Tag Archives: Danielle Panabaker

Review: Girls Against Boys

Girls-Against-Boys-PosterYou think you’ve got relationship problems now? Just wait until you catch “Girls Against Boys.” Guy or girl, you’ll never want to attempt a date again.

Shae’s (Danielle Panabaker) your average New York City college girl – well, minus the massive apartment she has all to herself and her unconventional boyfriend Terry (Andrew Howard), a 40-something guy with a kid. When Terry opts to do the right thing and try to work things out with his wife, Shae’s crushed and sulks her way through her shift bartending at a trendy nightclub. When one of the newer bartenders, Lu (Nicole LaLiberte), catches Shae tearing up, she suggests the two go grab a drink.

One drink turns into countless shots at another wild nightclub where the ladies dance it up with Simon (Michael Stahl-David) and his buddies. When the dancing schvitz takes the bounce out of Shae’s curls, the group calls it a night and heads back to the guys’ place for one last beer and certain something else. But when Shae takes a pass on the latter, Simon insists. With her mother busy at work and her best friend not answering her cell, Shae turns back to Lu who vows to end Shae’s man problems – literally.

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The Good, The Bad, and the Bogus: Modern Horror Heroines

Alexandra-Daddario-Texas-Chainsaw-3DAlexandra Daddario certainly made for a kick-ass heroine battling Graham Sutter in Bereavement, but can she take on Leatherface? Watching a slasher run around, chopping up helpless victims is almost always a good time, but the experience necessitates a strong leading lady. With a market currently oversaturated with sequels, prequels, reboots, and just a few original ideas, we’re left with a wide range of heroines – the good old charming fighters, the ones that are there to give the killer something pretty to chase and nothing more, and then there are those that land somewhere in the middle courtesy of an outlandish twist or wacky behavior.

Where will Daddario fall on the spectrum? We’ll have to wait until Texas Chainsaw 3D hits on January 4th to see, but in the meantime, check out the name these modern horror heroines made for themselves during their bloodbaths.

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Interview: The Ward’s Lyndsy Fonseca

Lyndsy Fonseca has been around for quite a while, but over the past few years, her career isn’t just on the rise, but on a rocket. In 2010 we saw her in Hot Tub Time Machine, the a few months later as Katie in Kick-Ass and now she’s about to get to work on the sophomore season of the CW show Nikita. She’s certainly been busy, but nestled in there was yet another feature film, John Carpenter’s The Ward.

After wrapping Hot Tub Time Machine, Fonseca stepped into the North Bend Psychiatric Hospital as Iris, a rather intelligent and welcoming resident eagerly awaiting what she hopes to be her final evaluation. However, when a young woman named Kristen (Amber Heard) is thrown into the ward, strange things start to happen and the girls realize it’s not their freedom they need to be fighting for, but their lives.

Not only is The Ward Fonseca’s very first horror film, but it’s her first horror film with renowned director John Carpenter. Perhaps it was intimidating at one point, but now, Fonseca has only the best to say about Carpenter, attributing quite a bit of this fantastic experience to him. With The Ward’s July 8th release fast approaching, Fonseca took the time to chat about working on the film, her upcoming projects, the status of Kick-Ass 2 and even a little about The Hunger Games.

(And yes Nikita fans, I am now kicking myself for starting to watch the show after conducting this interview rather than before. Oh well; until San Diego Comic Con! For now, check out my interview with Fonseca on The Ward.)

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Interview: The Ward’s Danielle Panabaker

Danielle Panabaker is easily becoming one of my favorite actresses to interview, not just because she’s a nice and insightful person to talk to, but also because she tends to work on the kind of films I’m drawn to – horror films. And not just any horrors film, rather, pieces that offer a fun kind of scare. Back in 2009 she starred in the remake of Friday the 13th and then, last year, in one of my favorite films of 2010, The Crazies, and now she’s in John Carpenter’s The Ward.

Panabaker plays Sarah, one of four patients Kristen (Amber Heard) meets when she’s unwillingly admitted to the North Bend Psychiatric Hospital. Iris (Lyndsy Fonseca) is bright and welcoming, Zoey (Laura-Leigh) a little on the shy side, Emily (Mamie Gummer) a bit too friendly and then there’s Sarah who’s, well, not particularly nice to anyone. Regardless, when a malicious entity makes its presence known, the girls must work together to survive.

To promote the film’s July 8th release, Panabaker took some time to tell us all about her experience making The Ward from working with Carpenter and her co-cast to her own personal preparation and feelings about the horror genre in general. Check it all out and more below.

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Interview: The Ward Director John Carpenter

It’s been about ten years, but director John Carpenter is finally back behind the lens of a feature film and we’ve got Showtime’s Masters of Horror to thank. With dozens of titles to his name, Carpenter felt the need to take a step back from directing. However, when Masters of Horror summoned him to helm yet again, the experience reinvigorated the passion that, well, has terrified us all for years.

Carpenter makes his return with The Ward, a story from Michael and Shawn Rasmussen about Kristen (Amber Heard), about a young woman thrown into a psychiatric hospital. There, she not only meets the other patients, Emily, Sarah, Zoey and Iris (Mamie Gummer, Danielle Panabaker, Laura-Leigh and Lyndsy Fonseca), but the ward’s resident evil entity, too.

After so many years, you’d think Carpenter would have this down to a science. While he does to a point, he also emphasizes the fluidity necessary when making a film. When it comes to working with a cinematographer, his actors and even burning houses down, an abundance of planning is great, but ultimately, it depends on the situation and it’s vital to be able to adapt. In honor of The Ward’s July 8th release, Carpenter told me all about his process starting with finding the right script to taking the footage to the edit bay. Check it all out in the interview below.

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The Crazies 1973 vs. 2010: Side-by-Side

Back in 1973 George A. Romero gave us a taste of what it’d be like if a biological weapon were let loose on society in The Crazies. When someone comes in contact with Trixie they lose their minds and become violent. Think the army can save you from the madness? Think again. Not only are the military men just as afraid of contracting the virus, but they’re trying to protect themselves from the crazies too; basically, they’re willing to kill everyone and anyone not in a biohazard suit. The Crazies is a film particularly fitting for the remake treatment. It’s dated, yet the general concept remains powerful. That’s where Breck Eisner comes in. He takes his source material trims away the fat and the obsolete elements and packs it with exactly what horror audiences are looking for: sheer terror. Eisner’s The Crazies is one of my favorite films of 2010, but I’m going to leave the critique at that and deliver this comparison using just the facts. However I can’t say the same for spoilers because they’re all over the place in this article, so beware.

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Interview: The Crazies Director Breck Eisner (Post-Screening)

Getting the opportunity to talk to a director who created a film you absolutely love is a frustrating double-edged sword. You’re thrilled to have the opportunity to chat, but there isn’t nearly enough time to squeeze in every question. This is the fortunate/unfortunate case with Breck Eisner.

He’s the man behind the remake of George A. Romero’s The Crazies. After a slew of poorly made and blood drenched reboots, it’s fantastic to experience something so refreshingly original that still manages to pay homage to the source material. Even if you’ve watched Romero’s 1973 original, Eisner’s film is like nothing you’ve ever seen before. When an experimental biological weapon called Trixie accidently infiltrates Ogden Marsh’s water supply, it’s only a matter of time before the townsfolk go crazy. The film follows four survivors as they try to escape their hometown now overrun with violent versions of friends and loved ones while eluding the army who’s prepared to exterminate anyone with the potential to let the virus loose.

Check out what Eisner told me about creating some of the most memorable moments, utilizing the appropriate amount of gore and even a little update on his next project, Flash Gordon.

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