Wicked Horror had the occasion to sit down with reality star, turned musician and actress Lala Kent about her role in the sorority house slasher film, The Row. Kent opened up about overcoming her aversion to scary movies, why her role in the film was a bit of a stretch, and also filled us in on what the future holds for her. Read on for the full exchange and be sure to check out The Row in select theatres and on demand now!
The Row follows college freshman Riley (Kent) as she discovers the sorority she is pledging has a dark and sordid history. Riley must uncover the mysteries of years past in order to thwart a crazed killer who is targeting her future sisters.
Wicked Horror: How did you get involved with the film? Was this a role you auditioned for or were you sought out for the part?
Lala Kent: LionsGate and the production company reached out to my manager asking me to come and audition for one of the supporting roles. From there, I did a couple of callbacks and met with producers and the director and we did table reads. Then, I get a phone call from the director and he said that he and LionsGate had decided to move me to the lead if I would take it. It was a really cool thing that happened. I was supposed to be in this supporting role and then, I guess my acting classes paid off because they wanted me to carry the film. In that moment, I wanted to jump for joy and scream but I also kind of felt like I got punched in the gut because I’m like, “Holy shit. They’re asking me to carry a film. This is real life. I’m a little nervous.” But the cast of The Row, I’m telling you, was so supportive, so kind. They made me feel really comfortable. And, I think that all of us together made a great film.
WH: I think you did a great job. Congratulations on securing a larger part than you were originally sought out for.
Lala Kent: Thank you so much. I appreciate that.
WH: You bet. Your character Riley is a few years younger than you. Do you see any similarities between her and yourself at 18?
Lala Kent: Can I tell you what I loved about this role? There were things I could relate to, but all in all, it was definitely a stretch for me to play Riley. And I like that. I like to be challenged. I like to feel uncomfortable. And, for me, I tried to get into that mindset of what was I like at the age of 18? Well, I definitely was not a very timid person. So, I think it’s going to be great for fans and my friends to not see me as Lala this crazy girl who skinny-dips and says what’s on her mind but more of a character that is a little bit shy, who grew up in a very different lifestyle than I did. It’s gonna be really cool to see everyone’s reaction.
WH: Greek life is a major theme throughout The Row. Do you see any parallels between the sorority system and your experience navigating the world of reality television?
Lala Kent: Oh my gosh, isn’t it crazy? It really is like, when you look at it, they kind of mirror each other. I’ve never been a part of a sorority. But, I know that there’s rush week and you kind of have to be accepted and you have to do things in order for people to be down for you. I feel like that was kind of my experience when I entered the reality TV spectrum. You do kind of have to prove yourself. A lot of shit happens where you’re like, “This sucks. I wanna run away.” But, ultimately, you form those bonds with people you never thought you would bond with. I connected with that when I read the script. These girls that Riley would never connect with—these supermodel looking girls that are totally foreign to her. And that’s kind of how I felt as a girl from Utah moving to LA. I thought these girls that are a part of Vanderpump, I’m a little bit struck by them, as far as their way of life. And that’s how Riley looks at these girls. And in the end, they all kind of come together for a really crazy ride and they’re bonded for life after this.
WH: This is your first turn in a horror picture. Are you a fan of the genre?
Lala Kent: I probably shouldn’t even admit this but I’m so terrified of horror films. I run the other way. So, that’s also why when I read the script, I was like, “I have to do it. This is going to be the ultimate test. If I can pull off being a little bit of a scream queen, I can do it all.” I’m totally kidding, but that’s what I like to think. I’ve never been into horror films but now I think if I watch I horror picture, it’s gonna be like, okay I know how that happened. Maybe I won’t be as terrified as I was before.
WH: As a journalist, being on set and watching a horror film being shot, it takes a lot of the mystique out of it. I’ve never been terrified by horror movies. But, I think it allows you to look at it from a more clinical perspective.
Lala Kent: Right, totally. I agree.
WH: You’re something of a renaissance woman, Lala. You’ve tackled film, television, and even started your own makeup line. What’s next on the agenda for you?
Lala Kent: My music is definitely something that I thought was a hobby until I came out with “Boy” on iTunes and it ended up hitting number one on the electric genre chart. It’s fricking incredible to look at iTunes and see me on a list with Nicki Minaj and Cardi B. I was so proud. After that happened, I was like, “Music is more than just a hobby. Let’s really put it out there.” I have two single coming out on August 15th. One is called “Love Yourself” and the other is called “What’s it for?” which was written two weeks before my dad passed away. It’s just crazy how that aligned because it’s a song about life and what does it all mean? “Love Yourself” is more happy. And then, I think we’ll start venturing into apparel. Most people get in touch with who they are with their clothing probably earlier on, I’m just now starting to figure out what I like to wear at almost 28. So, I think coming out with a line of clothing that Lala would wear will be neat to see. And hopefully people will buy it. [Laughs]
WH: Awesome. It was such a pleasure to talk with you.
Lala Kent: Thank you, you as well.