I recently got the chance to talk to Carryl Lynn about her role in Kevin Smith’s new film, ‘Red State’. Here, Carryl talks about what it was like working with the cast and crew on-set and what’s coming up for her in 2012…
Hey Carryl. Thanks for taking the time out to talk to me about your new film, ‘Red State‘.
What’s the general plotline surrounding the film?
Three Middle American teenage boys accept an online invitation for sex, and soon encounter fundamentalists with a much more sinister agenda. It’s about fundamentalism and religious beliefs – gone to the extreme.
Tell us a bit about the character you play in the movie…
I play Jeb’s wife, one of the members of the inner circle of the fundamentalist group (aka religious cult) of The Five Points Trinity Church, headed by mesmeric Pastor Abin Cooper, playing brilliantly by Michael Parks. My character is a regular middle-American Mom (with an adorable kid), a part of the Cooper family, who completely believes in and follows her religious beliefs and her church/family to the horrific extreme.
How did you get involved in the project in the first place?
I auditioned, which was taped, and then I had a callback. The casting selections were done by Kevin. Oh, and my familiarity and skill with firearms – were a definite asset.
How would you say this film is different and unique?
First of all, anything Kevin Smith does is different and unique. And he is fearless about attacking any subject he believes in. This subject matter is dark and very different from what audiences have come to expect from him. And his realistic style gives the film a very intimate feeling, which makes it all the more terrifying. Additionally, his dynamic guerrilla marketing tactics have now inspired many independent film makers.
The film is directed by legendary comedy director Kevin Smith – are you a fan of his past work? What do you think it is about him that makes him such a good director?
Actually, I’d only seen ‘Clerks’ and ‘Dogma’ before I was cast. I have since watched others. Kevin is amazing to work with…he knows what he wants, and he knows how to get it. He’s very passionate about his work. And this particular film. Therefore, he wasted no time…each day scenes were shot with very few takes, and he edited the dailies by next morning. He is very open, warm, and brilliantly funny and smart. And he makes everyone in his cast and crew feel appreciated.
The film stars Michael Angarano, Deborah Aquila, Nicholas Braun, Ronnie Connell, Kaylee DeFer and Kyle Gallner – what was it like working with the cast and crew on-set?
One of the first things I realized, which totally impressed me, was that everyone was like one big organic family. The heat, the rain, the cold, the mud, the…whatever…was no problem…
The entire cast was extremely professional – very focused, and completely occupied their characters when the cameras rolled. Michael Parks, who plays the patriarch preacher Abin Cooper, was a lesson in soft-spoken charisma and pure evil. Melissa Leo is a brilliant actress and much fun. You mentioned Michael A, Nichols, and Kyle – genuine, delightful. Kerry Bishe…everyone in the cast and crew worked so focused, gave their all immediately. And a joy to work with. Additionally, much credit must be given to the brilliant cinematographer, David Klein.
Let’s talk a bit about you Carryl. What made you want to get into acting in the first place?
I like make-believe, being anyone I imagine, and they say I have the gift of the gab; I can believe anything I say, and therefore everyone else does, too. And, to quote one of my acting coaches, ‘Do at least one thing every day that scares you’ – I’m addicted to that challenge.
What is currently on your I-Pod right now?
Really? Ok, Nirvana, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Cake, Stevie Ray Vaughan
If you could have dinner with three historical people, (living or dead), who would they be and why?
- Jesus, to get the real scoop
- Stephen Hawking, to delve into his brilliant mind
- Golda Meir, because she was/is fascinating
- Richard Branson I think would be a blast too
Ok, so that’s four…
What is your favourite beverage / food?
Sushi, lobster; water, champagne.
What’s coming up for you in 2012?
I’ve just shot a terrific role in a new rom-com, still filming, called ‘Shirin In Love’ and I’m also in the feature ‘Touched’, both being released in 2012. And lately I’ve been doing some comedy videos with a lot of improve, cool comedians, and fun stuff. I’m on hold for another feature, and we’ll see. That’s the cool thing about this business – you never know what’s around the next corner.
Thanks for the interview!