonic/possessed kind of traits into his character to keep it interesting. They had me doing seizures and the whole nine yards during the audition process
When I first heard about the movie, I assumed it would take more of a PG-13 path, but it really earns its R-rating. There are some really gruesome kills and practical effects. Can you talk about experiencing that on-set?
Jackson A. Dunn: Yeah, the practical effects I think are really helpful as an actor because they let you visualize and actualize what is going to be shown in the movie. As well as being helpful, they're also really fun to see how the props department and the art department can pull them off, and how different it is in-person than on-screen, It was a blast.
What was your experience working with Elizabeth Banks and David Denman? Your characters have this loving relationship at the start that erodes more and more as the movie goes on.
Jackson A. Dunn: They’re both incredible actors and super talented. It was really helpful for me as a young actor to be able to see what they did with their roles, and what they do in a movie like this, and be able to incorporate that into my own acting abilities. As people, they're both amazing too. David Denman and Elizabeth Banks are very, very nice people and they went above and beyond treating me like an equal.
What would you say was one of your favorite scenes to film?
Jackson A. Dunn: I can tell you one of my favorite scenes to watch- for the scene where I dropped Noah's truck, we had a 100 foot, maybe taller, crane with a stripped Ford Bronco hanging from it. That was a blast! It was 10:00 pm and they dropped the truck from 100 feet in the air and watched it crush like a soda can, so that was one of the most exhilarating moments.
The movie certainly leaves open the possibility of sequels. Have you had any discussions about where a sequel would go? What would you personally like to see happen next?
Jackson A. Dunn: I don't know any more than the average Joe does, but I'd love to be part of a sequel and I'd love to see where it can be taken. Personally, I think there's really an endless amount of directions it could go. There could be a league of villains, or there could be just Brandon on his own, exploring his own conquest of world domination. Personally, my favorite is that there be maybe a league and maybe there would be a bit of calamity and collision within those villains. Because I think that Brandon's definitely not alone as a super-being on earth, so I'd like to see where that could go.