Today might be Valentine’s Day, a day filled with love and passion. But today is also the day Fantasy Island hits theatres. Co-Writer/Director Jeff Wadlow takes the reins on the film adaptation of the classic television series where a group of people are brought to a beautiful tropical island to live out their wildest dreams – except they turn out to be closer to nightmares. Lucy Hale (from Pretty Little Liars and new series Katy Keene) stars as Melanie, who realizes quickly that justice and revenge might not be exactly what she hoped for.
We had the chance earlier this week to speak to Hale and Wadlow in a conference call (the pair’s first ever!) with other journalists to discuss the challenges of bringing Fantasy Island to the screen and their love for the Horror genre.
What drew you to Fantasy Island and remaking this classic TV show into a film?
WADLOW: I had an idea for a story that was loosely inspired by Fantasy Island. [Producer] Jason Blum heard it, called up Sony, got the rights and then he called me and said “Why do something inspired by Fantasy Island – let’s just do Fantasy Island!”
HALE: We were on [a different project] and Jeff came up to me and said “I have this Script I want you to read. It’s a character that I think is different for you and I think you’d kill it.” And all he had to say after was “Fiji. Two months,” and I was in. But I read the Script and it kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time I was reading it.
What do you look for in your actors?
WADLOW: I look for actors who bring themselves to the role. I always say I cast the actor, not the character. In the Script, there’s just a sort of sketch of a person and I’m looking for a real person who is going to bring something interesting that I could never have imagined to the part and really flesh it out and make it their own. Then I’m going to start rewriting for them and thinking of new ways to express the character on screen through wardrobe, dialogue and blocking. And a lot of that comes from the actor. I think it is really important that an actor takes ownership of the role. I don’t like actors who say “Oh yeah, just tell me what to do.” I don’t want to tell you what to do. I want to tell you what I’m trying to do and then I want you to play [this character] with me.
How do you challenge yourselves to continue to bring fresh and exciting elements to this genre?
WADLOW: There is never a moment where you’re not being challenged in some capacity. What I try to do is look for surprises on the set. I always show up every day with a plan so that if everything goes well, you have a plan to rely on. But I still want to be surprised. My favourite moments in every movie I’ve worked on were moments that I did not plan.
HALE: With this Film and Truth or Dare [which was also co-written/directed by Wadlow], we’re hustling the whole time and there’s so much to get done in a little amount of time. It’s always fresh and new and you just don’t know what’s going to happen and whether it’s good or bad. It just is what it is. But I think with Fantasy Island in particular, we were in a climate and a new place where most of us had never been before. We never spent time there. We’re trying to dodge rain storms, we’re hiking up mountains, there’s bugs and people are getting sick and…you just didn’t know what was going to happen. And that’s enough to keep it fresh.
From a character standpoint, Melanie is unlike any character I’ve played before. She’s very complex, layered, damaged and tormented. I loved stepping into her head but that was a challenge for me because our moral compass is so different…Never in a million years would I do the things Melanie does. My idea of revenge is much different.
What draws you to the horror genre?
WADLOW: I’m drawn to the genre the same way I’m drawn to Action movies I’m very interested in the dialogue between the film and the audience, how we are choosing the sequences, images and sounds to create an experience, and how we create tension and then release it. I love doing that with Action movies and I love doing it with Thrillers and Horror movies. It’s just a difference of scale and you have to be much more focused and smaller with a thriller to create that intensity.
Do you find that you ever borrow from your Pretty Little Liars character Aria, especially when acting in horror films?
HALE: I feel like if they brought that Show back, it should be made into a Horror film! It has all the makings of it! But there were so many suspense and Thriller elements from that Show that prepared me for Truth or Dare and then Fantasy Island. But all three characters are so different and I never try to play the same thing twice. But I do feel like after being chased and stalked by someone for eight seasons of a show, I definitely have my Horror Face down!
Sony Pictures Canada release FANTASY ISLAND on Friday, February 14, 2020.
Sony Pictures Canada x Mr. Will want to give Readers across Canada a chance to win Run-of-Engagement Passes to see FANTASY ISLAND. One lucky winner gets a $50 Cineplex Gift Card!
In BLUMHOUSE’S FANTASY ISLAND, the enigmatic Mr. Roarke makes the secret dreams of his lucky guests come true at a luxurious but remote tropical resort. But when the fantasies turn into nightmares, the guests have to solve the island’s mystery in order to escape with their lives.
See the Trailer:
To enter to win, click “like” on this Post at MR. WILL ON FACEBOOK and indicate your City. Re-Tweet this Contest Tweet from @mrwillwfor an extra chance.
