Having worked on beloved TV shows in the horror world like Hannibal, String zeroand New cherry flavor, filmmaker Nick Antosca is no stranger to delivering unsettling content to audiences. In recent years, Antosca has begun to explore the true space of crime, with projects such as The act and Candy drawing inspiration from various real-life horrors for gripping stories. Antosca continues this trend with Peacock’s A family friendAntosca recently recalling the differences between telling fictional horrors and those rooted in reality. A family friend will premiere on Peacock on Thursday, October 6.
“Horror stories I’ve told before use a lot of the same muscle as true crime stories because it’s just a slightly different balance. When you’re telling a fictional horror story, it’s also really important to to tell a human story in there, to focus on the characters, to make it character-driven,” Antosca shared with ComicBook.com. “Broberg’s story is a psychological horror story. There’s a monster in it, and it was just important to focus on the humanity as well as the fear, tension and suspense in this story. added element, of course, is that it really happened and it’s about real people, and there’s a real person whose story we want to honor and bring justice.”
He continued, “And the other thing I would say about the subject matter is that it’s a psychological horror story. It’s terrifying, but also heartbreaking and disturbing as it is. , it’s also a story of survival and of a family coming to a place of healing and forgiveness finally after an unthinkable ordeal. That was one of the reasons why it was important to say it and important to say it. say in partnership with real people.
A family friend is based on the heartbreaking true story of the Broberg family, whose daughter Jan was kidnapped multiple times over a period of a few years by a charismatic and obsessed “friend” of the family. The Brobergs — dedicated to their faith, family, and community — were completely unprepared for the sophisticated tactics their neighbor used to exploit their vulnerabilities, tear them apart, and turn their daughter against them. This is the story of how their lives were forever changed – and how they survived.
In an unexpected creative development, Jan Broberg herself served as the show’s producer, offering her own unique insight and perspective on the dramatized version of events.
“As I’ve told my story for 32 years to small groups, to large groups, and then now have these other bigger opportunities to tell it, I’ve been so grateful because it’s therapeutic for me, but that’s also what I’ve gotten from other people who have heard my story one way or another, ‘Oh my God, you gave me the words’ “, recalls Broberg of the personal motivation to be directly involved in this adaptation. “We have a book, Jan Broberg’s story, and I’ve had people read it and say, “Now I have the words.” I literally read paragraphs to my mom telling her what my stepdad did because it was like that, and I didn’t know how to say it.'”
She continued, “So in this show you have a full cast of characters who are real human beings and they’re not caricatures. And you’ll identify with them because if that hasn’t happened to you, it’s happened to someone close to you and it happened at the hands of someone usually close to you, at least in your sports team, or your congregation, or your family, or your neighborhood, your community center. wasn’t a scary stranger almost ever. So the psychological thriller, the true crime part of this story is fascinating, but the human story is one that everyone I’ve ever known, they know someone or it’s happened to them. It’s the most common type of abuse and it’s perpetrated by people who heal the whole orbit and the child slowly over time. And they’ve done a wonderful job of telling the story. story. It’s very true, it’s very realistic. The actors are amazing. It’s been a really fantastic opportunity for me to tell the story more fully. than headlines. And I didn’t need it.”
A family friend premieres on Peacock on October 6.
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