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Wingman Wednesday

Will Brittain

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Photo by: William Sanford Photography

With the release of the new film “Desolate” now upon us, we’re taking an extended look at the post-apocalyptic drama by sitting down with those who gave it life. First up we’re chatting with star Will Brittain, who plays Billy Stone, to discuss playing cops and robbers as an adult, revisiting a project months after calling wrap, and what kind of story he’d like to tell if given the keys to the Hollywood investment castle.

TrunkSpace: When youre starring in a post-apocalyptic action movie like Desolate,is there a fantasy fulfillment aspect to it that calls back to your younger self? What would 12-year-old Will think about his future self starring in a film like this?
Brittain: Absolutely. It’s Cops and Robbers on a much larger scale. He’d think it was awesome.

TrunkSpace: The great thing about independent film is that it seems like one of the last places to find a steady flow of original content. As an actor, is that part of the draw in working on a film like Desolateand independent cinema in general?
Brittain: Totally. It’s an opportunity to collaborate on some really amazing new stuff.

TrunkSpace: On the production side of things, getting an independent film made can be an adventure in and of itself. When youre making a film like Desolatein this setting, can those schedule and budgetary restraints impact performance, and if so, how do you keep the stuff happening behind the scenes trickle into what youre doing on-camera?
Brittain: It hasn’t really impacted performance, in my experience. It’s more just a group of people trying to build this puzzle together with limited resources – it makes the going a bit tougher but that’s part of the fun, I think.

TrunkSpace: For the viewer, the most memorable aspect of a project is the end result, but wed imagine that for those involved it goes much deeper than that. What is something from your time working on Desolatethat youll carry with you through the rest of your life and career?
Brittain: Just getting to film the movie with such a great group of people. We were brothers.

TrunkSpace: Youve done a number of projects since calling wrap on Desolate.Is it odd going back and revisiting a character in a promotional aspect when the film is being released, and does it require having to plug back into the experience internally?
Brittain: Yeah, it’s pretty weird. It’s like looking at an old photo album. There’s some things that strike you with more fondness than you might have anticipated. It’s an emotional experience.

TrunkSpace: If someone came to you tomorrow and said, Will, here is a blank checkgo out and greenlight any project for yourself to star in,what kind of project would you put into production and why?
Brittain: I’d aim to put one of the films I’ve written into production. I’d love to be able to tell some of the stories I’d like to tell. That’s the dream.

TrunkSpace: Creative people, particularly those who seek perfection from themselves, can be very hard on their own work. Where are you hardest on yourself?
Brittain: I’m pretty hard on myself physically. I like to push my limits.

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
Brittain: Forming friendships that last a lifetime.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Brittain: Sure. That would be fun.

Desolate” arrives in select theaters and on VOD today.

 

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Wingman Wednesday

McKenna Roberts

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Photography: Storm Santos/Styling: Lauren Taylor/Hair: Sienree for Celestine Agency/Makeup: Renee Loiz

Coming from the daily grind of network soap operas, McKenna Roberts learned what it takes to be a working actress at a very early age. Still only 11, she has since graduated from her “The Young and the Restless” roots to become Dwayne Johnson’s daughter in “Skyscraper” and the 10-year-old version of Zendaya’s character Rue from the new HBO series “Euphoria.” Those are both big roles to fill, and she has gone on to do so with a level of confidence that reaches well beyond her physical age.

We recently sat down with Roberts to discuss on-set lessons, the challenges of taking on characters, and the type of reality show she would one day like to appear on.

TrunkSpace: From Dwayne Johnson’s daughter in “Skyscraper” to the younger version of Zendaya’s Rue in the new HBO series “Euphoria,” you are certainly surrounding yourself with successful talent early in your career. Are you looking at each project you work on as just as much of an education as you are a job?
Roberts: Absolutely! It’s been a tremendous learning experience. Every job I’ve worked on, I’ve taken something from it and put it into other roles and auditions.

TrunkSpace: You spent a number of years working on “The Young and the Restless.” Soap operas are known for their breakneck production schedules, and in a way, that must be a great boot camp to learn from. What is a lesson that you took from your time on the series that you’ve carried with you through the rest of your career thus far?
Roberts: I learned that you need to be on your game – meaning, making sure you know your lines, paying attention to what camera is taping, and at the same time, you want your performance to be on point because they move very fast.

TrunkSpace: As mentioned, “Euphoria” will air on HBO, which is a network that actors of all ages are vying to do work with. When you step away and look at your career from an outside perspective, do you feel like each opportunity has led to the next opportunity, and if so, where do you hope to go from here?
Roberts: Yes, I do think that each opportunity in my career has and probably will continue to lead me to something even greater! I loved that I can add HBO to my resume.

TrunkSpace: In “Euphoria” you play a young Rue. Did you work with Zendaya to pick up the little details of the character – the physical stuff – so that when the audience sees her at 10-years-old, the who of Rue lines up with the where she came from?
Roberts: No we didn’t do that, and I think it was because the beginning experiences Young Rue went through were on a much different level than the Older Rue. And as she got older, her life went into a much darker place.

TrunkSpace: As a performer, is there more pressure involved bringing a character to life when, within the same series, someone else is also breathing life into the same character? Does it become a bit of a collaboration in that regard?
Roberts: I really didn’t feel any pressure because that’s what I’m used to doing with every character I have played in my career. It was just more of a challenge if anything, but I was happy with my work and I wanted to make sure the director was too.

TrunkSpace: What are you most proud of about your time spent on the series?
Roberts: I felt like my role was challenging and I thought I did a good job with my character, and I was just super happy I got to play a younger character that Zendaya was playing.

TrunkSpace: Aside from your acting work, you’re also a model. Do you view both as two separate careers, or extensions of the same career?
Roberts: I do see them both as separate careers for me. But a lot has changed since I started modeling and there are a lot of opportunities that can be tied into what’s going on in my acting career if the timing is right.

TrunkSpace: From what we understand, you like to bake/cook in your spare time. What is a food-related show that you wouldn’t mind being a contestant on and why?
Roberts: Well, the funny thing is that a few years back, I actually auditioned to be on a food-related show called “Master Chef Junior.” I auditioned for it twice and got really close one of the times. So, being on a show like that, or maybe a celebrity baking challenge show, would be really cool.

Photography: Storm Santos/Styling: Lauren Taylor/Hair: Sienree for Celestine Agency/Makeup: Renee Loiz

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
Roberts: The highlight of my career has definitely been working on “Skyscraper” with some incredible people in the industry like director Rawson Marshall Thurber, Neve Campbell, Dwayne Johnson and many others.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Roberts: Even though that sounds super cool, I wouldn’t want to time travel to see what my career looks like because I think it would ruin the fun and excitement of what’s to come for me – and I’m happy with how things are going for me now!

