Dee Wallace Gathers Us All Around The Tree For Red Christmas

She’s been the mother of both a rabid dog and a homesick alien, as well as a she-wolf, and literally hundreds of other roles that film fans have sunk their teeth into – she’s Dee Wallace, and we here at Dread Central were recently graced with the opportunity of speaking with her for a few minutes regarding her latest film, Red Christmas. Starring as a mother whose personal demons are coming back to haunt her and her family worse than anything that knocked on Ebenezer Scrooge’s doorstep, the film promises to add quite a bit of red to the green in anyone’s Christmas decorations. So, park your buns by the spruce, grab a glass of the old spiked nog, and enjoy!

DC: Can you give us a look into the premise of the film?

DW: The movie is a very bizarre horror/suspense film about a woman and her family at Christmastime who are visited by a child that she thought she’d gotten rid of, and the way that I looked at it was like a modern take on the old ghost story – the story is real, and it comes back to haunt her, ultimately wreaking havoc on her family. What drew me to the part was this strong matriarchal role, and when I read it first I said “my god, this is another part that’s very similar to the part I played in Cujo” – quite frankly, I didn’t know if I could do that anymore, and as soon as I had that thought, the next thought I had was “but you’re going to try, aren’t you?” (laughs) I then went down under to Australia and had an amazing time doing this movie.

DC: Now with all the ass-kicking that you did in this film, any bumps and bruises to speak of?

DW: Oh yeah! I got a few bumps and bruises, but I’ve done most of the stunts in the films I’ve been in – not that I haven’t had awesome stunt people, but I did alot, like when I did Cujo, The Howling and The Frighteners, unless they thought it was going to be too dangerous. I think it comes with doing a horror film and being a scream queen.

DC: This isn’t your typical horror film, and there’s quite a heavy subject matter attached to it – does that make you think about how you’re going to portray your character in the movie?

DW: Well, that’s what I loved about it, was that there’s so many layers going on in this script, and so many layers that Craig gave me as the mother to play – guilt and shame and defiance, all the while trying to justify myself and hide it from my family so they wouldn’t be hurt, so that leads to me being in defense of them all and trying to save them all, which I’m terribly inept at in this film. That’s what I love about a good horror film – many layers for its characters, and a lot of plot twists and relationships, which there are so many of in this film. I was kind of everything I look for, including a really beautiful cast and a nice set to work on.

Red Christmas

DC: Some horror films that are viewed have performances from time to time that can appear to be some one just going through the motions, yet when you take the screen, you have the ability to make everyone believe in your portrayal – is this particular genre a passion for you?

DW: It really is – I love to be challenged, and I love to play arcs, and perform emotional work. For me to do something like comedies for my career would not be very satisfying for me, which is why I love showing what I’ve got and there’s no better genre to offer that to an actor.

DC: Has there ever been an instance where you’ve said to a director “there’s one subject that I will not breach, or a line that I will not cross?

DW: Every film. From silly things like nudity to something like “well this will be good for the shot – can you do this?” My response usually is “well I would if the character would do that.” So you’re asking me to do something just to get a shot of something the character normally wouldn’t do, and that’s my job as an actor and their job as a director – to talk all these things out. That’s why movies have always been a great collaborative effort between all forms of talent. So when you have everybody’s ideas coming in to enhance the project, that’s when you have a project that stands out from all the rest of the “good ones.”

DC: Lastly, what can your fans expect to see from you after the release of Red Christmas?

DW: Hopefully more of the same, I don’t know! I’m finishing my series “Just Add Magic” which is on Amazon Prime, and my daughter Gabrielle Stone and I are bot big on the festival circuit right now – we both have films that were accepted into Hollyshorts Film Festival, and she and I are developing a film that I have written for the two of us. I’m always looking for challenging projects, and I haven’t been able to put it out there for the past 3-4 years because I’ve been so locked into the series, but I’m really looking for a project and people who are talented and creative – so now’s the time to get me!

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Matt Boiselle

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