Dee Wallace and Blaire Bercy
Hello and welcome. I'm Adrienne Barbosa star of the fog, Creepshow swamp thing, the convent just a name of you. And this is she kills a shudder original cod cast where we sit down and discuss all of the things we love about the John ra- that has given women some of the most iconic roles in film, history. I've had a fair amount of experience with psychics and the spirit world, a psychic told me I'd be dating Burt Reynolds two weeks before we met and fell briefly in love. And by grandmother was psychic she read Turkish coffee grounds and she knew things before they happen. And I'm sure she was responsible for me. Getting my first job on Broadway. Even though it was after she passed from caretakers to demented, babysitters, too protective mothers to the vessels, for evil a woman's work is never done, common themes of guilt, and sorrow or. Processed onscreen through the trope of female ghosts, but never with males spirits. We called up my friend d Wallace star of cujo the Frighteners and the howling and you don't know this, but I do a couple of roles that she took right out from under me to speak with us about her work within the afterlife. How there are no such things as evil spirits, and her current career in healing. She talked to us from her home, in California, amidst the backdrop of a very real horror, the Wolsey fire, which had just started at the time of this recording we paired her up with horror fan host and show runner of this very podcast, Blair Bercy. My name is d Wallis. I'm an actress I'm an author. I'm a healer. I'm speaker. I'm a great mom. And I'm Blair Bercy. I'm a host, and I am a producer of this very podcast. Most people vividly. Member watching their first horror film, probably through covered is my first horror film was Halloween. I'd never seen anything before that not even psycho. And I saw Halloween on the night that John carpenter, the director and I announced our engagement when it was over my two friends turned to each other and said, we can't let her marry him clearly Halloween made an impact on them. But we were curious to know which horror film, made the biggest impact on Blair and d for me, the horror film that had the most impact and also about vengeful spirits would be Namur on elm street, specifically dream warriors, because it, it showed me that horror films can be funny and edgy and FREDDY Krueger probably, I think, has had the most impact on my love of horse simply because there's no escaping him. He is the big bad that you cannot run from because everybody needs sleep. So Fred, he's gonna get you regardless of where you are. My first memory of horror film was not when I particularly enjoyed I was I was very squeamish little girl, and we were not allowed. I was not allowed to watch anything scary. So, of course, my older brother, had to babysit me one night. And he put on the bride of Frankenstein and. I got to sleep with my brother for two months because he led me. I was certain there were monsters in my big walking closet from the minute, we moved into the house. No wonder, you know, all those fears transfer really well into my acting into horror films. The horror film. I think that effect has always affected me the most won't there's to the exorcist and film called don't look now with Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland and. You know. I think it's the, the psychological part of not having control that fears me the most, and I'm watching right now, the hunting and pill house because Henry Thomas who who played Elliot in is in it and. It's freaky -cially a nerve ING watching watching this the series because it, it combines that psychological weakness fear uncertainty with true horror, which takes time to create relationships. You know, I think we're. We just got into slasher films and slasher films. Do not represent true horror films. And. So it's interesting that, that I do all that on the side as well as a lot of run of the mill films have three family films coming out this next year also, but it's always interesting to me that I do the horror films on the horror side. And then I also help he he'll people or teach people to heal themselves from the fears of themselves and of their lives. So it's a interesting dichotomy in a way, but also just kind of the flip side of the same coin. You know, I'm living in Los Angeles right now, right after the shooting, which was less than two miles from my house, in cal- in well outside of Calabasas. That's a much bigger horror film than what I would have to sit in the theater, and help myself get past so d-. I find it so interesting that you've had this huge career from heartfelt films like ET to heartfelt films that are freaking terrifying like cujo, and now with your career, and healing and kind of getting people to bridge loss, and the afterlife is there anything that is too scared of watches there, a film that is just off limits to scare you won't do it. The only movie that, that I've done. That's really, really hard for me to watch, and I don't revisit very often is the hills have eyes. Yeah. First of all, it has a dog I love dogs. And of course, cujo is all about a dog. But could you have to be my favorite film that I've done, but the hills have is, is just crosses that really. Gruesome line for me. I mean, I think it's wonderfully done in who knew all those years ago when we were just going. I. That it would still be cult film that people were asking pictures for, you know, crazy this business, but yeah, I would I would have to say it would be that one of my own film. I