Haunter is now available on VOD, opening in theaters this weekend in New York and L.A. next weekend. It will also play closing night of Screamfest on Thursday. We got to speak with the star of Haunter, Abigail Breslin, by phone. She plays Lisa, a teenage girl who realizes she’s repeating the day before her birthday over and over. This isn’t a Groundhog Day romp though. Lisa discovers something much more creepy going on in her infinity day. When we were connected, she shared a bit of playtime in which she was engaging before the interview started.
Abigail Breslin: I’m just sitting here coloring, because I’m five years old apparently.
Crave Online: What coloring book do you have?
It’s called Happy Halloween. I don’t know why I just said that in an interview but yeah, I’m coloring so it’s all good, since I have nothing else to do.
I think it’s cute so I’m going to use it.
Okay, go ahead.
Do you usually color for fun?
[Laughs] I don’t usually but I think my mom bought me a coloring book as a joke and then I just took it too seriously and actually started using it.
It’s appropriate for Halloween and this movie. Did you do two scary movies in a row with The Call and Haunter?
Yeah, I did Haunter and then I did The Call. This was more like a real true horror movie. I thought The Call was more like a thriller, but this is a more kind of freaky supernatural type thing.
Do you usually like scary movies?
Yeah, it’s my favorite genre. I watch pretty much anything when it comes to horror movies and stuff like that. I’ve been looking to do something and I thought it was really smart and really unique and clever too.
I haven’t actually checked this, but do you think you are the youngest final girl we’ve seen in a horror movie?
I guess so. She’s pretty young. She’s just on the verge of 16 so maybe. Maybe it is. I couldn’t verify it. I can’t confirm or deny this story but it could be.
I can’t either because there are so many movies I’d have to look up and check.
Exactly, there are so many.
In most movies, the hero tries to figure out the situation she’s in. Was it fun that she just said, “I can’t. I’m done?”
It’s the most frustrating thing I’m sure when you keep waking up repeating the same day. There definitely are moments when she just says, “Okay, I can’t deal with this. There is nothing that I can do.” But at the end of the day, she still pulls through and stays strong throughout it. That’s what I like about her.
Did you shoot the movie in order?
No, we couldn’t. We shot all over the place in terms of order, so that was kind of confusing on some days. I’d have to go up to [director] Vincenzo [Natali] and be like, “Could you just tell me where we are in this scene because we were just doing the end of the movie and now we’re at the beginning of the movie again.” It was a crazy shooting schedule for sure.
So it was like all movies, but it must have been more complicated given how important the order of events are in Haunter.
Yeah, exactly. It was one of those things where the script supervisor was kind of essential on it because it was just kind of all over the place and the order is so crucial. You really have to know where you are at every moment, so it was crazy.
Is Haunter really about how parents just don’t understand or believe their kids?
I think that’s definitely part of it, and that’s what kind of cool is that they just think at first she’s being an angst-ridden teenager going through the tough times in life, but she’s really actually dead serious. So it is about that and it’s about her maturing throughout the movie.
How creepy was that house to work in?
Well, we were shooting on a soundstage actually, so it wasn’t too scary, but it was creepy sometimes. When they would bring in the fog machines and everything, that was pretty terrifying. And there are some weird things that went on off camera, so it was spooky.
What weird things happened off camera?
One night I went running at the gym where I was staying, and all of a sudden this door, it was wide open, there was a stopper holding it open and everything. There was a sign, DO NOT CLOSE DOOR, so I go in and all of a sudden the door just slams shut. Then we were filming with the Ouija Board and when the director called cut, I had this massive asthma attack out of nowhere where a lightbulb broke. It was just weird. It was just a little bit odd.
Was the fog real?
I don’t know what they do to make the fog in movies. It almost smells like frankincense. It’s weird. It’s really weird. I don’t know what they actually do but it’s some sort of chemical thing that I’m breathing in. It’s probably really bad for me but it looks cool.
So it was on the set, it wasn’t added later.
No, it was on the set. I’m sure that they added some in CGI but it was on the set.