Lee Lawson is both an actress and a writer based in Toronto, Canada who can be seen playing a diverse range of roles onscreen. She can be seen in independent films starring as as a soldier dealing with PTSD in director Tamara Moos’ Kavod, a young teacher navigating the childhood crush of a gifted student in Hue’s Theatre and as Leaf Girl in Joëlle Wallinga’s conceptual collaboration with child writers; Cave Big, Cave Small. We chatted with her about her journey in acting and her upcoming projects.
Tell us more about yourself and what inspired you to become a creative person and pursue acting. What has that journey been like for you?
Hi! so happy to be chatting with you! It’s funny; I certainly wasn’t the typical actor kid. I was quite shy; a day dreamer. It took me a really long time to find my way into onscreen acting. I always felt this instinctive pull towards story telling, but theatre never fit quite right. It was so freeing when I finally discovered the Independent film scene. In front of the camera I felt like there was no distance to contend with. For me, acting for camera is an incredibly intimate experience. My artistic journey has been all about finding the right medium, material and community to work within.
We always love talking to a fellow nerd and Kelly McCormack is a huge sci-fi, fantasy and video games fangirl—she is lucky enough to join one of SyFy’s biggest show, Killjoys, in season 3! She spoke to us about her experiences, her inspirations as a writer and her future projects including CBC’s The Neddeaus of Duqesne Island and Sugar Daddy.
And of course, you will find out what super powers she chooses. Her answer may be the best one yet!
Are you excited to join the cast of Killjoys? Zeph sounds like she will bring a lot of fun to the characters and story. Can you talk to us more about her? What has been the best part of joining the series?
I am beyond excited! I can’t believe how lucky I am to be joining this incredible cast and to play a character as fun as Zeph. She’s a farm girl turned awkward science nerd loner with no ﬁlter and the deepest passion for biological science. I’ve always been a huge sci-ﬁ fan, so to be in a spaceship on set and be handed a new and incredible space prop for every scene by the art department was a surreal dream. I felt like I was in a video game half the time. But hands down, the best part of joining this series has been joining this special family of actors and creatives. They are a hilarious, kind and passionate group of people.
Eileen Li is currently kicking butt in the industry and has appeared in television shows like Orphan Black and Degrassi: The Next Generation. She will be joining the cast of CBC’s 21 Thunder as Lara Yun and will guest star in the second season of Freeform’s Shadowhunters. We spoke to her about pursuing what you are passionate about and the challenges of being an Asian actress.
When did you know you wanted to become an actress and what was your biggest inspiration? What has been your biggest challenge as an actress?
The first time I seriously considered becoming an actor was when I was in the ninth grade and took my first drama class. I had been in school plays prior to that, but that was the first time I had really studied acting, and I was hooked.
Vas Saranga was inspired by his idol, Michael J. Fox, to begin his journey into acting and filmmaking. He became widely known for his starring role in Mudpit as Reese. He has appeared in several other shows such as Flashpoint, Todd and the Book of Pure Evil, The Strain and soon, you will see him in fan favorite, Orphan Black. Read our interview with Vas as he discusses his role in Orphan Black and life as a creative person.
Are you excited to join the cast of Orphan Black? What can you tell us about your role as Amar?
I’m incredibly excited to join the cast of Orphan Black. It’s one of the best TV series ever created. Amar is part of a secret island camp called Revival, that is run by P.T. Westmoreland, the founder of Neolution. He’s a member of a hunting party, and he specializes in tracking with dogs, commanding two Dobermans. My character, Amar, will appear in several episodes this season, in a pivotal storyline.
Jake Raymond completed his feature film, Ashes, which will be making the festival circuit starting with a world premiere at the 2017 Milledgevile Film Festival in Georgia. The film is about a man who explores and experiences his grief in losing his parents by fulfilling their final wishes. Jake talks to us about creating, writing and what inspires him. Check out the interview below.
Tell us about Ashes and your character, Liam. What was it like playing a character who experienced tragedy and going through that journey?
Ashes is a passion project and my first feature film as a writer and producer. The motivation for the film was to create an acting opportunity for myself and my friends. There are so many talented actors these days, most of the time just getting an audition is a win in itself, so I wanted to write a script that I could cast my friends in and give us all an opportunity to work together. Along the way I found a whole new love for film-making and I’m excited to continue my career not only as an actor, but also as a filmmaker.
In the story, we find my character Liam, after discovering his parents’ final wishes are to have their ashes scattered where they first met. Joined by his closest friends, they set out to explore the place for themselves as they navigate old memories while creating new ones.
Emily Piggford is known for her compelling role as Meagan in the award-winning web series, That’s My DJ, and won Best Performance by an Actress at the Canadian Screen Awards. You can also see her in other television shows like The Girlfriend Experience, Lost Girl and Hemlock Grove. We spoke to her about her experience working on one of the most unique web series online and also her work in theatre. Check out the interview below.
What initially drew you to your character, Meagan, in That’s My DJ?
That she was a party girl with a heart of gold! Also I really like my quiet time and country music and staying in and while Meagan and I are both very playful people, we have completely different playgrounds. I was excited to play someone that was so joyfully immersed in this world of partying and EDM and DJs that I was so far removed from.
Tod Fennell has been acting since childhood and has starred in fan favorites, including Nickelodeon’s Are You Afraid of the Dark? Currently, he can be seen as Cliff Kerbis in The Art of More, produced by Dennis Quaid and starring alongside Kate Bosworth. He is also doing really amazing work in video games as a motion-capture actor for Tom Clancy’s The Division. Tod talks to us about his work and whether he’d be a hero or a villain with superpowers…
What is The Art of More about? Can you tell us about your character in the series?
It’s a thrilling, fast paced drama about the shady underworld of New York city auction houses. The characters go to extreme lengths to maximize profits and seal multi million dollar deals. Without giving too much away, my character is the CEO of an online bidding platform, he’s cocky and laid back, a little too much so.