It’s Friday—has your week driven you mad? Well, a friend of mine, actress Christie Lynn Smith, knows all about crazy. She’s here to discuss her latest movie, The Crazies, which opens today.
In the remake of George A. Romero’s 1973 film, Christie plays Deardra Farnum, a farmer’s wife living in an idyllic town where people suddenly start going violently insane.
Pop Culture Nerd: Did you practice running around screaming in your underwear before you started production?
Christie Lynn Smith: Not in my underwear, but there were some heavy rehearsals on the day of shooting. I think I lost my voice…it sounded very deep and sexy afterwards—haha.
PCN: This isn’t your first horror movie…
CLS: I did a horror film in 2007 called The Cursed; it just aired on the SyFy Channel. I had a cameo role and open the film with a few intense scenes with my daughter. It doesn’t end very well. And a few years back I did a short film called The Last Stop Cafe where I played a serial killer on the run!
PCN: You are a freak! I’m not sitting next to you at Thanksgiving this year because you’ll have access to knives. After you’ve done a few scary movies, are you more likely to watch them?
CLS: I tend to not be able to go to sleep if I watch them too late! I have to be careful—my imagination can play tricks on me.
PCN: You shot this in an isolated town, away from your husband and baby. Ever get creeped out alone at night in your hotel room?
CLS: I flew out of town twice to shoot in Perry, Georgia and then once to an isolated town in Iowa. I never got spooked, just missed my honey and baby.
PCN: What was it like on set? Did people stay in character, or were there pranks to lighten things up?
CLS: It was awesome working on this film! I loved the director, Breck Eisner, and the producers. Breck knew what he wanted and was very clear and gave great direction. No pranks but the mood was fun for sure.
PCN: What was your favorite action scene/stunt?
CLS: There is this scene were I am standing in front of a combine and the blades were going full speed and the sound was deafening! That was cool and a little freaky. They were, like, “Be careful—if this grabs your robe, you will basically be slashed to death.” Yikes! And I had to run and run and run all night one night—that was exhausting but I am a warrior. Bring it on, baby!
PCN: Um, I hope they had good life insurance on the film. In an episode of Bones, your recurring character, Caroline Epps, was decapitated and you got to keep your fake head. Any interesting souvenirs from The Crazies?
CLS: For your readers, here’s me and my head that was found in the freezer on Bones. I have the plaster version in my backyard. We take it out at Halloween to scare kids. Just kidding! [Ed. note: Forget the kids. I almost choked on my hot dog when I saw her head lying in her backyard.]
No souvenirs from the film yet. I did get a hat that says “The Crazies—Let’s Do It in Iowa” because that’s where most of the film was shot. And I hope to get a poster!
PCN: I’m a scaredy cat. I get nightmares after watching Teletubbies. Can someone like me handle this movie?
CLS: Yes, you can handle it. It has a thriller quality to it but with a human element. I did scream and jump a few times but I laughed, too. And I did not have bad dreams [after seeing it]!