If Holliston star Corri English's name is new to horror fans, that's largely due to the diversity of her talents. In addition to acting, English also fronts her own country-western band, Brokedown Cadillac, as she explained to me when I interviewed her on the set of Adam Green and Joe Lynch's show (currently airing on FEARnet Tuesdays at 10:30 PM EST) last year. Check out our full conversation after the jump.
How does your character fit into the world of Holliston?
As you probably know, Adam and Joe are aspiring horror filmmakers. And I play a girl named Corri, who is Adam's girlfriend from the past. They were together for a really long time, they broke up some time in college, and he never got over her. And she comes back to town. She's best friends with the Laura character, and so Adam still has feelings for her, and she has moved on in a lot of ways. So they have to learn to be friends again.
How would you describe her personality?
She's a nurse by day, and she's an aspiring country singer.
I know, right? So she's just the quintessential girl next door. But she's also artistic. She has her own thing going on. She understands Adam's character, because she wants to be a country singer. So she understands working towards something that you believe in. She also admires Adam because of his drive to be a filmmaker.
Does she get roped into his films?
Maybe. [Laughs.] It's possible. To be determined.
How is your character introduced?
I arrive in town in the pilot, and throughout the six first-season episodes you will find Adam and my characters navigating their relationship now that… It's always hard to go from being a relationship to being friends. So they have this period of separation, and now it's slightly awkward. Because they're trying to be friends again, but that's a hard thing to do.
Often it seems that when a sitcom offers two female characters, they're presented as a sort of Betty and Veronica duo. The good girl/bad girl dynamic. Is that here as well?
Definitely. I definitely think we have the Betty and Veronica thing going. They're two very, very different girls, but they're also great, great friends. The Laura character is artistic and kooky. The Corri character's a little more…
Yeah, she's more practical. She has this normal day job. She's a little more even-keeled. The Laura character is definitely quirkier. But they're a perfect match for each other as friends. One of them's not "bad." They get along. Their differences are more in their personalities. It's the opposites attract thing.
How many have you shot so far?
We just started shooting two weeks ago, so really we've shot one. But we're shooting a little out of order. Because we have Dee Snyder, and we have Oderus this week. All of their stuff is getting shot this week. Then afterward we'll go back to an episode a week pretty much, give or take.
Were you a GWAR or Twisted Sister fan prior to joining Holliston?
Oh yeah. It's so exciting to be sharing the screen with those guys. Especially because I'm a musician as well, so I definitely look up to them and the careers that they've had.
So you can relate to your character pretty well?
Absolutely. I have a country band called Brokedown Cadillac.
So was the role tailored for you?
Part of the whole thing is that we all play slightly lesser versions of ourselves in life. Adam and Joe are horror filmmakers, so they're playing aspiring horror filmmakers. There are definitely elements of our own personalities in the characters. They're different, but there's certainly elements that fit… So as a musician it's super-exciting for me to get to work with people who have been doing it on such a high level for decades. It's really cool.
Joe Lynch has compared the show to Friends. But it seems there are also shades of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia.
I've heard both of those shows used in reference to the show. And I think the It's Always Sunny reference is more the sort of quirky world that we live in. In the world of Holliston, anything can happen. But at the same time in the way that Friends is a buddy comedy that also has a lot of heart while it's still very funny, I think that's where Holliston is similar to Friends.
That being said, does it go into the raunchier territory of It's Always Sunny?
A hundred percent. It pushes the limits way more than Friends. Friends was always super clean-cut, whereas with Holliston we're definitely pushing the envelope on certain things. Like I said, anything can happen in the world of Holliston, which is what makes it such a fun show to work on. We're pushing the limits on certain things and it's hilarious. It's definitely edgy. I think using both of those shows – it's a mash-up of Friends and It's Always Sunny.
Are you a horror fan?
I am. I've always been a horror fan, but I've always been a big scaredy cat, which makes for an interesting combo. Because I watch most horror films with my eyes covered, almost the entire time. And I love horror films that also have an elements of psychological fear. Like Adam's movie Frozen. I think that's so cool, because it's the idea that that could really happen. And the fear and the emotions and all of that. When I was growing up, I loved the Poltergeist movies, and they terrified me. I couldn't sleep at night, but I loved them. I was terrified of clowns… And I also love Stephen King, and I read a lot of Stephen King novels and all of that. I love to do things that terrify me apparently. If I watch something scary I don't sleep very well after a few weeks. But it's worth it. I also really love horror films that are also funny. That sort of horror comedy, which is also what this is, is really great; where you can laugh while you're watching something gory.
Horror comedies tend to age well. Even Rosemary's Baby is pretty funny.
Oh yeah. I think so too… I even loved, when I was a kid, there's like the kid version of horror movies. There was this movie called The Watcher in the Woods. Have you seen that?
Sure. The Disney film.
Yeah, and it scared the crap out of me. It's amazing that it's a Disney film. It terrified me. It probably still would. That, and I also loved The Lady in White when I was growing up. But probably my favorite, because it's so funny, is Monster Squad. That movie is so amazing.
It's a masterpiece.
And it holds up really well. I watch it once a year. It came out on DVD not too long ago, and my sister bought it for me. We watched it right then, and I hadn't seen it in a decade, and, man, it's just so great. It's a classic.
"If we pull this off, I'm gonna shit!"
[Laughs.] It's so great!
And the little girl.
She's the cutest thing. When she grabs Frankenstein's pinky, that's the cutest little relationship. I loved that.
Going back to Holliston for a moment, what do think will make most people respond to the show?
I think that Holliston is a perfect combo of genres. It is a comedy. It's hilarious. The scripts are great. But Adam had written a show that, like I said earlier, has a lot of heart. I think people are really gonna grow to like these characters. As much as quirky, crazy things happen, they're real people, and I think that the audience will be able to relate to one of the characters. I think that's so important for a show, that you feel like you can get behind the characters; you're rooting for them. I really feel like this show has that while at the same time appealing to the Then horror fans. We have some gory gross things happening. Even for people that don't like horror at all, it's hilarious and sweet and funny, and I just feel like a lot of people will like it. I feel like it has something for everyone. It's being shot three-camera style, so it feels very familiar to people who like sitcoms, yet it offers something completely different.
It sounds like you're exploring some uncharted territory here.
We are, and that's what's been so fun about rehearsals and shooting and all of that. We're sort of finding our footing in this world. Figuring out how this world works, and what can happen and what can't. That's been a lot of fun, to sort of find our footing within the world of Holliston.
What's been your favorite moment so far?
There's one moment that, when I read it, I was so excited. I believe it's in our third episode. I don't want to give away too much. But there's one moment where my character is trying to help the guys, and she keeps getting picked on because she's trying to find something to neutralize a skunk odor. She's got these douches, because they have vinegar. And people are like, "What's happening? What's happening?" So finally she just kind of explodes on this one guy who asks her whether or not she's feeling fresh. When I read it I was like, "This is amazing." She just kind of stands up to this guy, but it's all about her vagina. Which is hilarious to me. When I read it, I thought, "This is awesome. The fact that I get to give this speech is awesome." It's like a girl power moment, while at the same time she's talking about her little, um...
Then I also love, in the last episode… The progression of the Adam and Cori relationship is really sweet. It's really funny. Him trying to get her back and all of that. It's a fun arc for the characters, and by the end of the sixth the relationship's kind of finding its way, and they have a really sweet moment at the end of the sixth episode that I really like.
Does the season end on a cliffhanger?
Yeah. It definitely does. It definitely will leave people with a lot of questions. That's the hope.