Former teenage model 'felt a little violated for a second' after seeing final version of thriller
Sarah Roemer started modelling professionally when she was 15, so she's used to being stared at -- especially by men.
But sometimes, it can get to her. During the filming of the new thriller, Disturbia, she spent a lot of time in and out of a swimming pool in a bikini. And in one memorable shot she answers the front door dripping wet. By the time this sequence came along, she had decided that members of the film crew were getting too attentive to her physical charms.
"It was a really bizarre experience watching them watching me and talking about me," she recalls.
"They kept wetting me down. They kept spraying me. I remember the crew guys each had an earpiece and they had their hands over their mouths talking to each other and looking at me ... and I was like, 'Can you stop? I'm trying to do a scene here!' "
It was only after seeing the finished film that she realized fully how voyeuristic these scenes were.
"I was a little taken aback. I had no idea how much was going on in the scene. I didn't realize how much fun they were having with it. I felt a little violated for a second."
But only for a second. Roemer, 22, admits that if some guy was secretly watching her, the way she reacted would probably depend on who that guy was.
If it was "some old crazy creep next door" she wouldn't be happy. On the other hand, if it was some "cute guy" it might be different.
In the case of Disturbia, the cute guy is Shia LaBeouf. He's playing Kale, a moody teenager who's under house arrest for slugging a teacher and who has started whiling away his endless hours by spying on his neighbours -- including her character, Ashley, the beautiful girl who's moved in next door.
"Shia's character is very cute and charming," she says. "I think most girls would be happy with that."
Besides, spying and voyeurism are what drive the suspenseful plot of Disturbia. Kale sees something sinister about the conduct of another neighbour, played by David Morse, and eventually comes to the conclusion that the reclusive Mr. Turner may be a serial killer. Ashley becomes Kale's ally in helping him discover the truth.
"The movie is really fun," Roemer says. "You really feel that you are part of their spy team. I did when I watched it, and there are so many laughs and you're having a really good time. It's a good ride and then when it gets intense; it's really scary."
Equally important, the film makes sure audiences come to know the characters "and I think that makes the end even scarier."
Mind you, it also got scary working with Morse, who decided to stay in character even when he wasn't doing a scene.
"He was very creepy. He did his job really well. There were a lot of rumours going around the set and makeup trailer. People were whispering, 'Is he really like this or is he just playing his character?"
But she also saw the other side of Morse during filming.
"I remember one time he knocked on my trailer when we were starting to do stunts and he brought arnica which is good for bruises and wounds. He didn't really say much. He just handed it over, and said, 'this helps,' and walked away.
"And I thought, 'Oh, he likes me. He was trying to help me.' But I absolutely loved working with him. Every scene I did with him was absolutely incredible. He just has this presence and it's very intimidating. That scene I did with him in the car just gives me the chills."
Roemer seems to be working the horror-thriller genre these days, but she isn't complaining. She made her debut last autumn in Grudge 2, playing a student who falls prey to a curse. She recently completed Asylum, portraying another student who this time must cope with the revelation that her dorm was once a notorious asylum. She had a ball on the film thanks to director David Ellis, who kept telling cast members to lighten up. "David Ellis is absolutely amazing. We had nothing but laughs on the set."
Sandra Bullock has been learning the tango in preparation for a new, as yet untitled, movie -- and she admits she was hopeless at the beginning.
"Go take a tango class and you'll want to go home and kill yourself because you are so inept. It is just frustrating -- but beautiful when it all comes together. Now, I have a tremendous appreciation for it."