I recently got the chance to talk to Katie Elizabeth Garner about her role in ‘Piranha 3DD’. Here, Katie talks about how she got involved in the project and what it was like working with the cast and crew on-set…
Hey Katie. Thanks for taking the time out to talk to me about your new film, ‘Piranha 3DD’.
Absolutely, I’m excited to be here. Thank you for having me.
Plotline: After the events at Lake Victoria, the pre-historic school of blood-thirsty piranhas make their way into a newly opened waterpark. (taken from IMDB).
Tell us a bit about the character you play in the movie…
I play a character named “Lizzie”. She is one of the lifeguards at the water park. She is known as the lifeguard who fell to her death in her lifeguard chair. She was strangled by her whistle while trying to save a life…so selfless
The scene was originally supposed to be in the middle of the film, but was then cut from the film and put into the movie RIGHT before the credits. It was a great scene, and I hate that it was cut, but that’s the business.
How did you get involved in the project in the first place?
I have an agent out of Wilmington, NC. I am always getting auditions and originally just got chosen to be a “waterpark staffer”. I was called back in days later, and my casting director informed me that after the director saw my picture, he said I was “too pretty” to be an extra, and cast me as a lifeguard. Needless to say, I was incredibly flattered, and shocked. I took full advantage. I was very blessed to be cast.
Why do you think the ’Piranha’ franchise is so popular?
I think its popular, because of the target audience. I remember when I was a teenager, and the popular films were all “teen scream parodies”. That’s exactly what this is. Also, it is scary at times, but with a hint of laughter, so it has a lot to offer. I know when I watch it, I don’t take it seriously, therefore it gives me a chance to let go of stress and just laugh. I hope that’s what a lot of people will take from the film. Its not a film to watch if you’re looking for life’s answers to the hard questions, more so just a parody to keep people laughing!
The film stars Katrina Bowden, Danielle Panabaker, Christopher Lloyd, Ving Rhames, Chris Zylka, Jean-Luc Bilodeau, Gary Busey and David Hasselhoff – with John Gulager onboard as director – what was it like working with the cast and crew on-set? Any good anecdotes?
John was a fabulous director, I really enjoyed getting to know him. We still keep in touch, and he is great to go to for advice! I got close with a lot of the crew. I really like to take the time and interact with everyone on a film set, because everyone usually has great advice, and a great life story to share. Chris Zylka is a cutie, I just liked to look at him, haha. David Hasselhoff was my “boss” in the film, and at one point we shared a heating tent while filming my death scene, that was eventually cut and put at the end of the film. He was a pleasure to work with. Very funny, and at one point, I remember him calling me a “Stepford Guard”. That made my day, and just broke the ice on set. He treated me with a great deal of respect, and I appreciated that.
Let’s talk a bit about you Katie. What made you want to get into the industry in the first place?
Passion, I have a true passion for the news/film industry. I have always known that a career in this industry. With a lot of hard work, and passion, I’ve gotten to where I want to be. I hope the blessings continue.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to pursue a career in the industry?
Keep the faith, and have patience. I have learned that you’ll be rejected a thousand times before you’re told yes once. Also, you really need to love what you do. If you’re getting into this for the fame and fortune, get out! That’s not a reason to pursue a career in this industry. Do something because it brings you happiness. Go to work everyday, knowing that even if you were working for free, you would still be there.
That’s the attitude I have, and I love every minute of my job. Also, get an agent, and treat ‘em like family! Respect your co-workers, and treat everyone the way that YOU want to be treated. That’s my advice.
If you were stranded on a desert island, what ‘personal’ thing could you not live without?
My iPad! Assuming that the desert island had WiFi!
If you could have dinner with three guests – (living or dead), who would you choose and why?
- My best friend, Tom Fisher! We’ve been friends forever, and we have been to everything from charity events to television premieres together. When I was Claire Danes stand-in for the Golden Globe winning show, ‘Homeland’, Tom and I attended the premiere. It was so much fun, and if I had been able to make to to LA for the ‘Piranha’ premiere, we would have attended a dinner party there as well! He is ALWAYS my go-to for any event I may have! Lucky to have a best friend that has excellent taste/practically the same mind as I do. We also love to speak ebonics, meet new people, and drink wine on porches. If you have a big porch, CALL US!
- Jesus – his plan for my life hasn’t been at all what I thought it would be. I never dreamed I would actually have a career in news that I love, or that I would have been cast in a film. I truly trust in him, and put all my faith into living and following my dreams! I consider myself happy, and I give all of the credit to God. I was raised a Presbyterian, and I have always had strong faith. I cannot even put into words the ways God has worked in my life! When I used to hear my Sunday School teachers say “Follow Gods Path”, I always thought I had to live “by the book”, as my parents said. However, I have learned through this journey of acting, and news that the path truly depends on following Gods plan for my life. I couldn’t be happier, and I love living in the moment, and for the future. Very blessed, and very thankful. I can’t wait to sit at a big table with Jesus one day!
- My Nana. We lost her pretty unexpectedly this year, and being that she was my favourite person, I would really love to eat one more of her homemade chicken pies and tell her how much I love her one more time. There’s nobody quite like my Nana! She’s the reason I have taken so many leaps of faith, and a big part of why I am where I am today! She was the epitome of love.
What is your favourite word?
Love – because I believe that’s what life is all about. I also believe love is the root of all success and happiness. As Mother Teresa said, “If you judge someone, you have no time to love them!” This is pretty much how I try to live, and that is why love is my favourite word!
What’s coming up for you in 2012?
I currently work as the Evening Traffic Reporter for a News Station in North Carolina. I absolutely love it, so that’s where my focus is for 2012. I wouldn’t have it any other way. I previously worked as the stand-in for Claire Danes in the hit Showtime series, ‘Homeland’. After Season 1, (the show won a few Golden Globes!). I got my job in news, working for an Emmy winning morning show, and then transitioned into evenings. With all of that being said, I feel as though I have achieved my goals thus far, and im in a great place. I plan on being here for a while.
Thanks for the interview!