MVPs of Horror: Naomi Watts reveals why she almost passed on 'The Ring'

Naomi Watts had serious heat after her head-turning performance in Mulholland Drive, David Lynch’s twisty neo-noir that introduced the Aussie actress to American audiences. Major offers rolled in, and among them was a mainstream horror movie called The Ring, about a woman who encounters a videotape that dooms those who dare to watch it.

Watts, who already had a decade’s worth of minor film credits under name, had seen people she knows in the business break out in an acclaimed film, then sell out for studio paychecks. “I really wasn’t sure if I should do it,” Watts told Yahoo Entertainment during a 2015 Role Recall interview (watch clip above).

“Because I’d just come from Mulholland Drive, and this was a commercial movie. Although I liked the script and the ideas, I wasn’t sure if it was the right thing. I’d seen so many actors come in and do something great and then get seduced to going in the wrong direction because of impure reasons.”

Watts put her trust in director Gore Verbinski, though, and agreed to headline the film as Rachel, a journalist investigating the deadly VHS tape. And it paid dividends: The Ring was a critical and commercial success, racking up nearly $130 million at the U.S. box office and further solidifying Watts as a rising star to watch.

“It turned out really well for me,” she said. “It was a great experience.”

Watch our full Role Recall interview with Naomi Watts:

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