Like the invisible apparition in It Follows, the “Scream Queen” title can haunt an emerging actress, following her from film to film until she’s cornered, pigeonholed, by the genre. But Maika Monroe is clearly the Final Girl of her own professional narrative.
Following her breakout role in David Robert Mitchell’s critically acclaimed psychological thriller, the Santa Barbara-bred actress spun her indie success into a lasting onscreen impression with turns in diverse films like Independence Day: Resurgence and The Tribes of Palos Verdes.
This summer, she’ll star alongside fellow breakout Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name) in Hot Summer Nights, a humid coming-of-age drama rife with sex, drugs, and bad decisions. The melodramatic A24 release promises to be yet another industry launching pad for the mellow actress, who admittedly feels a “little bit more comfortable” on an indie set.
“It’s nice to balance it out. Being able to do a movie that’s so different every once in a while is good experience,” Monroe explains. “The big movies are like doing a play, ’cause you’re not working against anything but a green screen, which can be bizarre. I feel like I learn a lot from [those films], but I try to do both. The dream is really just to do as many as I can.”