‘Utopia’ – Apocalyptic series rang true for Cusack

Why John Cusack enjoyed Comic-Con

John Cusack of ‘Utopia’ on Amazon

Q: This series obviously takes on new relevance in the COVID era. Was working on this and then living through the pandemic and continuing to live through it weird?

A: Yeah, it was. I mean, when we started it, the pandemic wasn’t happening. But the themes of this kind of fantastic gang of people who are obsessed with utopia, who know that within utopia lies kind of a roadmap or a secret to a dystopic or apocalyptic future. That included viruses, it included famine, it included perhaps a nuclear accident. So, the theme itself covered a lot of that but it was kind of disturbing and surreal to see it come so close to life, I guess, with the pandemic.

Q: Have you been a comic fan? Have you had any experiences at Comic-Con-type events?

A: I had a really good experience … . I’d never been to one and then I made a couple of horror movies that people liked. So, they said, “Yeah, you’ve got to come to this Comic-Con.” And I went there and the thing that you get, like, when you do a panel or if people are doing Q&As after a movie, in Hollywood sometimes people are a little bit too cool for school or whatever. But these people were so into the movies, and they asked such informed, detailed questions. And they knew everything about the film. And they were like, “Why did you do this thing here? And in the third act the character did this; did you know what you were doing?” I mean, they were just so into it that it sort of made you fall in love with the moviemaking again, too.

Because I was very surprised; the Comic-Con people were, like — it’s a very cool, little, weird culture. You know, it’s like people who want it to be Halloween every weekend. They just want to dress up and fly their freak flag and just they love what they love and they’re into their movies.

George Dickie

George Dickie

George Dickie has been a features writer for Gracenote/Tribune Media Services since 1989, when “Hee-Haw” was still on the air and George “Goober” Lindsay was his first interview. His early interviews ranged from Jim Henson and Dick Van Dyke to Phil Collins and the Dixie Chicks.

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