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An Interview with Nicola Wright, Star of Alba Rosa

by Mike Haberfelner

May 2024

Films starring Nicola Wright on (re)Search my Trash

 

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Your new movie Alba Rosa - in a few words, what's it about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?

 

I play the central role of Grace in Alba Rosa, and the film follows the five stages of grief that Grace goes through after her husband is killed in a terrorist attack while they were away together. She struggles with any coping mechanism and rejects offers of help as she tries to come to terms with her loss.

 

What did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much Nicola Wright can we actually find in Grace?

 

Thankfully I haven't lost anyone in quite such traumatic circumstances, however I have lost family members which of course means I have my own experience of grief, and so I did draw upon those memories and feelings, and adapt them to how I felt Grace would be feeling. I don't feel there is much of me in Grace! I like to be surrounded by friends and family, unlike Grace who chooses to cut herself off from those who want to help and support her.

 

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

 

I auditioned via Zoom at first and then met with director Bogdan Radu in person, after which I was offered the role. I didn't know any of the team prior to that.

 

To what extent could you identify with Alba Rosa's approach to drama?

 

I fell in love with the simplicity of the script, and the way the story was told as much through what was not being said, as to what was. It examines an older woman's journey, that is rarely explored on screen, and I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to bring Grace to life, especially as it is based largely on a true story. I don't believe Alba Rosa would have ever been green-lit by a studio, and for me, it is the perfect example of an independent film at its best, using a small cast and keeping locations to a minimum so the focus is on the truth of the drama.

 

What can you tell us about Alba Rosa's director Bogdan Radu, and what was your collaboration like?

 

Bogdan is the perfect example of an actors' director. Charlie Clee and myself spent time with Bogdon before filming, rehearsing and building on the mother/son relationship. On set , Bogdan would often whisper something to us which only 'we' would know, which often affected our reactions to each other. This kept our performances fresh, and open to change in the moment, which I love.

 

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

 

WWe shot the film during lockdown, so for most of the day the crew were behind face masks! Much of the crew had worked together previously, which meant there was already a camaraderie between them, and very quickly I was absorbed into that group, especially as for much of the shoot it was just myself and the crew. When Charlie and I were together in scenes it was a joy, and there were lots of giggles when the camera was off!

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

I recently completed filming a horror feature film, Bambi The Reckoning. I also appear in the new series of Trying for Apple TV starting shortly, and The Creature From Below (feature) is now finished, and has just begun its festival run. In July I will be doing another comedy series set in the corporate world for an American company.

 

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

 

My mother was an actress, and acting was the only career I ever thought of! I trained at IItalia Stage School, and by the time I was eighteen I was working in weekly repertory theatre.

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Alba Rosa?

 

My first film role was in the film Top Secret (Zucker brothers/Jim Abrahams) which has became a cult film, I feel lucky to have had that as my first film job, working with such a wonderful cast and crew at Pinewood. Over the years I have worked on both big budget and smaller independent projects, playing across most genres, drama, comedy and over recent years several horror films, I even did my first action film a couple of years ago!

 

Having worked on both mainstream and indie movies as well as serial television, how do these film sets all compare to one another, and what way of filmmaking do you prefer, actuallly?

 

The obvious difference on set between the mainstream and independent projects is of course the budget and what that extra money can provide! From expanding the world visually either through the size of sets and locations and the amount of people in the scenes, to the amount of crew and all the 'extras' that go with it, such as, trailers, big teams to do makeup, hair and costume, plus nonstop food which is hard to resist! I enjoy them both for different reasons - with an independent film, because everything is on a smaller scale, it generally feels more relaxed and less intimidating, it is also often quicker to bond with the people you will be working with. On long running TV series, friendships can be made from working with the same people for a longer period of time, and even after all these years I still love the experience of a big set either on film or TV, and seeing the world that the creatives make for the actors to exist in. The truth is, when 'action' is called an actor's job is the same on both types of set!

 

With your career spanning a few years now, how has the film business changed over time?

 

The changes in the film industry are huge, largely down to the advances in technology in the digital age. When I started out everything was shot on film, which was expensive as were the big cameras, there was no option to shoot a film on a smaller camera or even a phone! Independent film just was not possible in the way it is today. VFX and CGI has also advanced in a way that years ago would seem unimaginable, although I still love some of the old practical effects! Also thanks to streaming, independent filmmakers now have an opportunity to share their films which years ago was not an option. But what hasn't changed is that it is a film business, and many decisions are made with that in mind!

 

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

 

I think I am an instinctive actress and I like to be 'in the moment' when the camera rolls. I love the collaboration with the other actors I am working with, and finding the truth in a scene. I will draw on personal experience if it is relevant, but I also enjoy researching and getting 'under the skin' of characters that are very different to me.

 

Actresses (and indeed actors) who inspire you?

 

There are so many! I am drawn to older female actors who have had long successful careers and who have embraced growing older in a world that so often ignores women after a certain age! Jodie Foster, Frances McDormand, Annette Bening, Helen Mirren, Judy Dench, Meryl Streep are just a few. I am also inspired by the new generation of actresses who are also producing so that they can get projects made and retain a certain amount of control, Reese Witherspoon, Margot Robbie, Sydney Sweeny, Elizabeth Moss are just a few names that come to mind.

 

Your favourite movies?

 

That is one of the hardest questions, as I am passionate about film, I go to the cinema every week and I struggle to have a short list! I love dark tales, and ones that push boundaries like Border, Sick of Myself, Titane and Pan's Labyrinth. Then there are the classics which I watched when I was young and had a profound effect on me, Alien, The Exorcist, Midnight Express and Apocalypse Now. I also love every Quentin Tarantino and Yorgos Lanthimos film, Poor Things was my favorite last year. I could go on and on!!!

 

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

 

I don't deplore any, I am not so keen on car chase action films, but I can appreciate the work that goes into them. I suppose the one thing that frustrates me is huge budgets that are spent on one very average film with a poor script, and I think of how many good independent or smaller films that could have been funded instead!

 

Your website, social media, whatever else?

 

Instagram: @nk_wright

Twitter: @_nkwright

 

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

 

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I'd just like to use this moment to ask people to support independent films wherever they can. It takes incredible passion and hard work to get a film made without the funding of the bigger budget studios. It is often hard to publicise them as it is so costly, and without a big name attached it is hard to do. Therefore if you see something you like, please spread the word on social media and help give audiences an alternative to the mainstream big studio films.

 

Thanks for the interview!

 

© 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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