Many horror films delivered audiences memorable sequences of violence and gore in 2018, yet Suspiria ultimately takes the cake for delivering audiences a truly horrifying sequence of carnage that burned its way into the minds of audiences. While the final sequence was memorable enough in the finished film, prosthetics makeup designer Mark Coulier admitted that the scripted ending pushed the chaos even further.
"I think what [director] Luca [Guadagnino] had on the page and in the descriptions was more horror than it actually ended up being, so it was actually toned down from what we had described," Coulier shared with ComicBook.com about the film's finale. "And it was always going to be descending into an ending that's really going to blow everyone's minds, hopefully."
In the film, young American dancer Susie Bannion (Dakota Johnson) arrives in 1970s Berlin to audition for the world-renowned Helena Markos Dance Company, stunning the troupe's famed choreographer, Madame Blanc (Tilda Swinton), with her raw talent. When she vaults to the role of lead dancer, Olga, the previous lead, breaks down and accuses the company's female directors of being witches. As rehearsals intensify for the final performance of the company's signature piece, Susie and Madame Blanc grow strangely close, suggesting that Susie's purpose in the company goes beyond merely dancing. Meanwhile, an inquisitive psychotherapist trying to uncover the company's dark secrets enlists the help of another dancer, who probes the depths of the studio's hidden underground chambers, where horrific discoveries await.
The sequence in the finished film is a ballet of blood, with Coulier noting that the original plans for the climax were longer, though it essentially featured more of what made its way into the film.
"Those sequences were written longer than they ended up being in the movie," Coulier noted. "And there was more of the witches feasting and eating body parts, eating human flesh. It was all that kind of stuff. In the movie, it's condensed a little bit from what we'd originally discussed. I think it's a good sequence and it works time-wise, it works very well in the movie."
The sequence feels nightmarish for the viewer, yet Coulier detailed that the vibe on set was drastically different.
"You've got somebody in a big rubber makeup suits and you've got rubber intestines that you're pulling out the body, and people are shocked by that, but we were not," Coulier confessed. "We were just making it, shooting all these various elements and then we just hope that when it's all cut together that it works effectively. That's when you have to trust in Luca."
Fans can see how the sequence ultimately panned out when Suspiria lands on Digital HD on January 15, 2019 and on Blu-ray and DVD on January 29, 2019.
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