[Interview] Julia Rehwald for FEAR STREET
Courtesy of Netflix
Fresh out of school and quickly on the rise, Julia Rehwald has captured the attention of horror fans with her dual roles as Kate (in Fear Street Part 1: 1994) and Lizzie (in Fear Street Part 3: 1666) in Netflix’s FEAR STREET TRILOGY. In 1994, a group of teenagers discovers that the terrifying events that have haunted their town for generations may all be connected – and that they may be the next targets. Based on R.L. Stine’s best-selling horror series, the FEAR STREET TRILOGY follows the nightmare through Shadyside’s sinister history.

For the release of the FEAR STREET TRILOGY, Nightmarish Conjurings got the chance to chat with actor Julia Rehwald where we discussed everything from her two characters, the dangers of bread slicers, and more. As a general note, this interview features heavy spoilers. You have been warned!

When taking on the character of Lizzie, were there aspects of her that you could relate to? 

Julia Rehwald: Definitely. There were parts of me I could see in both Lizzie and Kate. With Lizzie, specifically, I could relate to her sense of mischief and her extroverted nature. She really just wants to have a good time with her best friends and for everyone else to have fun as well. Something that both of my characters and I share is our deep love for our friends. I think we three are all very cautious with who we allow into our lives, but once we open up to someone we will protect them at all costs.

Prior to getting cast, were you familiar with R.L. Stine – whether it be Fear Street or Goosebumps? 

Julia Rehwald: Yes – I had read Fear Street as a kid! Turned me into a bit of a horror junkie to be honest.

(L-R) JULIA REHWALD as KATE, FRED HECHINGER as SIMON and KIANA MADEIRA as DEENA

You are in both FEAR STREET: 1994 and 1666 – between the two did you have a stronger connection with one over the other? Additionally, how exciting was it to be playing in two different time periods?

Julia Rehwald: I think I would probably say Kate. Just because we filmed 1994 first, so I spent a lot of time with her before we got to 1666 with Lizzie. I also used my character for Kate as a starting point for creating Lizzie. I wanted Lizzie to have the same spirit/core as Kate to start with and then I branched off into different characteristics/personality traits for Lizzie once I felt like she had a connection with Kate. It was really exciting to get to play two different time periods! Getting to set for 1666 and being immersed in the dirt and hot sun surrounded by farm animals and tied into a corset made the time period feel super real whenever we stepped onto set at the village.

One of the things that so many of us love about these films is that it’s being heralded by a woman director. That said, how was it working with Director Leigh Janiak on this project? 

Julia Rehwald: Leigh is truly incredible. It’s mind blowing to think about how much work and love she put into these three movies. And it really shows when you watch the movies. You can tell they were made by someone incredibly talented who cared so much about the story, the characters, and every other aspect of moviemaking. Leigh was a dream to work with and I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to work with her on my first project. She’s an absolute legend.

What was your reaction when you found out your character was going to die via bread slicer and how was it preparing for that?

Julia Rehwald: I remember reading the script on my phone in bed really late at night. I got sent the script while I was on vacation, so I didn’t have my laptop with me, but I couldn’t wait to read it. So, when I got back to my friend’s apartment after a night out, I stayed up in bed reading the whole thing. I vividly remember the whole grocery store sequence feeling really tense and fast-paced to read. My heart was pounding and I could really feel the tension in it. I knew it was going to be a beast to shoot but that it would end up looking awesome. I was stoked for the acting challenge of it too. I really like getting really physical and hands-on as an actor, so this scene was the one I was looking most forward to shooting.

(L to R) EMILY RUDD as ABIGAIL and JULIA REHWALD as LIZZIE. NETFLIX © 2021

What are you most excited for people to experience with your character?

Julia Rehwald: It’s been so nice to see people really root for and love Kate. I really wanted to create a character who was a bit of a tough-love kind of girl, but who the audience knows has a big heart underneath her tougher exterior. I didn’t want Kate to turn into the tropey bitchy cheerleader, you know? She’s an intelligent, ambitious, and realistic girl who just wants to make it out of this situation alive, and isn’t afraid to tell it how it is. I hope people can see both Kate and Lizzie as characters with a sense of warmth and comfort to them, like the type of characters you would want to be friends with if you lived in Shadyside 1994/1666!

The FEAR STREET TRILOGY is now available exclusively on Netflix. To learn more about how Director Leigh Janiak tackled the trilogy, check out our interview!

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