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Archive 81 Star Dina Shihabi Reveals The Two Scenes That Gave Her Nightmares

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Archive 81 Star Dina Shihabi Reveals The Two Scenes That Gave Her Nightmares

Spoilers below for anyone who hasn’t yet watched Archive 81, so be warned if you’re included in that bunch!

As opposed to the many horror projects out there that have prioritized bloody visuals and gore above all other familiar genre trappings, Netflix’s binge-worthy frightfest Archive 81 put a similar amount of emphasis on its audio design and sound editing as a way to keep viewers on edge. Not that it wasn’t visually creepy as well, from the found-footage elements to the digital demon Kaelego to the doomed séance. As it happens, Archive 81 was as successful with giving one of its stars nightmares as it was with freaking out streaming audiences on the whole.

Ahead of quickly becoming one of the best shows on Netflix, where it’s currently the second-most watched piece of content on the service, CinemaBlend spoke with lead actress Dina Shihabi about bringing this dark and twisted tale into our 2022 timeline. For me, one of the most horrifying sequences of the entire series came in the second half of Episode 2, when Melody spied on Samuel’s cult in the community room as they hummed and moaned the notes from the show’s signature tune. (My skin is getting all crawly just at the thought of it.) And it turns out Shihabi was equally disturbed during the filming of that scene, to the point where viewing the finished product had a similar effect. Here’s how she put it: 

I was scared. And this is being completely honest, I was scared on set when I first heard the sound of the breathing and that kind of ritualistic singing. It creeped me out, and it gave me nightmares. And then watching the show, I got genuinely scared even though I’d heard it before, I’d seen it, I was there shooting it. Watching it scared me and gave me nightmares again. And so maybe I’m just such a scaredy cat and everything scares me or, you know, they did a good job in executing it, because it was creepy on the day, and in the final product.

While it wasn’t the last time Archive 81 featured characters vocalizing the haunting tune, it was the largest group of people to do so, making it all the more unnatural to witness. What I absolutely do NOT want to see or hear in 2022 is an arena or stadium full of Archive 81 fans breaking a world record for the largest number of people rhythmically whirring at once. Do not make this happen, universe. 

It had to be a wild situation for Dina Shihabi and the rest of the actors filming that scene. At least Melody wasn’t part of the group, so she didn’t have to take part in the noise-making herself. But I do wonder how being part of the faux cult itself was for the actors, and whether or not they were equally disturbed during each take, either by the haunting sounds or by Evan Jonigkeit’s sinister creepiness as Samuel. And whether or not any of them kept humming the damned thing to themselves ad nauseum like I did after watching. 

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Of course, what is a frightful set of sounds without some hallucinatory visuals to go along for the ride? The Netflix Original horror from showrunner Rebecca Sonnenshine and executive producer James Wan definitely serves up some freaky eye candy — in the sense of a Reese’s cup half-covered with cobwebs — to go along with all the aural disquiet. Arguably the coolest of these visuals is the increasingly spreading mold that infects the Visser and beyond, with the dark spirals seemingly breathing at times and showcasing an unexplainable color scheme that brought to mind rainbows appearing in oil slicks.

Episode 6 put the influential growth in the metaphorical spotlight when Melody took a trip down to the mold-covered basement, where of course Samuel was also there to make the mold seem more approachable in comparison. And it turns out this particular set was also responsible for giving Dina Shiabi some night frights. In her words:

I have so many cool things to say about it. Should I just dive in? Because you know the scene where I go into the room and I finally am touching the mold on the walls? They built this whole 360 room. It was like an art installation. It was so beautiful. And I thought that was really interesting that this thing that represents so much darkness was gorgeous and actually, I imagined, pulls you towards it. It almost has this, like, power that lures you in. But I had nightmares of mold while shooting the show. Yeah, it was weird. I would wake up and go to set, and I’m like, ‘I had another dream where my whole house was filled with mold, and I was coughing up mold,’ and it was constantly getting into my psyche, which was creepy. Yeah, ugh, it’s like it really messed with my head.

