Lacey Rae [Interview]

Welcome to Day 3 of Trainwreck’d Society’s Month of Horror Showcase. Every day during the month of October, we will have a horror related interview and/or film review for your fright-filled reading pleasure! The set up will be the same as usual, but the topics will be far more terrifying. Enjoy!

Welcome back folks! Today we are kicking off our first interview with a brilliant member from the on screen world of horror. Her name is Lacey Rae, and she is absolutely incredible! Now, to simply call Lacey an actress would indeed be a bit of an insult, as she wears several hats in the world of horror and beyond, but it would be deplorable to not put a shine on her brilliant acting chops. While her acting career is not primarily in the world of horror, with credits in films like Sideways (a personal favorite of mine!), Sorority Boys, and more. But, it is her work in the world of horror that we are focusing in on here today. Notably, Lacey wore may of the previously noted hats in the upcoming film 9 Ways To Hell, a compilation of linked horror films inspired by Dante’s Inferno. Some of the greatest minds of the independent horror world are teaming up to create this sure to be masterpiece of horror cinema.

And we are so excited that Lacey Rae was able to give us a few words about this project and so much more. Even some non-horror related questions, as it was a MUST that I ask her a bit about working on Sideways. Lacey Rae is also a columnist for the very horror heavy website, Media Geeks. So she is obviously an expert in this field! And we are so happy to share her words with you today. Enjoy!

When did you first discover that you had a passion for the acting? Was it an early on set type thing, or did you just sort of fall into it?

I’ve always been a performer. I started out tap dancing when I was four, then singing (I wanted to be Madonna), then musical theater, and finally plays/film/TV. Not a great story, I know, but I’ve never wanted to do anything else!

A few years ago, you appeared in one of my favorite films of all time, a brilliant indie gem of a film entitled Sideways. How was your experience on this amazing project, working with all four of the lead roles at the same time?! Any fond memories from this shoot?

I had done background work before, but this was my first time interacting with the director and having lines on a big budget feature. It was amazing and everyone was incredibly nice and helpful. I kinda fell into it. I went to school at UC Santa Barbara, where they were filming, and there was an open call for local extras/under-5s and I sent in my headshot and resume, got called in for a speaking role, read for the casting director, and a few weeks later, I was being asked to set!

Virginia Madsen and Sandra Oh were both very sweet. Virginia, especially, wanted to help me out career-wise as much she could and guided me toward a few acting networks in Los Angeles, for when I got out of school. I got to chat with Thomas Haden Church in the make-up trailer and asked him about one of my favorite films, Tombstone, which he was happy to talk about. I didn’t interact much with Paul Giamatti much, as he spent his time getting into character and preparing, which is totally understandable.

Alexander Payne was so caring on set. He kept giving me more to say! I remember right before my first take (with the four leads looking at me), he said not to worry if I forgot a line, but to just keep going. Of course, once he said “Action” I blanked on everything! I was mortified, but I got there eventually and the rest of the takes were A-OK. Alexander called me a few months later, when Sideways was nominated for an Oscar, just to make sure I was getting “all the proper Sideways love”. I couldn’t ask for a better experience.

I am intrigued by a project that you have coming up that you not only act in, but pulled an Executive Producer gig as well with your contribution to the anthology called 9 Ways To Hell. Can you tell us a bit about your involvement with this project, and what we should be looking forward to?

Shortly after a break-up (so I desperately needed an outlet), I joined a filmmaker Meetup in Hollywood. I met a ton of amazing and talented people there and we started making short films, most of which landed in the horror or comedy genres. About a year after making so many shorts, my friend Nick and I were talking and decided that, instead of making shorts, let’s put that time and energy into a feature. OK, but what kind? Since most of the group, Nick and I especially, are so into horror, we decided to make a horror anthology, giving the multitude of writer/directors their own segment to work with, while Nick and I spear-headed the overall picture (and he wrote/directed one of the segments).

