Interview – Jennifer Jostyn

Interview – Jennifer Jostyn

Trying your hand at a career in entertainment can often be a risky decision. You simply do not know what will happen, will you sink or swim? The chance a dreamer takes, New England native Jennifer Jostyn dived off the cliff, but has been soaring since! Combining a hardworking attitude  with dedication, Jostyn has enjoyed a career as an actress that extends thirty years and counting. From guest appearances on popular television shows such as ER, to full-length feature, taking a lead role in films including 2003’s House of 1000 Corpses, Jostyn has done it all. Recently we caught up with the actress to talk her career in film, the 15th anniversary of Rob Zombie’s House of 1000 Corpses, working on the new Horror short Blood Bride, plus much more. – You have been involved in film and television professionally for three decades. First tell us, what inspired you to pursue a career in acting?    

Jennifer Jostyn – Besides insanity? (Laughs) No, I  think it’s always been a dream of mine from a very young age. I was one of those kids who made up plays in her basement and forced everybody to come watch. I went to a performing arts high school and I was lucky enough to get to do that, it was really a fun thing to be able to do. Then I studied in college, it just has always been a love. It’s always been a love from a standpoint that I never cared that much which side of the camera I’m on – I love producing, being a part of the writing process, acting, I just really enjoy all of it. I have a little bit of a love affair with Hollywood and what they do, stage and everything. – It is wonderful to hear how passionate you are about it. Of your many credits, you have starred in Horror and Sci-Fi related films. Do you enjoy working in these subgenres?  

Jennifer Jostyn – You know, I really do. I have gotten to know the Horror world, the fans of Horror, when I have been fortunate enough to be a guest at conventions. I love the fans, I think they are a really passionate group of fans. I think there is something really fun about making these kind of movies because it sort of takes make-believe to another level. You can really push the envelope in terms of how unbelievable something is. To be chased through the woods by someone in a rabbit costume, which I got to do in Rob Zombie’s House of 1000 Corpses, that is something you wouldn’t be able to do in a movie that was trying to portray real life. I think there is something really fun about it, it is almost like you are playing. 

Paramount Pictures

Treehouse Films – Yes, there is definitely an ability to be able to do more beyond the suspension of disbelief. Speaking of the very popular Rob Zombie film House of 1000 Corpses. Set to celebrate its 15th anniversary in April, what was your time like working on that film?    

Jennifer Jostyn – It was really a dream. I felt so lucky to be a part of that project. I think back to the first night after we were all cast in the movie, we were told Rob wanted to have a rehearsal at his and Sheri’s house. I remember arriving and sitting in their backyard as we were reading through the script – it was Rainn Wilson, Erin Daniels, Chris Hardwick, myself, along with Rob and Sherri. I remember looking around the table and thinking, “How did I get here and why am I so lucky to be here?” Even then, none of them were all that well known yet, but you could just tell there was something very special about them, including Rob of course. 

It was just really fun. Rob made it all really fun. Rob is a very encouraging director who is very generous with feedback, letting actors know when they are doing what he is hoping for, fulfilling his vision. The other actors were so great to work with including Karen Black of course, I feel so lucky to have worked with her. As well as Sid Haig and Bill Moseley. It was just a dream, it was one of my favorite things I’ve ever worked on. – It sounds like a great experience. Can you believe it has been 15 years?

Jennifer Jostyn – I can’t believe it! Time just goes so fast for all of us. It is really hard to believe. All those people have become such good friends of mine and I’m so grateful for that. It’s hard to imagine I’ve known them all for that long now. It is really crazy how fast time goes, isn’t it? 

L to R – Jennifer Jostyn, Rainn Wilson, Erin Daniels, & Chris Hardwick in House of 1000 Corpses. © Universal Pictures – It really is, time does truly go by so fast. One of your most recent works is in the Horror short Blood Bride. How did you become involved with this project?  

