The 2022 edition of the Sundance Film Festival kicked off on Thursday, Jan. 20, going virtual for the second year in a row.

One of the day’s panels was for the new horror film “Fresh,” starring Sebastian Stan (“The Falcon and the Winter Snowman”) as seemingly charming Steve, who romances Noa, played by Daisy Edgar-Jones (“Normal People”); suffice it to say, Steve is revealed to be not at all who he seemed.

During the panel, “Fresh” director Mimi Cave discussed what sets Stan’s character apart from other movie villains. “Sebastian came in with a level of commitment that was beyond and he put it on himself to learn about someone who had trauma in their past who would be living in the life of his character,” she said. “There were little things that we wanted to do to set Steve apart from other villains you may have seen in the past.”

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According to Stan, he felt it was important to add some elements of humour to what is a pretty horrific scenario. “Humour helps us process trauma and difficult positions in a way that helps make us understand,” he explained.

“This came from the tone from the last few years like ‘Get Out’, ‘Killing Eve’, ‘Parasite’, where there’s this certain levity that comes from the darkness that I enjoy,” screenwriter Lauryn Kahn elaborated. “I wanted to make a movie that was saying something, but not shoving it down throats while allowing for people to laugh in moments.”

Finally, Edgar-Jones opened up about how being forced to quarantine prior to filming allowed her to really get into the mindset of her character. “We all had to quarantine when we first got to Vancouver. Even though it was difficult being by yourself for two weeks, it really gave me uninterrupted time to think about what we had to do. Also, a lot of the film I was quite isolated, so it got me in that mindset.”

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Asked whether the cast was able to look at meat the same way after making the movie, Edgar-Jones quipped: “I could not eat patè after filming.”

Meanwhile, check out a recap of highlights from the first day of Sundance 2022.

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