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An Interview with Constance Reshey, Star and Producer of Is This the Bed We Lie In?

by Mike Haberfelner

May 2024

Films starring Constance Reshey on (re)Search my Trash

 

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Your new movie Is This the Bed we Lie In? - in a few words, what is it about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?

 

In the new short film Is This the Bed we Lie In? I portray character Jennifer who is married to Robert, portrayed by Joel Blanco [Joel Blanco interview - slick here]. The basis of the film is an intimate conversation between the couple beyond the physical nature of the relationship and a small glimpse of the emotional and personal desires which over time can change within a relationship. We get to see the actions and reactions within this small window conversation into their relationship.

 

To what extent could you identify with the dilemma of your character?

 

I could relate to Jennifer, not exactly with what desires she is bringing into the conversation, but every couple has intimate conversations within the bedroom behind closed doors. These are precious moments to help encourage growth, love, at times sympathy when needed, and empathy to the themes of the particular conversations. As a woman, Iíve had relationships like many other women, similarly, who have not felt connected with a partner at the time emotionally, and I feel this theme made for a very interesting story for a small glimpse into their life, and makes you want more after the end credits roll.

 

What did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much Constance Reshey can we find in Jennifer?

 

The role of Jennifer I drew a little from my personal life - the courage to bring up serious moments and have conversations with a partner. Along with having the courage to maintain an open and honest dialogue when it comes to serious moments within the relationship, even if outside the two of us which I may feel, similar to Jennifer.

 

The rest of the character I read the screenplay and discussed with Joseph what he was searching for and how Jennifer would convey emotions and mannerisms, along with the emotional and physical nature to Jennifer. During rehearsals I would be able to experiment with the character, the characterís actions, and Joseph was very open to allowing me to find my character for Jennifer.

 

How did you get involved with the project in the first place, and how did you also end up on the production side of things?

 

I have been working with director Joseph McGovern [Joseph McGovern interview - click here] since his first short film All Over Again. I had a leading role in that film and a supporting role in his second short film Hush. Joseph brought me back on to star in this film Is This the Bed we Lie In?.

 

Also, I have been an executive producer on all of JAM Productions films too. Iíve personally watched Joseph grow not only as a filmmaker and writer but as an independent artist. He came from a turmoil driven company who was more focused on money than actually creating work of value, and when Joseph bought out all his work and left the company, I watched him slowly regroup with internal strength for redemption with his projects and self-taught the filmmaking process, especially post-production. Iím very proud to stand by his side with any creative endeavor he wants to undertake and complete.

 

What were the challenges of bringing Is This the Bed we Lie In? to the screen from a producer's point of view?

 

The challenges we face as producers usually come down to time and money, so we need to approach the situation from those directions. How are we going to take this grand vision of Josephís to make a reality of it. Our productions are currently low budget indie productions, and with the assistance from executive producers Joseph Fuoco and Christine J. Noble, we receive a lot of help financially with making our productions successful. Weíre fortunate to be blessed with a team who, altogether, believe in Joseph McGovern and the stories being told, and we get to take part not only in front of the camera but behind the camera too.

 

When producing we look at the screenplay first and see what locations we're working with and how many characters are in each location and how many pages to the script are present. Within this process weíre breaking up schedules and time tables to plan out what is needed and how long the production will take. I hate this saying but itís true especially with independent filmmaking, ďtime is money.Ē We have a script and weíre paying for the rented equipment and time of the owners operating so we need to be on point.

 

When Joseph owned his own equipment running his co-owned production company at the time, we could take our time and hold reshoots if and when necessary, but renting can be costly. Once we figure out how many different locations there are and actors needed, we go to scheduling rehearsals and we run rehearsals as frequently as we can so weíre completely ready when on set. We want our actors hitting their mark every time and we want to make sure we get to play around a little bit with the dialogue and exchange of actions. Sometimes the greatest moments come from what wasnít planned - Iíve seen this time and time again on Josephís sets.

 

Since this production was a one-location-two actor-screenplay, the producing end - scheduling the crew and actors - was much easier to accomplish and complete the production in one night.

 

What can you tell us about Is This the Bed we Lie In?'s diretor Joseph McGovern [Joseph McGovern interview - click here], and what was your collaboration like?

 

I have been involved with many different types of projects within various artistic industries. In the film industry, projects can succeed or be shelved because it didnít come out the way the filmmaker/filmmaking team anticipated Ė typically this occurs when theyíre still figuring out the process and how to use the equipment. Filmmaking is a very challenging process and as an actress within the independent filmmaking world, you never know if the project will be seen through to the end. As a producer, I make sure I do everything possible to ensure the project is always seen through to completion; even if itís not what we anticipated at least we made it to the finish line and next time we will improve for the better.

 

When working with Joseph McGovern as a filmmaker, he makes sure every project he starts is completed. He is very careful whom he works with, to be on set with, and behind the scenes with when in production. He calculates all his creative processes very carefully, and Iíve personally seen him bring projects from the ashes and fix them to be award winning films. Honestly, itís incredible and Iíve never seen or worked with anyone else who has a fierce passion for creating art, which makes a difference.

