Paranormal Activity director unearths original audition tapes
Oren Peli released Micah Sloat and Katie Featherston's improvised auditions
In 2009, unknown actors Micah Sloat and Katie Featherston starred in Paranormal Activity, which would go on to reshape the found-footage horror genre and spark a new franchise. Now, fans can watch the audition that started it all after director Oren Peli released the original audition tapes Tuesday.
“I found some interesting footage,” Peli tweeted, noting that the auditions were “entirely improvised.” According to the video, Sloat and Featherston were among thousands of actors who responded to a casting call for “an untitled horror film with a budget of $15,000.”
In the first round of auditions, Sloat and Featherston performed separately as they explained why their home was haunted and reacted to a ghostly presence. Returning for callbacks a month later, they were paired up on a couch to further test their chemistry and responses.
Peli released both a short cut (shown above) and an extended version (shown below) of their tapes on YouTube.
Paranormal Activity easily earned back its production budget (and then some) with a worldwide box office tally of $193.4 million. The franchise released five more films afterwards — including the Marked Ones spin-off and the fifth installment of the core story, The Ghost Dimension.