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An Interview with Meghan Adara, Star of The Cellar

by Mike Haberfelner

March 2024

Films starring Meghan Adara on (re)Search my Trash

 

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Your upcoming movie The Cellar - in a few words, what's it about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?

 

The Cellar is about a young girl, Abigail, who joins a church congregation in order to find refuge, however, after joining the congregation she becomes suspicious of the inner workings of the church, and after asking too many questions, she finds herself imprisoned underground in The Cellar with no recollection of how she got there.

 

Abigail is a very fragile and trusting girl, who is extremely vulnerable to the outside world. Abigail longs for a support network to help her find stability and to be able to heal from her childhood, however, due to her naivety she finds herself in immense danger, fighting for her life to get out.

 

What did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much Meghan Adara can we find in her?

 

To bring Abigail to life I made notes on the characteristics from within the script and from her past experiences that I created in my character backstory such as upbringing etc, researching into these specifics to what the overall impact would be on personality and mental health, to see if we had any similarities that I could use to influence my performance and characterisation. Having analysed and made notes, on a personal level I could identify with some of the issues that she has faced, and so I drew upon my own personal experiences to bring a part of me into Abigail, connecting these experiences to my research in order to build a genuine and believable performance.

 

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

 

I got involved with this project by director Jamie Langlands getting in touch and asking me if I would be interested in being a part of it. Having read the script I absolutely loved the concept and wasnít a genre that I had done before so I jumped at the opportunity. At first I just thought I would be playing one of the supporting roles, so to find out that Jamie wanted me to play the lead role I felt honoured to be given the opportunity and really excited to get started.

 

To what extent could you identify with The Cellar's approach to science fiction and horror?

 

I have worked on a few horror films over the years, so this is a genre that I am quite familiar with and absolutely love working on, but I havenít worked on many sci-fi projects before, so it wasnít a genre that I instantly identified with, and has been quite a different experience to what I am used to working on. In order to prepare for this project I did a lot of research into religions, cults and human experiments etc, as these are some of the main themes throughout the film and connected these themes to reality based on the research I conducted. This enabled me to create a detailed background for both Abigail and the formation and history of the church congregation she becomes a member of, connecting fiction to real life events.

 

What can you tell us about The Cellar's director Jamie Langlands, and what was your collaboration like?

 

Jamie and I have worked together on various projects over the past couple of years, getting to work with Jamie on any project is always such a great experience as we get on really well and so to be able to work with him on this has been such an amazing opportunity and a lot of fun. Although we have worked together previously it has always been as castmates and so going into this project with Jamie in a different role, it has been really intriguing to see a different side to him. What I have loved about working with Jamie as the director is he has given me free reign to make my own choices about how to play the character, and I think that is because we have worked together before so we know that we can trust each other on these decisions.

 

A few words about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?

 

The shoot has been a lot of fun to work on and I would say that the overall atmosphere has been quite relaxed and chilled, despite the genre of the piece. Having all worked together before, we all get on really well and it has been a great opportunity to have all come together to work on another project, which has taken away some of the on-set nerves and pressures. Before each scene, Jamie speaks with each actor, talking us through what the overall plan is, what each individual character is going through in that particular scene in order to really convey the intentions and emotions and how many shots there will be.

 

From what I know, a campaign to raise finishing funds for The Cellar is currently under way - so could you talk about that fundraiser for a bit?

 

Yes, so we have already had 4 days on set, however, in order to be able to complete the film Jamie has created a IndieGoGo page to raise some additional funds to secure the last vital locations needed for the project. If you are interested in supporting our IndieGoGo campaign, there are some additional perks, some of which are super exciting that you can choose from, including:

  • A Social Media Shout Out,
  • A Thank You Credit,
  • A Digital Copy of Film,
  • Behind the Scenes Photos,
  • A Signed Copy of the Script,
  • A Day on Set,
  • A Role in the Film,
  • Associate Producer Credit,
  • Executive Producer Credit and
  • Co-producer Credit.

If you wish donate, you can find additional information about our IndieGoGo campaign here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-cellar-horror-feature-film-finishing-funds#

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

Yes absolutely, thank you for asking. I have numerous projects I am working on at the moment, ranging from feature films, short films and TV shows but Iíll just mention a few that I have upcoming.

  • Therapy (feature film), written and directed by Scott Clist. Currently in pre-production, due to start shooting at the end of March/early April.
  • South Parade (feature film), written and directed by Tom Walters. Currently in pre-production, due to start shooting later this year.
  • Hegemony (feature film), written and directed by Allan McTaggart. In production.
  • Adamís Attic (feature film), written and directed by Luke Mepham and produced by the production company Macroverse Films. Currently in pre-production, due to start filming later this year.
  • WallDale (TV show), written and directed by Matthew Cathcart and produced by the production company Golden Horizons. In post-production. You can check it out on IMDb here: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt26424426/
  • Crook (short film), written and directed by Nadiira Omar and produced by Primaryuh. Currently in pre-production, due to start filming at the end of March.

I would also love to announce that my latest short film Apart has been released on YouTube. Written and directed by Ben Wood. Apart will also be entered into film festivals as well, so keep an eye out for it. Here is the synopsis:

ĎA short social realism film portraying a day in the life of a young single mother, living away from her soní.

