If you happened to catch Paranormal Activity 2 when it was in theaters this past October, then you probably joined me in falling in love with the ever-resourceful nanny/housekeeper/spiritual butt-kicker Martine, played by actress VIVIS. Recently Dread Central had the opportunity to talk with VIVIS about her experiences working on Paranormal Activity 2, her feelings on fan reactions to Martine, and whether or not she’s involved with the next installment in this growing franchise.
When VIVIS came on board to start work on Paranormal Activity 2, she had no idea that she was even attached to a sequel for one of the most profitable independent horror movies of all time.
“When I came onto Paranormal 2, I didn’t actually know I was working on it at first because it had a different name at that time,” explained VIVIS. “Even my paperwork was all secretive and just had the shooting title so I was pretty surprised when I found out to say the very least.”
VIVIS said even though PA 2 was a new type of shooting experience for her (without an actual script), she relished the challenge and talked about how director Tod Williams worked alongside the entire cast to keep them all on their toes as actors.
“I came in at the second treatment stage of production, and we did a lot of changes from there so it was very exciting because when we were done, we didn’t know how the movie was going to turn out,” explained the actress. “What I loved was that Tod really let us play and do a lot of improvising so we’d take personal experiences and put that into our performances, which is why I think everything about it feels so real. We had an outline of what we needed to cover but never a script, and I think that’s what makes these movies so special. They’re very authentic.”
“One of the games that Tod would play with us on set that was really cool was where he’d tell one of us a ‘secret’ in a certain scene and the rest of us wouldn’t know what’s going on and then we could just play off of that energy. He did this so he could get certain dynamics between our characters flowing, and even though it took us a while to catch on to what he was doing, I think it really helped us come together as a cast,” VIVIS said.
Part of having an improv-style film means that there are going to be a lot of outtakes, according to VIVIS, and you just never knew what would ultimately make it into theaters and what wouldn’t. “When I started, they were on the second treatment and I just shot two scenes then – when the baby was young, and then when he was 14 months old. Originally, the story was that the nanny was ‘evil’ so that’s why I get fired, but then they decided to go in a different direction and called me back in to tell me that my role was expanded.”
VIVIS added, “The first time I saw the movie, I honestly had no idea which direction my character Martine would ultimately go, so how the movie and how my character’s involvement plays out was just as surprising to me as it was for everyone else the first time I watched in. I absolutely loved the reactions people have had to Martine, and I got to hear an entire theater cheer for me, which was almost shocking to me. I think part of why so many people loved her and cheered when she came back was because they could either identify with her or identify her with someone in their lives. That makes me really proud, and I know we all did something really special with Paranormal 2.”
And part of what a lot of people loved about Martine was her relationship with teenager Ali, who was struggling to fit into this new family dynamic with the addition of her baby stepbrother. “I believe it was Chris Landon that caught on to the chemistry between Martine and Ali (played by Molly Ephraim) so he was the writer behind fleshing out their relationship. He saw that I had an immediate chemistry with Molly so he developed this bond where Martine was like her surrogate mother, which is why it was devastating for Molly when my character gets fired. She has lost her mother, she’s losing her father to this new family, and then she loses me,” explained VIVIS.
And since we already know that Paranormal Activity 3 will be hitting theaters this upcoming October, we asked VIVIS if Martine and her spiritual knowledge would be back to take on the demon and get baby Hunter back safely. “Whether or not you’ll see Martine in part three is beyond my control, but I know I’d love to come back for the next film. I just haven’t heard anything yet from Paramount or anyone else officially.”
“But if I do get to come back for the third Paranormal movie, I would love to see Martine reuniting with Ali and then going after Hunter and whatever evil force took him. I feel like she’d stop at nothing to keep the baby and Ali safe from this evil in their lives. Martine definitely knows that whatever this evil is, it needs to be defeated, and even if she can’t do it herself, I see her stopping at nothing to figure out how to get the baby back and destroying this evil at all costs,” VIVIS added.
We know our fingers are crossed for Martine’s return to the big screen this October! All we can do is wait until then to see what happens, but in the meantime make sure to check out Paranormal Activity 2 when it comes out on DVD and Blu-Ray on February 8th.
READ THE PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 2 REVIEW HERE!
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