In the diabolical Netflix series “You,” bookish stalker Joe Goldberg is so obsessively enamored of the women on whom he fixates that he is perfectly willing to commit murder to ensure the object of his laser-focused romantic ambitions becomes his. This often involves the use of a custom glass prison he constructs in order to keep his prey, or anyone foolish enough to come between Joe and his quarry, in a state of submissive pliability, should the softer charm approach fail to make them swoon.
Of course, for every intelligent serial killer with a heart, there is a rabid online fandom with a major crush. With his furrowed brows, seemingly harmless brown eyes and academic flair, the actor who plays Goldberg, Penn Badgley, channels a sophisticated yet primal allure that fellow heartthrob actors Michael C. Hall and Mads Mikkelsen of “Dexter” and “Hannibal” fame also evoke in their own unique ways.
We really had to flex our creativity in some challenging but ultimately super-rewarding ways, in order to accomplish the creation of plot points that make for a truly gripping thriller.
It may come as a surprise, then, that adult entertainment has not fully capitalized on this “I have a crush on the dapper monster” trend, given the myriad possible hardcore scenarios and sexually charged potential in such a narrative.
Well, porn fans yearning for a bad boy with a penchant for slaying, your time has come at last. Auteurs Jessica Jasmin, Michael Vegas and Siouxsie Q have joined forces to create their own smoldering rendition of the trope, in the new Disruptive Films feature titled “For You, I Will.”
The trio fully credits “You” as a touchstone inspiration for the project, but in the — ahem — execution, they tapped other sources as well.
“I found it helpful to draw from, and reference, the iconic vintage pulp genres when approaching this project,” Siouxsie explains. “Especially mainstream Hollywood thrillers made during the time of the Hays Code, from approximately 1934 to 1968, as producers also had to work within very strict parameters of what they could and could not show on screen during that time — just like we do when working in a space dictated by credit card processors.”
Given the at-times-perplexing, mercurial and capricious nature of credit card compliance, which can limit all manner of content deemed excessive by the banking powers that be, it was a balancing act to create a feature that draws upon so many problematic concepts blurring the lines of murder, consent and lust within the context of a pornographic work. Mainstream, of course, frequently does so with glee, yet adult is often subjected to extra-harsh scrutiny.
“We really had to flex our creativity in some challenging but ultimately super-rewarding ways, in order to accomplish the creation of plot points that make for a truly gripping thriller,” Siouxsie continues. “For example, how do you include the implication of violence without actually showing any? Just like our filmmaking forefathers during the Hays censorship era, we found a way to make it work.”
“For You, I Will” represents the third feature on which the Jasmin, Vegas and Q trifecta has collaborated. It tells the story of Wyatt, played by Carter Woods, and his complicated feelings for his obsession: his neighbor Cory, played by Dante Colle.
“We shot in a studio, we have outdoor night scenes … we created a whole universe around our characters,” Jasmin says. “Not only did we want to push the boundaries in terms of production value, but we also wanted to have something new to offer in one of our sex scenes. We shot our very first double anal scene for Disruptive Films.”
Co-starring with Woods and Colle are Roman Todd, Blain O’Connor, Jay Tee, Theo Brady and Tristan West, with special guest appearances by Maddy May and Ana Foxxx. When it came to the casting process, the Disruptive team had a few names in mind, though Colle and Woods were always first on their list for the leads.
“We lucked out that they were available,” Jasmin notes. “Both are consummate professionals. They come to set prepared and ready to act. With ‘For You, I Will,’ they arrived in the mindset of their characters. It’s dark, but they’re willing to go there, and that’s what Disruptive is about: bringing these scenes to life while flexing an actor’s chops.
“Directing is collaborative work,” she affirms. “I want the talent to understand their character’s background and have the space to propose their ideas of who the character is and what they would do in certain situations. When the directors and actors trust each other, that’s when magic happens.”
Speaking about the collaborative dynamic, Jasmin admits that when she first met Vegas and Q, she was intimidated by “such a powerful duo.” However, she describes finding them so down to Earth, welcoming and generous that any nervousness was quickly dispelled.
For Jasmin, the team-up was a dream realized. She first met her co-directors last year during the making of “Briar Basin Ranch,” another thriller project for Disruptive. It was during that production that she discovered their capacity to execute creative ideas and elicit the absolute best work from everyone involved.
“I was so impressed with their creativity and their ability to take an idea and elevate it,” she recalls. “We have a common goal, and we’re committed to pushing the limit to bring inspired content to our viewers’ screens. Our partnership is seamless. We’re a three-headed dragon. Preplanning sequences and scenes makes it possible for us to move into roles on set as necessary without discussion or assignment. It’s awesome.”
What makes “For You, I Will” distinct from other Disruptive movies was their goal to create a fully lived-in universe with fleshed out characters. If the explicit sex were removed, Jasmin remarks, the feature could still hold its own on top streaming services, on the merits of its storyline and acting.
“We focused on character continuity and development while ensuring the sets and locations were visually interesting,” she says. “We also feature our double penetration scene. The teaser is live on X. Go check it out!”
Generally speaking, Disruptive Films aims to live up to its name, indeed offering genre-blurring and innovative content that pushes the envelope. According to Jasmin, the company is not afraid to skate near the edge of compliance, in order to bring its creators’ visions to life with darkly rich panache.
“Our goal is to be as taboo as legally allowed,” she declares. “Even more twisted, our scenes actually come from real experiences, podcasts, true crime stories and popular TV shows. My team is inspired by what we watch and we’re big movie and television buffs.”
To achieve this, the process first starts in the writing room, where everyone brainstorms until they land on a concept for the next movie. Inspiration is welcomed from anywhere, be it pure imagination or popular mainstream fare. Once they nail down a concept, the Disruptive Films honchos share it with the directors and rally the design and post-production teams around it.
“Disruptive is a collaborative brand,” Jasmin says. “Every hand that touches a movie has an influence on it and their own spin. We’re lucky to have a passionate team.”
Many more such stories are on the horizon, and she cannot wait to bring them to life, as Disruptive strives to remain a leader in the market.
“We want to be on the tip of peoples’ tongues, a major part of the conversation,” Jasmin underscores. “We’re going to do that by disrupting the status quo. One of our major goals for the year is working with talent behind the scenes. We’re proud to have Jake Waters’ directorial and screenwriting debut coming to Disruptive next month. Disruptive will continue to be a studio that people love working with, and are excited to work for.”