ask that for that exact reason because I had a friend, I was telling him that I was doing the show, and we both had the same experience whereas much as we love horror that one is too hard. I wouldn't even watch like any, the remakes, or anything about it. Because after seeing the original it, it that was the worst thing that, yeah, it's I, I don't think I've ever been camping in an RV. I just there's a list of things that I will not do because of that movie, of course, for those of you that are reading frightened from the hills have eyes, just picture, all of the cast staying in one motorhome and the bathroom breaking. So, that'll give you a little inside. Into our own personal. Hell went through shooting that. Yeah. That does make it less scary. I will say that's a little. It makes it adds a little humor to that. So we're talking about the haunting of hill house earlier. You mentioned that I finished it was wonderful and that series. Particularly is just full of vengeful angry female feminine energy, and spirits that are here to kind of dismantle and haunt because of what they have been through. So I'm curious to see your take on vengeful female spirits, and kind of that anger bring being brought into the afterlife. You see this is where the two sides of d come together because I know from my hailing work that I mean I talked to people on the other side guys. So I know that there are no spirits, out to get anybody there. They're evil doesn't work that way, evil comes from. Being limited in a body and the fears that you create from your own perceptions, and focus energies, just energy and energy may absolutely try and reach you to communicate with you. I mean, I talked to Christopher my late husband quite a bit. Not like we're talking, but he reaches me through music and signs in the house that I know correspond with him. But I know in my heart that there are not energies out there to freak you out or to harm you in any way. And that extends into the alien world also. Okay. So then the Mike follow up question with that because I feel like the representation film is I can think of ghost maybe for a soothing spirit. That kind of makes you feel gives you a little closure, but also that, you know, the person is there with you. Why is it then that I guess with horror we stick to this? You know, the ghost is the boogeyman all the time. Why is that such an easy? I guess, kind of Goto why I think ghost being a boogie man is an easy Goto. Because that's the way it's always been way. It's always been, that's way. It's all the Disney films, right? The heavens horsemen you know their bad guys. That's win. An again, anything that is out of our control is a boogeyman. And so what better boogie men to, to try and go out and fighting conquer than those that we can't see that we have no control over that we can't reason with right? And so whatever we plug into within ourselves just grows and grows and grows and. Manifest more fear. We lose more control. So we direct a lot of these fearful things because we're in fear to begin with, and we believe in them, and it makes good movies. And most of these movies, by the way are done by guys. Yeah. Yeah. That is exactly right. And that brings me to a good point that the, the fear that the I think this big bad or the big scary thing that, that seems to be the trend now is the vengeful kind of female ghost the woman that had her kids wrongfully taken away from her or killed or was blamed for something that she didn't do or was told that she was crazy and, or a witch, and that's been the big bad. It seems slightly empowering to see kind of these big scary female characters. But at the same time, why is it always the representations? Always of somebody that had to this horrible trauma, you know, because I think guys that the principle that love conquers all eludes most men. You know they're taught to go to war. They're taught to fight for their woman. Pull out their gun. You know it's. It's very connected to their Dicks. Really feel like for these movies to work, there has to be authenticity to the fear. There has to be something real. There has to be some real nece to at all similar to everyone has brought up throughout the show. Shelley von the shining for many reasons her fear is palpable in believable in real. So my question to you is, as an actress, where do you pull from her? How do you kind of craft that authenticity to something that could seem on paper, kind of flimsier not believable, my purposes, an accurate is to always make the character finnick? I won't do it. I won't do a character if she's not if they don't allow me to do her that way. And yeah, I've fought a lot. I said, yeah, I know you, you need more nude people in the handling, but I'm not doing it. And, and I know the foreign investors want a bunch of women hanging over the banisters with bare breasts. But I haven't in my contract that no additional nudity would be added. And that's why and. You know, also I have to say, like when I looked at cujo I didn't look at cujo as a horror film, ever. I looked at cujo, and especially my part as. As the protrayal of mother, who would do anything to save. Her kid anything, and I can tell you, I did it before. I was a mother. And now that I am a mother, I would not play one moment of that differently. I would do anything to save my kid anything and I, I think most mothers identify with, that there was a part in ET where sorry in cujo where, you know, Danny's screaming. I want my daddy daddy, and I grabbed him and I see. All right. Don't get your father. Right. And Dan Blad