Elisabeth Moss stars in The Invisible Man in theatres February 28, 2020.
Let’s start by talking about the remake of this film and how it’s made relevant now.
When this was first sent to me, I kind of had the thought that I think people had when they first saw The Invisible Man title of what do I have to do with this? It’s called The Invisible Man. Yet they’re telling me I was the lead character, so how does that work? Am I invisible? Then I read it and I realized that it was this not only incredibly scary, entertaining, nail-biting thriller, but it had this incredible character piece at the heart of it, this woman who is being terrorized and that Leigh Whannell, our writer director, had used this invisible man monster as an analogy for gaslighting. I just thought that was so interesting.
Can we talk a little bit about what drew you to the script? Was it really telling it from her point of view? Was that some of the themes that started coming out as you read the script?
I think one of the things that really attracted me to it was the idea that we were making a monster a real character. That it wasn’t somebody who had some sort of special skill or had, I don’t know, it just he wasn’t wielding a chainsaw, that it felt like he was somebody who was real. He was a real person who was intelligent, and handsome, and was incredibly manipulative and also abusive. I think that that was something that I really, really liked that Universal and Blumhouse wanted to do.
I feel like the word surprise and also the element of surprise is such a huge theme throughout the whole movie. Can you talk about how the surprises and the scares are really amped up in this film?
One of the things Leigh and I talked about when we first talked was we were like, “We really need this movie to be scary.” That was the most important thing to us. Nothing else works if it’s not scary. We had so much fun figuring out what was the scariest thing to do. We would block out or rehearse the scene and we’d be like, “Ooh, Ooh. And then it’d be super cool if then the door open, and then it shut, and then I’ll turn and I’ll look, and it’ll go happened behind me.” We just would come up with stuff that we thought would be scary if we were watching the movie. Or we’d do a take and I’d be like, “I think that if you let that go a little bit longer and just draw it out as much as possible, the audience is going to be on the edge of their seats.” It was really fun to kind of just enact what we wanted to see.
Speaking of fun, I feel like when you’re making a horror movie, no one expects that to be fun. Can you talk about how surprised you were and how fun it was to make this film?
It was really surprising how fun it was, because it was such an incredibly challenging character, and a really crazy script, and incredibly dramatic, and all that kind of stuff. But we had so much fun. We really did. Leigh is really funny and a fun guy, Ali is, everyone’s awesome. We just, essentially, you’re doing things that are kind of really silly. They look really scary when you see the movie, but what we is very different. Like, my entire fight is with a man in a green suit, a tall man in a green suit with his head covered.
I mean, it looks ridiculous. You have things on strings that people are pulling and They’re trying to hide from the camera. Nothing looks as scary as it looks in the movie. When I saw that film, it was mostly me going, “Oh my god, that worked. Oh my god, that’s amazing.” Like, “Oh my god, that really actually is scary.” Because at the time, it doesn’t feel very scary at all.
And I have to talk about the character because even though your character, she’s always on the brink of craziness yet sanity, she’s so strong and powerful. Can you talk about her as a strong female character?
Yeah. One of the things that we discussed, Leigh and I was as if she was going to end up at the end being a strong character that we could kind of look up to or identify with, I really wanted her to start out as weak and vulnerable as possible. I’ve played a lot of strong women and I think it’s important to remember that we can also be vulnerable and we can be intelligent, but also make the wrong choices. That was that that, quote-unquote, weakness, that vulnerability, that timidness that she has in the beginning, I think it was just as important as getting to the strong place at the end.