Interviews

Cole Hauser and Kelly Reilly Interview: Yellowstone

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As the June 19th premiere date for Yellowstone season 2 approaches, some of its stars spoke with Screen Rant about their arcs. Rip Wheeler, played by Cole Hauser, will have a lot on his plate managing the ranch and keeping John Dutton's (Kevin Costner) affairs in order. Beth Dutton, portrayed by Kelly Reilly, will be taking it upon herself to defend those she loves at all costs. Chief among them Rip himself, as the two share a tumultuous bond that will be explored more in depth this year.

Your scenes together were electric, so I’m very much looking forward to the relationship as it develops this season. Can you guys talk about that? Where do you guys stand in each other’s eyes?

Kelly Reilly: Yeah. We explore more of their backstory in season 2. We really go back to when they were kids, when they first meet. We realize and we understand that this is a lifelong relationship, and how similar they kind of are, as well. And their loyalty is to each other. You can say whatever you want about Beth, and how outrageous she can be – but when she loves, she loves hard. And she loves Rip.

Cole Hauser: Yeah, I think Taylor did a wonderful job of kind of exposing us together. Meaning not to anybody else, but to the audience and to each other. And there’s some really beautiful scenes between her and I where you really get to explore who they are.

Speaking of exploring who your character is, some of the most powerful parts of season 1 were the flashbacks to Beth’s childhood and her dynamic with her mother. Is there more insight into the lessons her mother taught her, and maybe how that’s colored Beth in her father’s eyes?

Kelly Reilly: Yes. If you think about what her mother taught her, it’s “You’ve got to be stronger than all these boys. I’m going to be tougher on you than anybody.” And then she blamed her as she’s dying... I don’t know how you survive that. And so Beth is what she is because of that. Everything she is is because of that. Every breath she takes is because of that. And she’s just trying to find her way through life, you know? It influences the relationship with every character, I think.

I view Rip as another one of John’s sons, and I think Rip views John as a father figure. Do tensions arise with the return of the prodigal son Kayce to the ranch?

Cole Hauser: Between Kayce and I, yeah. I think what’s interesting about our relationship is it is a big brother-little brother relationship, and there is some obvious residue from him leaving the ranch and kind of not helping his father when I think he should have. But in the end, I think Rip loves each and every one of his sons like he does John, and obviously he has a tremendous amount of love for Beth. So I don’t think he’s the kind of person that goes, “I’m gonna put myself in the middle of this and stand on my own two feet.” It’s been happening for thirty years.

Kelly Reilly: Beth, on the other hand, will stand in the middle of it. She sees what’s going on. She sees the Golden Boy son coming home, and there’s some tension there with her father, and she lets him know how she feels about it. And I think that’s where a lot of Beth’s sort of… What I love about her most is her loyalty and her dignity to those who she loves, and she doesn’t mince her words about it, and she’ll let them know. And that’s pretty much what season 2 is for me, it’s about trying to protect [Rip].

Finally, there’s a lot about the branding in season 1. Obviously, you literally brand people, and you talk about how you were branded on the inside. Will we get more insight into what the brand means to you both, and why does this ranch go so hard?

Kelly Reilly: Gosh, all these characters are bound to it. I mean, you don’t leave Yellowstone. That’s the thing. If you leave, you’re on the train. Because there are some dodgy things that are happening at Yellowstone, and in order for it to survive, you’ve got to keep your mouth shut. It’s a little bit of Western Mafia happening here. But on a deeper emotional level to that, I think the branding is significant because they are all bound to this place emotionally. And they cannot escape; it will never be washed off.

Cole Hauser: I don’t think you can say it any better than that, so I’m just gonna stay silent over here.

More: Read Screen Rant's Yellowstone Season 1 Review

How LOST IN SPACE Created The Next Great Sci-Fi Heroine

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Ellen Ripley. Sarah Connor. Maureen Robinson. It's the last thing fans expected from Netflix's reboot of Lost in Space, but there's no denying how quickly and completely the matriarch of the Robinson family cemented her legacy among the great heroines of science fiction. And based on her brilliance, bruises, and blind ambition, may have proven far more formidable than other 'badass' feminst icons--especially to viewers who know that being 'strong' doesn't mean the same thing as being 'perfect.'

