Slayers Cast Talks Bringing a Gen Z Vampire Flick to Life
Dec 18, 2022
The Stream Team (Kara Hayward, Jack Donnelly, Lydia Hearst, Abigail Breslin) crosses paths with a cabal of bloodsucking vampires and a man hellbent on revenge in Slayers, an original take on the genre, geared towards Generation Z. The team has over a hundred million followers, attracting the billionaire Beverly Rektor (Malin Akerman) and company, inviting them on a vacation at her compound. It’s not long after arriving that they discover their true vampiric identities, and that the vampires are being hunted by Elliot Jones (Thomas Jane) as he tries to avenge the death of his daughter.
Also in the cast of Slayers are Adam Ambruso, Ashley Reyes, Emmy James, Galen Howard, Julia Sandstrom, and more. It’s directed by K. Asher Levin who co-wrote with Zack Imbrogno.
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“It was really incredible to get to co-star along such a remarkable ensemble cast filled with such talent. It’s not every day you get to work with Abigail Breslin, Malin Akerman, Thomas Jane… it was a little intimidating, but also exciting, because everybody was so nice, professional, and we had a lot of fun making this film,” said Hearst.
A Vampire Movie for Generation Z
In a previous interview, Levin commented on how The Stream Team and elements in the film are intended to target a Gen Z audience, and a little beyond.
“With this film, we did poke good clean fun at the whole social media influencer-type world. We all are part of The Stream Team. I play Liz who sort of emulates and embodies the quintessential vapid, sudo-socialite, mainstream influencer whose ultimate and singular goal is to become the most famous or infamous person in the world, and she’ll stop at nothing to obtain that… it was really fun to play with that, and to magnify that… we weren’t making fun of anybody, but we were making fun of ourselves to a degree because especially when you work in entertainment, you do have to post, you do have to do those things… So, it was fun to poke fun at that and have a good time doing it,” commented Hearst.
“It’s about the importance of being brave and taking care of the people you love, it’s about laughing, it’s about having a good time, and the joys and honoring of the genre,” added Hayward.
“That’s what was so interesting about the script,” commented Donnelly, “you take the vampire genre movie that’s been done before, and you go, ‘Okay, how can we put a fresh spin on it?’ Taking these characters and putting them in that world, people that live stream and post every moment of their life, and then they just happen to be in grave danger, I was like, ‘I’ve not seen that before.’ The two things complimented each other so brilliantly.”
“I think it’s a fresh take on vampire movie,” said Akerman, “it’s a dark comedy vampire film that’s really fun, fast-paced, unexpected, and original.”
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Working with K. Asher Levin and Thomas Jane
Prior to Slayers, Levin directed Dig, Dream Maker, episodes of The Shadow Diaries, and much more. When asked about his direction style, each cast member echoed kind sentiments.
“He’s really an actor’s director,” commented Hearst. “He wants to hear the actor’s input, and he wants to make sure that everybody is not just happy with the material but truly comfortable as the characters. On set, his first priority was to make sure that we loved the work. We were comfortable, felt safe, and were confident as ourselves and as these characters that we really got to know… that was really what I think made the movie, was the fact that he was so uniting for all of us.”
“Asher is a close friend, it’s hard to think of him as anything but our funny, crazy friend, and his style goes right into directing where it’s fun and easygoing. It feels like it’s on the fly even though it’s thought through, and he knows what he’s doing,” said Akerman.
Jane also has a bevy of credits before Slayers, of course, being a household name for his work in movies like Boogie Nights, The Mist, The Punisher, Deep Blue Sea, and the list could go on.
“I love working with Thomas Jane. He is beyond talented and just such a natural, comfortable presence on set. He was so funny. He improvised some lines here and there that I remember had the entire room laughing,” said Hayward.
“Thomas Jane, it was like his character was born from him. This whole other person just came out. One of my favorite scenes was the first scene that I shot with him in the movie. We pull up, me and the other influencers in a Winnebago, and he stood on the road blocking us. The line in the script was him turning to us and saying, ‘You need to turn around and get the hell out of here,” and Thomas just goes, “You need to flip that [expletive] and [expletive] off.’” laughed Donnelly, “and it was brilliant.”
Slayers is available in theaters, on demand, and digital as of October 21 from The Avenue.
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