MARY ELIZABETH WINSTEAD on 'GRINDHOUSE' Interview by Michael J. Lee, Executive Editor for Radio Free Entertainment
November 4, 2006
Audiences who don't know Mary Elizabeth Winstead from Sky High or her lead role in Final Destination 3 will have plenty of opportunities to become acquainted with the charming actress over the course of the next year: aside from being a part of the ridiculously star-studded cast in the Bobby Kennedy drama Bobby, Mary will be featured in the horror remake Black Christmas with Michelle Trachtenberg and Lacey Chabert, the groundbreaking Quentin Tarantino/Robert Rodriguez collaboration Grind House, and the summer blockbuster sequel Live Free or Die Hard with Bruce Willis.
In this segment of our exclusive interview, Mary previews Grind House, a unique undertaking in which filmmakers Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez will each write and direct separate pieces about an hour in length, which will be combined into a single film to simulate the double feature of yesteryear. Tarantino's half, Death Proof, pays homage to slasher flicks, while Rodriguez's half, Planet Terror, is a sci-fi excursion involving zombies.
Grindhouse opens in theaters everywhere on April 6.
RadioFree.com: You said the Black Christmas remake has been modernized, so it's not the campy '70s flick we might expect. But on the other hand, we have Grind House...
MARY: Yeah, you can expect some camp from that, for sure! [laughs]
How would you compare the onset vibe between Final Destination 3, Black Christmas, and Grind House?
They were all great. Final Destination 3 was probably the hardest work I've ever had to do in a film just because I was in every scene, and every scene was really draining, and I was always crying and screaming and being splattered with blood. And so even though it's kind of a silly, fun movie, it was some of the hardest work I've ever done. And Black Christmas, the weight was sort of dispensed between five girls, so the burden wasn't really on one person. We could all kind of just take it a little easier on that. And Grind House was just fun--it was just flat out a wild, fun set. In between takes, we'd be playing music and dancing.
So it was the typical "awesome set" we've come to associate with both Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez?
Oh, absolutely. It was just so much enthusiasm and love for what everyone was doing. Quentin and the whole cast and the crew...It was just amazing. I miss it already.
You're in Quentin's half of the movie, Death Proof. Was Robert's half, Planet Terror, filmed at the same time as yours?
No. His was filmed months before Quentin's was. His has already been done. That's why there's footage out right now of Robert's, because his has been done for months. Quentin's actually still finishing his. I just finished my part of it, but his is going on for like another month. He's still working on it.
Were any of your scenes in Grind House and Black Christmas as physically grueling as what you went through on Final Destination 3?
Definitely not. My characters in those films didn't really have to get into that kind of thing as much. On Grind House, the group of girls that I'm with...We get off a little easier than the first group of girls. So it was more fun than anything.
You mentioned that you've done voice training. Did you ever have plans to be a singer?
I wasn't ever really going to be a singer, but it's just something I've always loved. And I actually get to sing in [Grind House], which is really great. But it was just kind of a hobby of mine growing up.