Honestly, until she said all of that, I had managed to keep at bay thoughts of the mold actually being inside my body. But never again, I guess. I can only hope that if the series gets renewed for Season 2, that Rebecca Sonnenshine & Co. don’t find new ways to make that mold so mentally contagious. Wait, unless that means they come up with an even more ghastly substance to introduce…

Archive 81 fans are currently waiting to hear whether or not Netflix will pick the show up for Season 2. We learned from the showrunner that some characters’ fates were left unexplained with the purpose of having questions to answer if and when the series would return for more episodes, which also goes for other details from the first eight episodes that weren’t fully explored. She also confirmed what viewers should take away from Dan’s final scene, even if it doesn’t subdue the confusion much. Now let’s just convince Netflix to keep things rolling so we can find out what’s happening next.

Archive 81 can be streamed in its eight-episode entirety on Netflix now, and while waiting to hear about Season 2, be sure to check out our 2022 TV premiere schedule to see what other horror-leaning debuts are on the way.

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Quentin Tarantino Reveals His Pick For ‘The Greatest Movie Ever Made’

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Quentin Tarantino Reveals His Pick For ‘The Greatest Movie Ever Made’

It may not feel like it sometimes, but any upcoming movie has the chance to be named “the greatest movie ever made” by someone out there. However, that honor does have some specific caveats if you’re someone like filmmaker Quentin Tarantino. Not only has the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood director chosen a Steven Spielberg classic for that very distinction, Tarantino also explained just why that title is very specific. 

In an upcoming interview with our in-house podcast ReelBlend, Quentin Tarantino made his fourth appearance to talk about all things movies; the first since the big live show at the New Beverly Cinema. Promoting his new co-hosting gig on The Video Archives Podcast, Tarantino had yet another spirited discussion about cinema, which led to his pick of Steven Spielberg’s Jaws as  the greatest “movie” ever made. That distinction is important, as the Once Upon A Time…In Hollywood director made that perfectly clear through the following remarks: 

I think Jaws is the greatest movie ever made. Maybe not the greatest film. But it’s the greatest movie ever made. And then there are other movies that can get in its rarefied air. But as far as a movie, there’s no making it better than Jaws. There’s no ‘better’ than Jaws. It is the best movie ever made. And it shows how badly timed most movies made before Jaws were.

Leave it to Quentin Tarantino to separate his tastes in movies into those two separate, important camps: “movies” and “films.” In this case, the designation of a movie almost sounds like it’s shorthand for the blockbuster opuses that Steven Spielberg made a name for himself with. Which means that “films” are presumably more of the independent/art house titles that have higher pedigrees, and usually end up on the lists of best picture nominees every year.

Strangely enough, Jaws is one of six horror movies to have Best Picture nominations, so the line could blur just a bit in that respect. Putting aside the “movies” versus “films” debate, Quentin Tarantino isn’t using that separation to be a snob. Later on in the conversation, he explained how spectacles such as this are their own form of art, and how Steven Spielberg came to be someone who perfected it: 

What I meant by that, to one degree or another, is that Spielberg and a lot of his cohorts grew up seeing those kinds of movies in the theater. Henry Levin’s Journey to Center of the Earth, he’s gonna run to go and see that. Richard Fleischer’s Fantastic Voyage. He’s going to run and go see it. Gordon Douglas’s Them! He’s going to run and go see. Now… most of them weren’t directed that well. They were assignments given to journeyman directors who did their best with them. That was how we were used to seeing comic book — that kind of movie experience. As opposed to a Spielberg, who was like, ‘No, this is exactly the kind of movie he likes. This is exactly the kind of movies he was put on earth to make. And he’s going to make it, within an inch of his life, as effective as it possibly can be. And, you know, Michael Anderson, isn’t putting that kind of work in Logan’s Run.

