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Patrick Fugit and Heather Matarazzo Talk About "Saved!"

On Controversy, Edgy Roles and Growing Up on Camera

By

Patrick Fugit stars in Saved

Patrick Fugit stars in the dark comedy, "Saved!"

Photo © United Artists
Do you see yourself as a heartthrob?
PATRICK FUGIT: I don’t think I see myself as a heartthrob. (Laughing) I don’t think morally anyone is allowed to see themselves as a heartthrob. I guess that’s up to people to decide when they see the movie.

Was it tough to film the scene where you hang from the cross?
God, yes. Oh God, it was a demeaning experience (laughing). They told me it was going to be a loincloth so I thought 'loincloth,' like a strip of leather in front and a strip of leather in back. It was more like a diaper. It was very a uncomfortable, thick, golden fabric made of fiber that chaffed. I’m largely of Irish heritage so I’m very pale skinned and they had to spend like an hour and a half airbrushing a tan on me before the scene. The robe couldn’t touch my skin so I couldn’t really wear a robe on the set, so I was like hanging out in this golden diaper. I still haven’t seen the scene. Every time it comes on I can’t watch it (laughing).

This movie's set in high school. Were you a good student?
PATRICK FUGIT: I was really bad at school. I was diagnosed with ADHD and my parents kind of stepped back and said, “He’s not hyper and when he wants to concentrate on something, he does.” I think I just didn’t care is what was going on. It was just uninteresting.

ADHD?
PATRICK FUGIT: Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder. I used to – and probably still do – I used to have a problem with authority, with teachers and stuff, so I’d get kicked out of class. My freshman year of high school I think I went to three whole classes of English. The rest of the days - 2/3 of the year – I got kicked out.

What did your parents think?
PATRICK FUGIT: They didn’t know a whole lot until the report card came. Then they asked me what was going on and I told them that the teacher didn’t like children, which was quite a Catch-22. She was miserable. I knew all these straight-A students who would go in there and get Ds and stuff so I thought I was screwed – and I was.

These authority problems, did they ever extend to lawbreaking?
PATRICK FUGIT: Well, not lawbreaking. I’ve been skateboarding since I was like 15, and you usually run into problems with that. Police officers or security guards who don’t like skateboarders – that kind of thing.

Does your ADHD act up on the set?
PATRICK FUGIT: No, I’m fine when I’m on the set. (Laughing) I think everybody is ADHD. If you’re going to label that part of humanity, that psychology, everybody is ADHD. I’m alright on the set. I seem to understand that I’m going to need to stay inside of my head for awhile while they set up the shot. It’s just fun being there. It’s what I want to do. I want to learn all the different aspects of it. Everybody says that, but it’s true. It’s a lot of fun to watch what happens.

Heather, you started your career with a controversial film and you’ve done lots of edgy roles. Do you seek them out?
HEATHER MATARAZZO: I seek out good work. I feel that I’ve been very fortunate in the films that I have gotten and that I’ve chosen to do. I think a lot of female characters are portrayed either as a slut or an airhead or something very lethargic or boring. So the characters that I choose, I like to make sure that they have depth and that they have some sort of bite. It’s more fun.

You were described as the cheerleader of this project. What grabbed you so much?
HEATHER MATARAZZO: Brian [Dannelly] and the writing. That was it. It sold me after I had a meeting with Mr. Dannelly and we talked and talked and talked and talked. We couldn’t stop talking. It was like a three hour meeting. I told him right there, “I’m sold. I’ll stick with it. I’ll do it.” And we waited a long time and financers that were going to do it fell through, and then more financers that were going to do it fell through. I just have a belief that when there is a rare script out there that speaks to you, you have to stick with it. You have to. More films like this need to be made.

PAGE 2: On Casting Mandy Moore, Controversy and Adult Pressures

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:
Interviews with Jena Malone, Mandy Moore, and Macaulay Culkin
"Saved!" Photos

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