Friday, August 8, 2014

True Blood's Kristina Anapau talks with TV STORE ONLINE about playing fairy and her new movie ALTERGEIST

True Blood's Kristina Anapau talks with TV STORE ONLINE about playing fairy and her new movie ALTERGEIST (2014)

TV STORE ONLINE:  How did the opportunity to play 'Maurella' on True Blood come to you?

ANAPAU:  True Blood came to me through an audition. I went in and read for the show creator Alan Ball and I guess he liked what he saw because I was offered Maurella a couple hours after I left.

TV STORE ONLINE:  Did you do any types of research into mythological creatures or fairies or anything like that before you started on the show?

ANAPAU:  Well, Maurella is a pretty fanciful character, and as an actor that gives you a lot of freedoms that you wouldn't have if you were playing a sort of average person.  There wasn't really any research to do beyond what everyone has done growing up and learning about mythological creatures.  Chris Bauer who plays 'Andy Bellefleur' really helped me out on the my first day of shooting when he really let me in on how the writers of True Blood write and how its this sort of this Darwinian process.  The writers watch the nuances of the actors and they use those to write further story lines.   We decided together that Maurella should be this little creature and that she would kiss him with her eyes open and that she should lick his mouth.  I made her into a creature and the writers really liked that.  That conversation with Chris on that first day was really responsible in a huge way for me getting to come back in the next season.

TV STORE ONLINE:  When I think back about Season 4 of True Blood and Season 5, those two big scenes that you had with Chris are two of the most memorable moments of the show....I'm referring to the "sex scene" with Chris Bauer as Andy Bellefleur in the woods but also the scene where your character gives birth to all of Andy's fairy children on the pool table inside of Merlottes....

ANAPAU:  Right.  I don't think I would really call it a sex scene because all of that was cut out.  Working with Chris was great, and acting is so technical and everything was really blocked out.   It was fun though.  It was a nice day to kind of get to know Chris and all of the Producers on the show.  We shot that scene out in the woods of Calabash.  

Then with the pool table scene, that was near the end of Season 5 [Episode #11 'Sunset']  and it was really special because that episode was Alan Ball's last episode of the show.  He wrote that particular episode as well, and he was there on set the entire time and the whole thing was just so over-the-top and amazing and it took about fourteen hours to shoot that...

TV STORE ONLINE:  You went through fourteen hours of labor...

ANAPAU:  Yeah, and it was really hard on my voice...It was wonderful though.  When you go into something like that you just have to sort of surrender to the weirdness of it.  You can't be concerned about how you're going to look.  I started thinking about all of the weird things that had happened on the show in Merelottes and I really just tried to sort of channel that for the scene.

TV STORE ONLINE:  Speaking of sets...That fairy set with the MOULIN ROUGE (2001) like stage on it was pretty great...

ANAPAU:  That was a great set, wasn't it?    The fairies sort of transformed over Season 4 to Season 5.   They started out wearing these long-flowing gowns and then eventually they were wearing only lingerie on that set. 

TV STORE ONLINE:   Tell me about your new film project ALTERGEIST (2014)?

ANAPAU:  I was sent the script by my lawyer, which really isn't the traditional route that is taken, but he sent it to me and asked me to take a look at it.      He asked me to look at the part of "Sarah", but I really wasn't feeling "Sarah".   I was interested in the part of "Theresa".  At the time though "Theresa" had already been cast. Michelle Rodriguez was supposed to play her.   I went in to audition for the filmmakers, and as I was reading the Sarah scenes I tried to read them like I was playing Theresa.   I had a really solid audition with them and over the next couple weeks they offered me the role of Theresa.

TV STORE ONLINE:  So what can people expect from ALTERGEIST?

ANAPAU:  It's a scary movie.  It's a paranormal thriller and what sets it apart from other genre films is that it has some really developed characters and it is shot beautifully.  It's very scary and very entertaining and the filmmakers did a really good job at adding facets and dimensions to it that other filmmakers of genre films don't really care about.  I think that all of these elements are really gonna help it when it gets released.


ANAPAU:  Well, I have a few different movies coming out after ALTERGEIST.  The first is MISS INDIA AMERICA (2014) which is the directorial debut of Ravi Kapur. It was great to work with him.  Another is called  NEAR MYTH: THE OSKAR KNIGHT STORY (2014) which is this mockumentary where I play myself but very heightened.   It's really cleverly written.  It's super cerebral.  I'm also about to launch a company called Color It New and it's for my fashion based product.  We're releasing it in September of this year and it's a product that is going to change peoples' closets forever and I'm excited to share it with the world in a few weeks.

