Wish Upon is a horror film about a haunted old music box that is gifted to 17-year-old Clare (played by Joey King). The music box promises to grant seven wishes to the owner, but Clare doesn’t know that these wishes come at a price. Skeptical at first, she ends up being persuaded and takes notice of the positive effects that came after making her first wish. Soon thereafter, the musical box starts taking its victims… those closest to Clare. One of Clare’s best friend is Meredith, a gutsy, tech-loving character portrayed by Sydney Park. Not shy of being a fan of horror films, Sydney Park was raised in spooky of times, with her birthday actually being Halloween!
We recently got a chance to do an escape room in Los Angeles with Sydney, but not before we sat down and spoke with her about the role of Meredith. She also tells us about her approach to a horror film and how it differentiates from her usual comedy roles.
What about Wish Upon had you jump into the film to be a part of it?
I definitely loved the script and John Leonetti (director) has such great work from Annabelle to working on The Conjuring. It’s kind of like a win-win, and on top of that, my character Meredith is the comic relief and that’s me. So what drew me to the project was the cast, John, and the script.
Did John give you and Shannon (Purser) time to hang out and get that comradery?
Yeah, it was awesome! We shot in Toronto and we all got to stay in the same hotel, so that was cool. We hung out outside of that and went to restaurants and roamed the city a little bit. My parents had come down for Thanksgiving and Shannon suggested they have dinner with us and we just bonded so much off camera.
You did a lot of comedy before this, what prompted you into the horror genre?
It honestly just happened. I’ve always wanted to be in a horror film and my birthday is Halloween, which I believe is the root of my fascination with gore and horror. All that scared me when I was little, but as I got older, I learned to appreciate the work that went into the horror genre films. Working on The Walking Dead and Wish Upon have been great experiences for that. Even though comedy is my root, which kind of shows in Wish Upon, I’m just really thankful for the opportunity since I’ve been fascinated since I was a little girl.
Comedy and horror sort of illicit similar responses from people. Did you notice that while getting into The Walking Dead, which is a bit more serious project, but gets those reactions too?
What I think is amazing about comedy and drama is that they can affect people. You can make somebody cry or you can make somebody laugh. I find most of the times that comedic actors are some of the best dramatic actors because we are always searching for that funny in dark situations. Most of the cast from The Walking Dead come from comedy too. Andrew Lincoln worked on a romantic comedy years ago. That’s what’s really awesome about the show, we all come from different backgrounds.
Which of the two genres takes more from you?
Comedy comes easily to me, it’s really just fun and me being myself. Drama, I’d say is definitely more challenging and intense in a way where it almost plays mind games with you and makes you look deeper into yourself.
You have such a big moment in the film, a really ambitious part that you don’t necessarily get to see in horror movies anymore. Without spoiling anything, can you talk about that day on set?
So, we shot that scene in three different parts, so it got spread out through three different days. The first part of shooting I was only really dealing with funny scenes, nothing scary at all and it felt like I was shooting a teenage movie, which was awesome. There was a lot of foreshadowing involved and talking about how different she (Meredith) was acting, but shooting that scene was really fun. The special effects were really gnarly and even scared me sometimes. Looking at myself in the mirror, I was a little-freaked out cause it looked so good. I think audiences are really going to love that because you don’t really see that scene throughout the film and then it just happens. It was fun shooting and relatively easy. John works really fast and he knows what he wants and knows the shots. It was super collaborative too because if I ever felt off about something or want to change something he was always listening.
So, do you second guess elevators now?
OH YEAH! I already didn’t like elevators from the start and now it’s worse. No bueño!
Wish Upon is in theaters now. Check out the latest trailer below.