Girls from Pathology

Mei Melancon and Lauren Lee Smith tell some gruesome tales about the making of this film

Society seems to dictate certain things to boys and girls at very young ages. Boys like the scary stuff and girls go for the more softer side of things.

Don't tell that to Mei Melancon and Lauren Lee Smith. As Catherine Ivy and Juliette Bath in the upcoming medical/horror/thriller Pathology, these two had no problems getting their hands dirty amidst the grim subject matter of this film. The movie focuses on a group of med students who hatch a scheme to see who can commit the perfect crime -- one that even a fellow pathologist couldn't unravel.

During our set visit, the two actresses filled us on all the gory details going on around them.

Lauren Lee Smith: The sad thing is is that it's ridiculously fun. I think we're having too much fun (laughs) being evil. The poor extras man...

Mei Melancon: The funny thing about it is that they're all really into it. Even the quadriplegic guy. He was like, "Just go for it!"

Tell us about that guy.

Mei Melancon: This guy came in and he used to be 6 foot 5. Now, he's in a wheelchair and he has these electric legs that are $60,000 each! It fits on with a suction and we pull it off...

Mei Melancon: He was really into it.

Was it the script for Pathology that got you on board?

Lauren Lee Smith: I actually auditioned for Crank, it was probably one of the most fun auditions I ever did. I was really excited about this right off the bat. Then when I read it I really, really wanted this part and when I came into audition that's exactly what I said to them. "This is my part. You have to give it to me." And they did, they listened. Its been really great. Its an amazing group of people. I really like the fact that Mark (Schoelermann; the director) and Ekkehart (Pollack; the cinematographer) have worked together for so many years now. They have a really amazing relationship.

Mei Melancon: You'll be like, "How are we gonna shoot this?" They'll be like, "We'll see." It's like the greatest thing because you don't have to worry. You can move around and they'll just move with you. You're normally so worried about hitting your marks all the time, but they kind of just like adjust. When you're watching it it just looks so real.

Lauren Lee Smith: Were you surprised too? The first week of shooting I had no idea, really. I wasn't watching the shots or anything. Then someone brought it to my attention they're like the close-ups or whatever.

Mei Melancon: I asked the same thing. I'm like, "Is there a pattern?" Are we going wide, wide, then close, close, wide? I was like, "How tight are we? Okay, we're really tight."

Lauren Lee Smith: Yeah, it's gonna be intense.

We've seen some some pretty twisted things today. Did you guys have any reservations about any of it?

Mei Melancon: I think going to the morgue helped a lot. When you go to the morgue and you see them actually doing autopsies. It really prepares you because I don't know what I would've done if I would've come on the set, I would have been, "Oh my God, they're exaggerating. This is ridiculous. There's no way there's this much blood."

Lauren Lee Smith: The dead bodies from the morgue look much more fake than what we have.

Mei Melancon: Do you remember that one guy and his hair, I swear, it looked like a wig. It looked like I would just be able to pull it off. These guys look more real. Even the transvestite today that he was holding up, that head looked real.

Lauren Lee Smith: That's what it looked it like. It's waxy.

Mei Melancon: The expressions, everything. Were you in there with that one guy who was shot by his wife?

Lauren Lee Smith: No, I wasn't.

Mei Melancon: He was shot by his wife three times. The way he looked was kinda like the same expression. In terror and helpless when he died.

Lauren Lee Smith: They've done an amazing job. Like every tiny detail. I know that when we were in the morgue, going around and doing our visits, I know all of us were checking out the autopsy room and thinking, "Okay, are we going to have this? Are we going to have that?" Sure enough, it's all here. Which really helps.

Mei Melancon: Uh huh. It's interesting because the first time we went I was kind of panicked. They had so many different tools and watching them take all the tools and everything, but when you get in there and you actually have that it's not so weird.

Is the dark humor any more difficult to inject into the performances?

Mei Melancon: I think for me, what's harder sometimes is the older lady that's in there... and you see them there and we're doing this. Every thing will dawn on you...

Lauren Lee Smith: The funny thing about that is, you know when you're in a group mentality, like urging each other on... you start thinking everything's okay.

Mei Melancon: In reality, the scene that we just shot, one of the reasons we had to re-shoot it is the bodies that we had before didn't look right. Also, we walked away from the first shooting day and we all felt a little bit stupid. It was just this situation where it just got out of hand. We were all like a bunch of 5 year olds. It wasn't really funny anymore. It was 5 year old humor.

Lauren Lee Smith: It looked funny and we were all getting into it but when it was done I think we were like, "What did we do?" But that's also what makes it fun.

Pathology hits movie theaters April 18th from MGM.