Friday, 11 October 2019

31 Days of Halloween: Best Horror Actors: Michael Berryman

Me: Michael Berryman is an actor you'd recognise, even if you're not familiar with his name. He's a horror fixture who's also done classics like Weird Science and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

Jay: I remember Michael Berryman in Weird Science! He couldn't have been onscreen more than five minutes but it was interesting to see him in something besides horror. 

He's a very nice man that's made his fortune by making the best of his looks. When you see him, straight away you think of The Hills Have Eyes.

Me: Berryman has a very distinctive appearance that just begs to be in horror. His trademark appearance comes from something I'd never heard of until we started research for this post, Hypohidrotic Ectodermal Dysplasia. I moan about my wonky eyes while Michael Berryman is out there using his disorder to his advantage.

Jay: It's a horrible thing to say, but he's just so weird to look at, which will always find you a home in horror. His affliction is his fortune. Would he be on this list if he just looked like some Average Joe? Maybe not. 

Me: You got the chance to meet Michael Berryman. What can you tell me about him?

Jay: He may look frightening but Berryman is the nicest guy you'd ever want to meet. God, it was years ago. Maybe 2002ish? Honestly, I was a little nervous about asking for a photo because I didn't want to offend him. He was totally fine with it, luckily. 

Me: You mentioned The Hills Have Eyes before. Hillbilly horror really isn't my thing so tell me why it's a classic.

Jay: It wasn't my cup of tea either, to be honest. It's one of those films that was huge when I was a kid, at the dawn of the video age. Everyone had heard of it. I preferred Berryman in things like Deadly Blessing, even though it was only a small part. It seems like that's true for a lot of his roles. They might not be massive roles, but Berryman always stands out in a film. 

Me: And it looks like he's still incredibly busy. Michael Berryman has something like 9 movies coming soon. Seventy-one and no sign of slowing down. He's an inspiration.

Jay: There are horror actors who have done more films, maybe better films, that you might think are more deserving, but I'll always defend Michael Berryman's right to be on a list of Best Horror Actors. 

He looks frightening, like something is kind of off (which is the Hypohidrotic Ectodermal Dysplasia) and, as someone who's always been treated as a little scary myself, I understand a fraction of what he must have gone through. To take that struggle and turn it into a win is something that deserves respect. 

Me: I couldn't agree more. (Except I kind of like that you're scary... on account of the whole my not doing people thing.)

Thanks for stopping by! Don't forget to check back tomorrow to see who our next Best Horror Actor will be!

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