Milly Shapiro wants to freak you out as that creepy kid in ‘Hereditary’

Milly Shapiro is now a member of a very exclusive “club.” With “Hereditary” (in theaters now), the young actress becomes the latest kid to creep us out in a horror movie, joining the hallowed ranks of Samara (from “The Ring”) and Regan (“The Exorcist”). Nerdist calls her the film’s “standout,” while Vanity Fair says she’s “the scariest kid we will see on screen this year.” “I love horror movies and the kid is always such a big part,” Shapiro says. “Kids are usually seen as so innocent, like, ‘Oh, they can’t do anything that creepy — they’re kids!’ That’s what a lot of horror movies draw on, so getting to join that ‘club’ is really cool.”Shapiro, 15, plays the pivotal role of Charlie Graham, a troubled preteen with peculiar hobbies, to put it mildly. She draws pictures of her recently deceased grandma (who appears to her as an apparition) and cuts off a dead pigeon’s head with scissors to make it into a toy. Emotionally withdrawn from her overprotective mother, Annie (Toni Collette), and older brother, Peter (Alex Wolff), she often wanders around alone: blank-eyed, munching a chocolate bar and making an eerie “clicking” sound with her tongue. Despite the character’s sinister quirks, “I really connected with Charlie because I wanted to take care of her,” Shapiro says. On the outside, “she’s like a turtle, because they always go inside to try and protect themselves. But on the inside, she’s like a snake, because she has a hidden darkness and is misunderstood.”

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