our incredible producer came to me. And he said, d we saw the dailies, and I want you to look at this scene, because we're afraid. That people won't like you if we include this scene. And I went in and watched it and looked at him. And I said, Dan, if you take this scene out, you're crazy. There's not a parent in the world. Who hasn't been at that brink of? I'm going to slap the shit out of you because I can't help you. That. Yeah, that's absolutely true that my mom, once again, my mom doesn't do horror has seen cujo. And I think it resonated with her just as a mother of somebody, you know, adopted, a daughter and really wanted a child at that movie is about the, the will, and the persistence, and what things that you can do, when you know that this is life or death. He. The power and the love and the energy that you can call on which, I've, I know from raising my own daughter. You know, Christopher my husband. Her dad died right before she turned seven and. It's a lot of responsibility. And I, I have people come up to me all the time and go, oh my God. The, you know, we loved cujo when we were little and now we've seen it afterward parents, it's a whole different move. I look forward to getting there, because I can completely relate and see that you spoke about putting your foot down and saying no to certain things and part of being within your contract. How did you learn? I guess through experience through the industry to kind of be the voice for those dealbreakers for yourself. How did you kind of find your voice within that because I know a lot of actresses kind of feel like they have to access to certain things because the director asked the studio asked, I did not learn to speak up for myself through this business. I was taught to. Always be true to what I thought the truth was by my very own powerful mother, who was single mother. The mother figure the female figure has always through history represented. The divine the, the love the tenderness the caring, and there's nothing more frightening. Then thinking that can be taken over by evil. And I think that's why we use women more than we use men because let's face it a lot of guys are as holes in real life. We've seen it. You know, I mean a lot of you're lovely loving tender guys. But as far as history is concerned, the guys always have been. Well. The, the less loving nurturing of of the species. Okay. So we've been talking about a lot of the classics that I love this is slightly off topic because I just have a personal question for you. Are there any new movies that you find kind of represent what you love about horror what you love about the John r- just are fun to watch? Is there anything that kind of that you really enjoy? I think one of the most brilliant horror films that we've had recently is a quiet place and again use you see very little horror in that movie. But you see the people being horrified about something that they can't see and you can't see and you don't know why they're so fearful and. That, that's a real tribute to the performances and to the writing and direction of creating that tension. Without I mean you go back to jaws three fourths of the picture. You didn't see the you know you didn't see the monster. Right. But just like the music though too. It's coming it's coming, you know, it's coming, everybody's getting more afraid it's coming there something big out there. And again, it's unknown, isn't it? What we I mean. If we could ever. What's the word if we could ever conquer? Our fear of the end zone. By knowing that we are always in control of our own creation, things, wouldn't be so scary. As soon as you open the scary door to the closet in you see nothing's there. The fear goes away because you've taken control the first time, you know, you go out to do a public speaking event, and you, you know, Nike doesn't pay me, but feel the fear and do it anyway. Right. Just do it, then the fear goes away, and you go, what the hell was. I so like freaked out about, you know, if there's anything I would attribute to my success in lung. Tevi it's, it's what we've been touching on is that I just wanna keep creating as long as I'm creating something. I'm happy. And I'm peaceful, and I feel like I'm in control of my life when I stopped creating and start waiting for other people to create that's when the fear and panic starts to set in, and, you know, I often get the question. Well, yeah, but, you know, d- you're an older woman in the business now and I just have to laugh at myself like, but you see, again, those are. That's what we've been taught is the older. You get the less you create. That's what's expected of you by our society, and it's bullshit. It's just bullshit. That's when you wanna start creating more. How can I keep myself alive? How can I keep myself excited about this life that I still have twenty or thirty years left to live? What can I give where can I create what can I write? Where can I perform? What can I do? How can I expand my healing practice? You know, I think all of this could just keep asking ourselves. Where's the monster? Take him out for a beer and sit him down talked to him until him. We're in charge in get him on board with playing with us in whatever we want to create in our lives. Now. But now, my mental image just immediately went to like you taking a monster out like Michael Myers, and you just, you know, having a beer talking. Well, it makes it a little less scary. Isn't it? Absolutely does. He probably prefer a Bloody Mary, but. Kathy Bates plays a lot of those roles. I love to watch her as