DAILY GRINDHOUSE: You originally conceived FREAKED as a film to star The Butthole Surfers, it was going to be this big giant behemoth rock and roll film. Can you use some other adjectives, possibly some verbs and nouns, to describe what the plot was at that time?
ALEX WINTER: The film was like an extended music video for a music video magazine that was on VHS called Impact. The story was about this nerdy Dad with his wife and kid who are going through Texas and they get re-routed to get some BBQ and they end up at this ranch run by The Butthole Surfers and get murdered, turned into BBQ and eaten. You should check it out, it’s like this pulped out craziness.
Let me back up though; so we had done BILL AND TED and then I did THE IDIOT BOX for MTV and it was a big hit but they didn’t have any money and couldn’t afford to do it anymore so we decided to write something like an IDIOT BOX movie that would feature the same gang. So, we wrote this movie with Gibby Haynes (lead singer of The Butthole Surfers) about a family who stop off at a freak-show and get turned into freaks and that was the genesis of it. Hard pulp, low end, throwback to Cormanesque 1960s cult films. We just couldn’t get it sold; Sam Raimi even tried to help us at one point. It was just too far out, even for $200,000 it was too far out. So we kind of went back and thought about it, THE IDIOT BOX was popular, BILL AND TED is this huge hit, and so we decided fuck it; let’s pitch it as a mainstream comedy and we sold it as a pitch. We bent the Butthole story around slightly and pitched it. Now though we were like “oh shit, now we have to write this.” We had to take this hard R script and make it PG-13.
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