Ryan McCartan & Victoria Justice Talk Fox's Rocky Horror, First Impressions, & On Set Games
October 12th, 2016
by Ryan McCartan & Victoria Justice
The cult musical classic The Rocky Horror Picture Show indoctrinates a whole new generation of virgins on October 20 when FOX's television remake airs. People the world over will time warp again and embrace the philosophy of "don't dream it be it". Starring opposite Laverne Cox are Ryan McCartan (off-Broadway's Heathers) and Victoria Justice (Nickelodeon's Victorious) as the wholesome, newly engaged couple, Brad Majors and Janet Weiss.
Through a series of events at the Frankenstein Place, Rocky Horror's central couple is introduced to sex, transvestites, and rock 'n' roll.
BroadwayBox caught up with the dynamic duo to talk about taking on these iconic roles, filming Rocky Horror, their first impressions, and more.
My first impression of my co-star:
I was really excited to work with her. Her reputation proceeds her and her reputation is spot on. I was just so happy with how nice she was. I thought, ‘Oh good, I love this person! I’m not going to hate this job.’
We met at a screen test and I remember thinking, ‘He has the perfect look for Brad. I hope this guy can sing.’ Then we started singing ‘Over at the Frankenstein Place’ and he sounded great. Then I thought, ‘Oh, this guy is awesome!’
The number I was most excited to film when I got the job:
‘Dammit Janet’. I think I was in denial. I completely forgot I had to be in the rain for days; I completely forgot I had to be in my underwear for two weeks; I forgot I had to be in drag for two weeks; all I was thinking about was, ‘I get to do “Dammit Janet”, yay!’
I couldn’t wait to do so many things: ‘Dammit Janet’, ‘Touch Me’ (of course) ‘Over at the Frankenstein Place’. It was so cool to recreate these moments that are so iconic. Being in Toronto, filming at an actual castle, having the rain machine going, and then holding up the newspaper—it was such a pinch me moment.
My most nerve-racking day on set:
It was never really nerve-racking. The environment Kenny [Ortega, director] and the cast created was seamless and wonderful.
I was probably the most nervous to film my solo in 'The Floor Show' because it was very interesting choreography. We were channeling burlesque dancers—like Natalie Wood in Gypsy— and my choreography incorporated this spiky, uncomfortable boa. I didn’t get to practice with it until a day before, so I was nervous because it was the most intricate choreography I had to do, but it was still really fun.
My first reaction when I saw myself in my Rocky Horror costume:
It was really cool. I remember it vividly. The costume was finalized, I put it all on, and I thought, ‘Wow this is great.’ And subconsciously I thought something is missing. Then they come in and hand me the glasses and I thought, ‘Oh yeah. There he is. That is Brad Majors 100 percent.’
People kept telling me I reminded them of Jackie O in the blue suit and the white gloves [Janet] is wearing at the wedding. That was cool.
One of our favorite things to do on set between takes:
We played games all the time. She loves Heads Up and I hate Heads Up—I’m horrible at it. We would play that and 20 Questions and I Spy. It was great to pass the time and keep us awake. It was really fun.
We played a lot of Heads Up —I love Heads Up. A lot of 20 questions as well.
The first memory of Rocky Horror in my life:
I might have been 12 or so but I went to see the musical with my parents because my sister was in it. She was one of the Transylvanians and the concept for her costume was a slutty nun, so that was a weird situation for the family, but once we got past the initial awkwardness of it I was like, ‘This show is incredible.’ Then I saw the movie and I said, ‘I need to play Brad someday.’ I knew that I would but I never thought it would be like this though.
When I was in fifth grade my best friend at the time Shannon said, ‘Oh you have to see this movie. It’s so cool.’ So we started watching it together. I had never seen anything like it and I loved it. It was so different and weird and interesting. I loved the music. Then I went to my first midnight showing when I was 15.
I’m in awe of my co-star’s ability to:
I’m in awe of her ability to be so unbelievably successful and so busy and yet completely composed, down-to-earth and nice. That’s a testament to her character and something I really admire about her.
I’m in awe of his ability to have a one-liner for everything. He’s so quick. He has a comeback for everything.
Tune in to FOX on October 20 to see this killer pair as Brad and Janet in The Rocky Horror Picture Show.