"Katharine McEwan has a relationship being in front and behind the camera, see why this actress gives it her all in her latest film."
1. Katharine you wrote and produced the film "Solitary" which is getting quite a buzz at the film festivals. What inspired you to write this particular movie?
I wanted to look at what happens when a family chooses an illusion of functionality over the truth, and who gets sacrificed in that equation. I feel that tragic events will probably always happen in families, but if we could handle them differently, both individually and as a society, fewer lives might be destroyed as a result. Stories about family secrets, and the impact those secrets have on us, resonate strongly with me.
2. The character Nora spirals out of control due to her drinking and ends up in a very dark place revealing some pretty heavy secrets.How did you prepare for such a role?
I felt Nora's drinking was a symptom of something much deeper, and it was from that place that I started. I had to connect to her sense of isolation, and identify all the ways in which she learned to cope with that isolation.
I felt like in some ways, Nora created an alter-ego which she presented to the world in order to protect herself. What I tried to discover was who she really was underneath...who she dreamed of being before life robbed her of the opportunity.
3. Your husband Sasha Krane directed you in this role. Was it difficult working together?
There was no-one I trusted more to direct this film than Sasha. I knew he understood what I was trying to say, and who these characters were. That kind of trust is priceless for an actor and I felt extremely blessed to be in that position. Of course it was difficult at times as there is so much stress and pressure during the filmmaking process. But when the going got tough, Sasha would always remind me what we were trying to do and who we were trying to reach out to. It helped us all stay grounded.
4. What are you most passionate about acting, writing or producing?
Acting is my passion. I love to write and produce too, but there is nothing I find more exciting than opening a script and meeting my character for the first time.
5.What advice would you give women struggling with substance /alcohol abuse?
I think it's a really complicated and multi-faceted issue, and everyone's experience is different. But for me, abusing drugs and alcohol was always about trying to avoid looking at things in my life that I found unreconcilable - primarily my mis-spent youth. Getting to the root of what it was I was trying to make tolerable was the only way out. There came a time in my mid-twenties when I realized I either had to make peace with my life and the choices that I'd made, or be forever running from it. I had just moved to LA to pursue acting and make something of my life. I knew I had to stay put and stare it all down - the good, the bad and the really ugly. It was the hardest time of my life and took every bit of strength I had not to throw it all away and stay at the party. When I learned to live with my regrets, instead of pretending I didn't have any, they kind of lost their power over me. I began to trust that I had the right to be whoever I wanted to be right now, and that my past didn't define me. I still work on that every day as I feel we don't live in a society that supports women having second chances. So we have to claim them for ourselves.
6. Are you writing anything else right now?
I'm working on a Western! I'm intrigued by the American West. It was an epic time of a survival. New worlds were built and old ones destroyed. The empty planes were a blank canvas on which the pioneers could start from scratch. I'm fascinated by what they held onto and what was rewritten. And of course how women fitted into that picture.
7. What are you and Sasha working on next?
A psychological thriller that we plan on shooting this year in Europe.
oWhen party-girl Nora is forced to move back home with her aging father, it seems life can't get any worse. But inside her childhood home, the ghosts of her past begin to haunt her, until the secret she has buried for so long is finally revealed.
Katharine Lee McEwan and Anna Skellern
· Festival Awards Info:
oSOLITARY debuted on the festival circuit at the 2015 Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema. It was nominated for eight awards and won three - Best Feature, Best Screenplay and Best Actress. It won Best UK Feature at the 2015 London Independent Film Festival, Best Dramatic Feature at WorldFEST-Houston and Best UK Genre Feature at Moscow's DetectiveFEST. It has been invited to screen at several other film festivals worldwide, including the prestigious Women's International Film and Arts Festival in Miami.
§Katharine Lee McEwan as Nora
· Official website: katharinemcewan.com
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