Euphoria” airs Sundays on HBO.

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Wingman Wednesday

Burl Moseley

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If Burl Moseley ever wants to explore a career beyond acting, motivational speaking may be a seamless transition. The “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” star is confident in both himself and his abilities, projecting that self-assurance onto others in a way that helps to build them up as opposed to knock them down. And unlike many creatives, he doesn’t put unnecessary pressure on himself, especially in the casting room, preferring to go in with a clear head and deliver an audition that is tension-free.

A great teacher of mine once said that the world will beat you up plenty so you must not do it to yourself,” he said in an exclusive interview with TrunkSpace. “So, I don’t.”

We recently sat down with Moseley to discuss the impact of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” performing at Radio City Music Hall, and the correlation between martial arts and acting.

TrunkSpace: You have been working on “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” since 2015. Where has your life and career been impacted the most by joining the series?
Moseley: Oh, wow… on the life side, the cast, we all became a total family. I can’t tell you how much joy has been a direct result of just knowing each and every single one of these uber-talented people! We get together for dinners and go to amusement parks… it’s just wonderful. On the career side, the show has opened up quite a few doors that were previously closed to me. This past pilot season was my best one yet!

TrunkSpace: You have spent nearly 20 episodes portraying Jim Kittsworth on the show. As an actor, what are some of the benefits of getting to spend such a long time with one character?
Moseley: I really got to know the character inside and out. The timing of Jim’s reactions and responses was something that I always had fun exploring, within the framework of any given scene. Another benefit is that memorization is a breeze because I’d often read a script and go, “Of course Jim would say that! Haha!”

TrunkSpace: How has the character grown and developed since you first read for him all of those years ago? What has surprised you the most about your journey getting to play Jim given what you knew then and what you know now?
Moseley: Jim initially started as an antagonist on the series and grew to be much more of a friend. Given his beginnings, I was quite surprised to see him go from teasing Rebecca and Paula in say the first season, to employing Rebecca and being a sometime co-conspirator with Paula by Season 4. Watching earlier seasons is such a blast because I forgot what a jerk he used to be!

TrunkSpace: Fans of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” are very passionate about the show and its characters. In your opinion, what is it about the series that has turned viewers into long-lasting fans? Is it the writing? The tone? The characters? Something else entirely?
Moseley: I think it’s all of the above. The “something else” being how candidly the show talks about mental illness. The show does a fantastic job of discussing the topic without shame or prejudice, and really helps remove the stigma that’s usually associated with talking about mental health.

TrunkSpace: What are you most proud of about your time spent on the series?
Moseley: (Laughter) Definitely the song “Don’t Be A Lawyer.” It was a beast and I feel like the entire team just knocked it out of the park. Also, after the series wrapped, I got to perform the song live in front of 6,000 screaming fans each night at Radio City Music Hall this past spring – a banner moment that I’ll never forget.

TrunkSpace: You’ve been training in martial arts for years. What are some of the lessons you learned in the dojo that can be applied to a career as an actor? Are there any parallels to the two journeys?
Moseley: Ooh… that’s an interesting question that I wasn’t expecting! I see you, TrunkSpace!! Well, I think the best lesson is also the first lesson that you learn in any martial art – diffuse the situation. The most direct parallel I feel starts in the casting room. Some actors I’ve spoken to feel great pressure in these rooms. Pressure to impress and so forth. But, I feel if one can sort of release that feeling and understand that casting usually only wants the best for you and the project, the tension leaves the room.

TrunkSpace: Beyond the dojo, what is a piece of advice that you have received over the course of your career that you have carried with you moving forward, and possibly, passed along to others at some point?
Moseley: Know your worth. Give yourself a raise. I once ran into the actor Mykelti Williamson at the Parker Hotel in New York City and that was the advice that he gave to me. I’ve been passing it along ever since. Also, something that I personally espouse is to have a hobby! Don’t let acting (or any job in the entertainment sector) be the sole focus. Take a break and recharge by doing something enjoyable that has nothing to do with the business.

TrunkSpace: Creative people, particularly those who seek perfection from themselves, can be very hard on their own work. Where are you hardest on yourself?
Moseley: I’m not. A great teacher of mine once said that the world will beat you up plenty so you must not do it to yourself. So, I don’t.

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
Moseley: Radio City Music Hall, without a doubt.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Moseley: To quote Doc Brown from the movie “Back to the Future,” “Please, Marty! Nobody should know too much about their own destiny!!” So, nah, I’ll take a pass on that time machine. Buuut, then again, Doc DOES end up reading the note in the end and it saves his life, so… maybe just a quick little peek.

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Wingman Wednesday

Dash Williams

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Photo By: The Riker Brothers/Grooming By: Michelle Harvey

Being funny for a living is no laughing matter, especially when you can back it up with some serious dramatic chops. For young multi-hyphenate Dash Williams, who can currently be seen starring in the new Epix series “Perpetual Grace LTD,” acting may be his calling, but comedy is the ultimate tool in his performance toolbox.

When I act it’s helpful to be able to think quickly and comedy helps me do that,” he said in an exclusive interview with TrunkSpace.

We recently sat down with Williams to discuss establishing himself in the industry at such a young age, why the Epix ensemble is so epic, and the reason its best not to overthink the jobs he takes on.

TrunkSpace: You’re a comedian. You’re an actor. Are they the same road on your journey or are they two separate paths that lead in different directions? How do you view the two facets of your career?
Williams: I think they definitely service each other. The skills that I use when I act transfer over. When I act it’s helpful to be able to think quickly and comedy helps me do that.

TrunkSpace: You’ve been acting since you were three years old. At what point in your journey as an actor do you think you understood that this creative avenue was one that you’d stick with and make a career out of?
Williams: I’ve been acting my whole life and I’ve always known that I would make a career out of acting. Acting has always been my go-to creative avenue to express myself.

TrunkSpace: You’ve also been doing improv since you were seven years old. Which of your interests – acting and comedy – do you think has been more difficult to gain respect in based on your age at the time of entry? Was one been more difficult than the other in terms of establishing yourself?
Williams: I think comedy has developed a lot since I started doing it. I started to feel established when I became a part of the first teen class at UCB. Age is less of a factor in other areas of performance because they’ve been around for longer.

