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Slumberland Gave Marlow Barkley A Huge Fear Of Deep Water

Based on a comic strip titled "Little Nemo in Slumberland" by Winsor McCay, "Slumberland" is a Netflix original starring Jason Momoa as Flip and Marlow Barkley as Nemo. Released on November 18, 2022, the film received generally mixed reviews from critics due to it straying too far from the source material. Still, audiences have taken rather well to the fun, family-friendly adventure film. With an 88% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, parents seem to enjoy watching "Slumberland" with their kids.

"Slumberland" focuses on Nemo's adventure to Slumberland, the World of Dreams, where people can wish for anything their heart desires. She comes across Flip, a fantastical con artist that resembles a satyr, who joins her on her journey. Flip is from Slumberland, so he sort of fills in as Nemo's guide through the realm. Despite his dubious nature, he is a fun-loving companion that Nemo recognizes from her late father's stories. Wishing for nothing more than to reunite with her father again, Nemo and Flip traverse the dreams and nightmares awaiting them on their journey.

As shown in the "Slumberland" trailer, much of the film takes place in deep waters where what's under the surface can't be seen. This seemed particularly unsettling to Marlow Barkley, who confessed to having a fear of such locations.

Marlow Barkley blames Slumberland for her fear

During an interview with Black Film and TV, Miles, the host, asked Marlow Barkley if she was a good swimmer due to how many water scenes were in "Slumberland." Barkley responded by saying, "I like swimming. I definitely prefer pools. I mean, if we're at a beach, I'll go in the ocean, but I have a really big fear of, like, deep waters and like waters, you can't see into." This isn't an uncommon fear by any means (per Cleveland Clinic). Plenty of people fear the ocean or the dark parts of large bodies of water due to the unknown hidden from view, so it's understandable that the young actress would share these phobias.

"It sends shivers down my spine. That is, like, my biggest fear," Barkley continues. "And I think I developed it from this movie because of how much underwater stuff we filmed, but yeah, normally I prefer pools. I don't like a lot of deep waters." She repeated herself a couple of times, which emphasized how uncomfortable she was with the idea, making it an impressive feat that she managed to persevere through to finish filming. "I'd say I'm a pretty good swimmer," she finally answered with a big shrug.