FYIG recently talked to actress Risa Stone about her roles in Man Eater and Space & Time, as well as her work with Dog Rescuers Inc. Check out the full interview here!
I understand that your passion for acting came at the early age of 7 at a film and acting camp at Harbourfront Centre. What do you remember about that camp and what drew you to acting at such a young age?
Growing up my favourite past time was playing dress up. The mother of my childhood friend had curated this amazing costume chest for her daughter. She filled it with fabulous vintage pieces like capes, silk scarves, and beaded gowns. I used to rush over to their house and insist we open the costume chest, play dress up and put on shows. I think my mother caught on to my desire to perform and enrolled me in film camp shortly thereafter.
It’s funny because until this day costume has remained such a crucial component within character building for me. When I get an audition, I can’t help but imagine what my character would wear.
Did you aspire to become an actress from that point or was it something that came back to you later on?
As a child, I always told people that I wanted to be an actress but it wasn’t until I was 17, when I started training, auditioning and being on set that I realized what it would really take to make my dream a reality. I had some serious talks with myself and family members to decide if I was really going to pursue this craft as a career- Long story short, I realized I couldn’t not pursue a career as an actress.
Today, hard work aside, acting for me is about my ability to create and share meaningful, and truthful stories.
Talk to us about your role as Hayley in the short film Man Eater.
Man Eater is a commentary on the Millennial generation and their relationship with social apps. Hayley’s character was written to showcase this relationship and therefore really express the truth of modern day dating.
You were also a writer and producer on Man Eater. What’s it like juggling your behind the scenes responsibilities with your on-screen role?
As an actress, I’m used to getting my call sheet, showing up to set and plopping down in the makeup chair where I can go over lines, and just think about my character.
While shooting Man Eater I knew how important it was for me to let go of production and focus on bringing my character to life. Personally, it was really hard for me to detach from my other roles because I felt so invested in the project and felt personally responsible for my cast, crew and the locations. Thankfully I had an amazing team to support me while we were shooting. Big thanks to my producer (Nicole Segal), Director (Shawn Gerrard), Dp (Zach Silverstein) & Editor (Laura Carnegie). I couldn’t have done it without these guys.
Do you have any aspirations of writing and producing your own feature film?
I have a few projects in the development phase right now. One of them is a film called HaShoah. It’s a story about the granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor’s relationship with her Jewish Identity as she moves away from home to attend school. Ideally, I would like to shoot this project as a feature film. I am all about making art happen so if I have to shoot this as a short to pilot it, I will.
Are there any other behind the scenes roles that you’d like to get into (perhaps directing)?
I did a lot of location scouting for Man Eater. There are so many amazing venues and locations in the GTA and I didn’t realize how much fun I would have in that role. I would also absolutely love to direct at some point.
You also play the role of D.D. in the upcoming feature film Space & Time. Tell us a little bit about what we can expect in that film.
Playing D.D. is the most fun I have ever had on set. She embodies the manic, Millennial, pixie dream girl. She’s candid and primal and lives the way we all wish we could at times. I can’t wait to share her with everyone.
Tell us a bit about your work with the charity Dog Rescuers Inc.
Through the Dog Rescuers Inc I was able to foster Pippin, a Belgian shorthaired Pointer. He was such a sweetheart and If I didn’t live in a condo at the time I would have probably kept him. The charity was able to find him an awesome home. The family had four kids to love him, play with him and they also happened to live on a farm with tons of space. It was the perfect fit but it took about three months to find the best home. I think fostering is a great way to contribute without biting off more than you can chew. Sometimes dogs and organizations just need time to find a permanent placement and that’s when a foster home is perfect!
What’s your dream role (if you have one)?
I have always dreamt of playing a Bond Girl!
Do you have any advice for aspiring actors and actresses?
To anyone aspiring to become an actress/actor I would say this – Take baby steps and set monthly and yearly goals to keep track of your progress. Everything is a step in your career so don’t get bogged down by the big picture. It’s also really important not to compare your career to other actors. Everyone will have their time, just keep working hard, creating, collaborating and sharing. Finding a great mentor never hurts either!
Let everyone know where to find you online
Check out my IMDB and Instagram handles below for all up to date details on my career happenings!