9 Ways to Hell is based off Dante’s 9 circles of Hell. It begins with a short prologue and transitions, in order, through the 9 circles. We didn’t want the film to be only a series of shorts, so we really took time and energy figuring out how to weave certain themes and iconography throughout the segments, sometimes through the use of props or actors. And we also included easter eggs for those who are very familiar with Dante’s work.

For more info/pics/screening info, we are encouraging people to subscribe to our website and Facebook page.

9 Ways to Hell
Instagram/Twitter: @9waystohell
Asterion Arts:

While you have obviously worked in several different genres throughout your career, it is indeed our Month of Horror showcase right now, so I am inclined to ask: What do you love about working in the world of horror? What sets this genre apart from the others?

I’m not sure what it is about horror that draws me in, even from such a young age, but I’ll take a stab (wink, wink) at it. What’s funny is that I don’t get scared easily, but watching scary movies provides a release of repressed emotions. The building suspense and the ultimate calm after the scare. That rollercoaster of adrenaline. Not to mention, many horror movies are SO over the top they turn campy, which is just fun. I know they’re not real, so I don’t internalize anything.

Why do I want to act IN horror films? Because everything in a horror movie is pretty much life-and-death, the stakes are super high. The emotions are drastic. I get to be in a world that I (hopefully) will never experience in real life. I get to access emotional parts of me that are typically hidden away or useless in everyday life. Horror movies offer a chance to access those emotions and let them out. It’s cathartic. It can be fun to get messy or “bloody” and scream your head off. And the best part is that it’s not hurting anyone. The beauty of acting, in my opinion, is experience, living a different life for a little while. Horror just kicks that up a notch.

What is your favorite scary movie?

I always liked monsters, from “Thriller” to The Monster Squad. But my first REAL horror film was Scream, which is why I think it’s my favorite. I may not have understood all the tropes they were making fun of, but I loved it just the same. I wanted to be Drew Barrymore in it (without the death part, of course), and I actually got to recreate that opening scene for a little project for a friend many years later. If I remember correctly, I saw Scream in theaters 9 times – one was a midnight showing where I won a poster and Jiffy Pop.

I was never scared by the paranormal, so I find slasher flicks more scary and relatable. This could happen in real life. Combined with the clever humor and fun cast, Scream hit the right tone at the right time in my life. I was hooked ever since.

Other favorites: Event Horizon, The Strangers, The Evil Dead series (including the remake), Saw, and Cabin in the Woods.

What are your plans for this coming Halloween? Any sort of traditions you try to uphold each year?

I’ve gone to Universal Horror Nights for many years now, so I’m definitely doing that. Last year, one of my favorites was 17th Door, which is coming back this year in Fullerton. Since I write reviews for, I’m going to a lot of previews for haunts like Magic Mountain’s Fright Fest, Into the Black, and Mable’s 6-Feet Under, as well as some immersive theater like The Tension Experience and Apartment 213. I think I’m most looking forward to a costume party with friends at Beetle House, the Tim Burton-themed pop-up bar in Hollywood, so I can just let loose (and I love dressing up). I like doing everything Halloween I can fit in!

What does the future hold for you? Any projects coming up that you would like to tell our readers about?

Two of my short films got accepted into their (and my) first film festival, so I’m excited about that and hope to submit them into more. One of them was already on Fun-Size Horror at:

We have one segment left to film for 9 Ways to Hell, but I’m looking forward to submitting that to festivals and promoting the HELL (see what I did there?) out of it to get distribution. I also have a small part in Tom Six’s next film, The Onania Club, which I’m super excited to see!

While I love horror and want to do so much more in the genre, I have a web series I’m writing (and will act in) which is a comedy and a definite departure from my last few projects. I’m also a co-host on the podcast “Mary Dates L.A.” which will be launching very soon. The idea is to keep busy creating and pushing to make a dent in the industry, while auditioning for everything I can.

Lacey Rae
YouTube: Lacey Rae Pawlowicz
Instagram/Twitter: @LaceyRae17

What was the last thing that made you smile?

Today, probably the little bit of rain we got. Cuddling in bed with my black cat, Sergeant Pepper. Or a stupid pun/dad-joke from one of my co-workers. I love dad-jokes!


About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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