Wednesday, February 3, 2010

AUSTIN: Danielle Rene is Lily (Pt 1)

We've always referred to AUSTIN as our "heterosexual" short, but as with the other films, I think putting it into this kind of box limits the connections we all will have, gay or straight or trans or whatever, to the universal struggles it unearths.

For one, AUSTIN presents the challenges every human being faces as they get older to find a meaningful place for sex in their lives. For heterosexual couples, procreating can become a prime way that meaning is created for sex. And at the same time, there is the struggle in all long term relationships to still honor the animal and unknowable that nine times out of ten drew the couple together in the first place. It's a rare couple that gets together because they want to make great babies together!

Danielle Rene, one of the stars of AUSTIN, is one of those rare kinds of actors who can embody these contradictions with seeming ease, transforming from a vulnerable and all-too-human puddle of emotions into a powerful and confident sex-goddess over the course of the film. She has the range and depth of someone well beyond her years and, as many of the people have confessed after recent rough cut screenings, you literally can't take your eyes off her.

Today begins a two part interview with her on her 4PLAY experience. - Kyle

1) What were your first feelings about being approached to play your role in AUSTIN? First thoughts after reading the script?

D: I was intrigued with the characters and the relationship between them. I myself have, as many of us have experienced the joys and the frustrations in a partnership. How sometimes the way we grow as people can cause a bit of a struggle to be on the same page. I felt it would be challenging and rewarding.

2) What, if anything, helped you prepare to play your role?

D: I use relaxation and active imagination exercises to really get plugged in when preparing to step into a character, but I must say that I felt a kinship and real understanding of Lili from the beginning. She felt very familiar.

3) What particular challenges did you face playing your role? Any fears you had to overcome?

D: I think if anything so often love and sex are not shown in such a real and raw way. I think each one of us on this project wanted it to be portrayed and received in the way it was intended.

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