 

Joseph and my collaborations, within the artistic industry to date, have been working together for twelve years. Typically for any project, out of the collection of many screenplays heís written, I will review the screenplay and we will bring it together to completion either with my thoughts of whatís needed or helping to draft and write it with him. When it comes to the producing end, I will help bring the project from in-production and ensure completion in post-production and delivery. My main focus is to make sure we have the finances covered to make the project happen and ensure the set is run smooth, and I help within my knowledge in post-production.

 

Whenever Joseph has some form of update in post-production, he will have me review and provide feedback. Iíve never met anyone else who refuses to give up, especially when the task is near impossible Joseph along with myself and our producing team will rise to the occasion and make sure the project is the best it can possibly be before releasing to the public, even if it takes years - the end result is always worth the patience.

 

You've worked with Joseph Mc Govern before - so what can you tell us about your previous collaborations and how did the two of you first meet even?

 

Joseph and I first met at Weist-Barron Ryan in Atlantic City while I was studying method acting, he traveled to the studio to audition me for All Over Again, he cast me and our journey began. Our previous two collaborations were All Over Again and Hush.

 

At the time of being cast in All Over Again Joseph was running a production company, DMA Media, with two partners and a couple employees. Similar to most young companies they were hopeful and working towards a bright future, with opportunity and growth. A little bit of money incoming, inflated egos, and deception would fail this company and force Joseph to leave (DMA Media without Joseph involved would fail and be abandoned one and a half years later) after he bought out all of his hard work to his three films he wrote, produced, and directed - All Over Again, Hush and Inside Jonathan Fox -, all creative rights from all pre-production screenplays to post-production materials, film footage, sound files, and take everything he worked so hard to build with him and form JAM Productions so he could continue progressing with his work, carefully construct his messages, and be in total creative control with his stories.

 

All Over Again: production went well while filming in the cafť, since majority of the film takes place there. Unfortunately, having to do multiple reshoots because some of his employees would mess up tech-wise with taking sound, having to push back reshoots because his partners wouldnít show up to set to help operate equipment, it took longer than anticipated to complete the interior scenes. But Joseph pushed through and ended up scheduling one weekend to shoot and take sound all by himself, majority of the weekend holding sound while working the camera at the same time so we could get through the scenes. This moment is when I knew he was meant for better - and together we could push through the nonsense he was going through, leave the company, and continue to succeed on his own terms.

 

Hush production - to be as nice as possible, it was a complete mess. This short film Joseph squeezed in right as the end began unfolding, a year prior to leaving the production company. To say narcissism and megalomania was running through the set with his two partners and one of his employees made the shoot difficult and many mistakes occurred especially with lighting and sound. This is where Joseph had to really learn and understand color science to know what he had to correct in post and how much he could correct, and with the help of his sound designer, Matthew Amadio, together the team decided axing the ambient noise sound files completely and just placing a wonderfully written original score overlaying the action of the film was the best route and solution. JAM Productions was able to successfully complete the short and receive semi-finalist honorable mention in an Academy Award qualifying film festival: Flickersí Rhode Island International Film Festival along with many other accolades and official selections.

 

Inside Jonathan Fox production set was a much more relaxed environment. A one apartment one character/actor based short film centered around the theme obsessive compulsive disorder. Joseph cast Erik Searle from short film Hush to star in this film, and since this film was fit in two months prior to Joseph leaving DMA Media, he scheduled the only crew to be on set his cousin and friend, Joel Blanco, myself, and Erik as Jonathan Fox. During production Joseph would receive harassing phone calls and text messages where the equipment was, since this was completely his project and DMA Media wasnít involved, informing paid gigs werenít being completed because he had the equipment in use, when in reality Joseph always tripled checked production calendars for rentals and oncoming jobs for the production company and knew he was being lied to. These moments were very frustrating for him, but I reminded him constantly during the two full weekend shoots to turn his phone off since there wasnít mutual respect, and concentrate Ė donít let anyone ever harm your work, itís too important. He would turn his phone off while working to protect the project, and we were able to bring production to close within two weekends. First full weekend completing the film and acting and performing, as Jonathan Fox, and we are almost completed with the film in post-production.

 

You're also credited as one of the writers of Is This the Bed we Lie In? - so what was your contribution to the script, and what can you tell us about the writing process?

 

Joseph and I take the time to process each type of screenplay he wants to create. Not all of the wonderful screenplays with important messages he writes will be produced. He has already written and ready to shoot at least thirty different short films and five feature films ranging from comedy, mainly drama, to thriller, and one or two very loosely sci-fi.

 

Together, we will review the particular screenplay multiple times and break down the message and what weíre hoping to convey. Joseph explains to me the subtext, character arcs, how the language with dialogue moves the story, and the climax leading to the finale. The two most important questions we pose: does this story matter to us personally and will this story make a difference? Whatís the purpose in creating if it doesnít, and if the story resonates internally, you will make sure it is completed no matter what.

