Many of our readers will recognize Frances Conroy from her roles on American Horror Story and Six Feet Under. She also appeared in 6 Souls, which was recently released on VOD and will be in theaters next month. Starring Julianne Moore and Jonathan Rhys Meyers, the movie deals with multiple personality disorder, and I had a chance to talk with Frances Conroy about her role in the movie, as well as the upcoming season of American Horror Story:
Thanks for taking the time to talk with me today. I have to say that my wife and I are both a big fan of your work. I enjoyed watching you on Six Feet Under when it first aired, American Horror Story now, and my wife loves How I Met Your Mother and spotted you on there too.
Frances Conroy: I'm shooting How I Met Your Mother this week and I'm having a lot of fun of it.
You're not in 6 Souls for the entire running time, but your character plays a pivotal role in helping Julianne Moore put together the pieces. You also have a really intense segment with Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Could tell me about your experience working on that scene with him?
Frances Conroy: He was brilliant in his part, and being around him in that scene was kind of electric. He was so completely invested in his role and it was very charged in that room, with me, him, and Julianne [Moore]. There was a lot of tension, and when he goes into that violent transition, it was kind of scary watching him.
Is he someone who drops character between takes or did he stay in character throughout the day?
Frances Conroy: He would just be sort of quiet between takes. He's such a sweetheart and a really nice guy, so it was really easy for us to shoot that day. A lot of the scenes were tough, so he probably allowed himself to come out of it in between takes to relax and get through the day.
What was it about the story of 6 Souls that made you want to be a part of this movie?
Frances Conroy: I thought it was very frightening, but deep too. It deals with faith and religion, and a number of deep questions. I thought it was quite compelling that this woman was a dear person who was deeply affected by the story of her son. It seemed like an interesting film I wanted to be a part of, and it was also so frightening to me. The story is detailed and really went into the history of these people.
You've had quite a presence in the horror genre lately with your work on American Horror Story, and now readers can catch you in 6 Souls. Do you enjoy watching horror movies and are genre roles something that you'd like to take on more often?
Frances Conroy: I never watch horror movies.... they scare me![ laughs] It's interesting because I've been involved on American Horror Story and we'll be in New Orleans this summer for another season. I haven't heard specific things about what is being written, but it will have the great writing it has had for the last two years. It's interesting that I've been involved in these kinds of projects. They are compelling, but this kind of world scares me.
American Horror Story has to be great for the actors involved, because each season allows you to dive into a new character.
Frances Conroy: Yeah and between now and when we start shooting, I'll find out who I'll be playing. When I take these projects on, I think about the person I'm inhabiting and the life they have. Each season of American Horror Story was a different storyline, as this season will be. I certainly played three different kinds of characters in the first and second season: a maid, the angel of death, and Jessica's hallucination. They were all so different, and I like having that path as an actor.
Thanks again for taking the time to talk with me today. Following up on what you said earlier, what horror movie or movies scared you from watching them again?
Frances Conroy: Any of them! I can't deal with them at all... they just give me nightmares. I've seen next to none of them, but I tried to watch The Shining and I had to stop watching it because it was so frightening. The little I was able to deal with was terrifying and I had to turn the TV off.