Snow screams at Prom: Every corsage has its thorn

by Beacon Staff • April 9, 2008

Alfred Hitchcock was the master of suspense, a god of film that directors and audiences alike have worshipped since the 1920s. Never before or since has there been anyone who could create such tense, claustrophobic situations that could force even the most skeptic of moviegoers to the edge of their seats.

To describe the new horror film Prom Night as "very Hitchcockian," as its producer Toby Jaffe does in the production notes for the flick, is questionable. For director Nelson McCormick, whose resumeacute; consists of only TV episodes of "Nip/Tuck" and "Prison Break", to have his debut-movie be compared to a Hitchcock film is dubious.

Despite the fact that it is listed as a remake of the 1980 film by the same name on the Internet Movie Database and it has the same basic premise, its star, Brittany Snow of Hairspray fame, tries to be convincing when she says that Prom Night is so different from the original that it really isn't a remake. The only mildly interesting aspect of this movie is its creative yet unbelievable plot.

After escaping a psycho killer by hiding under a bed and watching him kill her family three years ago, Donna Keppel (Snow), is now in her senior year of high school and on her way to college. She has finally pieced her life back together. However, little does she know that as she's dancing away at her prom, the man who killed her family has escaped from the insane asylum and is lurking in the corners of the hotel, waiting for his moment to be with her.

Realistic? Probably not. But will Snow be the Grace Kelly to McCormick's supposed Hitchcock? Or will the equation of a first time film director, a remake that isn't really a remake and a teen queen add up to another horror flick fiasco? Moviegoers will find out when Prom Night twirls into theatres on April 11.

Berkeley Beacon: Are you a fan of horror films? Why did you do one, and why specifically Prom Night?

Brittany Snow: Well, I am a fan of horror films. It's funny, because I was very, very hesitant on doing this movie and wanting it to be really something that's a good choice for me and my career. I'm very picky when it comes to what I do in general, but when I found out that it wasn't a remake that was nice because I feel like there are a lot of remakes going on right now with scary movies and thrillers.

I really love the director, Nelson McCormick. This was also the first project that I've ever been a part of where I really had a big hands-on approach to the movie and the film in general. I got to kind of create the script along with Nelson and the writer and kind of work as a producer on it and share my ideas on music and the clothes and the cast and how I wanted certain things to be. So that was really a cool thing to be a part of, because I never had done that before.

BB: Was the line ever blurred when you were filming? Did you ever confuse your character with yourself and become scared on set at all?

Brittany Snow: I think to a certain extent. I try to do things that I engulf myself in what I'm doing when I'm actually shooting, so I do get a little scared. But it's hard to be scared for your life ... if you look out and you see 20 crew members staring back at you. But when you get into it and there's somebody wrestling you down to the ground with a knife it is a little scary to put yourself in that head space, so I think it's kind of both. But at the same time if you really blur the lines too much then it probably wouldn't be a good idea because then you'd be really freaked out and you'd probably want to leave the set or something.

Obviously, you wouldn't go to that point. But yes, I think it's good to kind of just feel what you would really be feeling.