TrunkSpace: As someone who is used to working in front of both an audience and a camera, does the method in which you work differ based on the environment you’re performing in? Would we see a different Dash on the set of a series than we would in a comedy club?
Williams: Performing in front of an audience is different in that I get a reaction immediately and can tune what I’m doing based on that reaction. When I am on set I have to trust that what I’m doing is good because there isn’t an audience there to give me that type of reaction.

TrunkSpace: You’re working alongside an amazing cast in your new series “Perpetual Grace LTD.” Do you view your time on a project like this as much of a learning experience as you do a job, especially when you’re surrounded by so many accomplished performers?
Williams: I take every chance that I get to perform as a learning experience but especially when I’m working with great actors like Jimmi Simpson. Being in scenes with Jimmi and the rest of our ensemble was an amazing experience.

TrunkSpace: As a performer, it’s always important to live in the moment, but when you’re working on such a big show like “Perpetual Grace LTD” or your other series “Fresh Off the Boat,” is it hard not to see them as career game changers? How do you stay grounded in the moment and not think, “This is a job that will lead to bigger and better things in the future?”
Williams: As an actor you learn to stop thinking of jobs in terms of what they will do for your career because you never really know. When I first booked “Fresh Off the Boat” I was only supposed to be on it for one episode. This one episode part turned into a multi-season part, and there was no way to predict that.

TrunkSpace: For the audience the final product is always the most memorable, but for those involved in a project we’d imagine that it goes much further than that. What is something from your time working on “Perpetual Grace LTD” that you’ll take with you through the rest of your life and career?
Williams: I will always remember how supportive our set was. The creator of the show, Steve Conrad, is full of trust and respect, not just for the cast and crew but for the audience as well. He’s a genius and such an interesting new voice in television.

Photo By: The Riker Brothers/Grooming By: Michelle Harvey

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far… a total “pinch me” moment?
Williams: The most recent highlight was after the “Perpetual Grace LTD” premiere when I got to talk to Sir Ben Kingsley about the show. It was also just incredible to sit in the theatre and watch the audience’s reaction.

TrunkSpace: If someone came to you and said, “Dash, here is a blank check… go out and greenlight anything you want for yourself,” what kind of project would you put into production and why?
Williams: I would probably greenlight a sketch show in America with some of my favorite British comedians that I feel are under appreciated here.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Williams: I don’t think I would because I enjoy watching my career unfold.

Perpetual Grace LTD” airs Sundays on Epix.

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Wingman Wednesday

Benjamin Charles Watson

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PHOTOGRAPHY: Noah Asanias/GROOMING: Frida Norrman/STYLING: Derek Perret

For an actor, joining an existing series can be a daunting task, but any nerves Benjamin Charles Watson had upon signing up for Season 3 of “Designated Survivor” quickly vanished after the first day of filming. As confident digital officer Dontae Evans, the Jamaican-born actor’s emergence into the political thriller came at a time when the series was transitioning from ABC to its new home, Netflix. While many of the original cast members remain (Kiefer Sutherland, for example, still plays President Thomas Kirkman), many new faces have been hired on at the fictional White House, making Watson’s arrival a welcome addition to the ever-growing on-set family.

I was basically joining a family that had already established its relationship for two years,” he said in an exclusive interview with TrunkSpace. “But I was accepted with open arms and quickly became one of the team.”

We recently sat down with Watson to discuss how the current political climate impacts the show, its newfound realism, and his “Snowpiercer” future.

TrunkSpace: You joined the latest season of “Designated Survivor” as digital officer Dontae Evans. Were there nerves joining the cast of an established series with the on-set tone already in place, even with the show making the leap to its new home Netflix?
Watson: I was absolutely scared to join a team that had already established itself with its audience. Being the new guy, I had to carefully study the first two seasons in order to match the tone. After the first day of filming, my nerves disappeared because I had the opportunity to work with actors I’ve always wanted to work with. I was basically joining a family that had already established its relationship for two years. But I was accepted with open arms and quickly became one of the team.

TrunkSpace: On the opposite side of that, is there also something exciting about joining a series that already has an established audience, knowing that there will be eyeballs waiting for it when the episodes eventually air?
Watson: It was very exciting joining a show that has such a fan base, but at the same time it made me nervous. This show is filled with characters that are dearly loved by its audiences and some characters didn’t return for Season 3. As a new member of the team, I had to make sure my character would be loved and accepted as a new member of the West Wing. And I think it was accomplished. Also, Dontae on the team will bring a fresh audience that has never experienced the show.

TrunkSpace: While you’re new to the series, tonally, has anything changed given that there are no longer the same restrictions with the content given its new home? Is it grittier than what people will recall from its time on ABC?
Watson: I think after leaving ABC and finding its new home on Netflix, the show has gotten better. We’re able to push boundaries a bit further and also explore real topics that affect the American people. I find that the show is a lot more realistic and engaging. We parallel some real-world events and it keeps you on the edge of your seat.

TrunkSpace: There are some heavy hitters in the cast. As an actor, do you view an experience like this – and any experience really – just as much of a learning experience as you do a job? Can you take a role like Dontae Evans and apply the time on set to future roles/jobs?
Watson: This show was a huge learning experience as an actor. Getting the opportunity to watch Kiefer Sutherland work, was absolutely phenomenal. He’s such a master craftsman and sharing screen time with him on a one-on-one basis was exhilarating. I understand what it takes to be an actor at his caliber, and it was fascinating to watch him work. He was an incredible scene partner and absolutely a dream to work opposite.

Dontae is a lot stronger than I am in real life. He fully knows who he is as a person and is unapologetic about it. I’ve taken Dontae and applied him to my real-life, including auditions. He is strong, confident, fearless and wears his heart on his sleeve. He taught me a lot about life and how to become the person I truly desire to become.

TrunkSpace: We’re living in a very politically-focused time right now, particularly here in the United States. Does a show like “Designated Survivor” benefit creatively during a period of such uncertainty and unrest because so many people are attuned to what is going on around them? Does the attention on real-life politics spill over into the fictional world?
Watson: With the political uncertainty happening in the USA right now, I think it works amazingly for the show. This show gets the audience to look at the inside of The White House from a point of view they’ve never seen. This season, we’ve touched on so many real-world events that many individuals don’t necessarily know about stateside and abroad.

