Interview with Blaze of Gory actress Susan Adriensen
Interview with the stunning, talented “Blaze of Gory” actress, Susan Adriensen.
Q1) How did you get into acting, Susan?
I certainly didn’t get into acting overnight. Like any art, it was a process… and still is for me. My acting process happened to be long and ongoing. Acting will always be a part of my life. Even if I start a new job or career, acting will always fit into my life.
As far as I can remember, I always wanted to act. As a kid, I used to put on fake plays, TV shows, and silly commercials with my friends. I even used to make wacky shows on a tape recorder (remember those things?) and I’d play various characters in different voices. Once, I came home and my mother was at the kitchen table with her friend listening to one of my tapes about a person turning into a cockroach. They were hysterical. I was mortified that she found that tape and I ran into my bedroom. … but I got over it quickly as I loved to make people laugh and still do. I’m a “Ham.”
Regardless of all these “performances” I did, I didn’t take theater classes until I was a senior in highschool because I thought I’d get stage fright. I enjoyed the classes and, soon after, joined the highschool theater. I was naturally nervous, but didn’t have stage fright. I regretted not joining earlier. Anyway, from there I took acting classes in college, performed in other students’ video productions, and, after college, I took various acting classes in New York City. Acting came in dribs and drabs because I never quite pursued it. Today, I don’t even audition as people ask me to be in their projects and if the script is good, I usually take the job. However, if I want to take my talent outside of the horror genre, I expect to pound the pavement.
Q2) You appeared regularly on the TV-Series “Steampipe Alley” in the USA. Was this your first appearance on TV and what do you enjoy most about this?
Yes, it was my first appearance on national television as it was syndicated throughout the United States. I really enjoyed the characters I got to play and I adored the production staff and the star of the show, comedian, Mario Cantone. It was family!
Q3)What actor or actress inspires you the most?
I was always a huge fan of Carol Burnett as a kid. As I became a young adult, I liked the “crazies.” I admired (and was obsessed) with Jack Nicholson in “The Shining” and later Anthony Hopkins in “Silence of the Lambs.” Why did male actors like these inspire a feminine petite blonde woman? I have no idea. Maybe I was a psycho actor in a past life…. I even have photos of me from my highschool graduation holding a knife and cutting the cake with my mouth wide open like a psycho. I think I had Jack in mind.
Now back to comedy actors, anyone who knows me well, knows I’m a HUGE Seinfeld fan. The entire cast has such great comedic timing. (I’m waiting to get a group of people together to play the Seinfeld board game. Anyone interested?
Q4) In “Blaze of Gory” you play a character called Reyna in the segment “Snow“ What canyou tell us about her and did you enjoy working with the director David V. G. Davies?
I became so excited as I was reading the script for “Snow” for the first time. I just loved the concept of a modern day “Snow White” story and me playing Reyna, the evil stepmother. I loved the character’s lines and monologues. I started reading them aloud and loving the sinister voice coming out of me. Later, as the character developed for me, I made her less sinister and more human. Of course, the character is a psychopath, but even psychopaths have feelings.
David V. G. Davies! What a guy! And what a pro! He totally gave me freedom with the character and I appreciated his trust. Despite the harsh conditions of Norway, he and the rest of the cast and crew were real troopers! And we genuinely had a great time. I hope to work with all of them again.
I would also like to give a shout out to the writer of the original “Snow.” She’s a young woman who wrote the short story when she was a pre-teen. Her name is Blaize Alix Szantos.
Q5) What was it like filming in Norway and what did you enjoy most about the experience?
The most enjoyable thing filming in Norway was the fun I had with the director and the cast and crew. We got things done efficiently, but had time for laughs.
The other enjoyable thing about filming in Norway was … the beauty of the countryside. We filmed in Kongsberg. We were in a cabin by a lake. Mind you, it was January and there was snow ALL OVER. It was damn cold and we even got stuck on the ice driving up to the cabin, but we made it through, had laughs, and enjoyed the breathtaking views.