With Lost in Space: The Complete First Season now available on DVD and Blu-ray, a new generation of families can see how the reboot flips the classic gender archetypes, with actress Molly Parker portraying the head of the family, and co-star Toby Stephens confirming that this time around it's Maureen who's "wearing the pants" in the marriage. That's what attracted them to the parts, and the finished product makes that clear: it's Maureen Robinson who is dragging her family into the stars in search of humanity's future. And if they all get killed or lost in the process... well, that will be her fault, too.

RELATED: What Story Lost in Space Season 2 Will Tell

Screen Rant had the chance to speak with 'Maureen' herself, Molly Parker, who after years spent facing off against dangerous, calculating, and reckless men in shows like Deadwood and House of Cards, is finally leading that charge. Parker may not boast that Maureen Robinson is a new kind of heroine, shaped by the last two decades and looking forward towards the next ten. But if the next season picks up where Lost in Space's season 1 ending left off, science fiction fans will soon have another icon to honor. One flawed enough to make it hard for future females to be measured against her--which, in the end, is kind of the point.

A lot of families, especially multi-generational ones with fondness for the original series didn't know what to expect from this re-imagining of Lost in Space and the Robinsons. What has the reception been like for you?

It's the first time I have done anything [laughs] really, in 27 years that has that kind of 'fan.' I mean I have a 12 year old, so he and his friends love the show. That's made me really, really popular on the schoolyard, which is cool. But then I meet older people all the time who watch the show who loved the original, and remember Maureen when she was a woman in space who made sandwiches. And used the awesome clothes-cleaner, where they all came out folded and packaged magically. So it's really wonderful like that. I'm really proud of it.

It goes without saying that this is a show about family. But I distinctly remember watching the first episode and wondering, "Why does this feel like the most real, authentic marriage, and family, that I've seen on television?" Is that as unique to find as an actor as it seems to be as a viewer?

That's a good question. I think in a way the writers were interested in re-imagining this family genre, you know? I think that's partly what Netflix was looking for, and what they wanted from the show. Which was: beyond the fact that it happens in space, and it's science fiction, and it's a remake of this beloved show from the '60s, all of us wanted this family to feel like people we recognized. When we meet them the parents are separated, they barely talk to eachother. The children have all of their own difficulties, all of these characters are flawed. That's who we are. We just wanted them to be real people. One of the things that was difficult, I think, before the first season came out was trying to explain how the show was a family show, but it's not for little kids. Like it's scary, the first episode is frightening.

Part of what Toby Stephens and I were trying to do all the time, every scene we had together, was to layer it in a way that it works storywise, but then also adults, parents, grown-ups who are watching it would recognize themselves in it and see, 'Okay they might be talking about this, but just underneath that is this sort of boiling amount of resentment, or hurt.' So we did try really hard to create something that... not just would speak to multiple generations, but be something you could watch together at a time when a lot of families--I know this happens in my family--my son's watching something on his screen, I'm watching something in another room... it's not happening together. I love this show for that, and I will say that this coming season, although I can't say much about what happens storywise, it is better. It is so good. It's deeper, and richer, and as the kids grow older the story gets a little bit more mature. I'm really excited about it.

Maureen Robinson might be one of the most underrated science fiction heroines of the last decade or longer. The coolest Space Mom, without a doubt. Not only because she is so clearly the head of the family, but it almost feels patronizing to say that she's "strong" because... she's not doing what she's doing to BE strong. She is very much who she is from the first time we see her, and never really stops to question that. Was that always a part of this version of Maureen?

Yeah. Yes. It was their intention, it was the way it was presented to me when they approached me about doing the show. And it is absolutely one of the things that made me really excited to do it. On the face of it, doing a remake of Lost in Space wasn't what I was looking for, but as I started to understand what they wanted to do, it was more and more exciting to me. And thank you so much for understanding that to talk about this particular character, or even at this point most female characters in film as 'strong women' is reductive. Because at the very least, my ambition is to try to create not 'strong' people, but complicated people. Human people, people who are conflicted so that we see the range of humanity in them.

