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October 2005
Saw II: An Interview with Beverley Mitchell

Saw II: An Interview with Beverley Mitchell

By Wilson Morales

Having played Lucy Camden on the long-running series, 7th Heaven, from the beginning, Beverley Mitchel was bound to be seen on the big screen. The question was, would it be on some film where she plays a similar character to Lucy or would it be on some teenage coming-of-age film. Well, it's neither, for Mitchell's next role will be in the sequel to last year's surprise hit, horror film "Saw". In "Saw II", Mitchell plays Laura, one of a few unlucky people that Jigsaw puts in a booby-trapped shelter. Like the others, she must find a way out before she inhales too much of a lethal nerve gas and die and she must also look out for the traps Jigsaw has set in the shelter that also lead to death. In speaking to blackfilm.com, Mitchell talks about why she chose this film of all of the horror roles and scripts she was sent.


What will you fans think of you being in a horror film?

Beverley Mitchell: I think some of them will enjoy it and some of them I hope don't even know about it.


I guess the film is for a certain age?

BM: Well, our audience is very broad, so I thought I have very young fans and some adult fans and I know I don't want my grandmother seeing this movie, so, yeah, it's for a certain age.


Were you looking for something to change that image and you thought this part would do it?

BM: I wasn't actively seeking things that would freak out my 7th Heaven fans. I was more looking for a role that was challenging and frightened me and really push my limits and that was definitely accomplished with Saw II. Laura is definitely a piece of work; not the easiest character.


You spent a better part of the film playing sick and coughing. Was that hard to do?

BM: It was hard physically actually. That was the most challenging part. I'm a very intense person to begin with and like being in this position pretty much for the whole film, I definitely had to get a few massages to let go because it was hard; it was exhausting. You go home and it felt like you were hit with a ton of bricks because your body just hurts from whether I was falling down or whether I was convulsing or running into a wall, you name it. I definitely took a few bruises. I come home at the end of the day and look at my legs and I'm like, "Where'd that one come from?" I was completely brusied from head to toe.


What do you think about the gore in the film?

BM: I like romantic comedies (Laughs) and it was rough. I told (Director)Darren Lynn Bousman, because he know I hate scary films. I hate them. I hate them. I hate them. Because you get one image, it quickly moves on to the next one. It wasn't as frightful to me. I was able to get through it and it didn't freak me out as much cause I was bombarded by the next image and it moved so fast that it didn't bother me, but it bad during lunch time. You didn't want to sit next to certain people during that time.


If you hate scary movies, did you see the first film?

BM: I did but it took me 5 times to see it. The first 4 times I turned it off. I kept getting freaked out. It would be late at night and my boyfriend would fall asleep or something; and I would yell, "Wake up! You gotta watch the end of this movie with me" and he's on the couch and would say, "No way. I'm tired. I've already seen it." I would then say, "You have to be awake. I don't care. You have to be awake."


Did you watch the film before or after you got the role?

BM: It was before, but they were talking to me about it and I was like, "Oh man, I really have to watch it?" My boyfriend bought it originally because the DVD box cover was so cool. He didn't even know anything about the movie but he thought the packaging of the DVD was so cool, he had to get the movie, and here we go, "Saw II". Little did he know.


Since Jessica Biel gained a big audience with her role in "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre", did that have any influence on you deciding to take this film?

BM: No, this was just a film that was offered to me. Just kidding. This sort of came my way and they were interested in me and I feel I'm not in a position to turn down any roles and it was something I cared about and loved and once I got to be a part of the cast, I was so excited about it. I'm thrilled to be part of an amazing cast, to work with an amazing director, Darren, who's just awesome; and to work with Leigh (Whannell) and be a part of something and being able to collaborate and make this character and film as amazing as it could be. It's great to do independent films where you can do that. With studio films, it's a little bit harder to have that much input.


What sort of films are you looking to do?

BM: The ones that they offer. (laughs) I'm just kidding. Anything that challenges me and anything that pushes me to the limit. Anything that scares me. It's that question of whether or not you can pull it off or not, because I'm still surprising myself. I don't know what I'm capable of. I think I pulled this one off, so I'm just excited to push and try again and try to do another amazing film and find another amazing character that is different and dynamic and challenging. That's what acting is all about; otherwise it gets boring.


Did you come up with a backstory for your character?

BM: We came up with some ideas. None of which has any real impact on the movie but we decided that she was a kleptomaniac because she was fashionably dressed compared to the rest of them. She definitely has trouble with her parents but we didn't really dive too deep. I wanted to know what her trap would be. I'm only one that has a peaceful death. With Laura, you see all the dynamics of everything you see, the gaps, how it affects her, and you see the she's the sickest. You get to see who's the most terrified. She's definitely not the stoic one. She's not the bad ass going and knocking down doors like Frankie G.


How are you at puzzles? Does it take you a while to figure it out?

BM: I'm pretty good with puzzles. I'm not good with math. If it had numbers in it, I can't do it. I can handle pieces, but not numbers.


Have you been offered horror films in the past?

BM: There was a moment where every audition and every reading was in regard to a horror film and I read so many scripts. By the end of the day, I was like, "You've got to be kidding me." Are there no romantic comedies out there? Why is everything horror? I read so many scripts and I was like, "Listen, this is too much for me. I don't think I can pull it off." This is freaking me out. For a period of months, everything I got was horror films. When I got "Saw II", I was like, "If I'm going to do it, this is the one." I'm proud of my work and I think it's awesome.


Were you scared watching the film?

BM: I wouldn't say I was scared. I definitely screamed a few times. I had to divert my eyes to a different direction. I thought it was so great. I loved the ending. I loved everything about it. I think everyone was so great and did a fantastic job. Donnie Wahlberg is unbelievable and Tobin BellGod is he sick. He was so brilliant and one of the great things about Saw, and Tobin plays this horrible character and does vicious things, you still feel compassion for this guy. You want to hate him more than anything but he's got so much going on he doesn't think he's sick and he is and the thing that's great about Saw is the it's real.




 

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