Read our exclusive interview with the lovely Katrena Rochell who starred in the 2006 film “Joy Division” and most recently in the upcoming films “Psychosis” and “Kick-Ass” starring Nicolas Cage and Aaron Johnson.
SY: ‘Kick-Ass’ is your first big release here in the U.S. What was it like working with co-star Nicolas Cage and Brad Pitt, who’s Plan B Production Company produced the movie?
KR: I did not get a chance to work with Nicholas Cage unfortunately. I worked with Chloe Mortez and Aaron Johnson which was great! They are both gonna be huge! The set was great and very open to creativity. Matthew Vaughn was an absolute dream to work for…I’d love to work with him again!! The film is Awesome… it totally kicks ass…
SY: Your previous credits include the 2003 direct-to-video movie ‘JD Pilot,’ last year’s TV movie ‘The Last Days of Lehman Brothers’ and this year’s TV film ‘Casting Nina.’ How is acting for direct-to-video and television movies different from acting in theatrical films? Do you have a preference of acting in direct-to-video or theatrical films, and why?
KR: I think it all depends on who you are working with… Kick-Ass was big budget yet very very creative and the BBC’s Last Days of Lehmanns was on such a tight schedule that everybody was definitely feeling the strain and trying to meet deadlines and stay with in the budget… That was stressful. But you just have to role with it and give your best and be prepared… Another example was Casting Nina by Dominic Kelly… for that .. basically no budget , but a team of willing creative people loving what they are doing… it was such fun… we could afford to screw up which actually made us better…
SY: ‘Psychosis,’ your upcoming movie, is a psychological thriller you executive produced, co-wrote and starred in. It’s about group of young Anarchists who set up camp along the construction of a motorway by-pass, where a terrible fate awaits them. Fifteen years later, Susan, a successful horror novelist and sensitive soul, moves close to the camp, where her nightmare comes to life. Being the co-writer of the movie, did you have any similar experiences in your life? If not, where did you get your inspiration from to write the movie?
KR: We actually got inspiration from a 1970’s Hammer horror film. Reg Traviss (Psychosis director)approached me and asked if Id like to do this short film about an American girl in London.. so we both started playing around with the script and people started responding to it… so we decided to make a feature and we got some bigger names involved and guest appearances like Justin Hawkins lead singer of The Darkness.. Also, Charisma Carpenter (Buffy, the vampire slayer) stepped in to play the character of Susan and I played Helena. This film premiere’s in London in July. Then it will be available in the states.
SY: Being a co-director of the British production company Kingsway Films, as well as a producer, writer and actress, which is your favorite occupation, and why?
KR: My love is acting.. I love it… I also like having control and creating projects. I was never good at just auditioning and getting the parts. It wasn’t until I decided I was fed up and got with some like minded people and started creating the projects as opposed to just waiting for someone to give me the job. Also, living in London made it more difficult.. I believe I’m hard to pigeon hole… I don’t fit in any boxes…. ie, I’m not the “British” girl but I’m also not the “American”… I’m not ugly and I’m not gorgeous…I’m not thick but I’m not intelligent….I feel like I am always a walking contradiction… which can do one’s head in….
SY: With productions in development in both the UK and Los Angeles, where do you prefer working and why?
KR: That is a tough one… I think it depends on what I’m doing. As far as producing, definitely London because it is easier to get things done because not everyone has their hand’s out like in LA. Its also fun working as an actor in London with British actors as they are generally much more reserved than my fellow American Actors… which means I stand out because I pretty much all of the shop… I wish I could be more reserved…. more still….. I guess that is why I always play the nutters… Which I have to say I do love….. But we all know the money is in Los Angeles or perhaps New York.
SY: After starring in several direct-to-video, television and independent movies, your career is really starting to take off with bigger movies, including ‘Kick-Ass’ and ‘Psychosis.’ What advice do you have for struggling actors just starting off?
KR: Go do it yourself.. The playing ground is now flat… we can reach pretty much anybody now via internet… get a camera, make a film or do a skit.. put it on you tube… also with all social networking sites, you can advertise your projects…. I feel the time for filmmakers is evolving….. it is exciting… people are always looking for new blood.