If you haven’t seen The Green Inferno, you need to. It’s gross and slimy, and definitely will make you cringe. You can’t help but notice the slight scent of roasting meat while watching it. Eli Roth’s tribute to Cannibal Holocaust had a lot of young talent in the cast, but one that really stood out was Canadian actress Magda Apanowicz, who played the young, tattooed, and bold and brazen lesbian, Samantha. Most recently, you can catch Magda in the Netflix uber-stalkery show, You, where she played young Joe’s delusional mother. But that’s not where this up-and-comer stopped. She also plays Angela in the new time-traveling sci-fi thriller, Volition. I was lucky enough to speak to Magda, and we discussed her career, fitting in, and of course, horror movies.
MA: Hi Tiffany. How are you?
PH: I’m good, how are you?
MA: I am peachy keen with a side of fine.
PH: Awesome! I watched the movie last night and I really enjoyed it. Super excited to talk with you today. I wanted to know, what was it about Angela that made you want to be a part of Volition?
MA: I think it started with Tony (Dean Smith, writer, and director). I wanted to work with Tony again. I was in school, a teenager and I auditioned for his film. I remember I wanted a certain part, and I got it and I was so stoked. I’ve never forgotten the ease that he kind of brought on set. And when he reached out to me and wanted to work with me on a script, I said, “Yup. I’m in.” He was like, “But you’ve got to read it.” And I’m like, “But I’m still in. I’ll read it, but yup. I’m in.”
First, it was Tony. And then second of all was that it was a very fun script. It sucked me right away, and scripts don’t always do that. It’s actually quite difficult to do that, and where you feel like that what you love just comes through your brain and your mouth, where you’re like, “Oh my God, I want to do this scene.” I always end up learning from the character at the end of it.
PH: I like how it fits together so well there. How did you prepare for the role?
MA: It’s kind of an instinctual thing for me when I read scripts. I just kind of go over it in my head who they are… It’s hard to explain. A lot of it is done in my head.
PH: Like getting comfortable with the character?
MA: Just knowing… Looking at stuff… If I’m not understanding a scene, it’s obviously because I’m not understanding where the subtext is and where it’s coming from and so as soon I figure out what the subtext is and what’s really happening in the scene beyond the words, then I know what to do. I come to set with my ideas, and you know, Tony and Ryan (W. Smith, writer) have their ideas, and most of the time they loved what I did. There’s a couple of times where they would be like, “We’d like to see you kind of do it like this,” and I’d be like, “Oh, my God. I love that suggestion.” And I’d do it, and it was so not what I was thinking, but it was so much better.
PH: You’ve been in some of my favorites. Recently you were in You, and The Green Inferno. But you were also in the really awesome made-for-TV movie, Devil’s Diary. That is such a great one, and I’m so sad it’s not streaming anywhere. What made you want to become an actress?
MA: I would say, Quentin Tarantino and Kevin Smith, and Joss Whedon. Before I knew their names, those were the movies that I watched. I kind of was a latchkey kid. I learned a lot of my lessons from TV, and how to group-up I learned from TV, and how to communicate with humans, which did not lead to an easy life, I’ll tell you that. Because it turns out that your 16th birthday isn’t like Sixteen Candles. I honestly had a lot of depression, and sadness growing up, and struggles. I didn’t know how to fit into this world and I felt like an alien for as long as I remember. And movies were the place where I felt okay. I felt that I understood whatever was happening there. It was the only time I felt like I was fitting in. I realized… for some reason I thought there was a certain breed of human that is born and goes into music, and is born and goes into movies. I didn’t understand the concept that a normal human being can choose to do this job. And so when I figured that out at 15, I had done some theater and asked the right questions and a lot of people patronized me, and I still kept asking the right questions, and I didn’t really listen, and was very stubborn and knew what I wanted. I look back at that teenager and wish I had the same confidence because she was relentless, and she did not take no for an answer. She did not apologize for who she was. I miss that.
PH: It’s a good thing she didn’t hold back because look at where you are now. That’s amazing.
MA: I know! As hard as those years were, I’m very grateful for the things that she did, because, for me, I don’t even see that as the same person as me. I honestly don’t. I felt like that was a part of me that I would like to know again, but I don’t. I have a lot of respect for her.
PH: I love that. I just have one last question for you. What is your favorite scary movie?
MA: Wes Craven is my favorite, and the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise was my favorite, but that’s also why I love Scream. He really cultivated what he was trying to do with Scream in the last Nightmare on Elm Street that Robert Englund did. You could see where it’s supposed to be kind of meta, but it didn’t kind of work out, but when he does Scream, it’s like he really figured out how to hone that, and where his mistakes were. So that one makes me so happy.
Thank you so much for Magda for taking the time to speak with us. Be sure to check out Volition on your favorite streaming platform!