Spielberg, and “cohorts” like George Lucas, Martin Scorsese, and Francis Ford Copolla all latched onto genres that were pulpier entertainments in their childhood, only to make them into something new. Through films like Jaws, Star Wars, Taxi Driver, and The Godfather, we saw a generation of directors taking movies they loved and reviving them through their own personal lenses. Which is exactly what Quentin Tarantino would do when he stepped onto the scene with Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction; and it’s also why he’s such a staunch supporter of the cinematic experience. 

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If this conversation boils down to anything, it’s game recognizing game. Much as Steven Spielberg idolized the movies that helped make Jaws, Quentin Tarantino has reverence for the bearded director and his dedication to making the movies that sparked his love of cinema. Though considering the history his collaborator Samuel L. Jackson has had with sharks, you have to wonder if this has already sparked any sort of humorous conversations between the two?

You’ll be able to watch, and listen, to Quentin Tarantino’s latest appearance on ReelBlend, as it’s set to hit YouTube tomorrow. Meanwhile, Tarantino may not have his tenth and final film in the works just yet, but you can still enjoy the man’s gift for words in two very cool ways. 

Tarantino’s Video Archives podcast, which he co-hosts with friend and collaborator Roger Avery, is currently streaming wherever you find fine listening material. However, if you also want to read the man’s thoughts on ‘70s filmmaking in his upcoming book Cinema Speculation, which you can currently preorder on Amazon (opens in new tab); or any other fine bookseller.

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‘Prey’ Interviews With Amber Midthunder, Dan Trachtenberg And More!

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The stars of “Prey,” Amber Midthunder (“Naru”), Dakota Bevers (“Taabe”), Dane DiLiegro (“The Predator”), director Dan Trachtenberg and producer Jhane Myers discuss their new “Predator” movie in this interview with CinemaBlend at San Diego Comic-Con 2022. They discuss the “Prey” audition moment that landed Amber Midthunder her role and more!

You can stream “Prey” on Hulu on August 5.

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‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’ | Marvel Comic-Con Interviews with Chris Pratt, Karen Gillan & More

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‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’ | Marvel Comic-Con Interviews with Chris Pratt, Karen Gillan & More

“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” stars Chris Pratt (Peter Quill / Star-Lord), Karen Gillan (Nebula), Will Poulter (Adam Warlock), Pom Klementieff (Mantis), Sean Gunn (Kraglin / On-Set Rocket), Chukwudi Iwuji (The High Evolutionary) and writer Director James Gunn discuss their upcoming Marvel film and conclusion of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” trilogy in this post-Hall H interview with CinemaBlend at San Diego Comic-Con 2022.

Video Chapters

  • 00:00 – Chris Pratt on Finding “Your Side”
  • 00:35 – Chris Pratt Teases What’s Ahead For Star-Lord and Gamora In GOTG 3
  • 01:24 – Karen Gillan LOVES ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Fan Reactions
  • 02:00 – Karen Gillan Weighs In On Nebula Unaliving Nebula in ‘Endgame’
  • 02:32 – James Gunn Teases a “Darker” ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Movie
  • 03:20 – Sean Gunn on Baby Rocket’s Difficult Backstory
  • 04:30 –  Pom Klementieff on Welcoming New Marvel Actors to the ‘Guardians’ Family
  • 05:15 – Pom Klementieff Teases A More Badass Mantis In ‘Guardians 3’
  • 05:35 – Will Poulter Teases Adam Warlock Origins in ‘GOTG 3’ 
  • 06:32 – Chukwudi Iwuji on The High Evolutionary and His Motivations
  • 07:20 – Chukwudi Iwugi Praises James Gunn’s Dialogue
  • 08:15 – Chris Pratt Recalls His Last Day of Filming the ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Trilogy
  • 08:55 – James Gunn Is Literally Always Writing and Rewriting Scripts
  • 09:49 – Will Poulter Wants to Play Adam Warlock Again “If Marvel Will Have Me”

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