 

After we have reviewed the screenplay, we clean up the dialogue. Joseph, being a writer and poet, has a huge vocabulary and sometimes when reading you can misunderstand the dialogue, which wouldnít convey on screen well, so we work through translating corrections to help the audience understand whatís being spoken between the characters. For Is This the Bed we Lie In? I had a hand in working on the screenplay with dialogue during rehearsals with Joseph and Joel in preparation months prior to the production shoot and providing feedback and breaking down the screenplay to help create an overall exceptional story.

 

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

 

The on-set atmosphere was great! Everyone involved knew their position and we all came together solving any issues which might have arisen at the moment (there are always unforeseen problems needed to be solved on a production set). Priceless quote which applies to any film project: ďWhatever can go wrong most likely will.Ē Joel and I were running through lines and practicing while Joseph, Daniel, Yves, and Joey were setting up the set and lighting shots and preparing sound. Christina Blanco was capturing wonderful on-set production stills. The entire overnight production worked wonderfully, everyone worked together very well, and I believe you can see it within the results captured when you watch the film.

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

At the moment weíre preparing to promote on the festival circuit Is This the Bed we Lie In? and All Over Again music film/video. Soon we will be completing and hitting the festival circuit with Inside Jonathan Fox. Next set of projects we plan to go into production for: Wild Hearts, a new erotic thriller short film, and we will produce our fellow producer Christine J. Nobleís concept short film for her series The Farm, and then we plan to create and complete our first feature film.

 

A separate note from JAM Productions filmmaking, Joseph released his new poetry book, Words Left Unspoken. Joseph asked me to be involved with producing and reading poetry from the book in a spoken word album he will create with our sound designer, Matthew Amadio. Iím extremely excited to participate in this project!

 

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

 

Originally, I started out with modeling classes and eventually it transitioned to acting classes. Joseph and I met while I was studying method acting with Weist-Barron Ryan in Atlantic City - he cast me in All Over Again in the lead role Victoria, and we have been working together since.

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Is This the Bed we Lie In??

 

Iíve participated acting in extra work for films such as Creed, have acted in small series such as My Big Fat Greek Wedding and small budget independent productions such as The Beacon. The majority of my film work is under JAM Productions with Joseph McGovern: All Over Again, Hush, Is This the Bed we Lie In?, All Over Again music film/video, working in crew for Inside Jonathan Fox and serving as producer for all the films

 

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

 

I received method acting training when I first began this journey. I felt the training built a good foundation and to acclimate into what acting is. Training can only take you so far without on-set practical knowledge and learning from experience. Itís good to experience production sets with positive environments and sets with negative environments so you know the difference. Typically, an IMDb search and review of the screenplay will serve as a good indicator for the project. The first step is always memorizing your lines, then you can begin creating and working on the character. But if you donít remember what it is theyíre supposed to say or what actions will be taking place, how can you bring life and purpose to make the character realistic for an audience to believe your performance.

 

Actresses (and indeed actors) who inspire you?

 

I enjoy watching many actors and actresses for entertainment and learning from their nuances, actions, and line deliveries to assist with inspiration and growth as an actress. To name several I admire but there are many more: Lucille Ball, Robin Williams, Meryl Streep, Judy Garland, Elizabeth Taylor, Johnny Depp, Bette Davis, Joan Crawford, Clark Gable, Ben Affleck, Kate Winslet, Sandra Bullock, Will Smith, and Julia Roberts.

 

Your favourite movies?

 

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Several favorite films of mine but there are many more: Titanic, The Wizard of Oz, Gone with the Wind, Goodwill Hunting, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, Miss Congeniality, Dead Poets Society, Men in Black, Cleopatra, Whatís Eating Gilbert Grape, Pretty Woman and The Bridges of Madison County.

 

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

 

Other than truly exploitation films, I feel there is something positive which can be taken from a production and be admired for. Even if itís just the fact the film is being watched by enough of an audience to be deplored - I would congratulate their marketing team for a job well done and with the development of a future cult following too.

 

Your website, social media, whatever else?

 

Facebook fanpage: https://www.facebook.com/ConnieResheyActor/

Twitter page: https://twitter.com/ConnieReshey

 

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

 

We need artists now more than ever! Continue creating and never stop trying, never give up. If you receive negative feedback from family, friends, colleagues, critics, general audiences - they donít matter. Learn from the comments but donít take them to heart, donít quit, become better. Thatís the time to improve, grow, and keep moving forward - most people canít do what youíre trying to accomplish so they want to disband your drive, endurance, and passion. Be the standing nail always and never be hammered down! I believe in you and there are many others who will believe in you too!

 

Much love and appreciation, Michael, for the interview! Thank you to everyone who took a moment to read this interview! We canít wait to show you our next film and more work to follow!

 

Thanks for the interview!

 

© by Mike Haberfelner


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In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

There's No Such Thing as Zombies
starring
Luana Ribeira, Rudy Barrow and Rami Hilmi
special appearances by
Debra Lamb and Lynn Lowry

 

directed by
Eddie Bammeke

written by
Michael Haberfelner

produced by
Michael Haberfelner, Luana Ribeira and Eddie Bammeke

 

now streaming at

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Robots and rats,
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