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An Interview with Elizabeth-Mae Starbuck, Star of The Night Monica Came Back

by Mike Haberfelner

August 2016

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Your new movie The Night Monica Came Back - in a few words, what is it about?

 

The Night Monica Came Back is a comedy horror film. It’s about a group of teenagers who go camping with their minder Pops, who is played by Laurence R. Harvey. The camping trip does not go quite to plan when one of the teenagers and Pops relive Pops' horror story and end up dead.

 

How did you get involved with the project?

 

I got involved with the project through Northern Star Acting. The producer of The Night Monica Came Back, Eirian Cohen  [Eirian Cohen interview - click here], arranged for a group of us to go on a horror camp, where we shot the film and attended a workshop led by professional actor Laurence R. Harvey.

 

Do talk about your character for a bit, and how did you prepare for her?

 

About a week before I got the role, Eirian Cohen messaged me and asked if I could do a Spanish accent. I told her that I had never done one before, but was happy to rise to the challenge. Seeing as I didn’t get the script till a couple of days before we went to the camp, I started by watching YouTube videos and researching into Spanish dialect and pronunciation of sounds. I wanted the accent to sound realistic and as if I was actually Spanish. Once I got the script I rewrote my beginning lines out with the Spanish vowel sounds. I then practised the beginning lines in the Spanish accent and by the time I had learnt it I was able to do the Spanish accent without trying. Monica was a character unlike any I have played before and I really enjoyed the challenge of learning a new skill.

Monica is one of the main characters in the film and is a Spanish exchange student. She has a crush on Thurston, played by Lee Ashley Preston[Lee Ashley Preston interview - click here] , and the pair has cute little moments throughout the film. However, you will have to watch the film to find out about their relationship and any twists because I don’t want to give too many spoilers away.

One of the on-set jokes was when someone asked me to do my Spanish accent or asked how I learnt how to do the accent, I said I had watched a lot of Dora the Explorer and then proceeded to impersonate Dora and say ‘Hola mayamo Dora!’ haha. 

 

The Night Monica Came Back features horror icon Laurence R. Harvey from Human Centipede 2 and 3 - so what was it like acting opposite him?

 

Working with Laurence R. Harvey was amazing. He is such a talented and nice guy. It was cool to watch him before scenes and in work because the way he presents himself and the way he can snap into character in a second shows how experienced he is and why he is such a huge horror icon.

 

From what I know (and I was there), you didn't only shoot a movie but this was part of a "horror camp" - so do talk about some of the other activities and workshops you did at the camp!

 

The horror camp was so much fun! I really enjoyed glamping in the pods and getting to know the cast and crew, seeing as most of us hadn’t met before.

After dropping our stuff off in our pods, we went to a field nearby and played some games such as the name game, ninja warrior, splat etc. This helped us all get to know one another and also worked as a bonding experience. 

We also did a zombie acting exercise led by Layla Randle-Conde [Layla Randle-Conde interview - click here]. Layla had us all lie down on the ground and close our eyes and she did a visualisation technique with us. We then had to open our eyes and gradually stand to form our character. We live streamed on Facebook as our zombie characters and then had some food before Laurence R. Harvey arrived.

When Laurence arrived we talked to him for a while and then he did a workshop with us. He did an energy exercise with us which involved us walking around and as he said numbers we had to go from desperate to find something to unable to stand anymore. He also taught us about the 5 states. This required us to: search, select, stare, succumb, switch. He started off by making us do it in order and then just said them in any order and we had to abide.

My favourite exercises he did with us were peep and creep where we went in pairs and had to make a creepy scene. Laurence was amazing at this and didn’t have to make any sound to creep us out. The other exercise I really enjoyed was one were we had stand in front of the camera as a pair and we had to try and intimidate each other. We ended up using this on set when we were waiting around and was a fun game to see who would give up first.

 

So talk about the shoot as such for a bit, and the on-set atmosphere!

 

with Lee Ashley Preston

The atmosphere on set was so much fun and everyone got on really well. We started off filming in the morning and I did my scene in the pod with Dylan Furness (Herbert) and Lee Ashley Preston (Thurston) [Lee Ashley Preston interview - click here] and then I did most of the river scene with Lee *Behind the scenes: when the camera is facing us in the film for the river scene, there is actually no river in front of us just a field haha*.

The last scene we filmed at the camp site was Pop’s telling us all the horror story. It was absolutely freezing and we all had to huddle up under sleeping bags between shoots.

We then packed up and moved location to an actual river. We had some food and then me, Lee, Michael Haberfelner (writer [who's actually me - the editor]) [Michael Haberfelner interview - click here], Layla and Cameron Prudames (DoP) made a very steep and rocky trek down to the river. It was a beautiful location and we got some spectacular photos taken. My favourite part about the river scene was definitely filming the death scene and getting to spit fake blood all over Lee.

After filming the death scene I had to run back to where we had left all our bags and where the rest of the cast was waiting and redo my makeup and make myself look as alive as possible for my last scene where Monica returns after being stabbed.

We were a little worried because I had fake blood in my hair for the last scene but it ended up being fine because it started raining and flung it down so you couldn’t tell.

The overall shoot went really well and we got pretty much everything in one take. The thing that took the longest was swapping over mics and getting the scenes from every possible angle.

 

If there was another horror camp or whatever-else camp again next year, would you at all want to join again?

 

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Yes definitely!!! It was so much fun and an overall great experience. I had a brilliant time and got to know the cast and crew and we had a lot of banter on and off set.

 

Anything else you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?

 

The cast have been really busy since we returned setting up Facebook pages, Instagrams, Twitter, websites and other social media platforms to promote ourselves. Please feel free to like, follow and share us on all our social media and platforms to stay up to date with what we a currently up to.

My Social media and platforms:

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/ElizabethMaeStarbuck1

Twitter - @EM_Starbuck

Instagram - @elizabethmaeofficial

Starnow - http://www.starnow.co.uk/elizabethmaestarbuck1

And finally please follow the The Night Monica Came Back on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/thenightmonicacameback - to stay up to date with the film and also see other cast interviews.

 

Thanks for the interview!

 

© by Mike Haberfelner


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Thanks for watching !!!



 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD

 

 

Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Träume ...

 

Und an diesem Tag geht natürlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!

 

Bauliche Angelegenheiten
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