Peters, Alexis (Hatchet II)
It’s hard to believe that the US premiere for Adam Green’s Hatchet II is only about a week away, and while we’ve had the opportunity here at Dread Central to hear from some of the key players in the project (including Green, AJ Bowen, and Tom Holland), we’re ready to introduce you to Alexis Peters, the up-and-coming actress who portrays Avery in the sequel.
We recently had the opportunity to check in with Peters to find out how she became one of those being hunted by Louisiana’s most notorious supernatural slasher, Victor Crowley, and how it felt to work alongside some of the genre’s most beloved stars.
Dread Central: What drew you to want to become an actress, and how did you get started in the industry?
Alexis Peters; My grandmother took me to see the musical “South Pacific” in an outdoor theatre in Chicago when I was a 5 years old and this blonde woman came out on stage and starting singing that song that goes something like, “I’m gonna wash that man right out of my hair…” and I was pretty much hooked from that moment forward. This led me to study acting and I ended up being Taft Hartlied for my first movie Grendel, which shot in Bulgaria right after college.
DC: Can you talk a little bit about how you got the part in Hatchet II and about your character Avery?
AP: I was scheduled to leave for Chicago for Christmas to see my family, and my manager called with an audition for Hatchet II which was the day before I left. I have to say I almost didn’t go; in fact I almost canceled the audition because I had so much to do before leaving. As fate would have it, I’m very happy I didn’t cancel.
Avery is a Southern girl who joins the group of "hunters" on the prowl for Victor Crowley. Her reasons for joining this particular team probably lean more towards the fact that she has unfinished business with Layton (played by AJ Bowen), which she is determined to set straight. The fans should get ready to laugh and be entertained at the very least!
DC: With Hatchet II being unrated, there’s obviously a huge amount of gore in the flick. Was that fun for you to experience since I know this is your first big genre film?
AP: I’ve wanted to be in a horror film since I saw Candyman as a little girl. Call me crazy… Some little girls wanted to play with Barbie, and while I was also one of those, I fantasized about playing the girl in horror movies who runs up the stairs trying to avoid her impending doom. The movie (Candyman) was partly traumatizing but also intrigued me. Who would ever guess I would work with Tony Todd as an adult? I had an absolute ball on the set of this film and can’t wait to do more.
DC: Part of what makes Hatchet II fun for the fans is the fact that this really is an ensemble film featuring a lot of horror heavyweights. Can you talk a bit about your experiences working with everyone on the project, including director Adam Green?
AP: For my first horror film I couldn’t ask for anything better than to work with icons like Tony Todd, Kane Hodder, Danielle Harris, and Tom Holland. Having grown up literally watching Friday the 13th, Candyman, Child’s Play, etc., I almost felt like a kid in a candy store on my first day on set.
I remember staying up late with my mom on Halloween night as a child eating popcorn and watching Candyman. I think I had to sleep with my mom for a month after, and Tony’s face haunted me throughout my childhood so working with him was almost surreal but also humbling and thrilling.
Working with Adam Green was unique because not only does he create a home environment feeling on the set, he let me improv a lot, and if he liked what I came up with in the scene, he kept it! A lot of directors don’t work that way so to be able to improv and essentially play on camera made my days on Hatchet II beyond enjoyable.
And with Kane Hodder, as much of a jokester as he is, when the camera is on…he transforms into the character, making for an absolutely terrifying set environment. Working with Kane, I have to say – I wasn’t really acting. That man is terrifying!!!!
DC: Now that you’ve dipped your toes in the “horror genre” waters, would you like to keep working in this area of film?
AP: I still have yet to be cast as the girl running up the stairs and away from the killer … so yes, I would love to do more. I honestly had some of the funniest moments of my life maybe with the cast from this movie. Horror films are more challenging than one would think. I can’t wait to do more.
DC: Any fun memories on set you can recall?
AP: In one of my scenes (you’ll know which one I’m talking about when you see the film), Adam really gave me free range to make up my own lines and say anything I wanted. I have no idea how I thought of the things I said, but they were so out there and funny all the camera guys, crew, and even Adam had tears in their eyes. I definitely broke many times throughout filming that particular scene, and let’s just say I was one of the most highly quoted people in this movie. I would hear the cast and crew saying my lines even a week later and still they made us laugh out loud. It was really good times.
Look for the film to be in AMC theatres (click here for listings) on October 1st! Click here to find out why you should take a stand for unrated horror!
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