Certainly Maureen is strong, but she's also flawed, and she's also full of secrets, and she's also insensitive, and she's also brilliant. She is all of those things. That's what I want her to be. These writers are so wonderful, and they really just think of her as this... One woman today said, 'She's an American hero!' And I'm Canadian, so it made me laugh... But I am always trying to shine a light into the corners of the antihero in her as well, you know? So it's really fun.

And you touched on something that I feel is really important, one of the things that I love about this show is that--it's set now in another slightly different reality, or 30 years into the future, basically. But my ambition, all of our ambition on this show is to present a situation where, for the women and the girls on the show, it's never a question that they are capable, that they can do what the men can do. Or they do what they do, and the men do what they do. In the same way, we don't really even get very far into discussing why we have a daughter who's mixed race. Families look all kinds of ways now. I love being in a place where we are at least trying to create something where... we don't have to talk about it. Anyway. That was a rant.

The best compliment that you can pay John Robinson is saying he was smart enough to marry Maureen. I suppose female roles today are what they are, depending on the genre, but were you just reading these scripts as the season develops, and Maureen tackles one thing after another, thinking 'I get to do THIS too? Are you kidding me?!

[Laughs] Yeah! I mean, there's a bunch of levels on which that operates. One of them is this show is much more physical than I had anticipated it to be, and I've never done anything quite like... they didn't really tell me until we were well into shooting the first couple of episodes that they were like, 'No no, she's an action hero.' Like, 'What are you talking about? I thought we were going to be in a studio, and we're up on these mountains, in space suits.' It's fairly intense.

There's all of that, and she is that, but what I see now when I look back at the first season as a whole, this is a character who again and again is coming from this... they really inverted the archetypal male/female roles in John and Maureen. So Maureen is coming from this scientific, logical place first. That's her first go-to, and has this kind of mantra that every problem has a solution and if she can just figure it out, you know. And yet she has put them in this situation, and it's her lack of emotional intelligence that always gets in her way. She finally does get to a place at the end of the season where there is no answer to the problem, and she has created the problem.

I think she ends up having to face this part of herself that she doesn't really want to even admit exists. Which is that she's ambitious. On the face of it she's told everyone that she's taken her family into space to give them a better life. Yet what she's done is--again and again and again--put them into situations where they almost die. They're not where she thought they would be but... she is the one who wanted to go to space her whole life, not the other four. In some ways she's one step ahead of everyone in terms of knowing what their future would be if they stayed on Earth, but in another way it comes at a massive cost for all of them. I really appreciate that these writers have allowed her to have those flaws.

When you look around at what's happening in the world right now, does working on something like Lost in Space have a therapeutic aspect to it? To be part of a story that looks to the future, at what's possible?

Right. I think that it's aspirational in the sense that, even if we're following this family that happens to be an American family, it's really an international effort. It's aspirational in the sense that it's hopeful. There's a lot of hope in this show, which I think we are desperately in need of right now. Without hope we can't really affect meaningful change, even in the way things are here at this moment. There are definitely aspects of the show that, to me, reflect a kind of migrant story, and refugee story.

It's a really good time to have to watch a privileged, Western family have to struggle with survival. Because it's not something a lot of us in the West really have to do, and so much of the rest of the world is doing it on daily basis. But I think there's all kind of different things, like just between classes, and who gets to go? These are really privileged people who get to go. You have to be the best of the best, and the smartest of the smartest, and pass all these things. So there's so much to unpack there, and luckily we have at least one more season to do it in.

Thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us, we really appreciate it.

Bye Andrew! Fellow Canadian!

Lost in Space: The Complete First Season is now available for pre-order and will be released on Blu-ray and DVD on June 4th from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. Be sure to check out our our interview with Lost in Space's Toby Stephens, as well.

MORE: What To Expect From Lost in Space Season 2

Sophie Turner & Jessica Chastain Interview: Dark Phoenix

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Dark Phoenix is many things, but at its core it's the story of Sophie Turner's Jean Grey, who gains immense power that alienates her from the X-Men and those closest to her - and right towards Jessica Chastain's mysterious alien presence. The two actors spend much of the movie together, where the main power play unfolds.

