(Note: The following interview was conducted last year when Teeth premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival. We are publishing it now to coincide with Teeth's theatrical release this week.)
One of my favorite little gems from last year, Teeth tells the story of Dawn (Jess Weixler); a teen abstinence preacher and all-around lovely girl who, at a very young age, discovers something wrong with her parts down there. It's called vagina dentata, which is Latin for "toothed vagina." Oh yes, it bites ... and it bites hard. Playing Dawn is fresh up-and-comer Jess Weixler, who arrived in this role without much of a big-screen resume. Yet, here, the gal clearly proves she has what it takes to rise up the familiar leading lady ladder, and it won't be long until Jess Weixler is a household name. Following a screening of the film, Cinematical sat down with Jess to talk about Teeth, vagina dentata and how it was playing the woman behind every man's worst nightmare.
Cinematical: You can't exactly go out and meet other women who suffer from vagina dentata. So you read the script, accept the part -- how the hell do you go about researching this kind of role?
Jess Weixler: (laughs) That's why I liked the part. Because there were no rules for how to play the game. Look at this girl Dawn, realize she came from this place of total innocence -- she's very human, someone who doesn't know their body and hasn't opened up yet. And then she gets to learn about life as it sort of attacks her. So she has a very dangerous sexual experience, then instinct kicks in and her body essentially protects her until she learns how to use the teeth. And that's something I had to come to.