Australian beauty Caitlin Stasey is best known in her native homeland as for her roles in the popular soap "Neighbours" and the Aussie blockbuster TOMORROW, WHEN THE WAR BEGAN. But the rest of the world is becoming quite familiar with her as well; she can currently be seen in The CW's "Reign," had a supporting role in I, FRANKENSTEIN and is now headlining Lucky McKee and Chris Sivertson's crazy horror comedy ALL CHEERLEADERS DIE.
This is a fun one. Caitlin curses up a storm and doesn't hesitate to be honest about her hatred of stunts, her on-screen lesbian love affair in ALL CHEERLEADERS DIE, the downfalls of fame (getting beat up for no reason is a bummer) and the joys of anonymity here in the U.S.
So I have to start with this question: did you have any cheerleading experience before ALL CHEERLEADERS DIE?
God no, it was sort of a point of hilarity on set because I was just so overwhelmed and under-experienced to be portraying this flawless acrobatic routine. It was hysterical. I can't dance to save myself.
Did you have to go to cheerleader camp or something like that?
I had one day of training! Then I just left it up to editing and to the stunt doubles. I was like, you know what, you guys are on your own. I'm no cheerleader.
I was convinced!
I'm not the kind of girl who likes doing stunts. I don't give a f*ck, I don't care how uncool that sounds, I don't want to do them. I just want to do the acting and let somebody else do the stunts, which I don't give a f*ck about and am not very good at. You can take my cheerleading routine away from me, it's all good.
I'm sure the filmmakers appreciate your honesty in that regard.
I just think it's bullshit, you read about so many girls who are just so adamant about doing their own stunts. It's like cool if you really enjoy it, but for the most part I think you're f*cking lying. It's hard, you can't just do it. You show up on set and you're like, yeah I'll scale that f*cking thirty foot wall and then do a flip off the end. I'm smart enough and humble enough to understand that I am human and feeble, and I don't want to f*ck with that.
This movie is quite different from what we've seen you in lately - what attracted you to the role?
Well my friend Sianoa [Smit-McPhee] was doing it, and I really love her, and I wanted an opportunity to play her lesbian lover. That was my initial draw. Also it was kind of fun, just weird and badass. I had never read anything like it before. It's ridiculous, there's an element of just loving the absurdity of it.
Did playing your friend's lesbian lover get awkward, or did it bring you closer, so to speak?
No, not really. Sianoa has gone through a real transformation, so it was almost like I was acting alongside a very different person. It felt as though we were very different, it's like she's this beautiful butterfly who popped out of this chrysalis, with a new vocation, a new life perspective.
It's quite crazy, truth be told, are you a fan of horror movies?
I think that I am and then I watch them and I'm like, "That was the dumbest f*cking thing I could have done, now I won't be able to sleep." I'm a fan of good films, regardless of the genre, I don't really discriminate against anything. Like I love Guillermo del Toro, I know he doesn't always qualify as horror, but I love him. Or Guillermo del Toro presents, like MAMA. That had beautiful cinematography and imagery.
Had you seen Lucky McKee's other films? They can get pretty rough.
I hadn't watched them previously, but since then I've watched MAY and THE WOMAN and they're f*cking dark. But they're cool as shit. As I said, I'm all about good films, as long as they're interesting and compelling, I'm happy to watch.
Now we're just getting familiar with you here in America, but you're quite popular in Australia. What has the transition been like?
Really humbling, I suppose. I kind of came here as an 18-year-old feeling pretty indestructible, and learned fairly quickly that this town doesn't give a f*ck what you think. You have to bend, you have to mold, just work your ass off. If anything, it has taught me to be a much harder worker. At the end of the day, I'm either right for something or I'm not right for something. And I like anonymity. In Australia, I get recognized fairly often, which is fine, but some people can be real dicks about it and you're very aware of it. I'm not hugely famous, don't get me wrong, but recognizable enough that people feel like they know me. So I'm put in these awkward predicaments sometimes where people think I'm a total bitch when I'm just doing my own thing and, I dunno, maybe it seems like I don't have time for anything like that. Fame is never anything that has struck me as appealing, I love anonymity and no one having any idea who I am. Also, if a guy or a girl is checking you out, you're certain they're just checking you out, it's not because they recognize you.
Have you had bad experiences with people approaching you?
I got beaten up in Australia once by this girl. She was just gunning for a fight. She had me in a headlock and I was like, if this girl is angry enough to fight me in the first place, she must be furious. If she's angry enough to instigate this, then what else is she capable of doing? I'm just going to let this one play out. Fortunately, she punched like a bitch, it didn't hurt.
I bet you had wished you had a stunt double on that occasion.
Or just an assault weapon on me. I'm totally anti-violence, but she deserves to die in a house fire. You can just tell with some people, she was a bad person.
Are you focused on succeeding here in the states, are you going to go back and forth?
No, unless something comes up that I really like. I did this show called "Please Like Me" a few years ago and I'm doing the second season because I think those guys are geniuses. Anything like that, I'll go back for. The only other reason would be for my family. They're not really making anything there that they would want me for, or that I'd be right for. I'm happy to stick it out in the states for a while.
You're doing both television and movies now, do you have a preference?
I sort of like film. It's not as great of a commitment, it's less than six months, and you have more creative license. You don't have a network of show runners, it's just you and your director, and you don't have the burden of trying to appeal to a bunch of suits. Television sucks for that purpose, you're constantly micromanaged.
I assume you're having a good experience with "Reign"?
Yeah, it's great. I really love the cast and I'm having a good time.
What has been your most memorable experience so far as an actress?
Everything, I suppose. Every job you get, everything you have already done is totally erased. TOMORROW, WHEN THE WAR BEGAN was a film I did in Australia that at the time was a huge deal. It was such a coveted role, and being awarded it felt incredibly surreal. I don't think I've ever been quite so surprised and thrilled, it was an incredible experience. But there's a moment whenever you book a job of feeling euphoric, and that one was by far the most significant.
Anybody in the business that you're really looking forward to working with?
I would really love to work with Sean Penn. Olivia Coleman is a genius. Julia Louis-Dreyfus, I think she's f*cking incredible. She's probably my favorite. All those people together, that would be great.
Thank you so much for your time, good luck with everything.