Your upcoming movie Bring on the Rain - in a few words, what
is it about?
For April, the annual rainfall is no mere coincidence but a welcome
event during which her beloved mother comes by to say hello. Now, instead
of tears of sadness, there are tears of joy, for her mother’s presence
dwells within her forever and always. This story may elicit a tear, but it
will fill you with joy – a renewal of the love that transcends tragedy
and, in its place, will spread hope and renewal.
What were your initial inspirations for
dreaming up Bring on the Rain, and is any of this based on personal
experiences? And what convinced you to make this into a movie?
mother passed away when I was in my 20s. I had 3 children 5 years
old and younger at the time, and I lived a block away from her and my father. She and I had gotten to be very close and we spent most of
our time with each other in person and on the phone. When she passed
away suddenly, I was devestated. A close friend described me as
someone “who is like a candle and their flame has been blown out”.
The first year anniversary of her death there was a terrific thunderstorm
and I remember sitting on a carport crying, watching the torrential
downpour and not being able to speak because the heartbreak and tears were
so heavy. She and I shared a tremendous love for the rain and I felt
that it was as if the world was telling me it was sad for me and my loss.
Every year after I started to realize that I continued to get rained on no
matter where in the world I was at on the anniversary of her passing away.
In time, I started to realize it was not a sad coincidence, but a
“hello” from her and I began to look forward to that day in hopes of
her letting me know that she was still with me. I have told many
people this story and those I have shared it with have relayed to me how
special it is and how it touched their hearts. From there, I thought
I would let someone else make the movie, but I felt no one else would
be able to put the love into it that I can. So, here I am, making a
movie J who would have thought?
also will play the lead in Bring on the Rain, right? So what can
you tell us about your character, what will you draw upon to bring her to
life, and how much Chauna Mae can we find in April?
movie is based on my own personal experiences, so it is very close to my
heart. You will find a lot of me in the main character, April.
I hope that when it is finished I feel I have given the best performance
possible. I am my own worst critic AND this is based on personal
experiences which make some pretty large personal goals to meet.
you can tell us about the rest of your key cast and crew yet, and why
exactly these people?
Currently Michael Harrelson
interview - click here] is cast as Michael the Angel. Not only is Michael the most respected
Arizona actor that I know of, but he is a kind soul who believes in a
higher power which will aid in the depth the audience will feel from his
character in our project. I am honored that he has accepted the role
and look forward to making him proud of the final project.
What can you tell us about the
intended look and feel of your movie?
There will be some
past and present footage throughout the movie to help tie things together
and the ultimate goal will be to reach an emotional place in the viewer so
that when the movie is over they will leave the movie feeling hopeful and
inspired – and begin to look for their own signs.
Where do you see
the major challenges on the production side of things?
have never made a movie before so the challenges are pages long J The one
thing I do know is that I am smart enough to realize when I don’t know
something and to find someone else who knows more than me. Right now
the challenge is to find those that love the movie idea as much as I do
and that have the skillset needed to help get this movie completed.
photo by KJ Photographyaz
what's the schedule for Bring on the Rain, when will it go into
production ... and even if it's probably waaay too early to ask, when will
the film be released onto the general public?
We plan to
have a fund raising campaign so that we can make sure to pay all involved
in the project. It may not be a lot of money, but I do not want
anyone to have to work for free on this project. I hope to begin
filming the fall of 2015.
projects beyond Bring on the Rain you'd like to share?
other than Bring on the Rain currently.
have recently also starred in Love
a la Carte - so what can you tell us about that one and your
character in it?
My character is a house wife who is going
through her own midlife crisis. The making of the movie taught me a
lot about indie movie making which should help me some with Bring on the
How did you get involved with the
project in the first place?
I auditioned for it at Good
Faith Casting in Phoenix, Az.
What can you tell us about
your director Tim McSpadden [Tim
McSpadden interview - click here], and what was your collaboration
Tim is very dedicated to the project Love
a la Carte.
He stopped at nothing to get what he wanted out of the movie, and I saw
several instances where he felt let down yet he never quit. Our
collaboration was of a love/hate relationship I guess lol. We had
some great experiences and also our disagreements but that is just part of
the creative process.
A few words about the shoot as such, and the
photo by Tiphania's Photography
I was fortunate enough to get to travel
to beautiful locations all across Arizona and also California for the
filming of Love
a la Carte. When we shot the scene at Havasupai
Falls we had to hike a lot to get to the location. One spot was a
horrendous climb on a very unstable “staircase” on the side of the
canyon wall. Getting down to the bottom of the waterfall and wash
area was scary enough but before we ascended after the shoot it began to
rain. We took cover of course and waited for the rain to pass by.
I had a heavy backpack (we all carried gear for the shoot) and as I was
climbing out on this rickety, wet staircase that was stories upon stories
high and nothing to catch you if you fall, my backpack decided to swing to
my side as I was scaling a high step, swinging my entire body over nothing
but the ground located stories below. My heart was pounding out of
my chest, and it took every ounce of strength I had to pull myself
back to the safety of the canyon wall. The stair case was wet, the rails
were wet, and all I could see in my mind was me falling to my death on the
ground beneath me. My right hand and right foot are all that kept
touch on the wall and stairs... Even thinking about that experience makes
my heart pound to this day.
What got you into acting in the first
place, and did you receive any formal education on the subject?
was actually accidental. I had a business owner who wanted me to
take some professional pictures to advertise their business with and the
photographer Frank Simon informed me that I should consider other
alternatives as well, which I did.
can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Love
a la Carte and Bring on the Rain?
largest project I had the opportunity to be featured in was the filming of
Piranha 3D. It was directed by Alexander Aja in Lake Havasu,
Az. I spent 2 weeks there for the filming and learned a tremendous
amount about large scale productions. I have had the opportunity to
work in commercials, television, and other indies as well.
would you describe yourself as an actress, and some of your techniques to
bring your characters to life?
photo by Tim Toms
I think about how I would
feel if it were me in the situation the character is going through and how
I would react in real life. For Piranha 3D it was difficult to
imagine being attacked by a school of flesh eating piranha, so I pretended
the water was acid that was burning my skin and that thought made it more
realistic to help to bring it to my character.
Actresses (and indeed
actors) who inspire you?
Will Smith – quality of
character, and Adam Sandler – dedication to self and family and friends
Your favourite movies?
Ghost, 300, Gladiator and
Rat Race J
and of course, films you really deplore?
There are many
films that I do not personally like to watch (Saw for example) but I do
not deplore any at all. I am impressed they made it to the finish
line in making their production.
movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?
On Facebook you can find us at
On Twitter you can follow us at @BringonRain
Our website is just beginning to get built, but it is
me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/chaunamae
My IMDb is
you are dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
Facebook page for Bring on the Rain has some wonderful experiences others
have gone through that have been shared in the comments section.
I encourage everyone to read the comments and also post your own if
you have one to share. They are very touching and show
us that this is not just something Chauna has experienced, but is
worldwide. I hope you follow along by “liking” the
movie page and that you enjoy our finished product. Thanks for reading,
for the interview!