Tilda Swinton posed as an old man in elaborate hoax for Suspiria

Tilda Swinton posed as an old man in elaborate hoax for Suspiria

The (not-so-kept) secret is out: Tilda Swinton has confirmed she is the actress playing 82-year-old male psychiatrist Dr. Jozef Klemperer in Luca Guadagnino's "Suspiria". Swinton revealed to The New York Times that Dr Josef Klemperer is in fact played by her in character as Lutz Ebersdorf. Lutz Ebersdorf is no longer on IMDb and searches for him now go to Tilda Swinton aka Lutz Ebersdorf.

She passed herself off as first-time actor Lutz Ebersdorf in a remake of the 1977 supernatural thriller Suspiria.

Swinton told The New York Times that she made a decision to play Lutz Ebersdorf playing Josef Klemperer "for the sheer sake of fun above all". (The first two being Dakota Johnson as dance student Susie Bannion, and Swinton as dance instructor Madame Blanc). The film shook audiences at Venice Film Festival and Fantastic Fest and is now set for release in Australia on November 8, and we have a bunch of double passes to give away to our exclusive preview screenings.

As for why she played Ebersdorf playing Klemperer, she cited a motto her grandmother lived by, and one I want to tattoo all over my body immediately: "Dull Not To". Though Coulier had previously put Swinton in old-age prosthetics for The Grand Budapest Hotel, and Swinton has played male characters before on film (most notably, in the 1992 "Orlando") to do both at the same time would be a new challenge.

Guadagnino further explained that Swinton playing Klemperer ensured "there will always be this element of femininity at its core".

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The New York Times said Oscar-winning make-up artist Mark Coulier was enlisted to help with the deception. Okay, fair enough, but will she finally admit that she's actually a literal swan who's playing Swinton who's playing Ebersdorf who's playing Klemperer? But Guadagnino says, "This is a movie that is very connected to psychoanalysis, and I like to think that only Tilda could play ego, superego and id". He used prosthetics to thicken her neck and built out her jaw to make it look more masculine.

Swinton's fake penis and balls are "probably in a box somewhere", Coulier said.

Her final touch was to create an online profile for Ebersdorf on movie database website IMDB, although it now redirects to Swinton's profile page.

The ruse might have held longer had a paparazzo not snapped a photo of Swinton as Ebersdorf during production in Berlin, then sold it to USA services two winters ago as a picture of Swinton as disguise. "My original idea was that Lutz would die during the edit, and his "In Memoriam" be the final credit in the film".

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