Helen Mirren Reveals What Drew Her to 'Winchester's Mysterious Haunted House (Exclusive)

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Academy Award winner Helen Mirren may be best known for playing Her Royal Highness, but she also starred in a Fast and the Furious movie last year, so expect the unexpected. Such is the case with her latest movie, Winchester, in which Mirren portrays Sarah Winchester, the enigmatic widow responsible for building "the most haunted house in history."

"She was a mystery and I think that's the wonder of Sarah," Mirren explains in this behind-the-scenes look at Winchester, exclusively debuting on ET. "Building this house does come from the Winchester Rifle fortune -- an instrument of death and war -- and that's very much what our film explores."

Helen Mirren, Winchester
CBS Films

The frights are practically guaranteed in Winchester, considering it hails from the Spierig Brothers, who helmed last year's Jigsaw. But the horrors go deeper than that. "It's about a woman who is haunted by the spirits that had been killed at the hand of this rifle," Peter Spierig says, while brother Michael adds, "It's very easy to perceive Sarah Winchester as a crazy person. But we didn't see her as that at all."

Watch the full trailer for Winchester:

Here is the movie's official synopsis:

"Inspired by true events. On an isolated stretch of land 50 miles outside of San Francisco sits the most haunted house in the world. Built by Sarah Winchester (Mirren), heiress to the Winchester fortune, it is a house that knows no end. Constructed in an incessant twenty-four hour a day, seven day a week mania for decades, it stands seven stories tall and contains hundreds of rooms. To the outsider it looks like a monstrous monument to a disturbed woman’s madness. But Sarah is not building for herself, for her niece (Sarah Snook) or for the troubled Doctor Eric Price (Clarke) whom she has summoned to the house. She is building a prison, an asylum for hundreds of vengeful ghosts, and the most terrifying among them have a score to settle with the Winchesters…"

Winchester opens in theaters on Feb. 2.

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