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Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil And Vile Director Defends The Ted Bundy Biopic After Backlash

Claire Reid

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Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil And Vile Director Defends The Ted Bundy Biopic After Backlash

The director of the new Ted Bundy flick Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile has spoken out after a massive backlash aimed at both the movie and its lead actor Zac Efron.

Joe Berlinger has defended his movie and shut down those who have accused him of 'glorifying' the serial killer.


Speaking to Bustle, he said: "I think the idea of this particular story, making a movie about Bundy, equals glorification of him is a very naive and knee-jerk reaction.

"Because if you actually watch the movie, the last thing we're doing is glorifying him. He gets his due at the end, but we're portraying the experience of how one becomes a victim to that kind of psychopathic seduction."

Bundy confessed to killing 30 women during a spree that lasted from 1974 to 1978, however, many believe the actual total could be much higher.

He gained the trust of many of his victims, often pretending to have an injury or to be a figure of authority, before overpowering them.

Many people have criticising the upcoming movie for romanticising the serial killer and rapist. But Berlinger says that the no subject should be 'off limits' for filmmakers.

He added: "Look, there have been a lot of movies about Adolf Hitler and about the Holocaust, but if somebody were to have a new angle as a way of illuminating some aspect of the human condition or aspect of that particular story... I think telling filmmakers any subject matter is off limits is a very slippery slope that leads us to Trump declaring that the media is 'fake news'.

"I think there should be no censoring of subject matter, if it's done responsibly. And even if it's done irresponsibly, people have the right to tell any story they want to tell."

Efron, who plays Bundy, has also spoken out since criticism was levelled at him by the public.

Zac Efron plays the serial killer in the new flick. Credit: Voltage Pictures
Zac Efron plays the serial killer in the new flick. Credit: Voltage Pictures

In an interview with Variety, he said: "Initially, I had reservations about playing a serial killer.

"I've seen people make horror films like this before, and it seems like an aggressive play to separate yourself from a perceived image. And it's got a lot of killing and hacking and slashing. I think I've seen that before too many times."

In contrast, the show's creators say Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile features little blood and gore and instead tells the story from the point of view of Bundy's girlfriend Liz Kloepfer, played by Lily Cole.

Speaking about what appealed to him about the role, Efron added: "This movie was really about a human being, somebody that perhaps I would have been friends with. And a love story from a very unique perspective.

"I've never seen that before. It's intriguing to me. I think it's more psychological and even more kind of a mindfuck."

Featured Image Credit: Voltage Pictures

Topics: TV and Film, Ted Bundy, US Entertainment, Zac Efron

Claire Reid
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