Abbie Cornish by Uinterview

Abbie Cornish stars in Ed Gass-Donnelly‘s horror film Lavender as a photographer who is struggling to remember her past.

Abbie Cornish On Lavender

Following a tragic accident, Cornish’s character Jane suffers significant memory loss and then sees a psychologist (Justin Long) to help her recover her lost memories. What starts to do the trick are her own photos, which seem to indicate that Jane may bear the responsibility for the deaths of loved ones she doesn’t even recall having.

In order to prepare for her role in Lavender, Cornish dove headfirst into her character and her character’s experiences. She also drew some inspiration from The Others, the 2001 thriller that starred Nicole Kidman as a mother, who comes to believe that she and her children are being terrorized by spirits in their home, only to realize that the truth is much darker.

“I think that’s a really great reference because she’s dealing with not only her life and her past, but something that is beyond her own comprehension, but is also so visceral and so real,” Cornish explained in an exclusive interview with uInterview.

Though Lavender is a dark fright fest of a film, Cornish did get the chance to laugh a bit on set thanks to her funnyman costar Long.

“He was stepping into a role that was really quite serious, and he’s playing a doctor and we’ve never seen him like that you know? So he was really ready to go, he was so engaged in every moment and it was really fun,” Cornish said, adding. “What’s nice about Justin is you could have a really serious scene, but then be giggling about it in between takes.”

For Cornish, the supernatural elements in Lavender and in other films don’t seem entirely outside the realm of possibility. Asked if she believes in the paranormal, she says, “I do,” before explaining, “I think that just experiences in life where I can’t really put my finger on it.” And while Cornish believes in the paranormal, that’s not necessarily what scares her the most.

“Real people scare me in real life,” Cornish told uInterview. “I don’t know. You know what life is like. Just watch the news. It’s pretty scary.”

Lavender premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival.


Q: How would you describe your character in the film? -

The film essentially is centered around my character, Jane, who is a photographer and she’s photographing old houses. She doesn’t really know exactly why she’s photographing the houses but has some connection to them. She sees a young girl on a road and has a car accident, loses her memory and in order to get her memory back she has to visit the ghosts of her past.

Q: How do you prepare for the role? -

For me, I just kept going back to character and story and that’s what I know. So in a way, it was almost a safety mechanism, but in another way it worked because it gave the story depth and it gave the story a place to evolve from, and also made the supernatural seem real – which I think is where the line blurs and becomes interesting. Also, too, Ed [director Ed Gass-Donnelly] referenced with me, he referenced The Others, you know the movie with Nicole Kidman? I think that’s a really great reference because she’s dealing with not only her life and her past, but something that is beyond her own comprehension, but is also so visceral and so real.

Q: What was your experience working with Justin Long? -

Justin was really amazing because I think for him it was a different role. He was stepping into a role that was really quite serious, and he’s playing a doctor and we’ve never seen him like that you know? So he was really ready to go, he was so engaged in every moment and it was really fun. What’s nice about Justin is you could have a really serious scene, but then be giggling about it in between takes so it was kinda nice to let go in between.

Q: Do you believe in the paranormal? -

I do. I think that just experiences in life where I can’t really put my finger on it, and I think there’s two ways to go. And one is to just ignore it, and the other is to go, ‘Well, I guess there’s just things I don’t know about.’

Q: What scares you? -

Real people scare me in real life. I don’t know. You know what life is like. Just watch the news. It’s pretty scary. In the movie — I guess it’s something — what we explore in the movie is something that is sitting within a person’s existence, memories within their self-conscious that they don’t quite know what it’s about or what its power is or what it has to do with them. Then, dragging that up and trudging through that and figuring that out and letting that become a release rather than a weight that they carry.