Zac Efron is the New Ted Bundy
With the Sundance lineup announced, the 'High School Musical' icon will star by Lily Collins in a film about the infamous serial killer.
There’s a new genre of film and television that has taken the world by storm. Not a day goes by where I don’t hear someone announce their guilty pleasure of enjoying “serial killer dramas” or “assassin documentaries.” My Friend Dahmer, Mindhunter, and Dexter are just some examples of the binge-worthy category. There is something incredibly interesting about witnessing the atrocities that a human can do from the safety of a screen.
The process of demystifying the psyche behind the villains proves to be satisfying even when their motives are hidden.
There are definitely technical narrative reasons as to why these shows and movies are so successful. To begin with, the characters are complex. There isn’t a simple motive or history that leads people to become monsters. It happens gradually, so these films can exploit that. They demonstrate the slow burn of how each person got poisoned by his surroundings or own mannerisms. More importantly, these stories have an automatic drive to thrive off tension. If there is one crucial aspect to making anything feel thrilling, it’s dragging on the tension and conflict within a scene. Serial Killer programs take advantage of this, and mix it in with their messed up characters in order to lead up to a payoff that leaves people shivering.
The adrenaline rush that people once sought out in horror films, now get it from biographical killer dramas. Why? Well, because they actually happened. The real monsters aren’t in the dark, they’re on the streets.
Sundance has just announced their lineup for its festival, which will be taking place in January. Amongst all of the well-crafted independent films, is “extremely wicked, shockingly evil and vile.” Told from the persective of Liz (Ted Bundy’s significant other), the story will reveal how she was unaware or in denial of her husband’s atrocities. With the star power of Lily Collins playing Liz, and Zac Efron as Ted Bundy, the independent film has created a lot of hype toward its premiere.
“He wasn’t a person to be glorified. It simply tells a story and sort of how the world was able to be charmed over by this guy who was notoriously evil and the vexing position that so many people were put in, the world was put in. It was fun to go and experiment in that realm of reality.” – Efron
The project was kept under tight wraps before its announcement, with only one still being shared around with Collins and Efron in character afterwards. And might I add, the said photo is chilling. Bundy is holding a knife while cutting a birthday cake for his daughter, but there is a lot of connotations hidden within the images. The grandest one being that a serial killing maniac is trusted with a knife. Not only does it claim that Bundy had control over his violent acts when it came to being around his family, but it emphasizes the hostility and desire to do what he did when he was let loose.
Directed by Joe Berlinger, the film will dive beyond the murders and show just how charming a person can be on the outside and be rotten on the inside.
Read more about the upcoming film here.
Another movie in the same genre set to premiere in 2019 is Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.