"Emily Hampshire plays the older woman and love interest in 'The Trotsky.'" – Interview

Emily Hampshire, star of the new movie, “The Trotsky,” said she had to make acting work because she had no formal education. That was then. Now, you could argue that the Canadian born actress’ formal education is… in acting.

Q - Hi Emily, thanks for doing this.

A - My pleasure. Thanks for having me.

Q - I imdb'd you and for not being so old you've done a lot of projects. When and why did you decide to get into acting?

A - Awe, that's very sweet of you to think of me as not being so old because, you know, in actress years I'm pushing 60.

I don't think I ever really made a 'decision' to get into acting, it was more something I started doing in high school (WAAAAY back when I was in high school; I joined the after school drama club, got a small part in the play) and continued doing because someone gave me a compliment after the first show (ya, I'm THAT easy). So I just kept doing plays because it seemed to be something that was working for me and then a casting director saw me in a show, called me in for an audition and I got the part... CUT TO: I'm 20 years old with nothing but a headshot and a resume and no formal education to speak of, and I realized that I HAD to make this 'acting thing' work or else I was f**ked. So far, I’ve been lucky and have been able to make my living doing the same thing I did when I was 13.

Q - Your new movie, “The Trotsky,” comes out May 14. What about the movie attracted you to the role?

A - A) that they offered it to me and B) The opportunity to play a part I don't usually get cast as: The older woman/love interest.

Q - You play the love interest opposite Jay Baruchel's (“She's Out of My League,” “How to Train Your Dragon”) character. How was it like working with Jay?

A - Working with Jay feels nothing like "WORK." We actually just finished doing another movie together and I feel kind of guilty that I keep getting paid to play pretend with my friend all day long.

Q - The movie was filmed in your home town. How did it feel to be essentially around people you know personally as opposed to being on a set somewhere?

A - I actually prefer to work on location when I'm shooting so that I can be free from all the everyday responsibilities (i.e.: taking out the garbage, etc) and fully immerse myself in the movie. However working in Montréal is like the best of both worlds for me: I get to live in a hotel and get per diem while working with people I know and feel at home with.

Q - You're from Canada. Your background is very diverse in terms of the projects that you do. What genre - comedy, drama, etc. - do you enjoy doing most?

A - I don't really think in terms of genre. I just either respond to a story or I don't. However, I've never liked a comedy that wasn't grounded in reality or a drama that didn't have a humor about it, so I guess my preference would be dramedy. Or dark comedy.

(Photo by Attila Dory)

Q - Do you prepare for each genre differently as an actress?

A - Yes and no. I mean, my preparation is the same for each project in that each story requires the same amount of attention, albeit on a different subject. I just like to immerse myself in the story and daydream about it. So it's the same process but the 'dream' is always different.

Q - Living in Los Angeles now, how different are the productions in Canada versus the states? Are there different rules and procedures?

A - Well, in the grand scheme of things I think it's all the same; it’s all telling stories at the end of the day. All the rules and procedures are the same but when there's more money at stake, which is usually the case in big studio films in the US, then things like casting a 'name' that will put 'butts in seats' becomes an important factor and therefore I think, for me personally (right now anyways) I tend to have better opportunities to work in Canada.

Q - You're mostly known from the movie “Snow Cake” with Alan Rickman and Sigourney Weaver. Being in a movie with well known actors, what did you learn the most?

A - That the REAL BIG stars are the most generous actors to work with. They don't have anything to prove and are therefore so unbelievably gracious and kind and treat you like a peer from the get go.

Q - Thanks again. Was there anything you wanted to add?

A - No, these were great questions. Thanks for the opportunity.


Jason Tanamor is the Editor of Zoiks! Online. He is also the author of the novels, "Hello Lesbian!" and "Anonymous." Email Jason at jason@zoiksonline.com.

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