TrunkSpace: For the audience the final product is always the most memorable, but for those involved in a project we’d imagine that it goes much further than that. What is something from your time working on “Designated Survivor” that you’ll take with you through the rest of your life and career?
Watson: The thing I will take away from working on “Designated Survivor” is knowing that I’ve done the work and trusting that life I’ve prepared for my character will show up once the director calls “Action!” Also, just knowing and trusting myself and being confident in my abilities. I remember having a rough time on a scene and Julie White, who plays Lorraine Zimmer, saw how badly I was beating myself up and she told me that it’s okay and I know what I’m doing so just be easy on myself. After this pep talk, I attacked this scene in a completely different way and I’m happy I had her to calm me down.

TrunkSpace: When you receive a new script on a project that you’re working on – in this case “Designated Survivor” – what are you most excited to discover when reading about your character’s latest narrative progression? Is it his overall arc? Is it a great piece of dialogue? What are the most intriguing aspects for you personally about reading a new script for the first time?
Watson: Whenever we got a new script I’m so intrigued to discover more about Dontae’s arc throughout the episode and how it affects his overall objective goal. Dontae’s biggest reveal is that he’s HIV positive and I had no idea until I received and read the script! It blew my mind because I was so excited to research and explore the aspects of living with a disease that affect a lot of individuals, including African American men, and has been stigmatized for a long time. As an actor, I love researching every aspect of my character and knowing him fully from early childhood to his current life.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Noah Asanias/GROOMING: Frida Norrman/STYLING: Derek Perret

TrunkSpace: You’re also set to star in the small screen adaptation of “Snowpiercer” for TNT. This is a show that people are very excited about. For those fans of the film, what can they expect when they see the series air later this year, and how your character Brakeman Fuller falls into things?
Watson: I’ve been a huge fan of “Snowpiercer” for such a long time! The fans can expect something out of this world. You’re going to be drawn into a world that is chaotic and extreme, but full of heart and hope.

Brakeman Fuller is obedient, but he’s a bit weak and a follower. He’s primarily seen with John Osweiler (played by Sam Otto). The thing about Brakeman Fuller is that when the going gets tough, he’s not down to fight.

TrunkSpace: What is a character that you portrayed – even as a guest spot – that you wished you had more time to spend with and explore further?
Watson: I had a guest spot on “Travelers” and I wish I had more time to explore my character Lars. The episode was entitled “17 Minutes” and we see my character basically crying because one of his best friends dies. I just wish I had more time to explore the dynamic and greater inner work of Lars, especially his relationship with his best friends.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Watson: Time machine! I’m not sure if I’d jump into the future 10 years. I’d be worried that by entering the future, I’d change the trajectory of my path by viewing it. What if by looking into the future, that the specific timeline would be changed? What if I saw myself and then I’d have to explain to myself who I was? Too many possibilities. But if I do go into the future and don’t like what I see, I would probably come back to the past and work diligently to change my future. SOOOOO, MAYBE I WOULD…

Season 3 of “Designated Survivor” is available now on Netflix.

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Wingman Wednesday

Madeleine McGraw

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Photographer: JSquared Photography/Hair: Gui Schoedler/Make-up: Desirae Cherman/Stylist: Jessica Margolis

Animated Disney movies are enjoyed generation after generation, over and over again. For example, our parents watched “Cinderella” in the 1950s, and then we watched it in the 1980s, and now our kids are watching it in a different century than when it was produced. That timeless, evergreen viewing experience is not lost on 10-year-old Madeleine McGraw, who plays Bonnie in “Toy Story 4,” set to hit theaters on June 21.

I almost can’t wrap my head around it,” she said in an exclusive interview with TrunkSpace.

We recently sat down with McGraw to discuss how she reacted upon learning she had been cast in the fan-favorite franchise, being a part of the Marvel cinematic universe, and the kindness of her “pretend dad” Patrick Fugit.

TrunkSpace: We are huge fans of the “Toy Story” movies because there is always something for everyone in them – both kids and adults alike. Were you a fan of the movies prior to being cast, and what was your first thought when you learned that you’d be playing Bonnie?
McGraw: I was five when I booked the role of Bonnie and I had definitely seen all three “Toy Story” movies. I loved them so much! We used to drive from Northern California to Southern California a lot and I would always bring all three movies for our drives. I remember when my mom and dad told me I booked Bonnie. I ran around our house screaming! I was so excited.

TrunkSpace: Bonnie is a character who was previously established in “Toy Story 3” and then appeared in a few of their holiday specials as well. Were you nervous taking on a character who had been voiced by a previous performer? Did you have the freedom to make her your own in this latest installment?
McGraw: When I first got the audition they were definitely looking for a voice match. I listened to the talented Emily Hahn and realized Emily and I sounded similar. I wouldn’t say I was nervous, but I didn’t want to disappoint anyone, especially Emily. You get very attached to a character you work on for such a long time.

TrunkSpace: Disney movies like “Bambi” and “Cinderella” are more than 70 years old but are still enjoyed by kids today. Is it cool knowing that your work will be watched by people for generations to come?
McGraw: Oh my goodness… YES! I know I am only 10, but I do think about how someday my kids, or even my grandkids, will get to enjoy this amazing series of movies. I almost can’t wrap my head around it.

TrunkSpace: What was the most enjoyable aspect of getting to play Bonnie in “Toy Story 4?”
McGraw: Well, I loved getting to work with Josh Cooley (director) these past four years and I hope to work with him and Jonas Rivera (producer) again and again. They were always super supportive. I also loved getting to record at the Pixar Studios in Emeryville. It was like an extension of Disneyland. I didn’t want to leave.

TrunkSpace: Without giving away any spoilers, what are you most excited for people to see when they sit down and watch “Toy Story 4” when it hits theaters on June 21?
McGraw: I can’t wait for everyone to meet Forky and watch his adventure with the original toys.

TrunkSpace: The franchise is one that always gets plenty of merchandise tie-ins, including toys. What is it like seeing a toy based on a character that you portrayed on the big screen?
McGraw: I don’t know if they will make a Bonnie toy, but I was incredibly lucky to voice a car in “Cars 3.” I played Maddy McGear. (Named after me – Maddy McGraw.) Having a character named after me was probably one of the most incredible things that has ever happened to me. Then when I saw the cute die-cast Maddy McGear car, I cried. It was a really special moment.

TrunkSpace: You also appeared in “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” portraying a young Hope Van Dyne. With the recent release of “Avengers: End Game,” what does it feel like knowing that you were a part of such a huge, international success as the Marvel cinematic universe?
McGraw: It definitely doesn’t feel real. But it does feel incredibly special. I am a HUGE Marvel Fan! My brothers have their whole room decorated in Marvel stuff. My pretend dad from “Outcast,” Patrick Fugit (we are still super close), his awesome wife, Jenny, and my whole family, always go to see all the Marvel movies together. It was so cool to take him to see “Ant-Man and the Wasp.” The whole Marvel experience is something I will never EVER forget! I still can’t believe I was a part of it. So grateful!