Screen Rant recently sat down with the Dark Phoenix

This is obviously one of the biggest, if not the biggest, X-Men story in the comics. Did you guys go back and read The Dark Phoenix Saga in preparation and pull from that?

Sophie Turner: Well. I'd read it years ago and then I read it again when I got Apocalypse and then, no.

Jessica Chastain: Yeah, for me, my character doesn't appear in it, so there wasn't any sense of me going and finding source material that didn't include my character in terms of research.

Jessica, your character is a very obscure comic character that pulls from various different threads. For that, did you lean more on what Simon has written for the script rather than the comics, then?

JC: Absolutely. And then also, a lot of Google searches about, you know, different alien species in that world.

Sophie, you mentioned Apocalypse. When you signed on for that, was this always part of the pitch? Did you know you'd get to do the good stuff?

ST: No, not at all. I never knew. You know, they had The Last Stand and so I just kind of assumed that it was done and over with. But I was really excited when they told me because in The Last Stand, the Dark Phoenix storyline was a subplot and in this it's the main plot and it being one of the most loved comic books in the X-Men world, it definitely felt right to do it again. I was so excited.

And what's so exciting about this one is that Simon is writing and directing. So you have a very driven direction which you don't always get on movies of this scale. How was that for both of you working with him and being able to shape this central relationship in the story?

JC: It's great. I mean, I love working with writer-directors because you could have a conversation and something comes from that and then the next morning, Simon would show up to work and say, "hey, I wrote some pages that I think could be interesting for this direction we're going." So I love that kind of, youknow, that fluid way of working.

ST: Yeah, it's just like you're constantly evolving. The script is constantly evolving and being chopped and changed in whatever way kind of way we liked,  and that was amazing. He's so collaborative, that was something that is often quite rare in directors, and he was great.

Could you elaborate a bit on that? In terms of the collaboration, what were you able to introduce to the character that perhaps wasn't in the script? Both of them, of course.

ST: It was probably just little things, you know. Like, Simon and I would sit down for two hours every day and just comb through each page of the script. And then, if I felt like, "oh, Scott and Jean need to have a moment here because this happens later on and it would make sense," he would be like, "yeah, no problem." And he'd rewrite it. I mean, there was rewriting being done all the time.

JC: For me, I mean, the look of the character was something that I brought to Simon and we worked together to hone in. And then things about the clinical nature of her, this idea that she wouldn't be very emotional because when I read the script I was like, it's a very emotional script, so I think it's nice to have a character who sees that as weakness and is giving another kind of performance for that to go off of.

Next: Simon Kinberg Interview: Dark Phoenix

Sophie Turner & Jessica Chastain Interview: Dark Phoenix

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Dark Phoenix is many things, but at its core it's the story of Sophie Turner's Jean Grey, who gains immense power that alienates her from the X-Men and those closest to her - and right towards Jessica Chastain's mysterious alien presence. The two actors spend much of the movie together, where the main power play unfolds.

Screen Rant recently sat down with the Dark Phoenix

This is obviously one of the biggest, if not the biggest, X-Men story in the comics. Did you guys go back and read The Dark Phoenix Saga in preparation and pull from that?

Sophie Turner: Well. I'd read it years ago and then I read it again when I got Apocalypse and then, no.

Jessica Chastain: Yeah, for me, my character doesn't appear in it, so there wasn't any sense of me going and finding source material that didn't include my character in terms of research.

Jessica, your character is a very obscure comic character that pulls from various different threads. For that, did you lean more on what Simon has written for the script rather than the comics, then?

JC: Absolutely. And then also, a lot of Google searches about, you know, different alien species in that world.

Sophie, you mentioned Apocalypse. When you signed on for that, was this always part of the pitch? Did you know you'd get to do the good stuff?

ST: No, not at all. I never knew. You know, they had The Last Stand and so I just kind of assumed that it was done and over with. But I was really excited when they told me because in The Last Stand, the Dark Phoenix storyline was a subplot and in this it's the main plot and it being one of the most loved comic books in the X-Men world, it definitely felt right to do it again. I was so excited.

And what's so exciting about this one is that Simon is writing and directing. So you have a very driven direction which you don't always get on movies of this scale. How was that for both of you working with him and being able to shape this central relationship in the story?