an actress I love right now. I loved watch viola Davis. I mean she's evil, she's evil, but you love her because she always shows you the humanity in that evilness you know, which is what we've done with guys for a long, long, long time. I guess I love viola Davis. I live for viola Davis. She is absolutely everything obsessed with how to get away with murder, but also just saw widows and she is really good her, and that little white dog pretty much held that movie down. So, yes, I would love to see violence within a horror film, that would that would really complete everything because she is one of those characters that are so good at being so bad. And watching her is just like a masterclass in how to make re. Really bad people really lovable and likable. Yes, she's a great example, because she's strong in ballsy and sexy and powerful. And yet, you understand her humanity and what drives her to be doing these things in every role? She plays haven't seen the new one about the widows. Oh, but I will go see it, just because she's in it. Yeah. Yeah. And she's a good example of somebody that is pot unapologetically powerful. And I enjoy that. Because even throughout the moments where her characters breakdown that strength is still there. So you still want to root for her even though you know, she's probably damaging many people's lives by playing everybody. It's just you just still want her to win. What do you think? Because that's a good kind of jumping off point. 'cause that character is very new, the kind of anti hero hero, especially for women of color, and on television. What do you think the future of horror is for women within the John RA? Open wide. I think I think horror is open wide for women now. Women directors women, you know, performers. I mean, I never had more fun in my life than killing everybody in the Frighteners. You know. And what was beautiful in the Frighteners was, I got to play this simpy kinda ugly victim character that turned into this ball BUSTER killer. I mean, what actress doesn't wanna play a part like that writing? And I'm I'm really drawn to strong women characters. I, I have a wonderful little film called red Christmas. That's out. DVD and all those places that you get films. And. I wanted to do it because it was that kind of Kerry ter- because she had done some unscrupulous things. In her life around. It's quite an interesting horror film that deals with abortion issues and stuff. And but she becomes. This, this tyrant that again, defends her family against all odds. And and yet. You forgive her for what she's done early earlier in her life. Because you ender stand what her motives were. That she just couldn't do something. And. And that's real. You know, there are women that just can't have Down's children. And there are women that, that can't afford another child in and have an abortion. And, you know, the, the judgment that we hold toward each other has just got to fricken, stop, because we're driving ourselves into our own living horror film through all of this judgment toward each other instead of going, okay. Done work for me if it works for you. You know, God bless you all deal with somebody else, but you live your life. I just don't get it. Why everybody these days think that they have to come in and direct everybody else's film. You know the way they live. It's it ain't going to work, and that's our biggest horror film that were living right now. And that's also another piece of good advice. You don't let, don't let people just come in and director film. It's not their life. It's not there. They're in a story to tell, and don't you go direct. There's true. That is absolutely true. Stay in your lane is a great lesson. I also am so happy mentioned the Frighteners because that's another movie that I feel like is underrated because of the balance in absolute terror. But also the laughter like CHAI is try mcbride's character just there's levity within it, but it gets very scary when it gets scary. So I'm happy. I love the Frighteners one. It's reasons that it didn't make it at the time. Was it was supposed to come out at Halloween? We would've made it, but there was some other big blockbuster movie that wasn't finished. And so universal through it in with all the summer blockbusters got lost. It's such an underrated. That's so good. It is. Is. Yeah. And I own it on VHS and good for you. I love. Yeah. And I thought that summer, I probably went to the theater, because it was just I was blown away, and that's a really good example of comedy in horror within an actual horror film. Yes. I love. It's an everybody's reforms Jake does a good job. You know, Michael FOX's wonderful. You are absolutely terrifying. So I thank you. It's a really good film. Jeff comb. Jeffrey combs. Oh my God. Oh my God. That performance. Jeffrey combs. You know, it's like I whenever I see Jeffrey go. Where did you confront tell me again? How do you put that all together? I mean it's like. Got those questions where you don't wanna go too far because you're like, how did that where where does that come from within your brain? Does that? Yeah. What did you pull from? Well, I asked, you know, Peter Jackson that I said where that hell do all these, if you've seen any of his early fills, LA La Land. I mean he just had to be in Lulla and, you know, Peter is one of the dearest client is sweetest men I've ever worked with. And I've, I've been blessed. I mean Blake Edwards. Oh my God. I o often say I started at the top, you know. What a beautiful beautiful man Joe. Dante just a Lewis Teague. I mean, you