Photographer: JSquared Photography/Hair: Gui Schoedler/Make-up: Desirae Cherman/Stylist: Jessica Margolis

TrunkSpace: Another project that you starred in with a comic book connection is “Outcast.” Are there any characters from the world of comic books that you’d like a chance to play in the future?
McGraw: Playing Amber Barnes was such a gift. Robert Kirkman is, well, a genius. So if he came up with a new comic book character that I could play, that would be awesome. But honestly, I love Marvel so much, it would be an honor to play any of them.

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
McGraw: Well, the highlight for me would definitely have to be all the amazing people I have met. Some of my closest friends and mentors in my life I have met because of acting. My friend Megan Park (“The Secret Life of the American Teenager”) has been such an incredible friend and mentor to me. She cast me in her directorial debut and she keeps casting me in just about anything she can. Besides directing and acting, she is such a gifted writer. I admire her so much. Meeting her and having her in my life is definitely a highlight. Same with my pretend dad from “Outcast,” Patrick Fugit, he is one of the coolest people I know. I had a tough audition recently and I asked my mom to call him and see if he could help me. He totally made space in his day to help me out. So meeting him has also been a huge highlight.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
McGraw: No, I would want to experience the journey as it comes. I wouldn’t want to ruin the surprise or work any less hard. I like having goals and working to reach them.

Toy Story 4” unwraps in theaters June 21.

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Photographer: JSquared Photography/Hair: Gui Schoedler/Make-up: Desirae Cherman/Stylist: Jessica Margolis

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Wingman Wednesday

Emily Haine

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Photo By: Farrah Aviva

With great writing and a chance to be seen by a loyal and loving fanbase, “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” is the kind of modern day television that actors are clamoring to be involved in. For Emily Haine, who made her debut as Elspeth in Season 2, that excitement began to build very early on in the auditioning process. Still ecstatic to have been cast in the bingeable Netflix behemoth, the Vancouver native says there’s something special not only about the series but the production itself.

Theres something in the air on set,” she shared in an exclusive interview with TrunkSpace. “Sometimes fans stand outside the studio gates to catch a feel for it.”

We recently sat down with Haine to discuss the need for a wild streak, eating pistachios with the shell on, and why she’s advocating for more human honesty in midst of the social media age.

TrunkSpace: Season 1 of Chilling Adventures of Sabrinawas a huge success, both with fans and critics. Is there an extra surge of personal excitement when you are joining a series with so much buzz behind it?
Haine: (Laughter) Yes! The buzz for me started with casting. ‘Brina auditions bring out the best talent. Seeing my friends turn up, knowing theyre out there when I go into the room, electrifies me. At the end of the day we all want to be part of a show like this with great writing and the potential for being seen. You gotta be a little wild to do this job. I can put all I’ve got into auditions and hear nothing back. But the nos only make the yess that much sweeter. By Satans divine intervention this is one of the times they were into it! Im still freaking out!

TrunkSpace: Although still grounded in reality, the series is one where anything is possible. From an acting standpoint, is it fun getting to arrive on a set where you can do the kinds of things on screen that are inconceivable in real life?
Haine: Theres something in the air on set. Sometimes fans stand outside the studio gates to catch a feel for it. Its the palpable tension between exhilaration and working long hours. Somehow the mythical, magical and the mystical come to life when were filming. I really cant explain it.

TrunkSpace: Elspeth is a confident, cool as a cucumber character. In terms of her personality, how has she differed from past roles? What has she allowed you to do on camera that you have yet to be able to tackle?
Haine: I see Elspeths confidence as her shield. High school can be like a poker game. Dont show your hand too soon, especially when the dark arts are afoot. Theres so much of Elspeths inner life to explore. Ive never played a witch before – what up witches! What has she allowed me to do? Maybe reanimation… but Im pretty sure I do that every morning if you know what I mean.

TrunkSpace: Elspeth ages slower than normal people. Is that the kind of power you would ever want to have in real life, because in some ways, it feels like it could eventuallyas others around you become oldfeel more like a curse?
Haine: In the industry, and societally, we put a ton of unhealthy emphasis on looking young – Ive been told by previous agents to lie about my age. There are a lot more roles for younger females. For that reason its tempting… but Ive seen enough movies to know that we shouldnt mess with the natural order of things, so no.

TrunkSpace: For the viewer, the end product is always the most memorable, but for those involved in the project it must go much further than that. Whats the most memorable aspect of getting to work on Chilling Adventures of Sabrinathat youll carry with you through the rest of your life and career?
Haine: My biggest take away is the crystallization of certain beliefs Ive been harboring. That we do create the foundation of our reality with building blocks in our heads. Think it, be it. Be really super clear on what you want and then work hard for it. Take classes, read books, watch Ted talks, do whatever you can to clear the way for your dream to unfold. Believe in yourself more than anything else and you will shine! Fall down, get back up. Keep trying. It wasnt that long ago that I was a kid dreaming about being an actor. Now Im an actor dreaming about acting, playing piano, a claymation horror short I want to make…

TrunkSpace: You used to be in a punk band. Whats the most punk thing about you, now, at this stage in your life?
Haine: Well, as an artist you kind of abandon security and normalcy – this job looks bougie but most of us are living paycheck to paycheck for five minutes of screen time. Is that punk? I eat pistachios with the shell.

Photo By: Farrah Aviva

TrunkSpace: You recently made an announcement on Instagram that you want to be more transparent about your own mental health so as to create a safe sharing space and to help others not feel alone. People are always there to point out the faults of social media, which we totally understand, but its benefits do stretch beyond self-promotion. Could you feel how your declaration helped others, and in return, did their reaching out then help you?
Haine: Thanks for progressing the conversation. I wanted to create a moment that shattered whatever public perception people may have of me and challenge how I see myself. Its easy to post flattering pictures and I am proud to share my accomplishments with friends, but whats beyond that? To pretend that we dont face hard times is delusional. I feen for that type of honesty online, like Jameela Jamil, shes one of my heroes! Sometimes the best way out of a dark hole is a big jump. Im so glad I did it. Your stories, messages, DMs, calls and texts revive me. It turned whatever uncomfortable feelings I had about sharing into easily the best thing Ive done on social. Because of that Im currently penning a presentation on my personal experience with mental health for a volunteer advocacy speakers position with Mood Disorders Association of BC.