JC: It's great. I mean, I love working with writer-directors because you could have a conversation and something comes from that and then the next morning, Simon would show up to work and say, "hey, I wrote some pages that I think could be interesting for this direction we're going." So I love that kind of, youknow, that fluid way of working.

ST: Yeah, it's just like you're constantly evolving. The script is constantly evolving and being chopped and changed in whatever way kind of way we liked,  and that was amazing. He's so collaborative, that was something that is often quite rare in directors, and he was great.

Could you elaborate a bit on that? In terms of the collaboration, what were you able to introduce to the character that perhaps wasn't in the script? Both of them, of course.

ST: It was probably just little things, you know. Like, Simon and I would sit down for two hours every day and just comb through each page of the script. And then, if I felt like, "oh, Scott and Jean need to have a moment here because this happens later on and it would make sense," he would be like, "yeah, no problem." And he'd rewrite it. I mean, there was rewriting being done all the time.

JC: For me, I mean, the look of the character was something that I brought to Simon and we worked together to hone in. And then things about the clinical nature of her, this idea that she wouldn't be very emotional because when I read the script I was like, it's a very emotional script, so I think it's nice to have a character who sees that as weakness and is giving another kind of performance for that to go off of.

Next: Simon Kinberg Interview: Dark Phoenix

Gary Dauberman Interview: Annabelle Comes Home

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Back in March, Screen Rant had the opportunity to peek into the editing bay for Annabelle Comes Home. As it was Gary Dauberman's first time directing after writing several beloved films in the Conjuring Universe, the excitement of bringing his own vision to life was palpable. Not only that, but the feels a lot more personal as well. It focuses on the daughter of Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) Warren and how she views her parents. As a young girl who wants nothing more than to fit in, Judy (Mckenna Grace) struggles with how different her parents' work makes her seem. But those struggles get a lot more life-threatening when they bring a creepy, possessed doll home to join the rest of their cursed artifacts.

Judy isn't the only one affected by Annabelle, though. Babysitter Mary Ellen (Madison Iseman) and her best friend Daniela (Katie Sarife) encounter a house full of horrors thanks to the doll's ability to summon evil spirits. After previewing a few introductory scenes, such as Ed and Lorraine's car drive home with their new acquisition and Daniela's first visit to the artifact room, Dauberman answered several questions about the process of creating Annabelle Comes Home and his hopes for its emotional impact.

Related: Annabelle Comes Home Trailer #2

Do you feel like Annabelle Comes Homes has a Halloween vibe?

Gary Dauberman: That’s the best thing you could ever say to me. You got it. That’s one of my favorite horror movies of all time. The course of the movie takes place over the course of one night, a lot like Halloween, so it has that same sort of – I hope – that same kind of build. Where we’re sort of building towards something and we get some character moments early on, people get settled in, and then we’re off to the races. I thought that was sort of a unique take that we haven’t done yet in the Conjuring Universe. It’s a day in the life, a night in the life, of our girls.

How integral is the parent-child dynamic to this film? It seems like a recurring theme throughout the Conjuring Universe.

Gary Dauberman: It’s pretty important. It’s Judy trying to wrestle with who her parents are and how they’re being viewed. As we learned in The Conjuring 2, not everybody believes what they do. In The Conjuring, they’re called kooks. To her, they’re her parents. They’re the ones who make her go to bed on time, love her and all that stuff. I think that’s got to be really tough for a kid. And as more and more people start to discover what they do, it just gets harder and harder for her, so it’s really sort of about, “Will she come to accept what they do?” Kind of ask those questions. So it’s pretty central.

How much are you using of Ed & Lorraine’s actual story in this? 

Gary Dauberman: I talked to Judy a lot, the actual Judy Warren, when she came on set. Just what it was like to be their daughter. I think about it in terms of my own kids and stuff, and just being away a lot, just stuff you deal with as a parent. [When] I wrote that scene in the car, I wanted to see them as just parents, or as a married couple, as opposed to just these paranormal investigators that we’ve seen in the other movies – and see what that relationship was like. I wrote the scene about Ed’s poor sense of direction before I learned from Judy that Ed had a terrible sense of direction. That’s a conversation they would have, she remembers that a lot.

