Ti West Shares Origins of X Trilogy

Ti West has had a busy year.

The writer and director’s unique, raunchy slasher X premiered in March to critical success, with leading lady Mia Goth delivering not one, but two phenomenal performances. Drawing heavy influence from classic campy, gory slashers, X follows a group of 1970s adult film stars and their crew as they find unexpected terror while trying to film a pornographic film on a remote Texas farm.

Only months after the delightfully gory film’s release, West announced that he and Goth had secretly written and shot a prequel film while X was in production. Set in 1918, Pearl is an intense character study of the first film’s deranged killer; the prequel recently received high praise from Martin Scorsese.

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And if that weren’t enough, West announced another upcoming film—this time a sequel, titled MaXXXine, catching up with the titular final girl from X in 1980s Los Angeles.

But West says that if A24 hadn’t greenlit Pearl with enough time to allow them to film X and its prequel back to back, the trilogy would not have happened.

“We would’ve never made this movie. That was part of it. It was like if we go home, this script is nothing. I knew that when we wrote it. I knew that it was completely a gamble to do this back-to-back, or it was a writing exercise, and that’s all it would be because it wouldn’t make sense. The movie’s budget would be enormous to recreate all this stuff,” West told Bloody Disgusting in a recent interview, sharing that reusing the set of X right away was pivotal to making the prequel.

“It was really a movie that was birthed out of one of the most unique timing scenarios ever. But because of that, I knew that we could, because of all the amortization of everything we had already put together with X, I just knew that there was a way to make a movie that looked a lot bigger than it was and to give a scope and an identity that would feel, not like a bonus movie, but a second completely different, fully realized story,” he added.

West Teases Character Evolution in MaXXXine

A24

While West says that the upcoming sequel MaXXXine would have been “fine” directly following X, the director felt that it was important to go back before moving forward in the story. Though he didn’t reveal much about what fans can expect from the third film, West says that it’ll show the “evolution” of Maxine Minx.

“I think what’ll be fun in MaXXXine, I’m not going to tell you what it’s about, but what’s fun is it is an evolution of the character, in the way that you met Pearl in X, but then you get to know a different side of her in Pearl Yes, you have met Maxine. It is a continuation of Maxine, but she is at a very different point in her life. It’s going to be an interesting thing to catch up with her when we do, and to see Mia Goth in yet another way.”

There’s no release date for MaXXXine yet, but Pearl is now showing in theaters.