TrunkSpace: Were suckers for a good banana bread here, and from what we hear, you have the skills to turn those old bananas into a loaf lovers dream! Just how beyond ripe does the fruit have to be to make the bread the best bread it can be?
Haine: Ripe enough that you wouldnt eat ‘em.

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
Haine: This moment right now.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Haine: What if Im not happy? Can I change the outcome? If yes, then fire it up! If not, then hellll nah. Ill come with you to look at your life though if you want! Ill bring my laser gun. Pew. Pew. Cause its the future.

Season 2 of “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” is available now on Netflix.

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Wingman Wednesday

Adam Tsekhman

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Photo By: Shanna Fisher

Having never expected to spend quite so much time shirtless when he first signed on to play Gary Green of The Time Bureau in “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow,”Adam Tsekhman is ecstatic to have been given the opportunity. Originally intended as a three-episode guest star, the Winnipeg native with a love for comedy has reveled in the expanded role, even when things got full on nipple crazy in Season 4. (No nipple spoilers for those who have not yet binged their way through it!)

We recently sat down with Tsekhman to discuss luring unicorns, Biff buzz, and peering into the future of “The Gary Green Chronicles.”

TrunkSpace: What would 10-year-old Adam think about his future self getting to play in the DC universe? Were you a comic fan and has your fanboy self come full circle?
Tsekhman: 10-year-old Adam would LOVE the fact that he gets to play in the DC Universe, however he would probably be a bit sad that he wouldn’t have any superhero powers. But adult Adam loves that he doesn’t have super powers (easier on the knees and hips). I wasn’t really a comic fanboy growing up. I wasn’t into comics growing up, but I was definitely into the comic book movies that sort of started for me with the Michael Keaton, Jack Nicholson “Batman.” I loved that movie and I was hooked!

TrunkSpace: As we understand it, your character Gary Green was originally only supposed to appear in a handful of episodes. When did you get a sense that it would become more than that and did that open up the character for you in terms of getting to explore areas of him that you never thought you’d have a chance to when you first signed on?
Tsekhman: I only knew for sure that I would be on the show for three episodes so when they wanted me to be involved in more than that, my excitement levels shot up immeasurably. I was never really certain how often Gary would appear so I was both eager and hopeful to get more chances to play this fabulous character. This season has been particularly fun and challenging in terms of the areas we get to explore. For example, I didn’t expect to be shirtless so often. It’s very freeing! (Laughter) But I do think we will get to see more emotional depth with Gary – while still maintaining his gloriously sunny outlook on life.

TrunkSpace: As far as your own personal journey with the character, what have you enjoyed most about getting to inhabit Gary and see him developed out more and more over time?
Tsekhman: I am naturally drawn to comedy and I get such a joy out of all of the hilarious situations that the writers have created for Gary. The beautiful thing about Legends is that not even the sky is the limit in terms of where this show can go and it’s so much fun getting to read the scripts that our brilliant writers churn out every week. They are the real superheroes of this show!

TrunkSpace: Anything can happen in a world where time travel and super heroes exist. What’s been your biggest “pinch me” moment on set thus far where you had to stop and go, “Wow, this is really my life now”?
Tsekhman: Yeah, I think being topless, holding a pomegranate and luring a unicorn out of the forest would have to be a “pinch me” moment. Also, getting to work this season with Tom Wilson who is immortalized as Biff Tannen has been incredible. He’s a hilarious and amazing guy full of great stories!

TrunkSpace: Do you find that this business subscribes to the old adage of work begets work, and if so, do you see your portrayal of Gary on “Legends of Tomorrow” opening up more doors for you in the future?
Tsekhman: I absolutely agree with that old adage! I certainly hope that Gary does open more doors. Perhaps a spin-off? “The Gary Green Chronicles” or “The Legends of the Time Bureau.” Wouldn’t that be fun? But, seriously, the attention that the show has garnered will hopefully open more doors. I suppose only time will tell.

TrunkSpace: You have a degree in finance from the Wharton School of Business. Was pursuing acting a serious change of gears for you, and if so, did you have to convince yourself that you were making the right choice? How hard was it for you to take the first step on the path you’re currently traveling?
Tsekhman: Yes, I do have a degree in Finance from Wharton and taking that first step was challenging. I had an investment banking job offer from Lehman Brothers that I chose to forgo in order to pursue more creative endeavors. Luckily for me, my parents were very supportive of my decision, which I recognize is very rare and I’m extremely grateful to them. I was so in love with performing at that time that I may have been slightly delusional to think that I could succeed as an actor. Perhaps you have to have these delusions to choose to go into this industry. Who knows? The numbers are certainly scary, many more actors than jobs. You don’t need a finance degree to recognize that.

TrunkSpace: There’s a lot of rejection and self-doubt that comes along with a career in the arts. That said, does the creative space fulfill you personally more than a career in finance could have ever achieved – even if you had reached the pinnacle of success in that industry?
Tsekhman: I certainly think so. That being said, I did enjoy finance, but the fulfillment I get from acting and writing is immense. However, I am sure that reaching the pinnacle of the financial world would be quite fulfilling as well. I am biased because I chose this path and I am ecstatic with my choice. But maybe I would have been happy to stay in finance as well. Perhaps my positive outlook on life would have brought fulfillment regardless of career choice. At least if I stayed in finance, I would have kept my nipple intact! (Laughter)

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
Tsekhman: “LEGENDS OF TOMORROW,” BABY!

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Tsekhman: No, I wouldn’t take that jump because it’s the 10-year journey that is the fun part. Knowing the destination would make the journey less fun and it would take away the mystery and hope that comes from this business. You never know what opportunities might come your way tomorrow and seeing what things look like in 10 years might negatively influence your decision making today. Although, jumping 10 years into the future and right onto the set of Season 7 of “The Gary Green Chronicles” would be pretty cool!

Season 4 of “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” is available now on Netflix. Season 5 will return to The CW later this year.

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Wingman Wednesday

Mark Gagliardi

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Photo By: Jenn KL

No one is more excited for the new action/adventure series “Blood & Treasure” than star Mark Gagliardi’s inner 10 year old. A lover of art who also enjoys spectacle, the “Drunk History” and “The Thrilling Adventure Hour” alumni jokes that he makes career decisions based on what his younger self would think is cool, but when you’re standing in an Egyptian tomb rigged with booby traps, anyone who grew up watching Indiana Jones crack his whip in exotic locales would be hard pressed not to want to jump in a time machine and tell themselves that dreams really do come true.

We recently sat down with Gagliardi to discuss quotingThe Princess Bride,” the need for the who, and why he likes to tell people he’s starring in a new adventure series for the Columbia Broadcasting System.

