Actually, that leads to my next question perfectly. Fried Barry, you really feel like you’re a passenger on this crazy ride and you’re not sure where these destinations are going. The interactions are very unpredictable, much like the movie. Kind of what you were saying. You touched on this a little bit about unpredictability. But what inspired some of the choices you made in informing Barry’s journey, that we get to discover?
Ryan Kruger: Yeah. When I got the idea and straight away I knew it was the right one to do. Because I was like, “Ah, I haven’t seen this before.” We haven’t seen a heroin addict abducted by aliens. Just saying that a heroin addict getting abducted by aliens and the world that this guy comes from. He obviously comes from this like a rough part of town. That just opened up like a can of worms for all the different scenarios that could happen.
I think the interesting thing about this movie is, whether you love or hate it or get it or don’t, the interesting thing is that you remember it. It’s almost like a passing car crash where you’re watching and you can’t help watching and just to see where this thing’s actually going to go.
Fried Barry Director Praises His Unique Star
I have to say this, what an outstanding performance by Gary Green. I mean he barely speaks in the film, but a lot of his acting is done with his body language and his looks. What an amazing performance. What did he bring to the role that wasn’t necessarily on the page? I know that he’s not a classically trained actor. So, can you talk to me about working with him as a collaborator as well?
Ryan Kruger: Well first of all Gary did an amazing job. This movie was made for him without a doubt and I’d never have cast anybody else. Even if I had the best actor in the country, it wouldn’t be the same. Gary not being that trained actor, when I thought of the idea, everything had to be right. Everything had to be right and complement each thing. So, the story and the character all had to fit together to make this thing work, or otherwise, it would crumble and it wouldn’t work.
Before shooting the movie, obviously, I said to Gary, “This is the movie. This is the story. This is the character.” When it came to filming it on set, he didn’t know what we’re shooting until 30, 40 minutes before filming, because I really needed that blank canvas and that he didn’t prep anything because the movie relies on him. I know Gary and I know what he’s capable of doing and stuff.
This movie doesn’t rely on dialogue, it’s very visual. I would’ve been worried about a lot of the dialogue, but again, when I thought of the story and the character, I thought it’s great. Because even if there was a weird, not-so-good delivery of lines, it wouldn’t matter because he’s an alien. Even if he said something, it would still be okay.
The ironic, funny thing was when we were shooting, his character is like a kid. He just absorbs. He’s like a sponge and he mimics all these people that he meets. So, when it came to directing, I had to work very closely with Gary and I didn’t actually let him do any improv. I’d to be very strict with him.
I’d be on the side of the camera saying, “Okay, Gary, pull this face. Okay, now do this face. Now do this face.” Because I’m basically editing the movie in my head. I’m getting all the cutaway reaction shots for joke A, joke B. This is a funny reaction, this will work.
The only thing that I gave Gary to look at and learn was, I gave him Edward Scissorhands and I said just look at the way, he walks. Johnny Depp and Edward Scissorhands. Look at the way he walks and look at the way he moves and that was it. I had work super close with him because as I said, the movie relies on him. The main reason why I cast Gary, was his look. I love characters and he’s got such an amazing, unique look and that’s everything. That is the movie. Nobody could’ve done it better than him.
I love that Edward Scissorhands reference because I absolutely understand what you’re saying when you see that child-like wonderment and I completely agree with you about Gary’s look. There’s nobody else in this industry that looks like Gary Green.
Ryan Kruger: Nobody’s going to go up to Gary and go, “Hey, are you a John, or are you this person?” If you see Gary, it’s like, “Hey, that’s fucking Fried Barry right there, no doubt about it. And that’s the guy.”
A Twist On The Alien Abduction Story
Exactly right. Barry is a heroin addict that’s abducted by aliens and his body’s taken for a joy ride. What did the aliens think about humanity through their experience with Barry’s body?
Ryan Kruger: I always laugh because there’s the pre and after scene where I always see in my head, where the aliens are like, “All right, all right.” Let’s say the alien is called Joe. The aliens are like, “All right, Joe. We’re going to send you down. We’re going to get your body. We want you to go there for a few days, see what you can learn, and see what you can bring back to us. And yeah, we’ll give you a few days. And then we’ll pick you back up.”
It just happens to be that they get a heroin addict’s body instead of a nine till five, and that would’ve been a completely different movie. So that’s the pre-thoughts before the film happens. And then the afterthought is obviously this alien getting back and the aliens are like, “Oh, cool. So, fuck you look terrible. What happened?” And this alien is going to be like, “Yeah, man. These humans are, they’re just fucking nuts. Everybody’s crazy. Everybody takes drugs and everybody just has sex, constantly. It’s very tiring.”
That’s how I see it in a comedy way because that’s what happens. The movie is just nuts and the movie is just crazy. I think the aliens would probably think like, “Yeah, all right. So and so wants to try it. Why don’t we send him down?” Or they move on to the next alien race.
If you’re looking for something different that will keep you engaged from start to finish or are a fan of surrealism then Fried Barry is for you.
Fried Barry Synopsis
In Fried Barry, Barry is a drug-addled degenerate who, after yet another bender, gets abducted by aliens. Barry takes a backseat as his alien visitor assumes control of his body and takes it for a joyride through Cape Town. What follows is an onslaught of drugs, sex and violence as Barry’s alien tourist enters the weird and wonderful world of humankind.
Fried Barry is available On DVD, Blu-Ray, and On Demand and Digital October 5, 2021. What do you think of director Ryan Kruger’s thoughts on Fried Barry? What most excites you about Fried Barry? Let us know if you plan on checking out Fried Barry in the comments below or on Twitter.