Sierra McCormick talks about playing a new kind of slasher maniac in Some Kind of Hate
Disney Channel star Sierra McCormick put down the mouse ears and picked up a necklace of bloody razor blades to play undead villain Moira in the new slasher film, Some Kind of Hate (out in theaters, on VOD, and via iTunes, Sept. 18).
“The necklace of razors was so much fun,” says the 17-year-old, who is best known for playing Olive Doyle on the Disney series A.N.T. Farm. “I wanted to keep it but they only had one of them. I was like, ‘Damn!’ But we had a lot of razors on that set. I think most of the money went to fake blood and razors.”
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: In Some Kind of Hate, you play a teenage girl who comes back from the dead and starts killing people at a remote camp for troubled kids. This is both a serious and a seriously nasty movie — and I mean that as a compliment.
SIERRA McCORMICK: I know. Spencer Breslin (who plays one of the kids at the camp) is our one little [bit of] comic relief and he does such a great job. But that’s what I liked about the script. It really took it seriously. A lot of slashers in recent times are good but they’re almost parodying without really trying trying to parody, do you know what I mean? I think the fact that it took it really seriously, and the subject matter was really relevant, and it hits home with a lot of people, and that the slasher villain is a multifaceted, complex character, I thought was really cool.
How did you get involved in the project?
I was having lunch and I got a call from my manager. He was like, “Hey, can you read this script and meet with this director in two hours?” So, I had this meeting with the director Adam (Egypt Mortimer) and his wife and producing partner Amanda and we talked forever. We got off on such a tangent about different movies we enjoy, and what middle school was like for me, and all kinds of crazy things. And we talked about the character extensively as well, and what Moira might have been like when she was alive. That’s really what I tried to focus on when I was playing her, was less [playing her as] a supernatural ghost-demon-thing, it was more playing her like an authentic teenage girl. Which I think is scary enough, you know. [Laughs]
When I was a teenage boy, they certainly scared me.
Yeah, exactly. We’re pretty scary! I think what makes it so special is her emotional intensity. And so I really tried to focus on her backstory and what leads her to where she is now in the film.
What was it like the first time you dressed up as Moira?
When Adam and I met that first time he was like, “Okay, how do you see her dressing?” We both agreed we didn’t want her in some sort of cliché, ghostly, Victorian nightgown. He had this vision from the start of her having this kooky, anime cat T-shirt, which is what I wear in the film. Because when she was alive, cat T-shirts were cool. But hers just missed the mark because she was missing the mark all the time socially about what was cool and what wasn’t. So, she has this funny little anime cat T-shirt. I think it also reminds you that she was a teenage girl when she was alive. It’s so easy to forget when she’s slitting people’s throats and stuff that she was once just a very sad teenage girl. I think that reminds you that she probably loved anime, she loved — I don’t know — Taylor Swift, something like that. I thought it humanized her in a way that’s kind of interesting.
The first time I dressed up was that scene where I’m with Ronen (Rubinstein, the film’s male lead) in a bathroom, and the door swings open, and I’m sitting there on top of the toilet, and I was dripping blood. It was really cool. I didn’t really say too much but dressing up really put me into the character.
Watching the film, I was never quite sure whether I should be horrified by Moira or feel sympathy for her.
I think the most interesting and cool villains in movies that I watch are the ones you don’t know how to feel about them. So I did my job! Awesome!
Were you looking for a change of pace from your,Disney Channel show?
I wasn’t looking for anything specific. It was a nice change, for sure. But I really just look to see if the work rings true, if it’s people that I’d enjoy working with, a character that I really feel strongly about. It’s more about that rather than like, “Oh, I’m going to do something really bloody now that I’ve been on the Disney Channel. [Laughs] Yeah, this will be perfect and I’ll show them!” No, it’s just more like, “Wow, I love this character, I love this script.” And when I met Adam I was like, “Okay, I know I’m in good hands.”
I was looking at your Twitter page earlier and clearly you’re aware that you have a lot of young fans. You’d posted a clip from the movie but warned people that it really is quite scary.
Yeah, I know. Normally I would just tweet it and then I realized, Oh my god, there are 12-year-olds, preteens, who follow me! Okay, maybe I shouldn’t just send them headfirst into some clip. I was like, Okay, maybe I should let them know that it’s scary, that it’s creepy, so if they’re not into that sort of thing…
I recently interviewed Contracted 2 director Josh Forbes, who shot second unit on Some Kind of Hate. He told me that the day you wrapped you were feeling sad and he took you out in public, still dressed as Morira, to cheer you up.
Oh, that was so much fun! That was great! Yeah, I was very sad the day it wrapped. I’m always very sad at the end of every shoot. I get so attached to everyone. So, yeah, I was still in Moira makeup, I was all bloody, and I looked like I had been in a car wreck or something like that. I was like, “Fill her up on number 11, please!” at some gas station store. No one did anything until I went into a Denny’s, or something like that, and I was breathing really heavy, and they called an ambulance. [Laughs] I was like, “Maybe we should let them know that it was all a joke?”
Would you be happy to play Moira again if Some Kind of Hate is a hit?
Oh, yeah. At the end of the shoot, Adam and Brian (DeLeeuw, who cowrote the script) were talking about that. I was like, “Sign me up now!” I had such a wonderful, fantastic time working on the first one, I would totally be down for a second.
You can see the trailer for Some Kind of Hate — which also stars Grace Phipps, Noah Segan, Lexi Atkins, and director Michael Polish—below.
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