This past week, FYIG had the pleasure of getting to chat with actress/director April Mullen about her career and her film, Dead Before Dawn 3D. April talks about how she got here start, her influences, and even give some advice to aspiring filmmakers!
April Mullen has been on the movie set for quite a while now yet in various roles in front of and behind the camera, she took us through what motivated her to become a filmmaker.
“From a young age (approximately 5) my parents have multiple home videos of “shows” I used to organize and put together with all the other kids on the block. Our neighbourhood productions involved costumes, choreographed story telling and ticket sales. So the director/producer in me started unwittingly when I was really young I guess. Then in grade 2 there was an improvisation group at our elementary school (Saint Antoine) and at the time I was a quiet one, but being on stage in a make believe situation allowed me to feel free and express myself without any reservations. I loved interacting with an audience, listening and reacting quickly on my feet to the rest of the troop. Once I started acting professionally I never went back to my trailer to get ready, etc, instead I never left the director monitor. I observed on-set and loved every minute of it. I am addicted to the entire creative process and really enjoy watching something come from idea to big screen.”
Unlike most people in film, April has become somewhat of a ‘jill of all trades’ as it relates to the film industry. She spoke to the challenges of being an actress vs. being a director.
“They are completely different but also very similar. Without writing a book on it, as a director I find that while on set things are always changing and one really has to yield. It’s tough sometimes when you’ve pictured something in your head for over a year and in the moment there is no time to get it just right due to so many things that happen out of anyone’s control…but that’s also when the magic happens sometimes. In terms of acting challenges, just letting go and being completely in the moment sometimes gets tricky as you are also aiming to hit marks, continuity and very specific cues…it’s a constant balancing act.”
We asked April if any one person influenced her and instead of pulling out names, she gave a much more interesting answer.
“I am constantly influenced on a daily basis by everyone I meet. I am inspired by moments and capturing moments on film. I pull from life, imagination and dreams. There are so many factors/people that have pushed and pulled my path to the most exciting and unexpecting adventure.”
April took the chance to speak a little but on her latest success, Dead Before Dawn 3D and to give us a glimpse into her future.
“Dead Before Dawn 3D is a self aware comedy that follows a bunch of college kids who unleash an evil curse that causes people to turn into Zombie Demons, aka ZEMONS, and they only have 24 hours to reverse it. It’s sorta like Shaun of the Dead meets the Goonies. At the moment we are currently half way through our latest feature film shoot, and action-thriller entitled 88.”
April left us with one last piece of advice for aspiring filmmakers.
Be Bold, don’t doubt, take BIG risks, and follow your gut. Believe at all times in the impossible.
Definitely words that can be applied to everyday life.