TV STORE ONLINE:  Is it a product as cool as "The Wonder Hanger" as seen on television?

ANAPAU:  (Laughing)....It's much cooler than that.  That isn't even in the same ballpark with this.   People should visit and sign up for updates and they'll be notified when the product is made available.   Or visit us on Facebook.

Check out the trailer for ALTERGEIST here. 
Interview Conducted By: Justin Bozung

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Actor/Director Gregg Daniel talks with TV Store Online about the final season of HBO's True Blood

New York born actor/director Gregg Daniel talks with TV STORE ONLINE about his character Reverend Daniels on the final season of the hit HBO series True Blood.

TV STORE ONLINE:   Boy, that sure was a great episode with you a couple weeks back...That monologue in the church with Sam Trammell was just great...

DANIEL:  I'm so glad to hear you say that... I'll tell you...After we finished shooting that  I sent an email off to the writer of the episode and thanked him for that.  It was the first time that I had done that, but I felt like I had to email him to thank him.    When we were doing the table read everyone was saying, Wow...Gregg's got this great speech."    So I wrote the writer and told him thanks for the speech and for caring about 'Reverend Daniels'.   It's pretty rare that a character like Reverend Daniels gets such a moment on primetime television.   I came onto the show during Season 3, and for him to go and reach back into that character's past and give him a back story really meant a lot to me.   The quality of that scene too...The fact that Reverend Daniels taps into his past and gets to his pain....I, as an actor, was just thrilled to get that.   I have a theater background, and for me, that speech was like having something to say from a Eugene O'Neill or Tennessee Williams play. 

TV STORE ONLINE:   I saw that your audition tape for True Blood just popped up on the internet recently...

DANIEL:  I saw that!  (Laughing)

TV STORE ONLINE:    Looking back at that audition tape what are you thoughts on it now?

DANIEL:   Well, when I made that -- I never thought that I'd get the role.   When the Producers contacted me I was in Cape May, New Jersey doing a play.   The Producers contacted me and said, "Can you put yourself on tape?"   The first thing you think of is -- Okay, who can I find that will film me?  It wasn't like I was in New York City proper. It's always better to be in the room with the Producers for something like that because they can feel you and you can feel them -- there's a great alchemy in something like that.      I really loved the simplicity of the scene I was given for that too.  I didn't want to approach the character as a typical fire-and-brimstone southern preacher.  I thought that that would have been too histrionic,     and when I sent it to the producers I didn't think that I'd get the role.   It was about a week after I sent them the tape that they called me and told me that I had gotten the role.  

TV STORE ONLINE:  The Reverend seems like a patient and wise man and I really like where the show writers are taking the character and "Lettie Mae" as a couple...

DANIEL:  Yeah, it's been wonderful.    I'm very pleased with where it's going.  We know that the Reverend has endured loss and he's suffered, just as much of us have in our lives.  Now he has to figure out a way to save Lettie Mae and how does the Reverend save a community that is losing their faith?   Those are nice, big questions for an actor to get behind.

TV STORE ONLINE:  Being on the set for True Blood down in New Orleans...Does the set or the costume help you find the character?

DANIEL:  The sets are amazing.  So, Yes!  Every time I walk onto a set...You wouldn't believe the detail that goes into those sets.  These sets and that environment aren't one that I visit every day.  Costumes, sets, and lighting help a great deal, especially when you as an actor give yourself over to it.   I still remember the first time that I visited the set for Lafeyette's apartment.  I said, "Wow!  Have I ever been any place like this before!" 

TV STORE ONLINE:  I'm sure you're getting questions from fans about what is going to happen throughout the rest of this final season of the show...But have you ever been tempted to just make something up when you're asked about it?   Have you ever been tempted to tell fans that the show is going to end in a big musical number and it's all a dream?

DANIEL:  (Laughing)  I love our fans.  They show up on location, and not only are they very respectful but they know everything about the show.  They know every detail about the True Blood universe.   If anything, I'm sort of hanging onto what they're saying about the show!  If anything, I tell them, "Keep the faith. There will be a ending.   There may be sacrifice, but you will have a sense of closure."  This is the final season of True Blood, we're on top and we're for sure going out with a bang.  

Follow Gregg Daniel on Twitter HERE: 
True Blood airs on HBO Sundays at 9pm EDT.
Interview Conducted By: Justin Bozung