Ian Truitner emerges from the bath of accolades and statues he’s worn for new sci-fi film Beyond the Trek (out this week from Screen Media) to talk classic sci-fi, what he’s personally afraid of, and the importance of suspense in sci-fi movies.
How would you describe the flick to the readers?
I’m a lover of classic Sci-Fi that makes you think, and that’s what I tried to make with Beyond the Trek. It brings audiences back to the days before studio Sci-Fi’s were mostly special effects and explosion extravaganzas.
How suspenseful is it? How high is our blood pressure likely to rise here? A thrilling sci-fi ride, right?
It’s a mystery that builds in tension as the characters begin to realize they can no longer control their own impulses, culminating in jarring violence and shocking plot twists at the end.
What’s the most unnerving scene in the movie – is there one that stands out over another?
The suspense builds throughout, but the greatest moments of tension are toward the end of the film once key elements of the mystery have unfolded.
Is suspense important for a sci-fi movie like this?
Definitely. You can keep people’s attention either with fast paced action or suspense, and we chose the latter.
Tell us about some of your favorite sci-fi movies and TV shows.
Blade Runner, 2001, Brazil, Alien, Battlestar Gallactica (the recent series). The one common thread (apart from the Sci-Fi genre) is you are continually guessing while you’re watching them, and thinking about them afterward. Good shows should linger.
Which do you think this most resembles?
Probably Battlestar Gallactica, both in look and theme. BSG went deep into the complexity of what it is to be human, and Beyond the Trek endeavors to do the same.
Does space scare you?
Yes, like a good movie it’s both scary and incredibly fascinating.
We know what scares Indiana Jones. And we know what the townspeople in Zodiac were rattled by. What freaks you out?
No breathing. Sort of fits with the whole outer space thing, right?
What about films? Do they have the potential to still scare or grip you – even though you know how they essentially made, well, this and that?
Yes, good ones definitely can do that.
Which filmmakers do you admire at the moment?
Paul Greengrass, Christopher Nolan and Michelle Maclaren.
Have you ever reached out to one of your favorite filmmakers to see if they’d like to work on something together?
Not yet, but that’s a good idea!
What about actors. Ever reached out to one of your favorite actors and actually gotten them to do your movie?
Why should audiences check out the movie?
Sci-Fi festivals around the world and over a dozen awards don’t lie. If you’re into Sci-Fi, or just a good indie film with intriguing themes and good acting, there’s a good chance you’ll dig Beyond the Trek.