Matt Rogers on Fire Island, Pride and Prejudice

Matt Rogers, Zane Phillips and Tomas Matos in the film FIRE ISLAND. Photo by Jeong Park. Photo by Jeong Park. Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures. © 2022 20th Century Studios All Rights Reserved
Matt Rogers acquired to stay the dream in the summertime of 2021. That’s when he and two of his highest associates — Joel Kim Booster and Bowen Yang — dropped at life the script for “Fire Island,” written by Booster and impressed by their real-life adventures. “I live under a lucky star,” he tells POPSUGAR. “Seriously.”

“When you’re doing a movie that is about friendship and that is about chosen family, to be there with your literal sisters does a lot of the work,” he explains. ” I think we’re good performers, but I also think we’re great friends.”

For “Fire Island,” Booster mapped the plot of Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” on a bunch of homosexual associates spending every week on Fire Island. The space is a historic gay vacation getaway on Long Island, partially as a result of, for many years, it gave LGBTQ+ individuals a spot to socialize outdoors of the eyes of straight society. But as “Fire Island,” directed by Andrew Ahn, skewers, the neighborhood will also be extremely exclusionary, elitist, racist, and sizeist. Booster and Yang’s Howie and Noah attempt to navigate all this stuff on their quest for love because the film’s Elizabeth and Jane.

I wrote my AP Lit essay concerning the relationship between Elizabeth Bennet and Lydia Bennet, and I acquired a 5. That means I acquired three faculty credit, child, and it is loopy as a result of now I’m portraying that relationship with Joel within the movie.”I wrote my AP Lit essay about the relationship between Elizabeth Bennet and Lydia Bennet, and I got a five. That means I got three college credits, baby, and it’s crazy because now I’m portraying that relationship with Joel in the film.”

And that makes Rogers’s Luke the Lydia. Rogers did not want a refresher on Austen’s plot, as a result of he studied it in highschool and even wrote his AP Lit essay about it. He says, “The essay was, ‘Choose a novel that you’ve read this year, and take two characters from it and explain how one character is a foil for another character. How the character’s existence in the piece heightens a theme for the main character.’ I wrote my AP Lit essay about the relationship between Elizabeth Bennet and Lydia Bennet, and I got a five. That means I got three college credits, baby, and it’s crazy because now I’m portraying that relationship with Joel in the film.”

Rogers is “proud” of how Booster interpreted Lydia’s story and that he acquired to painting it. In “Pride and Prejudice,” Lydia is disgraced when she runs away with Mr. Wickham, pondering he’ll marry her. But he quickly proves to be a scoundrel, solely intent on ruining her repute. Mr. Darcy steps in with sufficient money to pressure Wickham to marry Lydia. When readers see Lydia for a last time, she appears thrilled to be the brand new Mrs. Wickham, although her sisters and father are outraged.

“I think Lydia, in this incarnation as Luke, gets that dignity that Lydia did not get in the book, and some closure, or at least the beginning of some closure that Lydia does not get in the book,” Rogers stated. “He’s not doomed.”

But for Rogers, probably the most attention-grabbing components was diving into the deep insecurity he discovered on the heart of Luke, who would do something to get consideration from Dex (Zane Phillips), the Wickham of “Fire Island.” “In really seeping myself into the character in this world, I really asked myself the question, would Luke hook up with Dex again? And I think he definitely would,” he says. Just as Lydia nonetheless tries to make issues work with Wickham, Luke offers that very same energy over to Dex.

“I don’t even think Luke thinks of himself as an unattractive person. I think that Luke just is insecure and is not able to see himself for his value,” he says. ” I had to ask myself that hard question at the end of what’s his future after this movie, and I wonder if he’s going to process what’s happened to him.”

“I don’t think Luke realizes how f*cked this was,” he explains. “I think it’s going to take him a while to realize he was assaulted.”

While Rogers feels blessed to have made a film along with his finest associates, the closeness of their relationship generally made working collectively tough. “I’ll just be totally honest and transparent that sisters fight. Not every moment on set was completely above board,” he stated. “It’s a tough movie to do. It’s very meta.”

Rogers stated within the means of filming he additionally turned very near the remainder of the cast, particularly Phillips, Tomás Matos, and James Scully. “So, when you’re living on top of each other in Fire Island for two weeks, actually shooting the movie, which was the last two weeks, so we all knew each other really well, of course there’s going to be dynamics,” he explains. “When there’s real love, the stakes get higher. Also, we all are so passionate about this movie that sometimes we leaned into that stuff.” He says when he watches the film, it seems like an “emotional scrapbook” from the summer season “that just so happens to be a movie everyone can watch.”

Bowen Yang, Tomas Matos, Matt Rogers, Torian Miller, Joel Kim Booster and Margaret Cho in the film FIRE ISLAND. Photo by Jeong Park. Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures. © 2022 20th Century Studios All Rights Reserved

Booster wrote the position of Luke for Rogers, and the actor says he sees the similarities. “I think we both have a tendency to kind of do the most, to say the least. I think we both like attention, which is good and bad sometimes,” he says. “I definitely understand, which I think a lot of queer people do, and I’m really happy it’s a theme in the film, when you give so much power over to someone that you think you’re lucky that they looked at you.”

But Rogers thinks Luke is extra assured than he’s — particularly in relation to vogue. In an early scene, Luke wears an especially revealing, over-the-top singlet. “I felt iconic wearing it. I loved wearing it. I would never personally wear that to tea,” he says. “It’s such an overdressed moment.” Luke’s excessive dressing was a part of their exploration of his character. “Luke is the kind of person who is very intentional with what he wears, and he always almost gets it. He always almost nails it,” Rogers says.

Rogers loves making artwork for queer audiences — he wrote and starred on Netflix’s “Q Force,” and he at present stars in Showtime’s “I Love That For You” — however he says it may be a “tough crowd.” He will get why individuals had been nervous about “Fire Island” earlier than it got here out.

“Queer audiences are underrepresented, period,” he explains. “That makes them very anxious about media that comes out and says we’re going to represent you. In fact, we’re going to be called ‘Fire Island.’ I think that there is definitely a sense of wanting to get it right that I don’t think straight creators feel.”

“You know, when they made ‘Dr. Death’ of Peacock, Alec Baldwin isn’t saying, ‘Well, we don’t want to f*ck this up for white men,'” he jokes. “It’s just a burden they don’t have.”

But he is very optimistic concerning the inflow of artwork representing queer individuals. “It’s exciting to be in this generation of things that are happening, and I’m super excited that it feels like every year, if we get one, then the next year we get three, next year we get five,” he explains. “Not everyone might love ‘Q Force,’ but because that walked, something else can run. If ‘Love, Simon’ wasn’t your thing a couple years ago, maybe you liked ‘Happiest Season’ a little bit more. Maybe you’ll love ‘Fire Island’ a ton. Maybe next year, there’ll be something that really breaks through in a mainstream way. Maybe it’s released to theaters, becomes a box office success, and wins Oscars.”

“Maybe it can still be fun and about a fun queer experience and not mining our trauma. Maybe there’ll be all queer actors in the movie,” he says. “To be a part of it is so exciting, and I hope that people think I’m contributing to it positively and want me to continue being a part of it because I enjoy it, and I love what I do, and I love doing it with these people.”

“Fire Island” is streaming now on Hulu.

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