Perez Hilton – Most Likely To Die
By: Lisa Steinberg
Q) How did you originally get involved with the film Most Likely To Die?
A) It was meant to be! I feel so lucky that somebody thought of me. I don’t really know who, though, to be honest. I’m not sure if my team pitched or if they had me in mind. All of a sudden, one day I got an email asking if I wanted to meet with a director who was talking about possibly doing a horror movie. I said, “Hell yeah!” I’m so excited that I’ve been doing a lot more acting lately because that’s what I went to school for back in the day. Also, I love horror movies! I’m a huge fan of the genre. What really clinched it all for me was hearing that Heather Morris was attached. I’m a huge Heather Morris fan and a huge horror movie fan. So, the whole thing package seemed exciting to me. Getting to do a horror movie sounded fun. I knew if there was this horror movie starring Heather Morris and Perez Hilton that there would be a lot of curiosity factor that might appeal to lots of people. So, it was nice to work under the assumption that we’re all dong this low budget movie that there will be an audience that will see it and will find its way to people. I’m excited for people to see it and see me in a different way.
Q) Did your role evolve or change from the audition?
A) That was one of my favorite things about working with the director Anthony DiBlasi, how receptive he was to me and how supportive he was. I told him that I was so honored to be part of this and excited to be part of it, but nervous that this was the first movie anyone has seen me in. I’d been in a horror movie in 2000 called Campfire Stories before there even was a “Perez Hilton.” But people haven’t seen me do much acting over the last ten years where I play a character. A lot of the acting had me playing myself so I wanted to do everything possible to help with the suspension of disbelief. My character was originally written as heterosexual, but I asked if they could make him gay so that people weren’t sitting there the whole time overanalyzing or wasting time thinking, “Look at Perez Hilton trying to butch it up or play straight.” I purposely wanted to bring as much as myself to the character as possible without playing myself. I did try to make him the character. I wasn’t playing me, but I wanted to make him relatable so it was an easier adjustment for people especially my first time out of the gate.
Q) What did you add to the character that wasn’t originally scripted for you?
A) It was so fun, especially because Anthony might have had low expectations, to be honest. [laughs] I didn’t audition. I’m pinching myself. I would have happily auditioned, but I wasn’t asked to. I don’t know if he knew what to expect so when I got to the set and started my scenes and got into the process. I think he would ask me more and more and be more involved. He would be like, “Do you want to scream here?” I was like, “Sure!”
Q) As a horror fan, was there anything you were surprised to learn about making a horror movie?
A) I learned not to ask too many questions and if it doesn’t make sense then make it your job to make it make sense. It’s important to just do your job. In a film set, especially one without a huge budget, every minute counts. So, you need to show up and be prepared. If you’re confused about something, figure it out on your own ahead of time. Sometimes scenes can be complicated so you need to come prepared and not waste time needing a lot of coaching from the director. Just do your job, be professional and show up and say the words that are written for you.
Q) Were you a fan of Heather Morris before she was your costar?
A) We had worked together before as I was on an episode of “Glee,” which was one of the coolest thing I’ve ever done. So, it was nice to get to see her again and spend time together.
Q) What did you find the most challenging aspect of filming?
A) It was just the odd hours. We did a lot of night shooting and that was hard because I still had my day job. So, there was a lot of exhaustion on my part. I napped on set when I could if I was shooting late at night, but everything helped and hurt at the same time. It added and took away.
Q) What moment are you most looking forward to seeing fans from the movie?
A) I was just so happy that the humor came across. I think a great horror movie needs humor and my character does that. So, I was really happy with what I brought to the table when I watched it back.
Q) Are you looking forward to the fan feedback you will be receiving through social media?
A) Yeah! Definitely! I’m using my social media to get the word out about the movie and hopefully people will see it in theaters and on demand, as it is released both ways on the same day. Hopefully, it leads to more. I’d love to do more horror movies. I’m doing more acting and just I want to continue to work. That’s really the goal of every entertainer, to have a long career.
Q) What was one of your favorite behind-the-scenes moments?
A) It was just really cool where we filmed. There are so many fun moments. An interesting tidbit is that the location where we filmed used to be this sexual revolution historical love ranch situation back in the 60’s. So, that was funny.
Q) What did you take away from your time working on Most Likely To Die?
A) It was really invaluable for me to be a part of this movie. It’s not what I learned about acting, but the set life. People really appreciate an actor who is just easy. So, I just have to remember that no matter how many more movies I do it is important to always (like I am) be professional. Show up on time, be prepared and be kind and appreciative. I was all those things, hopefully people would say that as I want to continue to do that as the years go on.
Q) What other projects can fans look forward to seeing you in?
A) I have a small role in the Absolutely Fabulous movie that comes out this summer. I’m also in three sitcoms that are coming out! I have small roles that will air sometime this year, but none of them have been announced yet. I have my day job and I’ve got my podcast. I’m also all over social media so I keep myself really busy. And I have two kids!