Your new movie M is for Myctophobia - in a few words, what is it
about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?
It's a short horror film, directed by Jordan Morris of Waking Dream
Studios. I play a woman who wakes up injured in an unfamiliar, dark room. The
reasons for her being there unravel as the film goes on. I don't want to give
too much away, but it's about revenge, fear and, in a twisted way, love.
To what extent can you identify with the titular
"myctophobia", the fear of darkness, and what did you draw upon
to bring your character to life?
I wouldn't say I have a fear of the dark in general but what I don't like
are those walk through rides at theme parks where everything takes place
in the dark and you don't know when somebody might jump out at you. My
friend and I went on a ghost train in Blackpool a few years ago and,
towards the end of the ride, everything went pitch black and someone came
from nowhere and touched my shoulder. As silly as it sounds, that's what I
was focussing on when we first started filming.
As the sole actor in M
is for Myctophobia, you pretty much carry the films on your shoulders
from beginning to end - so what kind of a challenge was that?
It was a completely new challenge for me as I'm used to having other cast
members to bounce off whereas
with this all I had to work with during the scenes were my own thoughts
and emotions. The crew were all excellent though - extremely supportive -
and it was a great experience.
did you get involved with the project to begin with?
I've known about
Waking Dream for a long time
as both my partner and a good friend of mine have filmed with them in the
past and I've always liked their work. I wanted to gain some more filming
experience so I got in touch with them and when this came up they asked if
I was interested.
can you tell us about your director Jordan Morris, and what was your
Jordan's a great director. He knows what he wants and is really
supportive and helpful, as are all the crew I worked with.
Do talk about the shoot as such for
a bit, and the on-set atmosphere?
Well, we filmed in a garage and we were in the dark for most of the shoot
with lots of theatrical smoke so it was all very eerie but great fun. It
really fitted with how I'd imagined it would be when I first read the
script. There were only four of us working on the film; myself and Jordan,
the writer Richard Reynolds [Richard
Reynolds interview - click here], and our lovely make-up lady, Carrie. We all
got on really well, which was great. It meant we could have fun as well as
work hard to make the film the best it could be. It was a great experience
Any future projects
you'd like to share?
I'm currently working with Arletty Theatre and
we've just started a rural tour with a play called Patchwork Lives,
which is a storytelling piece about two characters who live in an old, run-down house filled with lost stories. We're touring around Nottinghamshire
and Leicestershire throughout November. I'm also working on a play called Granny Must
Die with a new Mansfield based company, Zodiac.
Aside from that, I'm writing a book about Eva Peron, and how she's
still fascinating and inspiring people so many years after her death. I
did my degree in Creative Writing, so it's nice to be writing about
something I'm passionate about.
How did you get into acting to
begin with, and did you receive any formal education on the subject?
I've been acting since I was about four. I remember my first ever
performance was at infant school and we had a T.I.E company visit and they
wanted people to help them out. Anyway, they had a character called Anna
and because that's my name they chose me to help them. They went through
the story with me and told me what lines I had to say and when, and then
we performed in front of the rest of the school. I remember that I
loved it and didn't really feel nervous at all even though I used to be
quite shy. After that, I was
involved in all the school plays but I didn't actually start training
until I was in my early teens when I joined the Mansfield Palace Youth
Theatre, where I now work. After that I went on to study Performing Arts
at West Notts College and got National Diploma and Higher National
far as I know, you've so far mainly done theatre - so what can you tell us
about your career as a stage actress, and how does performing on stage
compare to acting in front of a camera, and which one do you prefer,
I've always enjoyed everything about the theatre and I think that will
always be my first love. There's nothing quite like performing to a live
audience and the adrenaline you get from that. I've worked with quite a
few local companies over the years and I'm thoroughly enjoying all the
theatre work I do now. I particularly like original work and being able to
help develop characters. I've
been working on Patchwork Lives since the beginning (almost a year ago)
when the piece was commissioned by Hatch and we performed at the Buxton
Fringe over the summer. The show got a five-star review, which was really
Can you still remember your first time in
front of a camera, and what was that experience like?
The first thing I ever really filmed was an
advert for a college that a friend of mine shot. All I remember is being
asked to jump around to this dance track and look happy. After that we
went on a faux tour of the college and asked questions we thought might be
helpful for students to know the answers to. It was all very random and
lots of fun but a bit nerve wracking as I'd never done nothing like it
talk about your filmwork prior to M is for Myctophobia for a bit?
Prior to this I mainly worked with a good
friend of mine who studied media at the same time I was doing my HND. I
filmed several things for him, including a pilot for a detective comedy
called Sleuths. My character Raquel was extremely sarcastic but good at
her job. She was great fun to play.
also run acting classes, right? Care to elaborate?
I work at the Palace Youth Theatre and I also run adult drama classes. I
run a group at the theatre every Wednesday night called Open Doors,
which is for anyone aged 18+ who's interested in theatre. We have a good
mix of abilities and backgrounds, and it's so lovely to be able to teach
and work with such a great group of people. They're willing to give
anything a go and they make my job extremely rewarding. We run in blocks
of ten week terms and look at everything from practitioners, such as
Stanislavski and Brecht, to devising skills and script work. We also have
a showcase every other term so the group can put their new skills to the
test and show the public what they've been doing.
would you describe yourself as an actress?
That's a difficult question! I guess I'd say versatile - I like to try
different roles. I always used to say comedy was my main strength but I've
been doing lots of different genres of late and I really enjoy the
challenge of being out of my comfort zone.
indeed actors) who inspire you?
I absolutely love Julie Walters. She's such a great character actress and
can be hilarious. I also get the impression she's a genuinely nice woman;
the sort of person it would be good to go for a drink with. My favourite
actor is probably Ryan Gosling at the moment.
Your favourite movies?
I love all kinds of movies but I watch independent or foreign films most
often. My all time favourite though is Alan Parker's 1996 version of the
musical, Evita. If I hadn't seen that film I'd never have joined
the youth theatre so it will always hold a very special place in my heart.
and of course, films you really deplored?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
I can't think of one film in particular but action's my least favourite
genre. There are action films out there that I've enjoyed but as a rule
they're not really my thing.
movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?
Here's a link to the film:
http://26th.abcsofdeathpart2.com/entry/m-is-for-myctophobia and the
Dream website: http://wakingdreamstudios.com/
My Twitter accounts: annasanderson86 (me) and
TheEvitaProject (my book)
you can find Arletty Theatre and The Evita Project on Facebook too.
you are dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
nothing I can think of.
for the interview!