Your upcoming movie Bloom
- in a few words, what is it about,
and what can you tell us about your character in it?
is a psychological horror film. Bloom
opens to a woman
named Lily, played by the wonderful Deann Baker [Deann
Baker interview - click here], waking up to find herself
covered in blood. She is in an unfamiliar place with little recollection
of how or why she got there. The audience follows Lily from a
fly-on-the-wall perspective as she attempts to piece together exactly what
happened to her. I play the role of Calvin, a person who has some
questions of his own to ask Lily, but also has the ability to provide some
character has been described as the "a man who has something of a
vendetta" - so how much of yourself can we find in Calvin, and what did
you draw upon to bring him to life?
With each part I play, I always start with myself. How much of
me stays in a character varies from role to role. With regards to Calvin I
think a good bit of me remained with him, but a different side of myself.
Calvin is a man struggling with personal demons that are the cause for his
“vendetta”. I think everyone battles their past in one way or another,
myself included. I drew upon memories of my own trials and tribulations
for this role. I can’t exactly tell you what my demons are, my therapist
charges a pretty penny to hear them - I kid of course.
How did you get
hooked up with Bloomin the first place?
I was in a short film Travis Legge [Travis
Legge interview - click here] was making and a
friend and co-star of Bloom
Andrew Jacob DeHart [Andrew
Jacob DeHart interview - click here] starred in, M is
for Mayhem. Travis ended up inviting me as well as a few others
involved with the short to audition for Bloom. I did, and I guess he
liked my read.
about your director Travis Legge [Travis
Legge interview - click here] for a bit, and what was your
Travis was superb to work with. He gave me a lot
of freedom with the role, which is always nice as an actor. I love that you
used the word collaboration, because that is really what Bloom
is a really easy guy to talk to and we clicked right away. There were a
lot of times on set where I would think of something that I wanted to try
in a scene. I would tell Travis and his response was always something like
“Yeah man, let’s try it”. That was among my favorite things about
working with Travis. The environment he creates is really conducive to
To what extent can you identify
with Bloom's horror theme?
There are certain themes that stick out to me in
Bloom, and they aren’t necessarily the horror elements. To me,
a story about confronting the unknown as well as coping with change. The
parts that really resonated with me are the bits where Lily is trying to
figure out what happened to her and discover why it is changing her.
Change is a frightening prospect to many, especially the changes that Lily
is going through in this film. Deann did a fantastic job of portraying the
isolation Lily begins to feel as a result of all these changes. Bloom
speaks to how people confront these problems using Lily. Some people lean
on their friends and family. Others cast everyone away and take it upon
themselves to handle it on their own.
What can you tell us
about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
There was never a dull moment on set. The cast
and crew got along really well and I personally enjoyed the heck out of
the time we spent filming this. Everyone involved with this project are
people that I look forward to working with again.
future projects you'd like to share?
I am going to start filming The Cropsey
Tapes, a found footage horror film, and a new television show coming to
Chicago, Chiraq: The Series, in the coming weeks. Look out for them!
What got you into
acting in the first place, and did you receive any formal training on the
I started acting in high school. I’ll save the
cliché line about how I grew up entertaining anyone who would listen (I
have it ready if you need it) and say that acting was something I was
always a bit interested in. I auditioned for my first play freshman year
of high school, got in, and from then on it is something I knew I wanted
to do for the rest of my life. I have received formal training. Most
notably, I attended Western Michigan University for a year as a theatre
What can you tell us about your filmwork prior
I was in two features;
Girls and Day 1.
Girls was recently completed. It will
be showing at the Chicago Horror Film Festival. Day 1 is in
post-production, set to be finished soon. Both have distribution which is
exciting. Those were my first two films, I had smaller supporting roles in
them. Bloom was my first leading role in a film. Thanks Travis!
How would you describe yourself as an
actor, and some of your techniques to bring your characters to life?
How would I
describe myself as an actor? Hmmm, the word I most often associate with
myself, and hope others do as well, is versatile. I have come to pride
myself on the ability to play many different kinds of roles, portray many
different kinds of people. It is tough for me to pigeon-hole myself as any
one thing. That is why I love being an actor, I can be anything I want.
In terms of
techniques, as I said above I always start with myself. For me, this is a
fundamental building block to creating a well-rounded character. I imagine
myself going through what a character is going through. This has always
been an effective way for me to get comfortable with the source material.
It also keeps me from forming any personal or third-party judgments on the
character. Something that I learned that has always stuck with me is the
fact that people don’t judge themselves the way third parties do. This
idea is most effective when applied to villainous characters. Lex Luther
doesn’t think of himself as some terrible megalomaniac, even if you and
I do. He is a human being with a justification to every action. This is
what makes him such a great, multi-dimensional villain; he is just trying
to do what he thinks is right. Then
I try to figure out who the character is and where that person came from.
If there isn’t a backstory in the script I will make my own that fits
the source material, always with deference to the writer or director.
Where a character came from is important to me because it influences how
and why a character handles things in the present.
(or indeed actresses) who inspire you?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
The one actor that always comes to mind when
asked this question is Jaime Foxx. A really talented actor, comedian, and
musician, who I find many underrate.
A Time to Kill, The Replacements, John Q., Hot
Fuzz, to name a few.
... and of course, films you really deplore?
Ugh, Catwoman. I can’t even.
website, Facebook, whatever else?
Find me in
Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/terrybbell
I know I’m boring. Facebook is all I can handle for now.
Anything else you are
dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
Not at all. It’s been a pleasure.
for the interview!