Q6) I only started acting in films last year,what acting advice can you give me and would you consider working with me in the future?
I’d love to work with you. How can we do that soon?!
Well, I can only give you the advice I give to myself if I were to go outside the horror genre … and that’s to have TENACITY! Besides having updated headshots and a great resume and reel, I think the other piece of advice I can give is not to take the industry too seriously, but take your ART very seriously. Have fun at auditions. Enjoy meeting new people. The production may not want you for a particular role, but if the audition went well and you’re friendly, calm, and composed, they may remember you for a different role in the future!
Q7) You have starred in many films including “Sculpture” and “Under the Raven’s Wing”, which you also directed. Which one is your favourite film and what do you love most about doing horror flicks?
It’s hard for me to say which is my favorite film, especially when I wear different hats for them. When I acted in “Sculpture,” I wore the hat of actress, playing the role of “Rose Steele.” The hours were long one evening, but I was with a great group of people, including my friend, Marv Blauvelt (who played “Frank Steele” my abusive husband … we had fun with the scene!), and Pete Jacelone, the director. But my only responsibility was to act and give it my all. Yes, it was emotional and the scene was physical and tiring, but … I went home several hours later and my job was finished. When I made my own film, “Under the Raven’s Wing,” I wore so many hats that my head spun … not literally! I wrote it, produced it, directed it, and edited it. It went on for months and months. However, it was gratifying. But the role of filmmaker and actor are so different for me that I cannot compare.
As for “Under the Raven’s Wing” it’s about a young filmmaker who documents the murder confessions of three young women who seduce him into their strange world of spiritual “dimensions” and “transcendence.” The ringleader, Raven, holds everyone in her psychological grip, until her secret is exposed and a power struggle ensues.
If I may, I’d like to give more “shout outs”. Brian Jude, my producer, and Kimberly Amato, my actress, helped tremendously with the production! I appreciate the help from my entire cast and crew. You can see them all on the movie’s IMDB page. Please check it out.
If you check out my IMDB page, you’ll see that there are many other films I act in and I don’t want to play favorites as to which films I enjoyed working on the most, but I think the filmmakers know who they are!
Oh, one production that is not on IMDB yet and that I’m very excited about is the “In Fear Of Series.” I was in the “Scotomaphobia: Fear of Blindness” episode for Season 2. The film was produced by Scott Perry, directed by Jeremiah Kipp, and shot by Steve-Mark Glassner.
Although “Fear of Blindness” and “Under the Raven’s Wing” are not horror flicks, they have some very disturbing scenes and images. I like the raw aspects of films like these. Horror and thriller flicks send chills up your spine and I like the feeling that I get when I watch them and when I act in them. It’s a crazy joy ride!
Q8) You live in New York, what would scare you the most?Seeing King Kong climbing the Empire State Building or seeing the alien mothership hovering over the Brooklyn Bridge?
An alien mothership would scare me more. King Kong is one big ape and I love animals. … but then again, aliens can be cute and lovable too….
Q9) Do you have any pets at home?
Yes! Two turds! … uh … birds! Parrots to be exact. I have a Green Winged Macaw and an African Grey. They are a handful. If anyone is interested in getting a parrot, be sure you’re ready to dedicate yourself to another family member. They are flock animals and demand to be a part of the family. If they are neglected, they will scream and /or pluck out their feathers, or worse. My two girlie birds are loved and spoiled and are all around good girls.
Q10) Finally, You have expanded beyond acting into directing,producing,writing and so on.Where do you see yourself infive years from now and is your future in all of these?
I’m in a bit of a life transition, but I assure you, I’ll still be acting. I also see myself performing outside of the horror genre. I see myself making another movie with a partner(s) … they know who they are…. I also see myself doing more work with animals and parrots. In general, I see myself MOVING AHEAD! And I hope your readers keep on movin‘ too!
Thank you Susan for an amazing interview and good luck for the future.