When the absolutely terrifying trailer for Rings, the third movie in the US’s version of The Ring franchise, dropped last summer, we were very excited to see a whole new generation terrorized by a demon child, a well, and a low-budget video of a Victorian woman brushing her hair.
However, we were also very dismayed to see that the original Samara from the 2002 movie, Daveigh Chase, had aged out of the role — like, we’re sure that new girl is totally fine, but no one can fill the hearts of men with holy terror quite like Chase coming out of a TV sopping wet in a white dress.
Even though she was totally freaking adorable in real life.
Look at her winning the 2003 Best Villain award at the MTV Movie Awards! Too cute!!
In life, Chase’s Samara possessed nensha, which is the (almost definitely made-up) ability to “burn” images from one’s mind onto things like film using psychic means. She used it to effectively terrorize her adoptive parents (and a whole lot of horses), so her mother eventually trapped her in a well, killing her — only death somehow made things worse, with Samara gaining the power to scare people to death after watching the images from her brain on tape.
Chase — whose first big break was actually voicing Lilo in Lilo & Stitch, believe it or not — reprised the role in 2005’s The Ring Two, and in the meantime, managed to portray characters who were almost as scary as Samara, just in totally different ways. Like Samantha Darko, the bratty little sister in Donnie Darko, whose dance troupe Sparkle Motion is arguably just as terrifying as Samara’s tape.
And especially Rhonda Volmer, the 15-year-old bride of 70-something cult leader Roman Grant in Big Love. Chase played Rhonda for 32 episodes of the series from 2006-2011, terrorizing Bill Paxton’s family with her lies and manipulations countless times along the way.
Since then we haven’t really heard much from Chase. She reprised her Darko character in the critically panned 2009 sequel S. Darko, but tbh we skipped that one when we read the abysmal reviews. According to her IMDB page she also starred in something called Wild in Blue in 2015, with her most promising recent credits being the 2016 horror films Jack Comes Home, which also starred Britt Robertson, Rory Culkin, and Nikki Reid, and American Romance, which starred Nolan Gerard Funk.
So nothing has come close to the success of The Ring, but still — Chase’s life on Instagram seems to be anything but a horror show. The now 26-year-old actress appears to be happy, healthy, living in Los Angeles and, oh yeah, totally freaking gorgeous.
She sports blonde locks, a nose ring, and a love of hookah…firmly cementing her status as a 20-something.
She also has a sense of humor about her Ring past, recently asking her followers if she should dress as “Slutty Samara” for Halloween.
She rocks crop tops like no one’s business, and looks so L.A. it hurts.
Basically, her pics are enough to make you want to pack your bags and move to Los Angeles immediately.
So even though we haven’t seen her on a red carpet since 2002…
… We’re so glad to see she’s doing well, booking gigs, and not murdering people with video tapes.