Ricky Whittle has no desire to be a hero. That’s why he’s sure he’d survive a horror movie.
“Everyone always runs up the stairs, or into danger, or they hide,” says the “American Gods” star. “I’m not running up the stairs, I’m not grabbing a baseball bat. I’m pretty quick, and the Olympian inside me would be out the door, sprinting down the street, onto an airplane, into a different country or city. I’d be on the beach, loving life.”
Whittle has his survival plan down because he loves scary movies — they’re his “Crazy Town” films, because of the crazy things that happen in them, the crazy characters in them, and the crazy people who watch them.
“Scary Movie,” he says, exposes some of the rules for how to survive a horror movie, just like of the movie it spoofs, “Scream.”
“You’re never supposed to have sex,” he says. “It’s tough. If I’m gonna die in a horror movie, I’d probably rather die at least having had sex. It’s better that than dying trying to get a cat from underneath the bed, or investigating some noise you heard in the backyard. That kind of sucks.”
“Hostel,” on the other hand, is frightening on a whole different level. He says the gore-fest that will “warp your mind.”
“Hostel is the movie you need to go and see if you want to traumatize your children, traumatize all your friends just for the hell of it,” says Whittle. He’s watched the movie three times, and even on his latest viewing, “I have nightmares and I’m traumatized.”
“Silence of the Lambs” scares him on a whole other level. Hannibal Lecter’s escape, for one, gives him a good freak-out. “He’s basically a shape changer. He can put other people’s faces on his face. That’s terrifying, he’s a superhero.”
Whittle’s scariest movie ever? “Jaws.”
“I probably watched it too young. It traumatized me for life. Although I’m now fascinated with great whites, that is my greatest fear in life and it is because of that movie.”
He recently went jet skiing and fell into the water, only to realize there were more than a dozen baby great white sharks nearby. “I swam as fast as I’ve ever swam in my life,” he says. “I just thought, ‘This is it, this is how I die’ Who’s jet skiing when there’s great whites! Why would I do that? I just broke all the rules.”
To watch Whittle’s top “Crazy Town” films, “Scary Movie”, “Hostel,” and “Silence of the Lambs,”* and other movies like these, start your Tribeca Shortlist free, seven-day trial here.
*Titles subject to availability