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An Interview with Jen Burry, Star of Alienated

by Mike Haberfelner

March 2016

Films starring Jen Burry on (re)Search my Trash

 

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Your new movie Alienated - in a few words, what is it about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?

 

At its core Alienated is a film about a couple being forced to confront their relationship while an alien abduction is lurking in the background. It's the science fiction element that initiates the need for Nate and Paige to deal with those issues. Nate and Paige are having marital issues, and my character, Paige, is also searching for her own happiness outside the relationship. However, she isnít always the best communicator and can be a little thoughtless at times and disregard Nate.

 

What did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much of Jen Burry can we find in Paige?

 

While preparing for this role I was constantly drawing on my experience in past relationships. When I first read the script the arguments Nate and Paige reminded me (scarily) of disagreements I'd had with previous partners, so reflecting on those experiences was really beneficial. The work I also did with George Katt the two weeks prior to shooting to establish our own relationship and figure out how Nate and Paige related to one another helped tremendously once we got on set.

 

How did you get involved with the project in the first place?

 

I had met Princeton several years prior and it was just one of those things where we kept in touch and then one day he emailed me and told me he had a script he wanted me to read. Then that was it!

 

Your personal thoughts about conspiracy theories and the like?

 

Honestly, they freak me out. I try not to let my mind indulge in those thoughts cause they scare me. I'm definitely not the kind of person that spends time investigating or researching them. I'm too emotional and would probably be in a state of constant anxiety if I believed a lot of the ones out there to be true.

 

What can you tell us about your director Brian Ackley [Brian Ackley interview - click here], and what was working with him like?

 

He was so great to work with. He allowed us a ton of freedom to explore, improvise, and work through scenes and then he would check in with us. It was a really great trusting relationship where we both relied on each other for creativity and grounding.

 

Do talk about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?

 

It was a very short shoot and we worked fast. The cast and crew lived in the same house for the days we shot. That really helped me personally since we were in a way trapped in this environment which is how my character feels during a majority of the film. Plus it was raining for so much of the shoot and we had to black out the windows for a bunch of the scenes, so it really led to this very claustrophobic feel that I think just helped the whole filmís feel. Luckily we had a great group of people to help lighten it up and stay creative with!

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

Iím working on a short film in a couple weeks but for the next month we will all be busy doing interviews and promoting Alienated. Weíre getting ready for itís official release later this month, which is pretty exciting and something Iím really looking forward to.

 

What got you into acting in the first place, and did you receive any formal education on the subject?

 

I did musicals while I was in high-school but didn't pursue acting until I was 22. I went to The American Academy of Dramatic Arts for 2 years and then I completed my Masters in Acting from the University of South Carolina.

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Alienated?

 

I did a couple features and several short films prior to Alienated, which was the most challenging and rewarding role I've played thus far in my career.

 

How would you describe yourself as an actress, and some of your techniques to bring your characters to life?

 

As an actress, I think Iím just looking for strong characters and Iím drawn to women who are searching for themselves and their place in the world. Iím definitely an inside-out actor. I try to initially find aspects of the character I can relate to and start building from there. Even if itís the smallest detail, it allows me to feel as though that person has always been a part of me, even if most of her has been hidden away.

 

Actresses (and indeed actors) who inspire you?

 

That's always a hard one. I absolutely love Kate Winslet and Maggie Smith but then I think about Diane Keaton and Helen Mirren - how can you pick just one or two?

 

Your favourite movies?

 

I'd have to go with the Wizard of Oz since it was my absolute favorite growing up. I loved it so much that I took a tape recorder and put it in front of our television and recorded it so I could listen to it as I fell asleep every night. I can remember starting to doze off as a kid and then hearing the tape recorder click off and it would wake me and I'd wake up to flip "side A" over to "side B."

 

... and of course, films you really deplore?

 

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Hmmmm, I could say I love/hated American History X. Requiem For A Dream would be another. Theyíre such great films but the content matter for both of those was so disturbing I felt horrible after for several weeks. Literally, several weeks.

 

Your website, Facebook, whatever else?

 

My website is www.jenburry.com.

 

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

 

I'd like to thank you for contacting us. It's been really wonderful that so many people have been interested in the film and learning more about it. We've been surround by fantastic people from the start and it only continues which makes a great experience even better. Thank you.

 

Thanks for the interview!

 

© by Mike Haberfelner


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Thanks for watching !!!



 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
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tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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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