Mackenzie Davis on ‘The Turning’ and Whether She Believes in the Supernatural

     January 21, 2020

It feels like Mackenzie Davis is just on the brink of movie stardom. The actress stole scenes opposite Ryan Gosling and Charlize Theron in Blade Runner 2049 and Tully, respectively. Then – there was her heartbreaking turn in “San Junipero”, widely-lauded as the best Black Mirror episode. And recently, she, of course, headlined the latest Terminator, cementing herself as a bonafide action heroine. With The Turning, Davis takes a turn at the horror genre — yet there’s far more to her performance than just the typical ‘scream-queen.’


Image via Universal Pictures

On the surface, The Turning seems like a relatively by-the-numbers haunted house story: A governess (Davis) comes to tend to two orphaned children, only to discover they may be haunted by less-than-kind spirits. But underneath the ghosts popping out from darkened corners, lies a film about the ramifications of trauma and how madness can take hold if not properly treated. Davis is in pretty much every scene of the film – and The Turning works because of her, Davis so innately sympathetic you never question her motives… until, well, it’s far too late.

In the following interview with Davis, she reveals what she would do if confronted by a ghost, what scares her the most, and her preparation process. For the full interview, watch above.


Image via Universal Pictures

Mackenzie Davis:

  • Does Mackenzie Davis believe in the supernatural?
  • What would she do if she saw a ghost?
  • What scares her the most?
  • Did she look to any previous iterations of The Turn of the Screw for her performance? (Of note: The Turning is an adaptation of Henry James’ seminal novella)
  • What’s the first thing she does to find her character after reading the script?
  • How much did the script for The Turning change?
  • What was it like shooting at the vast estate for the film?

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