Wallis: Good horror is great art
Annabelle Wallis has revealed how terrifying her first experience of a horror film was as her new movie received its Hollywood premiere.
The Peaky Blinders actress makes her leading lady debut as a pregnant woman terrorised by a demonic doll in Annabelle, which picks up the story of the possessed doll first seen in last year's hit The Conjuring.
Speaking on the red carpet at the Los Angeles premiere, dressed in a full-length silver Calvin Klein gown, the British star said the first horror film she watched petrified her.
"I saw a film called People Under The Stairs, which is actually really, really scary and I think it gave me a fear beyond any kind of comprehension. It was one of the things I went to in my head when I was getting into character.
"The thing about horror is it shapes your cinematic experience, everyone remembers when they were really scared in a movie and that is great art. It's memorable, it's also launched so many incredible careers, there are so many iconic movies in the genre.
"There's Hitchcock, Polanski, Mia Farrow, Catherine Deneuve, Grace Kelly, Tippi Hedren. I hope this film really pays homage to that and a time when cinema was incredibly celebrated. I think this film deserves to be and I hope people are very scared."
The film is set before the terrifying encounters seen in The Conjuring, when the doll is given to Annabelle's character as a gift from her husband.
In spite of her scary ordeal, the actress said she understood why people love to be terrified by films.
"I think horror is an incredibly immersive experience and it's the ultimate escapism, it's what some people seek out. Good cinema is that and this film is that completely. I think they love to go in to the cinema and whatever is going on in their life and in their day will be forgotten very quickly and they will scream very loudly."
Annabelle is released in UK cinemas on October 10.