Brittany Snow Reflects On Prom Night Remake’s Brutal Reviews

Brittany Snow Reflects On Prom Night Remake's Brutal Reviews

Brittany Snow discusses how she coped with the critical panning of the 2008 remake of Prom Night, in which she played the lead role.

Brittany Snow has discussed her reaction to the critical panning of Nelson McCormick’s 2008 film Prom Night, a loose remake of the 1980 film of the same name. Snow is now best known to audiences for her role as Chloe Beale in the Pitch Perfect franchise, but also has a starring role in another horror film currently in cinemas, Ti West’s X. Snow is additionally soon to direct her first feature film, September 17th, which will star Kid Cudi.

In the 2008 version of Prom Night, Snow plays Donna Keppel, a high-schooler whose entire immediate family is murdered by her former biology teacher and stalker Richard Fenton. On the night of Donna’s high school prom, Fenton is found to have escaped from prison in pursuit of Donna. He goes on to kill everyone who gets between him and Donna, including both strangers and Donna’s loved ones. While the original film also tells the story of an obsessed killer attacking students on prom night, its overall premise is fairly different, following instead a group of students who contributed to the accidental death of another girl when they were children. The protagonist of the film is Kim, played by Jamie Lee Curtis, the sister of the girl who died and a classmate of the students who were there at the time. Without going into spoiler territory, the two films fairly radically diverge from one another in terms of plot, and their main similarity is the prom night setting of the horror that unfolds.

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As part of Collider’s Ladies Night series, Snow sat down with Perri Nemiroff to discuss her thoughts about having played the starring role in Prom Night 2008. Nemiroff asked Snow how she coped with separating her pride in her work from the press’ negative reception of the movie. See Snow’s response below:

“I’m really glad that I was at an age where there were so many other things that I was worried about as opposed to what critics thought of me. I was 21 and I really didn’t care about what the critics said. Now, in hindsight, in my 30s, I care a lot more I think. But I knew that it did really well at the box office, I knew that it was the number one movie for many, many weeks and I knew going into doing Prom Night that it wasn’t going to be Schindler’s List. I think there’s a way of making an experience feel like it was more about the experience than the result. And I did feel like that with Prom Night. I made one of my best girl friends in that movie who was in my wedding. A lot of good came from that and so I guess it was a lesson in not caring about the results of something.”

Prom Night Brittany Snow

Prom Night was primarily panned not because of Snow’s performance but because of what critics perceived as predictability, particularly in contrast to the 1980 original. The lack of a mystery aspect common to slasher films was criticized as turning Prom Night into essentially nothing more than a gorefest with no payoff. The film was nevertheless very successful at the box office, landing at #1 for its opening weekend and grossing almost three times its budget. Snow’s career did not suffer from the film’s critical panning, and she is additionally not the only actor from Prom Night who has gone on to continued mainstream success — the film also starred Idris Elba as Detective Winn.

Snow’s comments speak to the importance of actors maintaining a distance between one’s own work and the final product of a film when things don’t go quite as well as planned. Though Snow was no newcomer to acting when Prom Night was released, she was still only 21 years old at the time, and so chose to view her time working on the production as a learning experience rather than as a knock to her confidence. Fourteen years later, Snow has been able to return to the genre with a critically-praised performance in X, and her career has continued to go from strength to strength. Prom Night may have bombed with critics, but its production was a valuable experience for Snow, and something that she’ll always be able to take with her.

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Source: Collider

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