'The Perfect Guy' Cast Dishes on Crazy Exes at Beverly Hills Premiere
The Screen Gems film features a loving boyfriend turned crazed stalker.
The Perfect Guy had its premiere Wednesday night at the WGA Theatre in Beverly Hills. Stars including Sanaa Lathan, Michael Ealy and Morris Chestnut gathered on the red carpet, where they touted the David M. Rosenthal-directed thriller.
The Screen Gems-distributed film tells the story of a successful lobbyist (Lathan) who finds herself the target of her formerly loving ex-boyfriend (Ealy) turned crazy, obsessed stalker.
With similarities to films like Fatal Attraction, Boy Next Door and Unfaithful, the cast and crew spoke on how The Perfect Guy sets itself apart and how the film pays homage to the classic genre.
“The collective vision of what we wanted to do was to take a genre film and elevate it a bit, making sure it hits the right beats in terms of what you expect but make it a little bit smarter,” said producer Tommy Oliver. “Movies like Unfaithful or Fatal Attraction, they’re classics. We don’t get tired of watching them. For us, we wanted to do something that’s in that vein but put our own spin on it with a couple of noir qualities.”
Added Rosenthal: “The script had this danger to it, but it wasn’t super violent. It wasn’t action-oriented, but it was still gripping and a slow boil in the way that Fatal Attraction is. It’s a perennial genre/subject matter. Jilted lovers, people not meeting our expectations, betrayal — those are universal themes. When you touch on something authentic in that dramatic milieu, then you’re striking a chord that audiences respond to.”
Ealy, who switched in and out of being loving and insane, found the role took a toll on his psyche. “There were days when I had to be romantic and then do the stalking. It was weird going back and forth, and it was messing with me mentally, but I was able to push through,” he told THR.
Though the film’s tone was dark, Lathan assured that there were lighthearted moments on set.
“Obviously working with Michael and Morris is amazing. I had so many girlfriends trying to come to the set. It was crazy!” Lathan joked. “I was like, ‘You’ve never tried coming to visit me before?’ ”
In the spirit of the film’s storyline, the stars dished on their craziest experiences with an ex:
“She told me over the phone that if we didn’t talk right now that she would wait at my apartment,” Ealy told THR. “I wasn’t home, and she said, ‘I’ll just wait at your apartment until you get home.’ I was like, ‘OK! I’ll see you in a little bit! Let’s get this over with now!’”
For Oliver, the film’s premise felt a little too close to home. “I’ve unfortunately been stalked. I had a girl who she literally called from eight different phone numbers. She would not stop. I downloaded an app that would pick up and then hang up a half a second afterwards, otherwise she would leave me a message every single time she called. She would email. She would text. It was just a bad situation.”
The Perfect Guy hits theaters Sept. 11.