Ari Aster calls new movie Beau is Afraid the “Jewish Lord of the Rings”

The Beau is afraid poster.A24

In new behind-the-scenes footage from the forthcoming Beau is Afraid, writer-director Ari Aster compares the movie to classic J.R.R. Tolkien, calling his film “Jewish Lord of the Rings.”

Beau is Afraid is the eagerly anticipated new film from the man behind the terrifying Hereditary, and the equally terrifying Midsommar. It’s variously been described as surrealist, a black comedy, and an out-and-out horror movie, with the official synopsis as follows…

A paranoid man goes on an epic odyssey in order to get back home in this bold and ingeniously depraved new film from writer-director Ari Aster. 

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The film stars Joaquin Phoenix as the title character, with the cast filled out by Nathan Lane, Amy Ryan, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Hayley Squires, Denis Ménochet, Kylie Rogers, Armen Nahapetian, Zoe Lister-Jones, with Parker Posey, and Patti LuPone.

Beau is Afraid was 10 years in the making

In a new behind-the-scenes video from the production, Ari Aster endeavors to shed more light on the mysterious movie, talking about its genesis, and what Beau is Afraid means to him.

“I’ve been thinking about this movie for like 10 years,” Aster reveals. “There’s a part of me that can’t believe we’re making this film. It’s epic. Jumbo. Every detail has a detail inside of it.”

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He then adds: “If you pumped a 10-year-old full of Zoloft, and had him get your groceries, that’s like this movie. I wanted to make a film where it feels like you’ve been through a life, or even through a person.”

Why Ari Aster’s new movie is “Jewish Lord of the Rings”

In the footage, Joaquin Phoenix’s Beau says “I’m visiting my mother tomorrow.” To which someone who appears to be a therapist responds: “Are you expecting it to be safe?”

Ari Aster then continues his description of the film, admitting: “I feel a great responsibility to deliver something amazing. It’s like a Jewish Lord of the Rings, but he’s just going to his mom’s house.”

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Before finally stating with a laugh: “I want to put you in the experience of being a loser.”

The footage then ends with quick cuts from both the movie, and the shoot, with Beau’s mom – presumably – ending the video by asking: “Are you on your way?” while we hear a fair amount of screaming.

Beau is Afraid hits US screens on April 21, 2023, and UK screens on May 19, while you can find more of our horror coverage here.

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