“I think I wanted to make a movie for women to be able to be rougher characters than they’re usually given opportunities to play,” writer/director Laura Steinel told Deadline yesterday out of SXSW, of her latest directorial effort, Family. “That was my first goal, just to make a character that was a little bit more abrasive and not your typical female character.”
Starring Taylor Schilling, Bryn Vale, Allison Tolman, Eric Edelstein, Jessie Ennis and Blair Beeken, the comedy follows an emotionally-stunted aunt (Schilling) trying to bond with her 13-year-old niece (Vale), whose dream is to run away from home and become a Juggalo. Defining themselves as an avid fan group of horrorcore-comedy hip hop duo Insane Clown Posse (ICP), Juggalos are known for being a rowdy, hardcore group of alternative types.
Interestingly, while Steinel initially set out to use the Juggalos as a metaphor for parent’s worst fears of what their children will get into, upon meeting actual Juggalos during the making of Family, the director had all her fundamental beliefs about the community called into question. “At the time, I was like, ‘Oh, they’re terrifying,’ and then we went on to make this movie and I realized I was talking about a large group of people, and they happen to be pretty great,” Steinel said. “I had assumptions about the Juggalo community, but I think we all kind of feel like outcasts, in our own ways. We all feel like we’re the weirdo. They’ve just found something that brings them together as a community, and I love that.”
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