I am really proud of this short film and I had such a wonderful time getting to play the lead role, Tara. It was such a great experience from pre-production to being on set getting to work with such talented individuals, and I will hold this project and character very close to my heart for years to come. Working with Ben on this project was such a privilege and he was so supportive throughout every step of production. This role really enabled me to really challenge myself as an actress, and I was able to delve deep into the role of Tara, completely immersing myself in the character and the world in which Ben created. You can find the link to the film here: https://youtu.be/N6VbnmQySho?si=IoLKPlimI2LAh4ex

 

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

 

I had always enjoyed performing from a young age where I would put on little shows with my friends to perform to my family and their families just for fun, but never thought I would end up pursuing it as a career. However, one day when I was over at my friend's house she asked me if I wanted to go with her to her theatre workshop that she attended weekly. Being extremely shy and reserved when I was younger I was quite nervous about going and didnít think that I would enjoy it but decided to give it a go. I ended up enjoying it so much that I became a member and attended weekly. Having attended that theatre workshop I realised that acting was something that I had great interest in, leading me to attend summer drama workshops during the summer holidays and to take Drama as one of my G.C.S.E options.

 

From there I continued my training at college on the Level 2 Production and Performance Course, progressing onto the Level 3 Acting Course. While at college I became a member of a local theatre company in Brighton, where I was scouted by an agent while performing at Brighton Fringe. Having graduated from college I took a year out before applying for drama schools as I didnít feel as though I was ready for university. During that year I worked as an extra on some feature films and TV shows in order to gain more professional experience and continue to develop my skills as an actress working on a set outside of education. When the applications for drama school reopened the following year I felt as though from the experience I had gained, that I was ready to start applying and so applied for 4 different drama schools being offered a place at East 15 Acting School on the BA World Performance Course.

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to The Cellar?

 

The projects that I gravitate towards are usually dramas, horrors and thrillers as I find them really fun to do and love the challenges they bring. I find that I tend to connect with the story and characterís more within these genres and I think that it is because I can really identify with what the characters are going through, allowing me to really immerse myself within these projects and roles. Although The Cellar fits into the thriller/horror genre, I havenít worked on many sci-fi projects before so it has been a very different experience.

 

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

 

As an actress I tend to gravitate towards roles and characters that I can relate to in some way and that I can see a bit of myself in. As an actress I think it is really  important that I find qualities and characteristics that I can identify with and that the audience will identify with, so when I am preparing for a character I always like to ensure that I can bring my own experiences into them to show the vulnerabilities and complexities of these characters in order to create a believable performance.

 

I have quite a long process to prepare for a project, as I really want to be able to step into the shoes of the characters and build a genuine performance, but I wonít mention all the steps I do in preparation so are here are few:

I start off by reading the script fully to get a better feel for the project and the characters within it. Having read the script once, I go ahead and read it a second time highlighting any vital information about my character and any other additional information that I believe it necessary to showcase in my performance and the themes of the project. From reading the script a second time, I research heavily into these characteristics and themes, as I want to know as much as possible about how it will influence the overall story development and the characters, plus I find this step really fun. Having completed my research, I then re-read the script again and start making notes as I go, incorporating the research I have done to the script and analyse how it would affect my character and the relationships I have with others. Once completing these steps I start to bring the character to its feet, acting it out, applying the research I have done and facts I know about my character.

 

Actresses (and indeed actors) who inspire you?

 

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My favourite actresses have to be Suranne Jones and Jodie Comer. I remember watching Suranne Jones in Doctor Fosterí and Jodie Comer in Thirteen and was just in awe of their performances and completely immersed. I remember after watching both these shows, thinking to myself this is what I want to do as a career and gave me the confidence I needed to do so. When watching TV shows or films I always analyse the performances in order to keep developing as an actress, particularly when watching Suranne Jones and Jodie Comer. I would say that watching them when I was younger, just starting out in this industry, that they both really inspired me to pursue my acting career in a professional manner and have really influenced the way in which I prepare for my roles in order to reach the depth and naturalism that they bring to their performances. I think that is where my love for dramas, horrors and thrillers came from, as I was always watching these genres when growing up and where my connection to these genres stemmed from.

 

As for actors there are so many I love watching and that have inspired me as an actress, but to name a few: Brian Cranston, Dominic West, Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Tom Hiddleston and Martin Freeman (suppose I should mention Daniel Craig since I met him when I was younger haha), again following the drama genre.

 

Your favourite movies?

 

I mean there are too many to choose from but my ultimate favourite film has to be The Titanic. Whenever I say this is my ultimate favourite film I get mixed reactions haha. I think itís because I just find it really fascinating and have spent a lot of time researching into it. I guess you could say I am slightly obsessed, anything to do with The Titanic and captivated. A few others are Monsters Inc and Spiderman with Toby Maguire. I used to watch both these films religiously when I was younger so I suppose it just reminds me of my childhood. Others include About Time, Bridget Jonesís Diary.

 

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

 

Iím sure there are a few films out there that Iím not the biggest fan of but there arenít any particular films that are jumping out at me.

 

Your/your website, social media, whatever else?

 

I am currently in the process of creating my own website which is going to be a little hub of all my previous projects and upcoming projects etc, so will definitely announce when it goes live. But you can check me out on the following:

Instagram: Meghan_Adara

Facebook: Meghan Adara 

X or Twitter (whatever you want to call it): MeghanAdara

I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Thanks for the interview!

 

Many Thanks.

 

© by Mike Haberfelner


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Thanks for watching !!!



 

 

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

Amazon

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Vimeo

 

 

 

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
to the weirdly romantic,
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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