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-Interview by Nic Brown-


Nicola and Debbie Rochon on the set of

For Christ's Sake.

Finding one title to describe Italian-American beauty Nicola Fiore is a tough job. She’s been a model for Sears, and Tromette of the month for Troma Pictures, been a bass guitarist for a hard core band, a projectionist in a movie theater and now works as an actress and filmmaker. Nicola is as comfortable behind the camera as she is in front of it and prides herself on helping bring order to the chaos found on most movie sets.

Her projects include working with legendary Scream Queen Debbie Rochon on the film For Christ's Sake as well another dozen or so independent horror films including the memorably titled: Terror At Blood Fart Lake. Now Nicola Fiore is talking to B Movie Man Nic Brown about filmmaking, why she’s happy to be back in New York and why filmmakers Ivan Zuccon and Timo Rose need to read this interview!

 

Nic - Nicola, how did you get your start in acting?

Nicola - Well, I have always been a loud girl who likes attention. My parents were into the arts heavily, so they got me involved with a lot of performance type classes when I was a kid. Acting was not something my mother was willing to help me with because she thought it was too competitive and I wouldn't be able to handle the rejection. (So she got me into modeling? Go figure!) As soon as I got to high school I signed up for drama as an elective my freshman year and got crazy involved.

Nic - Can you tell us a little about your role in the film For Christ's Sake?

Nicola - Let me start off by saying that it is a role that I originally didn't think I was right for. I just wanted to help put it together because I was fired up at religious extremists at the time. The role I thought I would be right for was Dr. Serena Vance which Dustin had gotten Debbie Rochon to play. Michael Kenneth Fahr was the one who ultimately convinced me that I could pull off the pushy 18 year old girl. It took a while. I mean, fuck - I was 28 at the time.

Nic - Was For Christ's Sake your first film role?

 

Nicola - There were two films I worked on before FCS. Ironically both were horror which I didn't know a whole lot about at the time. The first was called The 12th Victim which was filmed at the movie theatre where I worked with a few people that were also taking film classes at the same college. My friend Chris Cline wrote the lead role for myself and we had a blast filming the death scenes in the projection booth where we all worked. A few years later Chris wrote another script called The Shadow Over Bales Hill. This script was really well written and controversial also. It was about an evil reverend and his family and the strange deaths that occurred in the small town. Needless to say I was one of the deaths. At the time getting killed kind of sucked but when we filmed it, it was so fun to die!! My character was a church girl with a southern accent. The film won 3rd place at the Sarasota, FL film forum in 2002. I felt I had my fill of acting after that so I didn't work on anything until For Christ's Sake which was five years later.

Nic - What do you find is the most challenging thing for you as an actress?

Nicola - The most challenging thing so far has been getting these productions going. Independent film can be a bitch with budget and everything else involved. I have several scripts that have been sent to me in the past year that may never see the light of day. It's a damn shame.

Nic - Thinking about the difficulties of getting production actually started on a film project, what advice would you offer to aspiring independent filmmakers?

Nicola at Sirius studios to do appear on Maxim radio for Hotties of Horror week

Nicola - Do NOT let a budget stop you!! Some people think they need all this money to get a film going. You can make a great film for little to no money. You may not get Nicole Kidman to play the lead, but your film will still get seen. One of my favorite directors I have worked with is Chris Seaver at LBP and he has done some great films on the cheap.

Nic - Your credits in For Christ's Sake go beyond just acting. Among other things, you're listed a producer for the film. Do you plan to do more work behind the camera as well as in front of it?

Nicola - Absolutely. My background in business and the education I paid for from it (I was a retail manager for 10 years and put myself through a year of film school) are something I have finally gotten to utilize. I am helping market a few projects that I shot this past year and am signed on to produce 2 films next year that have about 6 times the budget of For Christ's Sake. Acting is not something I ever thought I would do again. I am great with managing a budget and shoot schedule. Organization is also something that I can manage well from within the chaos that comes up on sets. I look forward to that as much as my acting career.
Nic - Putting a bit of a twist on my last question, how do you think your experiences behind the camera and what you’ve learned in film school affect your performance when you’re in front of the camera?

