An Interview with Eirian Cohen by Dean Sills

ec5An Interview with Eirian Cohen by Dean Sills

UKHS – Hi Eirian, welcome to UKHS. You are known for your work in independent horrors, how did you get into acting especially in the horror genre?

EC – At 17, I went to do a performing arts diploma with dreams of being a dancer on a cruise ship so how I ended up doing all these mad films being covered in blood, eaten by monsters and having parts of my body chopped off, I’m not too sure. I guess it all started when I saw an advert for a short film called ‘A Father for the Dead’ and decided to apply. I prepared a monologue from ‘ Hannibal’ and went to the audition shaking like a leaf. I don’t know why they gave me the role, I was a nervous wreck but I’m so glad they did because that little short film became part of a trilogy that made up an award winning feature film called ‘Book of the Dead’ (Safehouse Pictures UK) that has been released in the US and has just been released here in the UK.

UKHS – Which horror actor or actress inspires you the most?

EC – Anthony Hopkins. He is an amazing actor, his characters are so believable and he is captivating to watch. He fascinates me.

ec4UKHS – I believe your first acting role was in York Dungeons, which character did you play and did you enjoy the costumes?

EC – I really liked that job and for some reason, quite enjoyed the fact that I was in costume and make up that made me look like a ghost.There’s a strange satisfaction from making grown adults cry with simply by lurking in the dark and telling stories.I played a few different characters, some funny, some scary and some that were just ridiculous.It was really good fun and really hard work.

UKHS – You worked on ‘Legacy Of Thorn’, a horror feature from the director of ‘Slasher House’, which is also now out on DVD. What was it like working for MJ Dixon and did you enjoy your role in the movie?

EC – I reviewed ‘Slasher House’ and loved it so was very happy to be offered a part in MJ’s film. Working for MJ Dixon was great, there was a very relaxed atmosphere on set and when the camera stopped rolling, we couldn’t stop laughing.I played the role of Nurse Dalton which was a very interesting role to play. I’d like to say more but I don’t want to give away any spoilers!

ec1UKHS – Can you please tell us about some of your other work including ‘Molly Crows’ and ‘The Psychiatrist’?

EC – ‘Molly Crows’ is the story of a 7 year old girl, Jess who can see and hear spirits from the 17th Century. It’s based on the true story of Molly Leigh who was hung as a witch and buried in Stoke, which is where the film was set. The director, Ray Wilkes is great to work with and the story is fantastic.

In ‘The Psychiatrist’, I played Sandra Rosenburg, the daughter-in- law of an unhinged psychiatrist. I had worked with Richard L. Davies, the director and Nathan Head (who played my husband William Rosenburg in the film) before and was really happy to get the opportunity to work with them again.I believe this film it is being released later this year, I actually haven’t seen it yet so am really looking forward to that.

ec3UKHS – What is the hardest role that you have had to play and do you go to extreme lengths to prep for your parts and stay in character?

EC – The hardest role I have played was my most recent, ‘Inside Fear’. It was so challenging because Kristie was someone who had experienced things way beyond what I could comprehend in the beginning and I don’t mind telling you that I had serious doubts about whether I would be able to pull it off.

To prepare, I spoke to people who had been through similar experiences as her which helped tremendously, kept video diaries as Kristie and other things that you would probably think I was mad for so I’m not even going to say but everyone has their own ways of getting into character and these things worked for me. Preparing for my role in ‘Inside Fear’ took over my life for a while but hopefully I pulled it off, we will find out when it is released.

UKHS – What would you consider to be the three main ingredients that you need to make a classic horror flick?

EC – An excellent story, believable actors playing characters that you can relate to and suspense.

ec2UKHS – If you were stranded on a desert island, which three items would you want to have with you?

EC – Items… Hmm… I don’t really care about stuff. Can I take cats?

UKHS – Yes, if you take three cats.

UKHS – Finally, can you tell us more about ‘Inside Fear’ which you also co-wrote and produced. What can you tell us about your role and the project and when will it be released?

EC – I played the role of Kristie Maguire who, following an attack develops agoraphobia to such an extent that she is unable to leave the house and is tormented by nightmares.In desperation, she pleads with her psychiatrist to help her and she agrees to bring her a new and untested drug that her husband is currently working on. Gradually, as Kristie becomes hooked on the drug, it turns unveils a dark side of her personality and her idyllic family life turns into a chilling nightmare.

The project is currently in post-production and will hopefully be released later this year.

UKHS – Thanks for your time and good luck with your latest film and any other future projects.

‘Legacy Of Thorn’ is out to buy on DVD from:

‘Book of the Dead’ is out to buy on DVD from: