Watch: Selena Gomez, Rachel Korine, Ashley Benson talk shock with ‘Spring Breakers’ at SXSW

AUSTIN — Girls in bikinis at spring break may not be all that shocking, but “Spring Breakers” itself seemed to shock audiences at South By Southwest. Three of the four leading ladies in the film were on hand to discuss just what’s so surprising about their manic crime-filled film while visiting Austin.

First, there’s James Franco’s trashy, rapping gangster character Alien, who to Rachel Korine was far more scary than silly. “I don”t think his character was funny,” she said, calling him more “sinister and charming.”

Benson’s own wild behavior was informed, in part, by some other rappers, namely lady MCs Kreayshawn and V-Nasty. “These girls are crazy,” she told her director, Rachel’s huband Harmony Korine. She said she starting using some of their style in sussing out her character Brit.

Rachel Korine’s character Cotty flashed her crazy, dark side in the film as she tapped into “pent-up aggression and energy” from her youth: growing up in the South, students took their spring break pretty seriously, “Like [the movie], minus the violence and the crime. I always wanted to go, and my partents were pretty strict…”

Gomez’ character Faith had just that going for her — faith, or at least a religious background. “She had her own battle to face,” Gomez said.

Check out what else Benson, Korine and Gomez had to report on developing their characters for “Spring Breakers” in the video above. And in case you missed it, Selena Gomez exclusively revealed the title for her new single “Come and Get It” in the video below.

“Spring Breakers” heads to theaters on March 22.