Suki Waterhouse is more than just a pretty face. Highly trained in karate and judo training growing up, she can kick butt — just ask the director of her new movie, Seance.The British model-turned-actress plays mysterious private school student Camille …
Suki Waterhouse is more than just a pretty face. Highly trained in karate and judo training growing up, she can kick butt — just ask the director of her new movie, Seance.
The British model-turned-actress plays mysterious private school student Camille Meadows in the new horror movie directed by Simon Barrett, who was unfortunately at the receiving end of one of Waterhouse's punches.
The duo were practising a pivotal scene in the movie in which the actress' character is required to take a swipe at her co-star. But in rehearsal she accidentally made contact with Barrett, hitting him in the nose.
"This was obviously an accident," Waterhouse tells 9Honey Celebrity via Zoom while promoting the film. "Simon was showing me a very quite complicated succession of movements and somehow I don't know if it was my fault or his fault but I ended up hitting my director fairly hard on the nose.
"Simon is an amazing judo artist. I think he's got one of the highest levels of black belt that you can possibly have. But my dad was a black belt so I did a lot of karate when I was younger too and we were all quite heavy-handed with each other, wrestling and stuff."
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In the movie, Waterhouse plays student Maggie, who enrols at the Edelvine Academy girls private school following the death of one of its students. The tragedy was surrounded by mystery and involved an urban legend about a previous student who killed herself.
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As more students are found dead, Maggie and her classmates meet for a seance to contact their deceased classmates, only to invoke a spirit that terrorises the girls via a series of paranormal activities.
In real life, however, Waterhouse is not as sensitive to the undead, despite the fact her sister is convinced the actress' house in LA is haunted.
"My sister is much more sensitive to that stuff. She has beady eyes, forever looking for something," Waterhouse says. "She always says there's an old lady she sees when she wakes up at night. She's sure of it, which I'm just like, 'Oh, for goodness sake.' I changed out the furniture that was here from the person before and I think it went away after."
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"I am not particularly sensitive to that kind of stuff. I've moved around so much that I'll just sleep anywhere, different places, wherever," the actress laughs. "I feel like I am most sensitive to energy in the sky or when I get sleep paralysis. I've definitely felt like I've been abducted a few times and definitely feels like the most paranormal thing that's probably happened to me."
At 29 years old, Waterhouse was worried she wouldn't pass for a high school student. But she played her teenage character effortlessly and believably. Besides, the script — also written by Barrett and containing horror and underlying humour — was just too good to pass.
"Simon has a very dry, slightly alien sense of humour and I do find it quite funny as well that a man is writing girl jokes for teenage girls. He has an ironic sensibility," Waterhouse says.
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"I like old slasher movies, and doing that sort of thing in a modern way was very appealing to me. Doing something with an all-female cast that has bitey humour and doesn't take itself too seriously and getting to go back to school was really an appeal as well. I feel like it was probably the last time I'll get to put on a school uniform and vaguely be OK. I was already pushing the envelope."
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Playing a student, Waterhouse was able to reflect and revisit her high school years, during which she says she never really fit in.
"That was an interesting thing going back in this movie, I think so much of, like, my adult life was shaped from school and it was such a tender time," she recalls. "I wasn't always accepted into the cool crowd. My whole school thing was like trying and wanting to rebel away from that.
"I just think so much happens there. It's a great place because s--t goes down and you feel all these things and everyone feels weird and an outsider or whatever. But then it's a good board to use what happens to you in school and set you off to get the things you want. I think always having a little bit of revengeful thing in you of being like, 'F--k you guys,' is always so good for everyone."
Seance premieres on Shudder on September 29.
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