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?
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
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
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,
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
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
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?
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,
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.
(and indeed actresses) who inspire you?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results?
The links below
will take you
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!
website, social media, whatever else?
you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
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.
for the interview!