Elizabeth Olsen reflects on life after ''Martha Marcy May''

Thu Mar 8, 2012 4:13pm EST
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By Zorianna Kit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - One year ago Elizabeth Olsen stepped out of the shadows of her famous sisters, Mary-Kate and Ashley, to star in the title role of drama "Martha Marcy May Marlene," which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and earned her critical acclaim.

But the actress appeared in two films at Sundance last year, and it is only now that the second, horror thriller "Silent House," is finally landing in theaters. It opens on Friday.

Last year, Olsen was a little-known acting curiosity in a low-budget art house film who was following in the foosteps of her famous twin sisters. Now, she's a bona fide star in her own right having earned best actress nominations from the Independent Spirit Awards and Critics Choice Movie Awards, and "Silent House" is her move into the mainstream horror genre.

The film is a re-imagining of the Uruguayan movie "La Casa Muda," and it follows a young woman (Olsen) and her horrifying ordeal over the course of one evening in her family's long-neglected summer home. The 23 year-old sat down with Reuters to talk about it and her year of living in Hollywood's spotlight.

Q: In 'Silent House,' you spend pretty much the entire movie crying and running scared, going up and down stairs and in and out of rooms. That must have been exhausting!

A: "It was! There is so much snot in this movie because that's what happens when I get emotional - snot comes before tears. I gave myself a sinus infection by the end of the movie. It was hard."

Q: The story unfolds in real time and is told in a continuous camera shot. What kind of challenges did that bring?

A: "We would shoot one 12-minute take but if at the 11th minute, something went wrong, everything you did up until that point didn't matter. It was hard as an actor to know that you couldn't use any of that material. It's heartbreaking. But you deal with it and try to be present in what's happening next."   Continued...

Actress Elizabeth Olsen poses for a portrait while promoting her upcoming film "Silent House" in Los Angeles, California February 28, 2012. The movie opens in the U.S. on March 9. Picture taken February 28, 2012. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni