Los Angeles: John Cusack will be seen playing multi-faceted writer Edgar Allan Poe, known for inventing the detective genre, in his forthcoming movie ‘The Raven’. The actor says it is his darkest role ever.
Poe is best known for his tales of mystery and the macabre in the 19th century. Set in 1849, "The Raven" is a fictionalized account of the last days of the renowned writer`s life, in which the poet and author pursues a serial killer whose murders mirror those in Poe`s stories.
"I can`t think of any darker role. He (Poe) was very romantic and wanted desperately to love and to touch the higher worlds, but he also needed to go into the underworld. So there was a duality to him that was so intense. Most of the artists and writers can relate to it," Cusack said in an email interaction from Los Angeles.
"I don`t know how people are going to see it. But I think we were true to the source material. I think we made a movie that was much like Poe`s writing. And I think it`s dark. I tried my hardest," he added.
The 45-year-old, best known for his role in films like "Con Air" and "Serendipity", admits that the preparation involved a lot of research.
"There are some great biographies around Edgar Allan Poe. It is a multi-faceted role and involved a lot of research. We visited many places and book stores as there is so much material on all of his writings. For eight weeks, we had sleepless nights trying to read and find answers," said Cusack.
After going through Poe`s work, Cusack feels "the author was way ahead of time as a writer".
"In the time when nobody had the courage to even think about such dark stories, he wrote things that were deep in his heart and soul.
"It was Poe who invented the detective genre and his work laid the foundation for one of the most famous and iconic detective stories of all time (Sherlock Holmes).
"I think he was very charismatic, way ahead of his time and yet led a sort of tragic and twisted life which reflects in his library of work. He also had a great sense of humour that showed in his writings," he added.
The film, which releases Friday, also features Alice Eve and Luke Evans.