A24 and DIRECTV’s release of THE BLACKCOAT’S DAUGHTER, Shipka gives some insight into the filmHome,Movies/TV,News Adam Lee Price
Best known for playing Sally Draper on the hit TV series MAD MEN and currently playing B.D. Merill in Ryan Murphy’s FEUD, Kiernan Shipka is no stranger to the small screen. Now, Shipka has made her way to the big screen staring in the recently released genre flick, THE BLACKCOAT’S DAUGHTER. Also staring Emma Roberts, (SCREAM QUEENS, SCREAM 4) and Lucy Boynton (SING STREET, MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS), and directed by Oz Perkins, son of Anthony Perkins, the film is a mesmerizing horror/thriller centering around two teenage girls alone at their boarding school during winter break and the evil forces they must battle against.
From the opening scene to the final shot of the film, THE BLACKCOAT’S DAUGHTER is the kind of movie that grabs audiences right away due to its fresh story line and unique characters. From the moment she read the script, Shipka knew she had to play the multi-layered and mysterious Kat “I read the script that fall and I contacted Oz [Perkins] and we chatted about it a few times.” Continuing, she noted, “It was very layered and very nuanced. It was a simple script and a quiet script but also simultaneously being complex and I think that’s why I liked it so much. I trusted his vision and I was really happy to come on to it.”
Cinematically, the film is eerily cold and beautifully unsettling, a wise choice as the backdrop for this story of loss, fear, and insanity. Shot in a small town in Northern Canada, Shipka gives ample credit to her experience of shooting on location. “I did research to get in the mode, but just the intensity of the cold and the isolated environment that we were in created this tool that I could use to get into the darker moments.” After watching the movie it was clear in Shipka’s haunting performance that her surrounding elements helped morph her into the character on the screen.” Though humbly she admits, “I just jumped right in and hoped for the best. I felt like I knew the character well enough to be able to tap into her psyche.”
Of course as dark as the film may have been on-screen, off-screen the vibe was a bit more cheerful. “Working with Oz and my scenes with Lucy were so much fun. It was a very tight knit set and the crew was really close and everyone really liked each other.” And when asked about working with Perkins, Shipka said, “Oz definitely gave the actors freedom to kind of figure it out. He would give us some really clear directions to guide us and then at the same token let us figure it out for ourselves and play around with it. It was a full collaboration.”
THE BLACKCOAT’S DAUGHTER is not your average run-of-the-mill horror film and it’s refreshing to see films like this being produced today. Though you may not get the in-your-face horror we’ve grown accustomed to over the years, you will get a deep sense of dread and fear that will stay with you long after the movies’ end. Shipka left us with this statement, “At the end of the day I feel this movie is rooted in insanity and it has these classic horror elements.”
Watch the trailer below:
Check your local listings for screenings of THE BLACKCOAT’S DAUGHTER or VOD. Either way, it’s a movie not to be missed. And don’t forget to check back for our sit-down with writer/director Oz Perkins and some insight into the making of the film.