Hot off the success of GET OUT and SPLIT, BlumhouseProductions present the Trailer for their new Horror starring Lucy Hale and Tyler Posey, TRUTH OR DARE! We love both and anticipate this being their big movie breakthough!
A seemingly harmless game of truth or dare turns deadly for a group of friends.
See the Trailer:
Universal Pictures Canada release TRUTH OR DAREFriday, April 27, 2018.
We’ve been to New York City many times but never for #TVWeek and are we ever glad we did! Stars flocked to the cosmopolitan mecca this week to present the upcoming 2017-2018 programming lineups on behalf of their respective networks. Known also as the Upfronts, major networks like NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, CW and several more this past week announced upcoming cancellations, renewals and brand-new Series coming to their programming slates.
The star power was explosive and several faces, familiar and new graced the Big Apple. While we were only able to stay for the first part of #TVWeek, we are thrilled at the caliber of talent we saw and met! I mean, Toronto hosts the Canadian Upfronts in early June which also is exciting, but this was another level!
Some highlights of the new and exciting shows we can expect to see this Fall on TV below!
SPLITTING UP TOGETHER (ABC)– stars Oliver Hudson and Jenna Fischer whose marriage is rekindled after their divorce.
S.W.A.T. (CBS) – Fan fave Shemar Moore heads this Los Angeles law enforcement unit.
SEAL TEAM (CBS) – David Boreneaz stars in this Series about a Navy Seals unit and their dangerous missions.
WISDOM OF THE CROWD (CBS)– Jeremy Piven stars in this Series about a man who invents an app which seeks to solve his daughter’s murder.
WORLD OF DANCE (NBC) – Reality Series with Ne-Yo, Jenna Dewan-Tatum, Derek Hough and more.
GOOD GIRLS (NBC) – Mae Whitman and Retta star in this series about friends who rob a supermarket to make ends meet but get away with a lot more than they bargained for.
REVERIE (NBC) – Dennis Haysbert stars as a former detective who creates a virtual reality program which has unexpected consequences.
THE GOOD DOCTOR (ABC) – Freddie Highmore stars as a young autistic doctor who relocates from quiet country life to a prestigious hospital’s surfical unit.
UNTITLED ZACH BRAFF PROJECT (ABC)– Zach Braff stars as a radio journalist who quits his job to start his own company.
THE MAYOR (ABC)– A young rapper runs for mayor of California to help draw attention to his music. Yvette Nicole Brown and Lea Michele star alongside Brandon Michael Hall.
THE GOSPEL OF KEVIN (ABC)– Jason Ritter stars as a man on the path to despair who is tasked with saving the world.
LIFE SENTENCE (CW) – Lucy Hale stars as a woman diagnosed with cancer, to find out she isn’t dying after all.
DYNASTY (CW) – The classic prime-time soap gets revived and stars Grant Show.
THE RESIDENT (FOX) – Matthew Czuchry and Emily Van Camp star as senior doctor who shows a young doctor the realities of modern medicine.
GHOSTED (FOX) – A skeptic and a believer in the supernatural are paired to look into unexplained activity in Los Angeles. Adam Scott and Craig Robinson both star.
THE GIFTED (FOX)– A spin-off Series of the X-Men franchise starring Stephen Moyer, Amy Acker and Jamie Chung.
RISE (NBC) – Josh Radnor stars as a teacher who takes over a high school’s lackluster theatre department.
10 DAYS IN THE VALLEY –Kyra Sedgwick stars as a TV producer who has to cope with her daughter going missing.
YOUNG SHELDON (CBS) – Focuses on The Big Bang Theory‘s Sheldon in his younger years.
WILL AND GRACE (ABC) – The beloved cast reunite for a special 10-episode revival of the Series.
ROSEANNE (ABC) – Popular Sitcom gets a revival with original cast members.
More to come. Stay tuned!
See our Snaps from #TVWeek! Hover mouse over left and right of the albums to navigate slideshow.
58 Categories, many, many Winners! The 40th annual People’s Choice Awards were held tonight at Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles and walking away the night’s big Winner was America’s Sweetheart Sandra Bullock, taking home four Awards as decided by the General Public. The Actress had a super year at the Box Office with two major Hits Gravity and The Heat, both which won Favorite Dramatic Movie and Favourite Comedic Movie respectively. The former earned Bullock a People’s Choice Award in the Category of Favorite Movie Duo along with her Co-Star George Clooney, in addition to wins for Favorite Actress, Favorite Dramatic Actress and Favorite Comedic Actress.