I wanted to ask about the things that I couldn’t find out in the countless books that have been written on them and by them. You know, the fact that they love diners. They would seek out what’s the best diner in town. Things like that I just love. It felt like I was getting secrets or something that not a lot of people knew, it's a nice peek behind the curtain of what their family life was like. But it was great to actually just spend in their house. The movie takes place in their house, which hopefully becomes its own kind of character. You set a horror movie in the Warren house, there’s a lot you could do [but] it has its own sort of challenges and limitations too.

This is your first time directing as well as writing. How different is it to bring your own vision to life?

Gary Dauberman: The short answer is very different. But it was nice having a shorthand with the writer. I didn’t have to be so specific in the script, because I knew I could just email the people who needed to be [in the know]. The script felt like an ongoing conversation with myself. I just fleshed out ideas, and as these great collaborators come onboard - like Michael Burgess who’s the DP, and of course working with James [Wan] and Peter Safran and the guys at New Line and Atomic Monster. It always felt like an ongoing conversation, but sooner or later the director always in the past has taken over the conversation to steer it towards whatever they wanted, their point of view. This time I was able to sort of just keep chugging along to my own tune.

Was directing something you always wanted to do?

Gary Dauberman: It was something I always wanted to do, but I always wanted it to be the right thing. I loved horror and I loved the Conjuring franchise. I had other opportunities, it just never felt right. And this one felt right to me because I get to work with people I love and people I respect, and they have fantastic ideas. It felt like a very safe environment, and I care very deeply about this franchise so it felt like the right time.

Did you get the hang of the technical aspect?

Gary Dauberman: Because I’d been on the set of the other movies, it really helped. It’s been such an education, all the movies I’ve worked on, to be able to apply the stuff I’ve learned in hopefully the right way was a great experience. And to shoot it all and have [editor Kirk Morri] sit there and put it all together has been great too. He’s done such an amazing job on the other movies, it felt again very safe. Just having a conversation with him throughout the process. "Am I getting what I need?" and all that stuff, It’s so cool to shoot stuff and then a couple days later see it.

What has James’ involvement been in the film? How much does he step in?

Gary Dauberman: He’s always very involved from the story standpoint. From the get-go, we talked about the initial idea. He’s reading scripts, he's having idea, he comes to set, he comes to the editing room. He’s always very involved. It worked out to my benefit, because he was back from Australia and he was finishing editing while I was shooting. So he was editing here on the lot, and it was like, "James, what do we do?!" or whatever. No, but he’s just super super involved. He's the North Star of the franchise.

Did you work together on the writing of the film?

Gary Dauberman: We kind of bounced around ideas. I think it was James who was like, "I think it would be cool to do the artifact room." It was very organic, and that’s kind of how we feel about all the movies. We didn’t want to do another movie or spinoff just to do one. But it felt like the artifact room was begging for its own kind of movie. And, of course, Annabelle sort of looms the largest in the room and feels like she’s on her throne, as she looks at all her loyal subjects and the other artifacts. That felt like an obvious place to go for the Annabelle movies. And it was a nice way to bring Ed and Lorraine into the Annabelle franchise as well, which is pretty cool. It’s awesome.

What do you think is the secret to the Conjuring Universe’s success?

Gary Dauberman: It’s something I find myself trying not to think too much about because I don’t want to apply a science to it. I wish it was a formula. This all started with The Conjuring, and it’s based on real events. Ed and Lorraine are real people, and they’ve been doing what they call God’s Work and just dealing with demonic forces and stuff that we’re all sort of fascinated with and think about. So I think, really, The Conjuring helped set the table for all of this in a really fantastic way, so everything feels like it has an authenticity to it to some degree. Even if we veer away from actual events to tell something, they all feel like they have a little bit if authenticity to them. So it doesn’t feel [like] just a story that we’ve conjured up from nowhere. A lot of this stuff – a lot of the artifacts we have, are in a room in Connecticut. And at some point, the Warrens went out and investigated them, and whether you believe it or not, that is true. They went out and investigated a case and came to their own conclusions. I just find it more fun to believe than not, because I was never good at science.

How do the actual Warrens feel about the embellishments in the films? Are they onboard?

