Friday, February 7, 2014

INTERVIEW: Actress Page Hannah looks back at SHAG (1989)

Actress Page Hannah talks with TV STORE ONLINE about SHAG, the 1989 dance coming-of-age cult film...

TV STORE ONLINE:   How did SHAG (1989) first come to you?

It was just one of the movies around  to audition for as a girl being of the age that I was at that time.

TV STORE ONLINE:  What did you think of the script when you first read it?

HANNAH:  I thought it was really unusual to find a movie about four young girls, and to me that was really exciting.  Generally, the girls parts are the "girlfriend" or the "best friend" or both.  Not very often is there a film that revolves around four really defined young women.

TV STORE ONLINE:   Did you have to audition for the role of "Luanne"?

HANNAH:  Yes, I did. During the audition process they had me read for all of the girls.  When you went in to read you didn't know who you were actually auditioning for.   In fact, you would go in and read with a group of girls and then they would ask you to come back in with a completely different group of girls.   Once I knew what part I was really focused on, I envisioned her as someone who grew up always playing by the rules.  She grew up with those three girls and she felt safe with them and that allowed her to break away from those rules that she grew up with and got to go wild for a couple days.  She was really a fun character to play.

  Did you learn the dance for the film?

All of us learned to dance.   I started working with Kenny Ortega about two weeks before we starting shooting SHAG.   It was really fun.   When we weren't shooting at night, I would go out to some of the clubs in Myrtle Beach and practice.

TV STORE ONLINE:   How was working with Zelda Barron?

  She was lovely.  It was a woman directing women and that was really great.   She really immersed herself into the music and the period.  I really enjoyed working with her.

TV STORE ONLINE:  How was shooting in Myrtle Beach during the hot summer?

HANNAH:  It was beyond fun.   We were a young group of actors in a very summer oriented town.  I don't remember it being super hot, except for a few days when we had to shoot the scenes in the car.  It was really a fun time.

TV STORE ONLINE:  Did all of the actors become close during the shoot?  The film has such a wonderful energy in it...

HANNAH:  Yeah, everyone became very close. But that always happens on a film set.  It's like you live in a bubble. But with SHAG, in particular, this one was special because it really created some special bonds between us and those continue on all of these years later.

TV STORE ONLINE:  What do you think it is about SHAG that has its fans returning to it over and over again?

  I think it is because of the four different girls.  Each character sorta represents something that everyone can relate to I think.   Then, the story takes part in that time when these characters are going to be transitioning into another part of their lives and I think it reminds people of a more innocent time in their own life.