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Sarah Lavrisa
Horror Interview by The Gravedigger

I recently had a chance to ask this upcoming actress a few questions about her role in the romantic horror movie BLOOD RED MOON, which will be released on April 6th, 2010.

Q: When did the acting bug first bite you?

The first ever role I had was playing a mermaid at a summer camp when I was 5 or 6. But the first time I knew I wanted to pursue acting as a career, as opposed to ballerina or police officer or lawyer or rock star, was when I was in my first high school play. It was called The Castle Spectre, and in retrospect it was pretty terrible. A key character did not know any of his lines, the scenery was painted on a bed sheet, and props were left onstage so that there was a bush sitting around inside the castle after an outdoor scene. I still loved it though.

Q: You are a Theatre and English major at University of Ottawa?

Yep. The theatre program at University of Ottawa is small, but it's growing really quickly. It provides a great foundation for continuing any sort of theatre studies because you learn the basics of pretty much every discipline in theatre. They also toss you into more practical situations. For example, as well as acting in department plays I've stage managed (for those of you who don't know, it's kind of like being the puppet master during the performance of the show) and right now I'm making costumes for a directing student's show.

Q: Is BLOOD RED MOON your first feature? How was it working with Brett?

Blood Red Moon was actually my first feature, vampire movie or otherwise. Working with Brett was an awesome first feature experience because he creates a pretty low-key atmosphere, but he still gets things done. He's a great director; he's very creative and makes great movies on a limited budget. Being part of the whole process was really exciting. Plus we're both kind of geeky, so we got along fine.

Q: Did you have high school flashbacks since you were supposed to be a teenager in the movie? Talk about your character.

Hell yes. There's one scene in the movie that especially brought me back. It's when my character, Megan, is walking in the school hallway and is confronted by the two bullies and she really tears them a new one. I always wished I had the balls to do that, as I wasn't the bravest teenager out there. That's what I like about Megan, she isn't afraid to stand up for herself. She's just moved to a small town and ordinarily you'd try to keep your head down and make friends, but Megan goes and falls in love with the town vampire, Victor. She has a very dark side as well, she thinks that Victor being a vampire is the best thing she's ever heard, and she's not at all fazed by the possibility that he may have killed people in the past.

Q: Are you a "horror fan"? What are your top three favorite horror movies and why?

Oh dear, I thought you might ask me this question. The short answer is not really. The long answer is I like horror if it's combined with something else. I love Silence of the Lambs because of Dr. Hannibal Lecter. He's charming and clever, but at the same time you know that all he wants to do is kill you and eat you. Another favourite of mine is Seven. I like my serial killings to have a theme, you know? It might as well be religious. I also like Shaun of the Dead. I stand by my choice. It has zombies in it.

Q: How is it different for you working in theatre as compared to the movie? Was it more or less challenging or just a different animal altogether?

It's not like the difference between a shark and a squirrel, but more like the difference between a grizzly and a polar bear. They're both awesome, and they're both fundamentally the same, but they have different skill sets. In theatre there is a lot more attention paid to rehearsal time, actions can be bigger and you can get away with a lot more physically. The performance still has to be genuine, but natural acting isn't a must. In film I was actually kind of shocked at how soon we were put on camera. The performance wasn't exactly smaller but it had to be more nuanced and indicating or any kind of dishonesty would be picked up immediately. It was harder for me, I think, because I hadn't really done it before.

Q: If there was one television show you had free pick as a character what would it be?

Oh man. I think number one on my list is River Tam from Firefly. She's quirky and a good character with a lot of depth, but at the same time she totally kicks ass. I mean, not that I have an extensive background in martial arts or weapons training, but it would still be insane.

Q: What are you working on now?

I'm going back to my theatre roots. I'm a directing intern for Salamander theatre, a Shakespeare theatre company. My most recent acting work was a short film by Josh Stafford, another local horror film director, called The Morning After the Night of the Living Dead. It was about a guy who has a one night stand with a girl who turns out to be a zombie.

find information about Sarah Lavrisa at imdb.com find horror stuff by Sarah Lavrisa

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