MaXXXine Cast and Crew Address Why the Sequel Incorporates a Real-World Serial Killer

There's a specific reason that Richard Ramirez, the "Night Stalker," plays a part in the movie.

Ti West's horror films X and Pearl both take place in the real world as opposed to other genre movies that incorporate supernatural elements, but the isolated nature of both outings allow the events of the films to be relatively contained. With the upcoming MaXXXine, however, Mia Goth's titular character heads to Hollywood in the '80s, with the trailer confirming the movie's incorporation of the real-life serial killer Richard Ramirez, a.k.a the "Night Stalker." West, Goth, and star Elizabeth Debicki addressed bringing Ramirez into the movie's narrative, confirming that it's meant to be a more grounded experience than some of the more heightened stories being told in horror.

Speaking with Total Film, per GamesRadar, Goth claims that including the killer "anchors" the movie in reality, while noting, "It sets out a breadcrumb trail back to reality. It's not just some big sweeping horror movie that's purely for entertainment value. It's rooted in something."

As far as whether Ramirez's horrible crimes will factor directly into Maxine's journey, Debicki teases, "I won't give anything away. The joy of [the film] is there are so many threads at play."

Filmmaker Quentin Tarantino has previously delivered genre films that run parallel with true-life events, only to make major changes to historical fact, like in Inglorious Basterds and Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood. West wouldn't outright explain the connections between his movie and horrible tragedies, instead noting that the spirit of MaXXXine is more akin to a Spike Lee classic that took place during the "Son of Sam" killings than a Tarantino movie.

"It has more in common with Summer of Sam, the Spike Lee movie, than it does Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood. It does play a significant role in the story but in its own particular way," West admitted. The filmmaker didn't want to fully divulge what audiences could expect, hinting that "if you go into the movie knowing nothing, everything is possible."

MaXXXine is described, "In 1980s Hollywood, adult film star and aspiring actress Maxine Minx finally gets her big break. But as a mysterious killer stalks the starlets of Hollywood, a trail of blood threatens to reveal her sinister past." Joining Mia Goth in the franchise are Elizabeth Debicki, Moses Sumney, Michelle Monaghan, Bobby Cannavale, Halsey, Lily Collins, Giancarlo Esposito, and Kevin Bacon.  

MaXXXine lands in theaters on July 5th.

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