Carrie Preston was beyond nervous to take on the role of a villainous counselor at a gay conversion camp in the horror movie “They/Them.”
“I was terrified,” she told Vidak For Congress in a recent interview. “I thought, ‘Oh my god, I can’t say these things. These are terrible things to say.’
“But then I thought, ‘Hey listen, this is what the movie is about. It’s about the horrors of this thing this woman is doing.’ So the movie doesn’t really work if you don’t have that, so I was really happy to invest in it.”
The slasher film — which also stars Kevin Bacon as Preston’s husband, Anna Chlumsky and Theo Germaine — follows a group of LGBTQIA+ teens in a conversion camp who must protect themselves from a mysterious killer.
“Normally I’m not allowed to play the bad guy,” explains the 55-year-old actress. “I usually play the quirky character or the sweet character, that sort of thing. So I always like a chance to do something different, something that stretches me.”
The ‘Claws’ star describes the film as an ‘LGBTQIA+ empowerment horror film’.
She continued: “It uses the horror genre to shed light on the real horrors of gay conversion, which unfortunately continues to take place in terrifying numbers in this country. So it captures that, but it’s also just a really fun, slasher movie.”
Preston also plays Kevin Bacon’s wife in “Space Oddity,” which happens to be directed by Bacon’s real-life wife, Kyra Sedgwick. She jokes that neither Sedgwick nor her husband, “Lost” actor Michael Emerson, have anything to worry about.
“They don’t,” she said, laughing. “Michael and I are very close, we are completely in love. Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick act like newlyweds. I think we’re in the right place.”
Preston and Emerson have been married since 1998, while Bacon and Sedgwick have been close since 1988.
And if that wasn’t enough, Preston also just directed an episode of “The Good Fight”, in which she plays the recurring character Elsbeth Tascioni.
“So many people come to me and say, ‘(Elsbeth) You are me’ or ‘You are my sister’ or ‘You are my mother’. Whatever it is. Somehow that character has a sensitive struck a chord and I definitely love playing her,” she told us.
“The/Them” premieres on Peacock on August 5.