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An Interview with Paul Noonan, Star of She, Who Dared

by Mike Haberfelner

December 2023

Films starring Paul Noonan on (re)Search my Trash

 

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with Katie Killourhy

Your new movie She, Who Dared - in afew words, what is it about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?

 

She, Who Dared is about Lois Weber, a Hollywood filmmaker in the early part of the 1900s. I play Phillips Smalley, her husband and business partner.

 

What did you draw upon to bing your character to life, and how much Paul Noonan can we actually find in Phillips Smalley?

 

First, as this is a period piece, it was important for me to educate myself on that era, and also how the film industry operated during that time. In terms of Phillips Smalley, for as little there is out there about Lois, there is even less about him. But, if it was out there, our director Gabrielle Rosson [Gabrielle Rosson interview - click here] found it! And she was very kind and generous in sharing her research with Katie Killourhy and I, which I thought was enough to build on and learn about Phillips, Lois, their relationship (both business and personal) and their stories. How much of me is in the character? Well, I think that I bring a certain likability to Phillips Smalley, and I think that captures part of my essence.

 

How did you get involved with the project, what drew you to it? And have you at all been familiar with movie director Lois Weber before getting on board of She, Who Dared?

 

Interestingly, I had never heard of Lois Weber or Phillips Smalley. In terms of my involvement, I worked with Gabby on her first short film Get Up Eight back in 2019. That project hit close to home for me, personally, and will always have a special place in my heart. And Gabby has been a dear friend ever since. She reached out to me for this role and told me that Katie would be playing Lois Weber, my characterís wife. Iím pretty sure I said yes before she finished her sentence. I had just wrapped another film project with Katie where we worked opposite each other for the first time (she played my characterís niece), and it was a joy working with her and getting to know her. Sheís just an all around awesome human and her talents speak for themselves. So, in this case, it was the people that drew me to this. With Gabby and Katie steering the ship, Iíd be crazy not to get on board.

 

What can you tell us about She, Who Dared's director Gabrielle Rosson [Gabrielle Rosson interview - click here], and what was your collaboration like?

 

Gabby and I formed a pretty solid bond from our collaboration on Get Up Eight, and our friendship and respective careers have grown since. So collaborating with her on this project, 4 years later, was pretty special. Sheís one of the kindest, strongest, most generous, genuine people I know. And I think just as highly of her talents as I do of her. She has been blazing a trail since I met her and it has been awesome watching her grow along the way.

 

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

 

The overall shoot was a wonderful experience. Each and every person involved in this project in front of and behind the camera was so passionate about it, and their efforts and talents were evident. The atmosphere was extremely positive, focused, fun and productive. I love to be on set. I feel like itís where Iím supposed to be, if that makes sense. So, for me, any day on set is a great day. But then there are some days that are extra special. These were those days for sure. There were a lot of friendships made on this set. And Iíve lost count of the professional collaborations that have happened since this project with cast and crew that met on this set.

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

I just finished some work on a film written/directed by Kris Salvi called Machine Gun Town (fun fact - Kris played Charlie Chaplin in She, Who Dared) [Kris Salvi interview - click here]. I really enjoyed that character and the story line. That just went into post-production. In the meantime, Iím actively involved with theatre and I continue to audition for my next film/television job.

 

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

 

My younger brother and I were in a Zayre department store commercial when we were younger. I was probably 11 or 12. Our parents had a family friend in advertising that was looking for a couple of adolescent boys for a TV commercial and I guess my brother and I made his job of finding them easier. I loved that experience and was so intrigued by it. So around age 16, I signed with a talent agency in Boston and did some industrial, commercial, TV/film work until my early 20s, at which time I joined the corporate world for 20+ years. About 6 years ago, I found myself thinking about a new career and I decided to dive head first back into acting, which has always been my true passion. So this is the 2nd act of my acting career, so to speak, and Iíve been doing it full time ever since. I absolutely love it. And itís not lost on me how lucky I am to be able to do what I love for work. Iím very grateful. For many reasons.

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to She, Who Dared?

 

I feel like Iíve built a pretty solid foundation of various TV and film credits over the past 6 years that, I think, are pretty diverse in the roles that I play, as well as the genres they cover. With my Ďtypeí, I tend to book more dramatic roles, but have had some comedic roles, which I enjoy, as well. A recent comedy short film that comes to mind is Mob Ghost, by writer/director Jimmy Caputo, where I play a down-on-his-luck divorcee who needs help exorcising a ghost from his apartment. Itís a fun short and I had a blast working on it. It should be on one of the streaming platforms soon. I also recently worked with some Fitchburg State University film students on a webseries and 2 different short films. I have to say, I've worked on projects with a lot of different universities, and Iíd be hard pressed to find a more professional, dedicated, disciplined and talented group of students. They were an absolute pleasure to work with.

 

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

 

I am a full time SAG-AFTRA actor with representation in Boston and NYC. I focus mainly on television and film, but do theatre as well when time allows. I am very passionate and committed to what I do and I love and respect the craft of acting. In terms of techniques, Iíd like to say that it is ever-evolving. But if I had to point to one specifically, it would be substitution, sometimes referred to as transference. This was acting teacher Uta Hagenís technique.

 

Actors (and indeed actresses) who inspire you?

 

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Well, for the purposes of this interview, can I say Lois Weber and Phillips Smalley? They were filmmakers, but they each acted in a lot of their films, also. That answer seems fitting. Hahaha!

 

Your website, social media, whatever else?

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1058104675

Instagram: https://instagram.com/paulsnoonan

Website: https://paulnoonanactor.com/

IMDb: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm9705028/

 

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

 

Iíd just like to thank you for taking the time to speak with me. I really believe in Gabby and this project and Iíd love for it to get the attention (and funding) that it deserves. We have a feature film to make! Thanks again, Michael.

 

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

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Vimeo

 

 

 

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

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
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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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