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Interview with "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" Victim Mike Vogel

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Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Jessica Biel and Mike Vogel in "Texas Chainsaw Massacre."

New Line Cinema
Mike Vogel was one of the stars of this summer's skater movie, "Grind." With "Texas Chainsaw Massacre," Vogel moves onto much scarier fare, though according to Vogel, going up against a chainsaw is much easier on your body than taking falls off a skateboard.

MIKE VOGEL ('Andy'):

What was your first reaction when you heard there was going to be a remake of "Texas Chainsaw Massacre?"
I was scared at first. I didn’t know the ingredients that were going into it. I hadn’t seen a script yet, I’d just heard the idea. You know, we’ve all seen the cheesy remakes of things but when I saw they were bringing Michael Bay [into it]… Anything with Michael Bay, he’s got the touch of gold, Daniel Pearl the original director of photography who shot the original one reshot this one - first time it’s ever been done – and a great young cast of actors, to me it was just a great opportunity to go back and be successful at remaking something.

What’s the biggest difference between the two movies?
The biggest difference is the character relationships. I think in the first one, there wasn’t a big emphasis placed on caring about these characters. People started dying and at that point becomes about who had the best death. With ours, they brought us in two weeks ahead of time to just become friends and hang out, which we did every night. Ever since we wrapped, every weekend we’ve all been together just hanging out. So those relationships have translated on screen and now when someone dies, it’s not about like, “Ah, that’s a great death.” It’s about, “Oh my Lord, that guy was so cool” or “They were so cute together.” There’s more meaning to it.

So audiences will connect more with the characters?
Yes, that’s what a lot of people have been saying about this.

What’s the most difficult stunt you were asked to do?
In my death scene, I’m kind of hanging a bit. I was hanging for hours on end, about five hours at a time from a waist harness. When I would come off the harness, I couldn’t walk. My legs were numb and black & blue. They’d have to massage the blood back into my lower extremities so that I could walk again and stand. It was a pretty painful time.

When this was being filmed, there were a ton of rumors on the Internet about how things were being changed from the original. Did you hear any bizarre rumors?
At one point I think I heard Ryan Phillippe was going to play Leatherface (laughing). I don’t know how that was [going to work] but apparently that was never true, but it was one of the weird things I heard.

Is the chainsaw the weapon of choice in Texas?
The chainsaw and tobacco, I would say. I had a bad bout with [chewing tobacco]. It was the first time I’d ever dipped in my life, right before we had to film the scene where we were swimming. I had it in for 5 or 10 minutes and the next thing I knew, my world was spinning and I was walking down sideways to the water. I was throwing up, and it was just a bad thing. I’m sure they use that for non-local people who come into town for the first time. “Here buddy, try this.”

You used to be a professional skater. Did you do Oscar-worthy performances when you’d take spills and did your experiences skating help you prepare for this movie?
I did, but only this time I got to do it without running the risk of hurting myself. I ruptured my spleen twice and broke both my wrists when I was skating. So to be able to do it in an arena where I was kind of protected was a lot more comforting.

And working around a chainsaw is safer than being a skater?
Yeah, why not? I was dreaming about it for a while. It’s kind of like a love tool, the chainsaw.

ADDITIONAL "TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE" PREMIERE INTERVIEWS:
Jessica Biel ('Erin') and Director Marcus Nispel
Eric Balfour ('Kemper')
Producer Tobe Hooper
Special Guest - Sala Baker ("Lord of the Rings")

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:
"Texas Chainsaw Massacre" Photos, Trailer, Credits, and Websites

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