J. Larose and Ashley Smith appear in the recently released horror film “Extremity” (perfect for Halloween and available on demand!). The pair of stars took a few minutes to answer our questions about production, and their careers.
Horror fans know you from many movies, such as Last Shift, Saw III, and Repo! The Genetic Opera, what brings you back to genre and how has the genre treated you?
The horror genre fans are amazing…they’re so invested and excited that I can’t help but want to be involved with that universe.
What appealed to you to do Extremity?
First and foremost is getting the opportunity to work with Anthony DiBlasi again. This is our 5th project together. Especially when you’re dealing with these extreme situations, there needs to be trust. I have total trust with Anthony. Obviously that includes the safety aspect of whatever we’re doing, but also the creative story telling that ultimately is what the audience receives.
Having played both sides of the horror situation, victim and victimizer, which is your favorite or the more fun to pay and why?
While both sides certainly are rewarding in their own way, “victimizer” is definitely more fun for me. I also believe that it’s more challenging. I’d like to think that I’m kind by nature, so being Evil takes more imagination.
Are you a fan of haunted houses, or even extreme haunts? What from them appeals to you or pushes you away?
I am a HUGE fan of haunted houses in terms of seeing how much people really enjoy the live aspect of venturing through the unknown and dangerous. That said, I’m totally NOT a fan of participating. Don’t know if it’s a control thing, or a touchy thing, or perhaps I’m just a good ole’ fashioned scaredy cat.
How was your experience shooting in cold Canada?
I love Canada and Canadians. I’ve always had the best experiences filming north of the border. That said, it was painfully cold. Growing up in Chicago, I’ve experienced intense cold, but that time in Edmonton introduced me to a whole new level of discomfort. It’s mostly my own fault for not preparing correctly. I traveled in from Florida where the only layers we’re doing are shirts over take tops.
Where can we expect to see you next?
Last year I stepped away from the business to care for a loved one. This year has been spent getting back into the game. I have a couple potential projects, but I’ve been around long enough to know that until you’re on set and hear “Action”, nothing is certain. So until then, maybe playing guitar and singing at an open mic…now that’s WAY scary !!! (I won’t say for who, me or the audience…)
From what can be found online (read IMDB), you have done two shorts and two features, with Extremity being your first horror feature. What attracted you to Extremity?
I really liked the story, as a frequent haunted house fan myself I felt like the story really resonated with me. Also Anthony seemed like he would be a lot of fun to work with, which I was totally right! Plus I just love working as an actress, so it was all a win win situation. Not much more thought than that.
Is horror harder or easier for you to work with?
Horror is much easier to work with, I think. It’s just naturally where my mind goes. I’m very much a teaser and a nuisance in real life. So I really loved putting that fun into playing Nell.
How do you prepare for a part like Nell (Female White Skull)?
To prepare for Nell I spent some time back home in East Texas, a some what desolate place. Reminded myself of my small town roots and that feeling of doing stupid shit for kicks and wanting to leave and see the world one day. I really found Nell in that place.
I got a coach, I read the script ALOT ALOT and got creative. Played, had fun and pulled from my own experiences.
Working in an abandoned building, did anything get to you while filming?
Honestly I loved shooting in an abandoned building. We really felt the freedom to do as we pleased. A sort of anything goes feeling where creativity really flourishes. Besides the cold temperature those whole shooting experience and location was really fantastic.
What is next for you?
I always hate this question. Nothing super specific. I want to do more movies, plain and simple. I live in LA now and I’m doing auditions and meeting people in the industry. Super psyched to find my next part, my next challenge.
Thank you Ashley! We look forward to seeing more of you in feature and short films.