TrunkSpace: As a performer, do you feel pressure for a project to succeed? Does any of that come back on you with something like “Blood & Treasure,” which premiered last night?
Gagliardi: Yeah, of course it does. Everything I do, I want people to enjoy. I’m not going to create a show and be like, “Oh, man, people are going to hate this one.” I want it to go really well. I’m nervous about it because it’s a big show. It’s a big deal for me personally because this is my first time having a part this size on a show, and I personally love the show. It’s a show that I would watch anyway were I not involved. It’s very much up my alley, so I just hope people enjoy it as much as we did making it. We had a blast making it, and the whole time, we’re assuming people will love this show, because obviously we love having a great time, and we all love each other. We’re traveling all over and having this amazing experience, so hopefully that translates.

TrunkSpace: If it’s a show that you would watch if you weren’t involved, what would 10-year-old Mark think about you starring on a show like this?
Gagliardi: Man, I’ve thought about this so many times. First of all, one of my favorite movies is Disney’s “The Kid,” where Bruce Willis meets Spencer Breslin, who plays little kid Bruce Willis, directed by John Turteltaub… who directed “National Treasure,” so it all comes full circle.

I try to make my decisions based on whether or not 10-year-old me would think I was doing something cool and want to give me a high five. So, I think that 10-year-old me would see this show and get really pumped that 40-year-old me was in it.

TrunkSpace: And that’s coming from a guy who’s already voiced Batman, so 10year-old you has already handed out some high fives!
Gagliardi: Yes! Oh, man, I called 10-year-old me when I got the Batman job, too. He was really pumped.

That was a fun job. That was one of those where the first thing my voiceover agent said to me when she called me was, “Here, sit down. I have something cool to tell you.” So the fact that she knew, “Holy crap, it’s Batman!” was really awesome.

TrunkSpace: With so much content circulating today on so many different platforms, do you think a network like CBS feels less pressure for something to become a hit right out of the gates? Does “Blood & Treasure” have more wiggle room to build an audience now than it would have had 20 years ago?
Gagliardi: Yeah, I think that we have the benefit of a huge, major network, and a great lead-in, the “NCIS” season finale. So, yeah, I think there are so many screens now, and there is so much content now that you have a million choices of what to watch and where to watch, and there is some amazing television that is doing amazing things. “Game of Thrones” broke a million barriers. “Fleabag” now is a new one that is breaking all these molds. There are a lot of really great “break the mold” television happening, and I think one thing that CBS does really, really well is what we are doing… big, old school television for as broad an audience as we can make it for.

I like referring to them not as modern day CBS, and it annoys my friends, but I call it The Columbia Broadcasting System. That sounds so big and old timey to me. “I’m doing a new adventure program on the Columbia Broadcasting System.” It sounds like, “Hey, everybody, gather around your radios.” There’s something that feels very communal and old timey and family and big about the show.

TrunkSpace: And it also has that summer movie feel to it. With that said, is it no accident that it’s getting its run now in the summertime?
Gagliardi: No accident at all. We actually talked a lot about it while we were making the show that what we were making is a summertime adventure. It’s the book that you read on the beach that’s a little lighter. Maybe you’re on vacation, and you’re going to splurge and get the big meal instead of having the healthy salad. We knew going in. One of our great directors on the show – Steve Boyum is his name – and after every take – I’m paraphrasing because I don’t know if you swear in your publication – but after any great take, he would always say, “That’s the big movie stuff right there!” And that’s how we knew he had gotten the take that he wanted.

TrunkSpace: You’re kicking off the Summer TV season!
Gagliardi: Yeah. I like the idea that we’re beginning the summer movie season with a television show. That feels fun and groovy and subversive. Because any screen can show you anything now. I watch movies on an iPad before I go to sleep, so you can find a giant blockbuster popcorn story anywhere. I think that’s great. I think it’s fun.

Summer movies have always been my favorite season. I’m a huge Marvel MCU fan. I loved the “Lord of the Rings.” I love any big, epic thing. There’s a reason that I’ll go and see whatever giant, splashy Broadway show is opening because I love art, but I also love a little spectacle.

TrunkSpace: Well, and going back to 10-year-old Mark, that’s the kind of stuff that first draws us in.
Gagliardi: Exactly. There’s a reason that people cosplay at ComiCon in the costumes from the epic, fun, over-the-top stories. And those are the stories that always sang to me as a kid, and still do as an adult.

And one thing I love about the show is everybody involved in this show was high-fiving 10-year-old themselves in some way. We live in a world on this show where Indiana Jones movies exist, and Marvel movies exist, and we quote them, and we all watch them, and these are characters that nerd out for them. One of my most fun experiences reading a script for this was when I’m reading a script for an episode, and at one point, I quote the “Princess Bride.” I was like, “Oh, my God, I am quoting the Princess Bride. This is the greatest adventure show of all time.” 10-year-old me got a high five.

Pictured Mark Gagliardi as Father Chuck of the CBS series BLOOD & TREASURE scheduled to air on the CBS Television Network. Photo: Kharen Hill / CBS © 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.

TrunkSpace: The most memorable thing for the viewer is always the end product, but for those involved it must go beyond that. What are you going to carry with you through the rest of your life and career from your “Blood & Treasure” experience?
Gagliardi: Two things. The smaller of the two being that… I’ve always wanted to be an actor since I was 5, from watching the behind the scenes footage for “Temple of Doom” and watching behind the scenes footage for “Never Say Never Again” when I was a really little kid, and seeing these giant movie sets with all the big cameras and lights and everything. I thought, “Oh, that’s what being an actor is,” which I, of course, have learned through the years that it’s not quite just that. So that’s why I say that’s the smaller of the two for me… walking into a set that is a huge Egyptian tomb with missing sarcophagi… that is evocative and fun. They’re blasting smoke, and there’s guys one ropes rigging booby traps. It’s this crazy thing.

But to me, I think the more important is… I had an acting teacher once tell me, “A story is a who, a what, and a where, but it’s always about the who.” That’s the heart of your story. And I think that this show in particular, for me as an actor, getting to meet and work with everybody who is playing at this level, and is still the kindest people in the world… we all just fell in love with the work and each other while we were doing this. I think that’s something for a TV show, too. I think we can fill it with explosions, but unless the audience cares who gets blown up, it doesn’t matter. So I think that what’s going to sustain the show is some really, fun, cool characters that I’d love to hang out with in real life.