2 Broke Girls Stars Beth Behrs and Kat Dennings hosted the Evening, which saw performances from the likes of Brad Paisley, One Republic and Sara Bareilles and although the two Actresses were nominated for Favourite TV Gal Pals, they lost-out to Rachel & Santana (Lea Michele and Naya Rivera) from Glee.
Toronto was well-represented with Kristin Kreuk winning Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actress for her work in Beauty and the Beast. Meanwhile, the Series which is filmed in the City and also Toronto-filmed Reign won Favorite New TV Drama.
Winners tonight were as follows:
Favorite Streaming Series Orange Is the New Black
Favorite Cable TV Drama The Walking Dead
Favorite TV Gal Pals Rachel & Santana (Glee)
Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor Ian Somerhalder
Favorite Movie Actress Sandra Bullock
Favorite Comedic Movie Actress Sandra Bullock
Favorite Dramatic Movie Actress Sandra Bullock
Favorite Album The 20/20 Experience (Justin Timberlake)
Favorite Male Artist Justin Timberlake
Favorite R&B Artist Justin Timberlake
Favorite Daytime TV Host(s) Ellen DeGeneres
Favorite New Talk Show Host Queen Latifah
Favorite Comedic Movie Actor Adam Sandler
Favorite Dramatic TV Actor Josh Charles
Favorite Competition TV Show The Voice
Favorite Network TV Drama The Good Wife
Favorite Comedic Movie The Heat
Favorite Cable TV Actress
Favorite On-Screen Chemistry Damon & Elena (The Vampire Diaries)
Favorite Pop Artist Britney Spears
Favorite Comedic TV Actress Kaley Cuoco
Favorite Comedic TV Actor Chris Colfer
Favorite Action Movie Iron Man 3
Favorite Action Movie Star Robert Downey Jr.
Favorite Actress in a New TV Series Sarah Michelle Gellar
Favorite Movie Iron Man 3
Favorite Late Night Talk Show Host
Favorite Movie Actor
Favorite Movie Duo
Sandra Bullock & George Clooney (Gravity)
Favorite Dramatic Movie Gravity
Favorite Dramatic Movie Actor Leonardo DiCaprio
Favorite Family Movie Despicable Me 2
Favorite Horror Movie Carrie
Favorite Thriller Movie Now You See Me
Favorite Network TV Comedy The Big Bang Theory
Favorite Dramatic TV Actress Stana Katic
Favorite Actor in a New TV Series
Favorite TV Crime Drama Castle
Favorite Cable TV Comedy Psych
Favorite Premium Cable TV Show Homeland
Favorite TV Anti-Hero Rick Grimes (The Walking Dead)
Favorite TV Bromance Sam, Dean & Castiel (Supernatural)
Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Show Beauty and the Beast
Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actress Kristin Kreuk
Favorite TV Movie/Miniseries American Horror Story
The Stars have descended upon Toronto for the 2013 MuchMusic Video Awards and while preparations are well under-way over at the Station’s Queen Street Headquarters with Soundchecks taking place throughout the day, several Guests and Performers are just now arriving. Several Fans today not only got a Sneak Peek of tomorrow night’s performances, but some were even lucky enough to meet the Performers including Co-Host PSY, who was gracious to stop for Snaps earlier today with Fans! Others like Armin Van Buuren, Avril Lavigne, Phillip Phillips and more graced the stage today.
Meanwhile on the other end of the City, we were lucky enough to witness several of tomorrow’s Presenters arrive including the likes of Josh Bowman (Revenge), Shay Mitchell (Pretty Little Liars), Kunal Nayyar (Big Bang Theory), Naya Rivera (Glee), Lucy Hale (Pretty Little Liars), Popstar Cody Simpson and this year’s MMVAs “It Couple” Brittany Snow (Pitch Perfect, Hairspray) and Tyler Hoechlin (Teen Wolf). Red-hot Arrow Star Stephen Amell, who hails from Toronto, already has been in town for a bit in advance of the Show.
Meanwhile, Australian Internet Sensations The Janoskians have been causing quite a rage at their Hotel, requiring their Security to step-it-up a bit as their hoards of female Fans shower them with attention.
And although simultaneously in town for her Red Tour at Rogers Centre, Taylor Swift and Tourmate Ed Sheeran are expected to grace the Queen Street Stage tomorrow and some are saying they just might perform their latest Single Everything Has Changed as a surprise.
The 2013 MuchMusic Video Awards air tomorrow night at 9:00 PM EST on both MuchMusic and Fuse.