Nicola - I learned the basic fundamentals of acting from classes at a theatre. Theatre acting feels over the top and very unnatural for me. While taking film classes and working on the first two films I did, I felt I could be much more intimate with my delivery and expression. Knowing what was going to happen in post-production helped me too. I am not one of those "fix it in post" actors. Understanding camera work, sound recording, and lighting (and where the light is hitting you) is all stuff I think about before doing a scene.

Nic - How do you think the internet is affecting the world of independent film?

Nicola - This is being brought up a lot lately. It was just discussed at The B Movie Celebration in Franklin, Indiana. The panel included some of the best B movie directors in the business. There is a little animosity it seems from long time filmmakers about Youtube and different web series out there. They feel that maybe the market is too saturated or that the quality has gone down. Lloyd said it best I think. Everything he said is what I feel about this also. The more young filmmakers out there, the more fans of the indie genre we have and the easier it is to find the freshest talent. Also, the way we used to have to wait to get info about films coming out is over. There is no more waiting to read the next issue of whatever magazine or watching a documentary to see what is going on behind the scenes. Trailers are more readily available, people are finding it easier to network, and sites like this one are out there to give us great info almost instantly.

Nic - If you had the opportunity to work with anyone on a film whom would it be and why?

Nicola looks ready to face the Terror At Blood Fart Lake.


Nicola - I have been very fortunate to work with a lot of great people already. When we were filming For Christ's Sake last year, Debbie kept talking about what a great experience she had filming Colour from the Dark in Italy. My favorite horror films are Italian Horror so this was intriguing to see where the genre was going. After I got on MySpace in January, I friend requested the page for Colour from the Dark. I got a message back from filmmaker Ivan Zuccon saying he would like to see my film reel. Just getting back in to filmmaking, I didn't feel I had enough to send. I watched all of the films of his I could get my hands on and was taken with his talent.

I also met Joe Davison at a film screening in Florida which Debbie attended for the premiere of her film Savaged. Joe told me he worked on Fearmakers with her and filmmaker Timo Rose. Me and Melody (my girl) really loved this film and Debbie and Joe were really great in it. It is obvious that I am very inspired by Ms. Rochon and I give her a lot of credit for my career continuing on after FCS for she was very encouraging. Working with Timo Rose and Ivan Zuccon I feel would be a great fit and a great experience for me as well. (They should both expect film reels soon, for my reel is finally looking the way I want it to.)

Nic - So what would your dream project be?


Nicola - As an actor, I guess working with Ivan or Timo! Serious! There is a great concept I am working on that has a Thelma and Louise meets Bonnie and Clyde tone. It is a lesbian love story. One day I hope to bring that to life as a producer.

 

Nic - Nicola, we’ve talked about your work in film, but what do you like to do when you’re not making movies?

Nicola definitely looks good in... or at least in front of red!


Nicola - Spending time with my fiancée Melody. I love New York City and finally live here again so walking around exploring the city with her is always a great day. Also, we tend to do a lot to support gay rights in this country that seems to be easing its way towards equality little by little. In the past few years it seems we have made great progress.


Nic - So what’s next for Nicola Fiore?

 

Nicola - There are several projects lined up for 2009. There is Hellstorm which is a great project about a hurricane hitting Galveston, TX (which did happen but it is still fictional) which I am also producing. Into the Basement which is based on Norm Applegate's novel. I will be working with Forbidden Films and Chainsaw Sally which I am a fan of. There is another film that I am doing with Michael Kenneth Fahr called Victimized which is a very cool script with intense situations and characters. I just landed a lead role in a martial arts film that is being shot here is New York with filmmaker Jim Haggarty. Chris Seaver at Low Budget Pictures invited me back to work with him on his largest film yet called They're Here and I really love working with him. And there is a project called Grace of Midnight that is a very well written comedy that was sent to me by a great writer named Matthew Jason Walsh. Matthew and his partner/friend James L. Edwards are putting it together and asked me to come on board as a producer. There is also a fun supporting part that I get to play. These guys have some great films they have done and I am thrilled to be working with them on this. There are a lot of other things that are in the works so we will see, anything is possible :)





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