TrunkSpace: This is a business with no certainties. With that said, sometimes the things we don’t plan for are the ones that are the game changers. What has been the biggest surprise of your career?
Gagliardi: I think there have been so many experiences in my career that I didn’t know at the time that they were going to send me on a trajectory. At first, this was an audition. I audition for a lot of different things. This is one I was particularly excited about because I read the script and loved it. So I really stuck to my gut on this audition.

Several years ago… things had started off small that just got progressively bigger, and I had no idea that that would happen… I did a little show at M Bar in 2005 called “The Thrilling Adventure Hour” that became this juggernaut podcast over the course of 10 years. We had movie stars guest starring in it. We were sold out, and we were adding shows, and we went on tour to Australia and New Zealand. So that was a huge thing that changed my life forever.

And another one, of course, was sitting on my couch, getting drunk and telling a story with Derek Waters and Jeremy Konner, and now that sitting on the couch, getting drunk, telling a story has become “Drunk History,” and is in its sixth season on Comedy Central. So that just is mind blowing to me that that became a thing.

Blood & Treasure” airs Tuesdays on CBS.

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Wingman Wednesday

Lisa Durupt

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Photographer: Birdie Thompson/Grooming: Allison Noelle

Although she has had to take a few reflective deep breaths from time to time, Lisa Durupt never doubted herself or her ability to make a career in the arts. With an unwavering belief that her dreams would one day become a reality, the Canadian-born actress stayed the course. Now with her role as Paula Noble in the recently-released film “Breakthrough,” what lies ahead is becoming increasingly more clear as she continues to build on an already impressive 2019, which also includes a return to the series “Heartland” later this summer.

We recently sat down with Durupt to discuss taking life lessons from her costars, the unpredictability of acting, and “playing cold.”

TrunkSpace: “Breakthrough” is based on a true story. When there are real people involved in the journey that you’re taking audiences on – even with artistic license taken – do you feel like you have a responsibility to those who lived the story? Is there a different feeling on set with a project like this than something that is entirely fictional?
Durupt: Of course, yes. You want to be careful to honor their actual story but at the same time you need to trust that you were hired because you had the right type of energy from the start. At the end of the day if you focus on the facts of the story and on the relationships that the character had with everyone else, you can rest assured you are somewhat on track. The feeling on set was different than fiction in the sense that everyone wanted to get it right. There is always a sense of trying to make a great show, but when it is a true story, there is a little extra care that is taken, even if no one says it out loud.

TrunkSpace: Paula Noble is a real person. What was your approach to giving her life on screen? How much of who the woman actually is in real life is present in your performance?
Durupt: I had to trust that my gut instincts were on point, as I did not meet her unil the premiere. I met her husband Jason Noble on set but she did not make the trip. He confirmed that I was a great choice as she is just as sassy and spunky, so I felt pretty comfortable at the end of the day.

TrunkSpace: There’s a lot of heavy drama involved in “Breakthrough.” Was there a moment captured in the film that you feel shined a spotlight on a side of your acting that the world had yet to see? Were you able to go places as Paula that you hadn’t had an opportunity to with previous roles?
Durupt: I do get to do a fair bit of comedy in my career so a film like this was a nice change of pace. I think the one aspect that I had not tackled before was Paula’s unwavering faith. I grew up going to United Church until I was about 12, but due to sports on Sundays eventually we stopped going. Understanding her point of view about faith and religion was a new one for me, I learned a lot about myself in the process.

TrunkSpace: What would younger Lisa – the one who first decided to make a career in the arts – think about her future self’s performance in “Breakthrough?” Would she be surprised?
Durupt: I think she would have thought you were nuts, but, at the same time, totally believed it. I was a late comer to the game but I never doubted I would make a career in the business. Call it naivety or blind ambition but I always knew I would get to do exactly what I wanted to one day. I still do. Others might doubt me, but I always prove them wrong, sometimes it just takes longer than I would like.

TrunkSpace: For the viewer, the end product is always the most memorable, but for those involved in the project it must go much further than that. What’s the most memorable aspect of getting to work on “Breakthrough” that you’ll carry with you through the rest of your life and career?
Durupt: The cast. I am a fan of them all so to get to know them on a personal level, as much as you can in the short time you work together, it was really special. They are all great people and sometimes in this business that is not always the case. I tend to take away a life lesson from each actor I work with and they gave me some of my most memorable yet. They are a special group and I wish them all continued success.

TrunkSpace: What has been an unexpected bonus or reward – something you could have never anticipated when you first started your journey as an actress – to a career in the arts? What is an aspect of your life that you wouldn’t have now had you not taken this path, but at the same time, one that you can’t imagine your life without?
Durupt: The relationships. The people I have met from all walks of life through work, they are talented, hard-working and creative beyond belief. It absolutely melts my heart to think about how spoiled I am to have them in my life. If someone had told me at 19 that I would have the circle of friends and extended family I have now, because of this business, I would never have believed it. I value those connections immensely and would never trade them for anything.

TrunkSpace: There are ups and downs in any career, but certainly the entertainment industry is known for delivering peaks and valleys. Was there ever a moment where you considered walking away from acting, and if so, what kept you on your path and looking forward?
Durupt: Oh man, yes! Every artist goes through that more often than they are willing to admit. Any other career, the amount of work you put in to auditioning, training, and managing your own career, you could be the CEO of the company. Acting is so unpredictable and out of your control. The reason I could never quit is my deep-rooted passion for what I do. Sometimes I do need to take a breath, shake it off for a few days and regroup. But quitting? Not an option.

TrunkSpace: We’re suckers for Christmas movies here and have seen quite a few of yours, either around the holidays or during our Christmas in July binge sessions. Is it a bit of a trip to shoot these movies and dive into that red and green festiveness months before the holly is hung in real life?
Durupt: YES! Murphy’s law: It is always so hot when we are shooting them and they are yelling (playfully) at you to “play the cold.” But I looove Christmas so I am happy to do it.

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career thus far?
Durupt: It is hard to pick one. There are so many for various reasons. A really memorable one was working with Josh Lucas. I was such a fan of “Sweet Home Alabama” back in the day. All my girlfriends and I swooned for him as ‘Jake’ so to meet him and get to know him as a person was a big highlight. He is a total gem and not to mention an awesome dad.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Durupt: No. I am a big advocate of trusting that you are exactly where you were meant to be in life. It is too easy to worry about enough in life already that stressing about what is coming next only distracts you from staying present in the moment. I am so excited about what is coming up, I am just getting started. I don’t want to ruin the surprise.

Featured Image Photographer: Birdie Thompson
Featured Image Grooming: Allison Noelle

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