After defeating Leatherface in Tobe Hopper’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre Part 2, she went on to face off against other legendary horror icons including Michael Myers, Leprechaun, the Stepfather, and most recently Victor Crowley, ranking the very talented and fearless Caroline Williams as one of our favorite scream queens of all time.
We first caught up with Caroline via email in October as part of our Halloween at 35 retrospective series of interviews. You can click here to read what she had to tell us about making Halloween II (2009) and working with director Rob Zombie and future Academy Award Winner Octavia Spencer, and then scroll down to check out Part 2 of our conversation!
HALLOWEEN DAILY NEWS: When did you first see the original Texas Chain Saw Massacre and what did you think of it?
CAROLINE WILLIAMS: I saw a bootleg copy of the film in Austin Texas during Texas-OU weekend the year of it’s release. I was still in high school, but dating a college football player, and I had come up for his game. The minute Pam hit the hook, I was outta the room!
HDN: How did you get involved with The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Part 2?
CW: I was living in Dallas, Texas and had just finished Hostage: Dallas (for Halloween 4 director Dwight Little; starring Edward Albert Jr. and Joe Don Baker) the previous year when I got the casting call. I drove to Austin, and joined a long line of hopefuls in the hallway of the casting office. And the rest is history!
HDN: What are some of your favorite (or least favorite) memories of filming Chainsaw 2?
CW: I honestly never had least favorite memories. I loved the responsibility of playing a leading role for the first time. And the athleticism of the role was wonderful! All action, all the time. It was Texas-style summer, we were dirty and sticky and bloody and smelly, and I loved every minute of it.
HDN: Can you tell our readers a little about what it’s like working with Tobe Hooper, Bill Moseley, and Dennis Hopper?
CW: I learned so much about film technique from Dennis Hopper. Tobe was cutting Invaders From Mars during our shoot, so he was stretched to the maximum and didn’t need an actor who needed instruction. So those little stories and touches that Dennis suggested to me ended up changing my performance for the better. He was very caring with me and told the most phenomenal stories about working on the great classics, with the great directors, that were such a part of his career.
Bill Moseley was a little unpredictable, in the best sort of way. I always felt a little off-balance in my scenes with him, because he was such a riffmaster! He improvises like nobody’s business.
HDN: One of the most memorable and popular scenes in the movie is when Leatherface has an enormous chainsaw threateningly between your legs. Can you tell us what you remember about filming that scene? Also, do you have a personal favorite scene in the movie, and why?
CW: That scene was so daring for 1986! Now, it’s considered tame. But at the time, I was very worried about what my Mom might think!
It was a very choreographed stunt scene, and John Moio (stunt coordinator) put it together effortlessly. We actually rehearsed a lot to make sure the fall was right. Beth Neumayer was my stunt double and she fell into the ice dozens of times to cover all the angles and teach me how to nail it.
A hydrogen charge (meant to simulate the steam of the hot saw hitting cold ice) went off under my ass and that hurt!
As for my favorite scene, I will always cherish the scene on the radio station stairs with Dennis. It’s one of my better, and cleaner, moments!
HDN: How did your cameo in Texas Chainsaw Massacre Part 3 come about?
CW: I had done Stepfather 2 for Jeff Burr, one of the most talented and passionate directors I’ve ever worked for, and I jumped at the chance to wrap up Stretch’s character in TCM3. It’s only 27 seconds, but it repositioned the character for possible future use. And I spent the evening on a fun set with Viggo Mortensen!
HDN: Did you see the new Texas Chainsaw 3D that came out in 2013? If so, what did you think of it?
CW: I saw TC3D when it came out. I have no worries that it will replace the originals by Tobe Hooper in anyone’s mind.
HDN: If you were asked to return in some way in a future Texas Chainsaw Massacre film in the franchise, is that something you’d like to do? I’m sure the fans would love to see you back.
CW: I don’t really see a place for Stretch in future films, unless they recast the role with a younger actress. I felt that Adam Green really captured the spirit of Stretch with the Amanda Pearlman role in Hatchet III. I had such fun realizing her future in that film. I felt like Stretch all over again!
HDN: How did you get involved with Hatchet III? Had you seen the first two Hatchet films?
CW: I got the call right out of the blue from Adam’s office in March before the May shoot. I had seen the first two Hatchets (and walked the red carpet at the Hatchet II premiere) and loved them. Old school horror from the mind of Adam Green; he’s a creative genius. Funny, smart, punchy. He’s got the goods!
HDN: What was it like working with Danielle Harris?
CW: She’s totally professional, knows her lines and blocking cold, but was very generous with me when I occasionally struggled through 4 pages of dialogue. My role in Hatchet III involves a lot of exposition, so it was challenging. But she was cool and unruffled through it all. She’s warm and generous, perfect in every way. Couldn’t have asked for a better scene partner!
HDN: What is you favorite memory from working on Hatchet III?
CW: I loved being in the swamp each night to play those scenes. They include my only, brief moments with Kane (Hodder, who plays Victor Crowley), so I made the most of them. We got rain every night we were there, but (director) B.J. McDonnell was the perfect, happy warrior. Never complained, never explained. Just soldiered through with a happy heart and a winning spirit. Quite a guy!
Be sure to read Part 1 of our interview, where discuss making Halloween II and working with director Rob Zombie!