The filmmakers behind Freaky Tales are talking about the experience of working with late actor Angus Cloud in one of his final roles.
The Euphoria actor, who died at age 25 in July, is posthumously onscreen at the 2024 Sundance Film Festival in the Anna Boden- and Ryan Fleck-directed feature, which premiered on Jan. 18 in Park City, Utah.
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Freaky Tales, which defies traditional genre definitions, has punk rockers fighting neo-Nazis, rap battles featuring real-life pop star Normani, Pedro Pascal as a soon-to-retire fixer, and an entire plot centered on Golden State Warrior All-Star Sleepy Floyd’s performance in the 1987 playoff game against the “showtime”-era Lakers. The film, told in four interweaving chapters, is set in 1987 in Cloud’s native Oakland.
“He’s got the Bay Area accent. It’s important that we had some people that talked that way [in the movie],” Fleck told THR prior to the festival. Boden added, “We felt really lucky to have gotten him in the movie.”
The duo had seen his work on Euphoria where he played Fezco, a drug dealer with a heart of gold. In Freaky Tales, he plays Travis, a would-be burglar in the film’s neo-Nazi gang.
“He cared so much about the role,” says Boden. “Even in the most tense moments on set, he would bring this different energy and help break the tension. He ends up bringing this very specific, very Angus energy to the role. He totally transforms it from something that could be a very average role that you don’t think that much about into something that has a very specific life to it.”
Cloud’s final film credit is listed as Abigail, the Universal horror from Radio Silence (Ready or Not) that also stars Dan Stevens, Melissa Barrer and Giancarlo Esposito, and is set for an April release.
At the time of his death, multiple co-stars and fellow actors shared remembrances, including Sydney Sweeney and Maude Apatow. Zendaya wrote on social media, “I’m so grateful I got the chance to know him in this life, to call him a brother, to see his warm kind eyes and bright smile, or hear his infectious cackle of a laugh (I’m smiling now just thinking of it).”
Freaky Tales premiered on Jan 18 at the Eccles Theater in Park City. When Cloud appeared in the final credits, the packed theater roared with applause.
During the post-screening Q&A, Ellis remembered meeting Cloud, Pascal and fellow Freaky Tales actor Ben Mendelsohn on the day they were filming action-heavy and challenging scenes. Said Ellis, “We laughed the entire time, as crazy as that scene was. We had meltdowns and we helped each other through the meltdowns quite a few times. It was so dope to see this cast come together.”
“Rest in Peace to Angus,” Ellis continued. “He gave such a great performance and had so much fun with us.”
“He was just a breath of fresh air,” added Boden of Cloud. “I know a lot of people on the movie felt that way — touched by his presence.”
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