know, Louis came in three days into the shooting of cujo. And in picked it up in just turned out a miraculous product and everybody that you've mentioned in all those works are long lasting. And I feel like there has to be something about the balance of kind of energy and work ethic. And that everything that everybody brought to the table because there's a reason why they've, they've stuck around for all this. Yeah. I think it's, it's respect. They respect everyone that they work with. They respect your ideas they encourage you. To bring in your best ideas, rob zombie. I have three from hell coming out for rob zombie. He's the same way. What's it like working with him? Oh my God, I adore, rob. He's the nicest sweetest guy and just I mean, just open to anybody suggestions, and, you know, kind of look at you go. Yeah. Okay, go for it. And if it doesn't work we go over it something else. But to have a director, like that, that, that trusts you and encourages you and it's just it makes the shooting of the movie, so much more. Exciting. Because you feel like you're really participating. So we are wrapping up. We are almost done. Is there anything that I missed is there anything that you want to tell us about why you love being an actress or anything that you want people to ask you that they never ask you, you know, I love being an actress because I think actors or some of the greatest healers in the world, we give people permission to cry, when they can't laugh when they won't. Be frightened and be safe and work through their stuff. We teach them we enlighten them. We touch more people doing one movie than a doctor can heal in a lifetime. I can tell you stories and stories and stories and people that have come up to me about AT and how their lives have been drastically changed by the shift in their lives from watching that movie at, like a, a mom with an autistic, little boy, never heard him speak for ten years. And she took him to see the rereleasing on the way home. He started saying every line E T, it said, now, that's I, you know, she said to me, d you're part of a miracle, that is a wonderful story, and it goes with such a wonderful movie. I know personally for me, ET was so important, because I think that was the very first time I saw a single mom that looked like my single mom not in peril. Not kind of abusive, there was no negative connotation she was just doing her best within this crazy situation. So I'm so happy to wonderful story goes with such a wonder. Awful movie and we get included in the show today. Thank you so much for that. Mandatory. I'm sorry. We're going to have to go. We have to evacuate just heard that. Okay. So the fires are spreading you guys have to evacuate. Thank you so much for your time today, and your insight and your wisdom, and everything that you've given us de. So thank you. Thank you. Thank you, and be safe. And if I ever meet you person I'm going to give you the biggest hug. My arms will be open bed. Thanks, deem, Blair. I'm pleased to report that D And her family are safe and her home was spared from the fire that damaged so much of Calabasas in the coast. I agree with d that spirits, aren't bad. In fact, they can be quite benevolent when my mother was dying she was in the hospital and I spent the night in her room. The room was extremely cold. My mother had a fever. She was sweating. They had the AC on as high as it could go, there was a fan blowing on her. I was in my g. Jeans and a sweatshirt and a jacket over that. And I think I had a robe on over that sleeping on the cut next to my mom with a blanket on me and freezing, and my mother in her sleep started to call out for her mother, my grandmother and my first thought was, oh, shall I wake her is she in pain, if I wake her will, she feel more pain? Shall I just let her sleep which will I do? And I opened my eyes and at the foot of the bed, was my grandmother and all of the sudden, the room, it was, like someone had taken, a fleece blanket and just lowered it on the entire room on me on my mother, the room got warm, and I was filled with the knowledge really that everything was going to be okay for my mom that my grandmother, was there. I could see her as clear as day, and that she was going to be there when my mom passed over so, yes, the you're right as far as I'm concerned your right? I'm Adrienne Bard bow, and this has been, she kills a shudder original podcast executive produced by Blair, Bercy, Killian, van, Rensselaer, Giordano Freyberg, in Debra, Henderson, hosted by Adrian Barbault associate produced by Nancy. Himal- supervising producer Kara free, featuring interviews with d Wallis and Blair, Bercy, sound, recording design and mixing by iceman audio production sound mixing, and re recording mixing by Evan mimic, supervising, sound editing and re recording mixing by Michael Capuano composed by Doug Bossi music by ice by music production manager Kate Tinder production legal Jordan rock production accounting. Stephen d Smith for shudder, Owen shift lit Robin Jones and nNcholas Lonzo. She kills the characters and events depicted in this podcast or. Fictional. Any similarity to any actual person. Living did or to any actual events, firms places, and institutions or other entities is coincidental and unintentional. This podcast is protected under the laws of the United States and other countries, and it's unauthorized duplication distribution or exhibition may result in civil liability and criminal prosecution country. First publication United States of America. 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