reminices with Carole Goldman about playing The Witch in SUPERSTITION (1982)]
A huge thank you to Carole Goldman for sharing her memories of making one of my favourite quasi-slasher, SUPERSTITION. She tals about witchcraft, prosthetics, cackles and more!
Q: Do you recall where SUPERSTITION was filmed and in what year?
We filmed my scenes on a small pond in Coldwater Canyon right here in Los Angeles. It had this stone building and it was perfect for the scenes. The time was probably 70s that you can find I bet (It was actually 1981 - Justin). I had just come to L.A from Chicago. I don't believe they shot far from L.A for other scenes.
Q: How did you get involved with the production?
I got involved by auditioning for it ... unknown to the casting woman Ruth Conforte. I sat outside the door while waiting to meet and read for the part ... listening to the other auditions ... who all sounded like the Wicked Witch Of The West. with high shrill voices ... I just knew I had a better plan. First I was wearing a long black wig (over short red hair) and boots and black clothes ...and looked very threatening ... which was my plan. When I walked in and sat down I did no chatting but waited for the casting person to read the first line ... While she read the first line I growled low and scared the H out of her. I read the part with dark growls and raspy voice and I knew it worked and when I got home found I had it. That was fun as I was doing comedy on TV in L.A. though before did only drama on stage in Chicago which I missed doing. So my intentions were serious in that audition.
Q: You play the title character of The Witch, who is responsible for wreaking havoc throughout the film. In one memorable sequence your face contorts and expands as the townspeople condemn you for witchcraft. Those prosthetics were pretty impressive. Was that a complicated sequence to do?
About the face and effects. It entailed my having my face covered with plaster after about (30 minutes I think) with only my nostrils open. Every place felt like it was covered in plaster to harden. After taking cast off ... they put a composite that felt flesh like over the plaster face and created pieces to lay over my own face for filming. My hand was held for all that time and I was told to grab the person if I could not handle the plaster hardening. I handled it. Underneath was to be tubes attached to something to squeeze (by others from a distance) that sent liquid through the tube to to break up the outer surface layers over my face when I got angry ... It really didn't do the great job that they had hoped and actually I had to pull off the chest piece at end because it was starting to burn me. It was an experience that was memorable ... and amuses me to this day ... except for the burning chest part. I still have a photo of them applying the pieces and just last year threw the cast away which really looked like me and felt like a death mask. It hung on my wall for years.
Q: Your voice was also contorted throughout. Did you do that yourself or was that all done on post-production?
My voice ... I spoke in a low growl raspy sound while acting the scenes ... and everyone loved it ... but ... found they did add more to it ... which to me did not work well. oh well. H
ave no control as an actor with the editing.
Q: Do you recall if the flashback sequences you were in were shot at the same time as the rest of the film?
Flash back scenes were done same time as shooting to my knowledge.
Did you play the Witch at all in the rest of the film, or was that a stunt person?
My molded hand was used ... my laugh was often used throughout ... but I did no more scenes other then two ... in the stone house and out at night over water.
Q: Finally, thank you for taking the time to answer these questions – it's much appreciated! Do you have anything to add or any other interesting recollections about the film?
The level of actor (when I read the casting list) I was impressed with ... (hard to see the talent in that kind of bizarre piece) and the man who played the priest in my scenes I really admired for years as a NY stage actor at Lincoln Center ... We all took the job because ... it was work for money!! Sandy Meisner my teacher ... would be turning in his grave if he knew of this job. One hopes always ... it might be at least decent ...at least it is amusing!!!! I'd rather you and everyone else have seen me in A View From The Bridge on stage that I won an award for. This film is something for my 3 very grown kids to be amused by for sure.
Always wondered what happened to Jim Roberson the director ... nice man
review of MORTUARY.
Visit Carole's IMDB page.Listen to the Hysteria Continues podcast dedicated to SUPERSTITION, which features an audio interview with sfx supremo Steve LaPorte.