Read Shockya.com's exclusive interview with actor Josh Hammond, who’s preparing for his role of Scott Salazus in the upcoming horror film ‘American Girls.’ The movie, which is currently in pre-production under the direction of Eric Pereira, is based on the true events of the abduction, rape and murder of two high school girls. The story also chronicles the fallout that nearly destroys their small Midwestern town, as long-buried secrets are being brought to light as the police begin investigating the crime. ‘American Girl’ is told through multiple character points of view, as it presents several psychological looks on the tragic crimes. Hammond, who has made a name for himself in guest-starring television roles on such shows as ‘Malcolm in the Middle’ and ‘Scrubs,’ discusses with us what attracted him to ‘American Girls,’ and why he likes reuniting with directors he’s previously worked with.
Written by: Karen Benardello
ShockYa (SY): You play Scott Salazus in the upcoming horror film ‘American Girls.’ What attracted you to the character, and convinced you to take the role?
Josh Hammond (JH): Well, I really enjoy playing twisted and sick individuals in film roles, because it’s fun. You get to step out of being a family-man and dad between action and cut. That’s kind of exciting, because there’s no consequences while you’re shooting. That’s what attracted me to the role.
I was also approached by (screenwriter and actress) Devanny Pinn and (actor) Brandon Slagle about working on the project. They’re friends of mine, and I said yes, that sounds like a delightful adventure to take with you guys. I guess it’s pretty much that I like to step out of my norm, and play somebody who can fly off the handle a little, and creep people out.
SY: ‘American Girls’ is based on true events. How much knowledge did you have of the true story before you began filming, and what kind of research did you do to help you prepare for your role?
JH: I actually didn’t have that much prior knowledge of the actual story. I was sent a few news clips and YouTube footage of what happened. So that was interesting, because our characters were based on real people. Names have been changed to protect the innocent. To prepare for the role, I pretty much went into the woods near my house, and hunted down some squirrels and dissected some insects.
SY: The film uses multiple character points of view to offer viewers a psychological look at the crime. Do you think this technique helped benefit the telling of the story?
JH: Yeah, I do. I kind of like that style of film where a bunch of characters’ stories weave together. I think having a lot of different sources and mediums telling the story keeps the viewer interested, as they can see it through a bunch of different eyes.
With how flashy culture is now, when you watch commercials or MTV, it’s always fast, colorful and bright. It’s moving rapidly to keep your attention. I think it’s an interesting concept to tell it through that kind of storyline, because then you get to feel the different feelings of each character. It gives it a little more variety.
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