This past weekend, The Wrath of Becky celebrated its world premiere at the 2023 SXSW Film Festival. A brutally fun follow-up to 2020’s Becky, the sequel directed by Suzanne Coote and Matt Angel follows the titular character (played by Lulu Wilson), who is tasked with taking down a group of neo-Nazis (led by Seann William Scott’s character, Darryl) who end up pissing off the teen, thus unleashing Becky’s formidable rage.
Recently, Daily Dead had the opportunity to speak with the crew from The Wrath of Becky about the sequel, and during our interview, the directing duo of Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote chatted about their approach to the script and the challenges of balancing tone, Lulu Wilson discussed how thrilled she was to return to the eponymous character, and Seann William Scott explained the collaborative experience he had in crafting his character with Coote and Angel.
Look for more on The Wrath of Becky closer to the film’s release, hopefully later this year.
So first and foremost, everybody, thank you so, so much for chatting today. This was fricking awesome, and I loved it. I loved the first Becky, and this was so much fun, too. So first and foremost, congratulations on being able to build out the world of Becky a little bit more here. It was really awesome.
Suzanne Coote: Yay. Thank you so much. It's so nice to hear. That’s awesome.
You're so welcome. So, Matt and Suzanne, is it okay if I start with you guys and talk a little bit about your approach to this script, if that's cool? What's interesting to me is the first Becky was a little more straightforward, but there were those darkly comedic hits to it where this one leans into it a little bit more. And the way that you guys were able to make everything really balanced out without making the stakes feel any lessened by some of the humor in it, I thought was really great. I was wondering if you could talk about that.
Suzanne Coote: Yeah, we were just talking about that because when you're dealing with the douchebags that Becky is up against in this, and “douchebag” is too nice of a term, but they're actually out there today. And so people are dealing with these noblemen type of characters out there who are into book bannings and protesting trans gatherings and they are everywhere. They're ubiquitous. And so, you have to toe the line between making it very apparent how dangerous they are and how real that danger is, but also, we wanted to add that comic book-type levity tone to the film. So that was a line we had to toe. I think it's always important to ground anything regardless of the tone in character and start at that base.
Matt Angel: And then, as long as you do that and you have actors like Lulu and Seann, who can bring humanity to the characters, we as the filmmakers then have the freedom to shoot it in such a way and direct the actors around them in such a way that you can create something a little larger than life. So, we really look to the Tarantinos and the Edgar Wrights, or films like Kick-Ass and Deadpool that perfectly toe that line where you get the comedy, but you also have very human people, and that gives you a lot of freedom to have fun.
Oh, absolutely. Lulu, for you, coming back to play this character again, what was the most fun part of being able to re-explore Becky in this story? Because things have changed so much for her, but yet she's at the core still very much the same girl that she was in the first film.
Lulu Wilson: Well, Becky is still the Becky that we know and love, but two years have passed and within that time a lot has happened to her. She's been through many, many lifetimes in a short amount of time, and she's only 16. So, she's dealing with all that, too. Being a 16-year-old girl, the rage of it all, and she has really had to grow up and she's had to mature really fast and she's not letting that guard down from the first movie and she never will. I think I was really looking forward to exploring that. Matt and Susan were talking about the humanity of it all. I wanted to really dive deep into that, and I wanted to express that a little more because she's dropped a lot of the teenage angst. She's not 13, she's more grown up here, but I was just so excited going into this because I love the first movie; I've seen it so many times. I love to watch it and I love that I was in it, and I love Becky. I love all of it. And I know that if I wasn't Becky, I would love it just as much.
Seann, I wanted to ask you, because first and foremost, I know you don't do a ton of horror, but you were in a movie a few years ago called Bloodline that I totally loved and you were fantastic in that. So, I was excited to see you come back into the genre a bit here. I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about what the appeal was, because this is a tough character to try to wrap your head around and try to immerse yourself in. But you scared the crap out of me and I've been watching you for years now, and I'm just curious what that process was like for you to that appeal.
Seann William Scott: Well, thank you so much. The movie came together for me really quickly. I think from the time that I got the script and then spoke with Matt and Suzanne, and then I think it was a couple of weeks later that I was on set—something like that. But yeah, I just loved the script and the character was a little different in the script—the one that I had read from what you see in the film. And I just had some ideas, too. Then, when Matt and Suzanne and I had talked on the phone and started talking about the character, they really responded to my ideas and then they rewrote some scenes and added some scenes. All of that made me feel like I had a better idea of who this guy was. It was great to be able to do that.
Go HERE to catch up on our coverage of the 2023 SXSW Film Festival!