How the 'Insidious' Star's First Movie Role Made Her Mother Vomit

Thanks to appearances in genre films like A Nightmare on Elm Street, Critters, and the Insidious franchise, actress Lin Shaye has become an icon from her horror offerings. While the film itself wasn't horrific, Shaye's first role in 1975's Hester Street gave the actress her first taste of horrifying audiences, with her mother being upset to the point of becoming sick after seeing the film.

"It was my first movie, Hester Street. Joan Micklin Silver, a wonderful female director and who also wrote the script," Shaye shared with "The role was this prostitute. It was basically the storyline, she was a young polish woman who became a prostitute because she could earn more there than she could in the sweatshops. And she was trying to bring her family over from Poland. So it was really kind of a nice little couple scenes. So we shot it and it went quite well."

She added, "And then, right before the movie was shown, I was all excited, I invited my parents to come to New York for the premiere. We watched the film, I'm sitting next to my mom and my scene came up, and they had cut it way back. Basically it was just me leaning forward with a breast showing, and I said one line or something."

Understandably, sitting next to your daughter while she's on screen portraying such a character would cause most people to feel uncomfortable, but in the case of Shaye's mother, it didn't end at merely feeling awkward.

"I could see my mother kind of cringe a little, but we didn't talk or anything and the movie finished. Everybody was really excited about it," Shaye recalled. "The end credits roll, and I was really excited to see my name on the screen, because it was the first movie I'd ever been in. And we get to, on the very last credit, and it says, 'Lin Shaye - Whore.' And my mother stood up, marched out of the theater, and vomited."

In the decades since that first role as "Whore," Shaye has gone on to star in dozens of films that would likely cause extreme reactions, a possible inadvertent result to causing such a passionate response with such minimal screen time. That trend will likely continue, as the actress recently revealed the upcoming Grudge will be the scariest film of her career.

"Wait until you see this. It's the scariest movie I've ever been a part of, not even maybe. Not even maybe," Shaye confessed. "And it's the scariest part I've ever had, bar none. I think it comes out next August, I'm very excited about it. The horror fans are going to go insane, that I can promise.

Shaye is this year's ambassador for Screamfest, America’s largest, female-run and longest running horror film festival in its 18th year. Screamfest is currently running through October 18th at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres in Hollywood.


Grudge is slated to hit theaters on August 16, 2019.

Would you be surprised if a parent reacted this way to a film role? Let us know in the comments below or hit up @TheWolfman on Twitter to talk all things horror and Star Wars!