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DREAD Presents: BLACK SITE’s Samantha Schnitzler on Badass Female Protagonists

It’s been a week and a half since we released Black Site, our latest DREAD title. It’s a film that, “…creates a compelling neo-Lovecraftian world“, “…will please fans of different genres“, and “…is a serious love letter to the films of John Carpenter“.

One of the aspects of the film that we’re very proud to get behind is the strength, resilience, and craftiness of lead character Ren, played by Samantha Schnitzler. But rather than try to put words in her mouth or tell you ourselves why this is important, we turned to Schnitzler to tell us in her own words why such characters are so necessary.

She explains:

“Ren to me is a bit of a conflicted character who’s let a particular event – the night her parents were killed by the elder god Erebus – define who she became as an adult, and when we meet her, instead of embracing her vulnerability she’s trying to fight against it and prove the world – and herself – that she’s enough. And I think from a human and psychological perspective it’s quite a deep thing to realize that what we’re seeking and what we think we’re lacking is very often to be found within ourselves and ultimately the only thing truly standing between what we want to achieve and us is our own insecurities.

“What truly drew me to the script was how well the character and her evolution were depicted by Tom and how he managed to create a character I believe the audience wants to root for from start to finish. As we embark upon this crazy adventure with Ren, we see her softening and discovering her own self. And what was initially defensive sarcasm and almost emotional impermeability gives way to more empathy and vulnerability.

“To me, badass females in genre films are super important, but that’s also because I think the meaning behind what badass is, is evolving a lot. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to be kicking ass left, right, and center and I love when I get to shoot cool fight scenes but I believe that it’s possible, if not crucial, to convey strength within characters beyond their physicality, to show the future and current generations of females that it’s important to stand up for yourself – and the people around you – and that strength comes in different forms. For instance, Ren, in my eyes, is even more badass at the end of the film because of how she’s embraced her vulnerability and not in spite of it. I can think of 50 female characters in films and TV shows right now that are badass and don’t necessarily have fight scenes. And for that, we have to thank great scriptwriters that create layered and unapologetically strong characters, just like Ren.”

An elite military unit encounters a supernatural entity, known as The Elder Gods, that forces them into battle against an army from another dimension. They must fight together to defend the Black Site and save the world from ultimate destruction.

Written and Directed by Tom Paton, produced by Airpick Pictures & Alvin Adams, and shot by George Burt, Black Site stars Samantha Schnitzler, Mike Beckingham, Bentley Kalu, Lauren Ashley Carter, and Kris Johnson as “Erebus”.

You can order Black Site right here.

blacksiteblucover 1024x1024 - DREAD Presents: BLACK SITE's Samantha Schnitzler on Badass Female Protagonists

Written by Jonathan Barkan

Lifelong horror fan with a love of music on the side.

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