Maggie Q says Ant-Man star Michael Peña was the driving force behind her signing up for new Blumhouse thriller Fantasy Island, in cinemas today.
Peña stars as the mysterious Mr Roarke who owns the remote and luxurious island which somehow makes the secret dreams of his lucky guests come true – until they turn into nightmares.
Nikita star Q plays a competition winner who gets to visit the island to redo a moment that has haunted her for years, and she tells Yahoo that the main reason she said yes to the film was Narcos Mexico star Peña.
“I took the film for two reasons: I like the director [Jeff Wadlow] and the second was Michael [Peña],” she shared.
“I love him as an actor and a person, so I enjoy collaborating and we worked a lot on and off-screen.”
The 40-year-old admitted that at first she didn’t know what to think when she was handed the script because horror films “are not the movies I watch per se” but that when Peña became attached, it was a different ball game.
“I was told ‘just read it because it is very different and you may enjoy it’. Then Michael was attached to it, which was good so I had him in my head, and then Lucy [Hale] was attached, and then I went on a journey with these characters.”
Q worked closely with director Jeff Wadlow, the writers and Peña on the film, revealing that they all had the “freedom” to offer input.
“It’s hard when you write something and it’s your baby and then actors come in and trample all over it, and you’re scared,” she joked, “but I think as long as there is fundamental respect and knowing this person gave this amount of work and I just want to make it better, and everyone knows that it’s not ego but the outcome, you get a much better response.”
Read more: How Fantasy Island twists genre conventions
Maggie herself also shared that she did give a lot of input into the outcome, adding that the film “can very easily be seen as horror so I wanted to play against that in what [Gwen] was bringing to the screen and I was adamant about having a character that is very relatable”.
Fantasy Island is loosely based on the 1970s US TV show of the same name, and follows five people who are offered any fantasy that they may wish to live out.
But before long, the fantasies turn into living nightmares that appear impossible from which to escape.
Fantasy Island is in cinemas now. Watch a trailer below.