Gary Dauberman: They’re onboard. I wouldn’t want to do anything to upset them. They’ve been so great to us, the family, and I think we’ve been pretty good to them in terms of just getting their story out there. So it’s been a nice back and forth, but they’re very open to that stuff. They’ll share the real story with us. And I guess it gets people to ask them those questions, and then they can share the real story of what happened. There hasn’t been any issues on that at all, thank God.

Is there something you really wanted to accomplish in this film?

Gary Dauberman: Overall, I really like moments of levity in my horror films because then I feel like the scary is much scarier. Because you have that much more distance to go, if that makes sense at all. So that was something I was really hoping I could achieve, just having some bits of humor before we can get them scared. For me, the best thing is if we can get them laughing and then just right away, boom, we hit them with a scare. I’m not a huge fan of horror comedies, but I like comedy in my horror. So that was something I wanted to get at and tried to sneak in where I could. So I think there’s a couple moments where I’ve managed to do that, just from screenings and stuff, but we’ll see.

Do you want to continue directing in the future?

Gary Dauberman: I would love to continue in the future, yeah. If I could replicate this experience, I would, over and over. Just because I loved the crew that I worked with, they were so great. Obviously I’ve loved working with New Line and Warner Bros. I’ve done that forever. I feel fortunate enough to get to pick the jobs I want, which means I get to pick the people I work with, and that’s been very important to me. That’s a quality of life thing too, you spend so much time with [them]. If Kirk and I hated each other, it’d be the worst job in the universe. I can't wait to do it again, and I’ll try to keep the band together as much as I can.

What impact do you want this to have on the audience? Is there anything you want to leave them with other than being uncomfortable going to bed at night?

Gary Dauberman: I didn’t go into it going, “What’s the message I’m trying tell here?” Because it is important to me that people go and are uncomfortable at night, and are entertained and have fun. That to me is really what I kind of set myself out to do: trying to be entertaining and scary and have fun. I wanted a watchability factor. There’s movies I love that I’ll never watch again, and there’s movies that are like your favorite song that you want to play over and over again. There’s a level of comfort to it, there’s a quality that you like. Just like, “I feel better.” That’s something I like with my stuff, just making it feel like there’s a rewatchability to it.

I wanted to really pay tribute to Judy and the Warrens but not have an overall social message. I went into it from that standpoint, just as a parent myself and how what I do that affects my kids, and how that must be for the Warrens and thinking about their kid. For me, that personal message to me was about that. Another thing that I thought about [is] Daniela. This doesn’t mean to sound as heavy as it is, but Daniela’s story is about her losing her father and wondering if something is out there. I lost my father a year ago, in March, and it did not occur to me until I was telling my sister a couple of weeks ago that “the girl lost her father and she’s trying to…” And she was like, “Do you think you wrote that because of Dad?” I was like, “Ohhh, I guess I did.” It’s so close to it, that it never occurred to me that I was actually dealing with that. So it has that personal message to me, the story, but as far as a grand social message, that’s not something I thought about.

Was there anything that wasn't told about the Warrens in previous films that you felt you had to include in Annabelle Comes Home?

Gary Dauberman: I love the Warrens. Every time they’re onscreen, they’re so great. With Patrick and Vera, I’d be like, “Hey, guys! Guess what? I wrote a new scene last night! here you go!” Because you just want more and more. I just wanted to see them as parents. I think of them as a married couple and the stuff they would talk about when they’re not talking about, "How are we going to get this ghost out of this guy?" or whatever. So that was something, a part of it that we felt was touched upon in The Conjuring 2 and The Conjuring, certainly, but it was just something that I thought would be a cool to see something that we haven’t dug too deeply into before. I think that’s a good opportunity, because you don’t want The Conjuring 2 to just be a romantic comedy. You want it to be about them on a mission and trying to solve it. So I felt like in this one maybe I could have a little bit more freedom to explore the other parts that you wouldn’t be able to in the other movies.

Do you think you succeeded at that?

Gary Dauberman: I think so. I certainly got what I wanted out of it. I can see it between Patrick and Vera on set. They have such great chemistry, and they’re so close, that they really did a great job of capturing that.

Next: Annabelle Comes Home Set Visit Report: Everything You Need To Know

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