Alexandra Daddario has never in her life run from a burly, chainsaw-wielding masked murderer, thankfully, so getting to do it on screen is something special.
“It was a difficult shoot, but I had an amazing time,” the young actress recalls, discussing her physically and emotionally demanding role as the heroine Heather Miller in Texas Chainsaw 3D. At times running, jumping, and hanging from a Ferris Wheel, Daddario says.
For all the desensitization of young audiences, the demand of horror fans, and the ease with which audiences scoff at a young, sexy woman tripping over her own feet as a killer chases close behind, acting in a horror movie requires a demanding skill set.
“It’s a more extreme level of emotion,” Daddario explains. “You’re putting yourself in situations you’ve never been in and can’t even imagine. You have to find reality in a completely unbelievable circumstance.”
“There is something really challenging and great in being an actress trying to accomplish that.”
Daddario was prepared for the physical aspects of the movie, having filmed two similarly demanding films in the Percy Jackson series, the second of which comes out later this year. For the emotional and mental aspects, it’s about the people.
“Tania Raymonde and I are being chased, we’re both screaming and crying, and we feed off one another,” she says. “You start to get really frightened and you worry about the other person, it’s just instinctual.”
“There are experiences that we can drawn upon that make us hysterical and full of despair, being you need to be able to place that same emotion and heighten it.”
When it comes to the killer, however, Dan Yeager who plays Leatherface, stayed away during the film for the most part.
“You get more frightened if there are no inside jokes, no relationship, it makes it easier to work off of,” says Daddario. “He has such intensity you actually get scared by what he is doing.”
Despite the hysterical screaming and crying on end during some long, hot days, Daddario is grateful for the chance to be a part of an iconic series and a film that sets itself up as the immediate sequel to the original.
While she enjoyed doing a horror movie, the young actress looks to keep finding diverse roles, especially after the rigorous experience. “It’s an adrenaline thing; your body is only survival mode.”
Being chased by a masked man with chainsaw would do that. I’m assuming.