Jennifer Jostyn – I got a phone call from the director, Michelle Romano. I didn’t know her before this, but I am so happy to now know her. She is an incredibly hard working, smart, big Horror fan. She is also from Boston, Massachusett, which was my really exciting piece of news about her because I am from Boston too. It’s always fun to meet somebody from your part of the world. I was excited because she used the word “wicked” on the first two minutes of the phone call, us Bostonians like to use that word. (Laughs) 

Anyway, she called, told me about the project she was working on, and was nice enough to ask me to be a part of it. That’s how it happened. I didn’t know much about her, but I just knew on the phone I would be in good hands. I could tell she was smart and passionate, everything you would want in a movie director. – That is great how it all worked out. This is Michelle Romano’s directorial debut. What was it like working with her as a director?  

Jennifer Jostyn – She was great! She was very confident and felt a little bit of the pressure, in a good way, that this is her shot, so she was really going to make sure she did it right. I arrived on set at 7 in the morning, she gave me a big hug, was very welcoming, and treated everybody that way. All day long, she kept telling us encouraging things about what her plans were for the film when it was done. She was really good at getting everyone excited and feeling like they were part of something special, which is a really hard thing to do. She was acting in it too. The fact that she was producing, directing, and acting in it, is obviously pretty challenging. I think she did a great job. She was smart enough to hire a really solid crew, she had a lot of people making sure they had her back in terms of the technical aspects of it. She is very confident and talented. 

Blood Bride – What is also really cool about Blood Bride is that it is associated with a good cause of raising awareness about donating blood.    

Jennifer Jostyn – Right! I was really so happy to be part of that too. It is great when something can be made for multi-faceted purposes, hopefully be entertaining and also for a very important cause. – Yes, it is very important. It is also associated with Women in Horror Month. What is that like being a part of that?

Jennifer Jostyn – It’s great! With everything going on in the world right now for women, I feel like it’s a really exciting time to be female. I think things are changing and improving. Anytime I get to be part of something that’s celebrating that is a great honor. – It is a great honor. Sadly, typically when people think of women in Horror, they think of a scream queen, which is not negative at all. But the fact is women have been contributing in Horror in terms of writing, directing, and producing for many years. It is nice to see that being recognized more. 

Jennifer Jostyn – Yea, you are right! That is a really good way to put it. I agree with that 100%. I have worked for some great women over the years. It is nice to see it celebrated more and more. – Yes! Blood Bride will be released online February 19th. Have you heard any early feedback?

Jennifer Jostyn – I just heard from Michelle that she is pleased with it. That is the main thing you always want to hear, that is your job as the actor to make sure you are fulfilling the director and producers vision. I also have gotten positive feedback from the Soska Sisters, which is exciting. I haven’t seen any of it, but I am hearing from everybody that they are happy. Anytime you don’t have to go back for a re-shoot you feel pretty good about things. 

Universal Pictures

Broad Appeal Productions – That is always a good thing too. As mentioned, you have been very active through the years in various films and television series. What are some future projects you have coming up?

Jennifer Jostyn – Like any actor, I audition for things. I am always looking and hoping that someone will be good enough to hire me. I am also working on my own things. Right now I am really excited because I am working on something with my husband Pete Goldfinger. He co-wrote the recently released Jigsaw with his writing partner, Josh Stolberg. We are talking about, and putting together, a project. I am also talking with Michelle on maybe collaborating on something for the future. Probably something in the Horror world with both my husband and/or with Michelle. That is what we are talking and thinking about right now. – That sounds exciting. My last question for you is pertaining to movies. covers music and Horror/Sci-Fi films. What are some of your favorite films? 

Jennifer Jostyn – I go a little old school. I love all Rob’s movies of course, I have become a big fan of his over the years. I love the Saw franchise, but again, I am biased because my husband worked on that. (Laughs) In terms of old school, The Shining (1980) is probably my all-time favorite scary movie. I love all Stephen King’s, I love Carrie (1976). Films like Jaws (1975), those are the films I gravitate to more. As I have gotten to know Horror fans more, I have learned more how to watch Horror movies. I think 20 years ago, before I was doing Horror movies, I was like some people when you watch it and you think it is so gross and I can’t watch it. I have learned it is almost like someone who likes a roller coaster ride. I have learned it is the thrill of the scare. When I went to the premiere of my husband’s film, Jigsaw, once again, I am always so surprised when I look around the audience and people are laughing at the scary, gruesome parts. I learned that is how most true fans watch Horror movies. That sort of made me understand, appreciate it, and kind of love it in a different way. 

United Artists

Warner Bros.

For more on Women in Horror Month visit

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