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Interview: Actress Jacqui Holland talks ‘Silent But Deadly’

Many may recognize Jacqui Holland from her television appearances on “How I Met Your Mother”; “Workaholics”; and “Desperate Housewives.” She also appeared alongside Dane Cook; Kate Hudson; and Jason Biggs in the romantic comedy, “My Best Friend’s Girl.” For her new film, “Silent But Deadly,” which opens in select theaters on Feb. 7, Holland serves as writer, producer, and one of the film’s stars.

Jacqui Holland
Courtesy of Clint Morris

In this spoof on the horror genre, Holland plays Kitty, an attractive activities director at a retirement home. A masked murderer is killing the senior citizens who live there, and Kitty and everyone else come together to figure out who is doing it.

The Chico Movie Examiner recently conducted an over-the-phone interview with Holland about the film; her role; and what she has in store next. Check it out below.

David Wangberg: Before today, Clint [Morris] told me that you were excited to talk about transitioning from being an actor to being a producer. Go ahead and tell me the whole process of doing that.

Jacqui Holland: OK. Well, I guess it starts with something like waiting around for your agent to call and feeling depressed all the time, because you have no control of your life, and then realizing that taking some of the skills that you have as a writer and working on so many of these projects – there’s just so many low-budget films that I worked on – it was like, “Oh, my God. I can do this better.” And then it’s just about building a team of people who are qualified and fun to work with and awesome – and getting them together and making a project that’s fun for everybody.

DW: When we meet Kitty, she makes this grand entrance. There’s a light around her, and people are just eying her. Has there ever been a time where you walked into a room and it felt like you’re making the same kind of entrance?

JH: I don’t know about that. [laughs] Probably not, but it was really cool in the movie.

DW: When I got the press release for the film, one of the descriptions said it was “in the same tradition of ‘Scream.’” But this is more of a slapstick film to where “Scream” was more meta. What was it that intrigued you to make it more slapstick than meta?

JH: We were going for kind of like a “Young Frankenstein” sort of vibe – just more of a comedy. The characters were just very comedic and fun. And it was kind of like, since it’s a movie about old people in a retirement home, I feel like even though there are some more youthful jokes in it, it’s geared to a very large audience and an older audience that likes that slapstick humor.

DW: This is the first time I’ve seen a retirement home get attacked by a serial killer. And we’ve seen many instances where it’s a high school, or someone’s house, or some other scenario. What place do you think has not been tackled by a serial killer that you would like to see in a future film?

JH: What I really wanted – it has been done before – but when I was thinking about the sequel to [“Silent But Deadly”], I was thinking a cruise ship would be great. It’s a bit of a big budget, but I think you could do something really fun with that.

DW: There’s a scene in the film where Kitty holds what Dale describes as “the world’s most expensive napkin.” I don’t want to give a whole lot of the plot away for people who read this. What’s the most expensive thing you’ve held in your hand?

JH: My grandma – who the character Vivian is based on – had a huge diamond ring, a five carat. And when I was a little girl, I used to try it on all the time. I feel that’s probably the most expensive thing I’ve held and put on my finger.

DW: Do you have another project you’d like to mention in this interview?

JH: I guess the big one is “Silent But Deadly,” which is coming out next month. I also have a sci-fi Thor film called “God of Thunder,” coming out to VOD in March.

This concludes the interview, but the Chico Movie Examiner would like to thank Jacqui Holland for taking the time to talk about “Silent But Deadly.”

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