Yusry Kru may not be a name you recognize but he is making a name for himself not only working as a director but also producer and visual effects supervisor. He recently directed the action film “Vikingdom”. Media Mikes had a chance to as Yusry a few questions about the film and what’s next.
Mike Gencarelli: What was the most challenging aspect for you on “Vikingdom”?
Yusry Kru: Obviously, when we made the decision to film everything in Malaysia, I knew it was going to take massive planning to get it right. I remember, 20th Century Fox coming over to film in Malaysia for ‘Anna and the King’. This is the equivalent of them filming that whole movie in California (but with less money, of course). So, you could say that pre-production was the most challenging. I broke down the script to every single location, person and prop, and made a list, down to the spoon on the dinner table. From there, I called in a few illustrators and had them draw every single thing/person on that list. By the end of it, we probably had hundreds of illustrations before we even started with pre-production. We then scouted for locations in Malaysia that we could possibly use, that actually matched the illustrations. If there were none, we would then know these had to be built. It is the same process for every little detail on the pre-viz. Overcoming it was really by doing a thing at a time, without letting the whole production overwhelm you. Having said this, the filming was no walk in the park either… But if you’re asking about the most challenging aspect, that would definitely be the pre-pro. It was really extensive.
MG: Tell us about how the character Eirick was created?
YK: I discussed with Dom (Purcell) on how the character should be portrayed in the film. Imagine someone who was brought back from the dead… someone who has lost every reason for living… primarily driven by the fact that he is no longer able to be with his immortal lover, Frejya. To make matters worse, he is asked to go head on against the God of Thunder, Thor! How’s that for motivation? So he is a reluctant hero and his character is subdued until he fights against Thor at the final battle.
MG: Tell us about what you have in the cards for 2014?
YK: I am currently smack in the middle of directing my sixth feature film entitled “Cicakman 3” (or in English “Geckoman” – a successful Malaysian comedy super hero franchise I created in 2005), which is the 2nd sequel to my debut as a director in the film industry. KRU is also in the midst of completing our first 3D animation movie entitled ‘Ribbit’, about a frog with an identity crisis. Ribbit, with the voices of Sean Astin, Tim Curry & Russell Peters will be screening at EFM in February 2014. KRU is also in the midst of pre-production of various other projects, which we anticipate to announce at Cannes Film du Marche.