Truth or Dare star Violett Beane discusses working with female directors and Hollywood’s efforts to increase diversity in the Spring 2018 issue of Pulse Spikes.
If you weren’t acting, what do you think you would be doing right now?
Right before acting kind of starting taking off for me, I was applying to jobs at bakeries! I used to love this adorable neighborhood bakery and I made a portfolio with all of my cupcake and cake designs. I even went in to talk to the owners and show them the binder! I’ve been baking for at least 5 years now and it’s a huge passion of mine.
You have a recurring role on the new Fox show The Resident as “Lily Kendall,” a cancer patient who is looked after by Matt Czuchry’s character, Doctor Conrad Hawkins. What is something you admire about Lily?
Lily is such a spirit. Through the season of the show, she’s suffering with a very serious stage of Leukemia and she handles all of it with such grace, and admiration for the people around her. Even when her fiancé leaves her to handle it all alone, she doesn’t blame him or hold any hatred for him. She’s brought a lot of understanding into my own personal life and definitely made me appreciate my health and family.
What is the main difference between working on a TV set verus working on a movie set? Is there a difference?
I would say the main difference is knowing the arch and end-point of your character and the story. With movies you read the whole script, you’re able to plan and execute every scene with that knowledge. Where as with TV, you might know ultimately where your character is headed, but you don’t know what’s gonna be written next week, so it keeps you on your toes a bit more. I have loved my experience with both film and TV, I love that they’re different!
I think Hollywood is making an outward effort with diversity, but the real change comes when the people behind the camera mirror that variance.
Have you worked with female directors before? How is Hollywood creating more opportunities for actresses and directors to exemplify strong female characters?
I have worked with a handful of female directors, but definitely not enough! Every experience I’ve had working with a female director has been so apparently unique because they’re able to tell a story in a way that is so different from what you normally see. They’re telling a side of things that hasn’t been told nearly as often as the male perspective. I think Hollywood is making an outward effort with diversity, but the real change comes when the people behind the camera mirror that variance. You can cast a female of color, but you can’t tell her story properly without those who have lived it writing and filming it.
Is there a specific director or actor that you hope to work with in the future?
I love all things Meryl Streep and would absolutely die for the opportunity to work with her just to learn a thing or two. I’m also a huge fan of Ava DuVernay’s films and what I have seen of her lust for life and story-telling, and would love to work with her on something!
What made you decide to become vegan? How has your lifestyle changed?
About seven months ago, everything clicked for me. I’ve been dealing with digestive food issues most of my life so what I put into my body, had always been on the forefront of my mind. Preserving our world is also something that’s very important to me and when I understood the impact a plant-based diet can make on climate change, deforestation, and preserving our resources, there was no way I could ignore the simple change it would take from me. One pound of beef requires anywhere from 4000 – 8000 gallons of water (mostly in growing the feed for the animal) where as one pound of tofu or one pound of oats only requires around 300 gallons. The process of raising, slaughtering, and packaging meat products causes immense amounts of greenhouse emissions, which are incomparable to that of plants.
With the recent and previous school shootings, what actions do you think need to be taken to ensure a safe educational environment? As an advocate for gun control, in what ways can the problem be addressed realistically?
I’m a firm believer that these incidents are not solely a gun issue, but a mental heath issue as well. However, it’s important that the American people and our governmental representatives address both causes equally. Saying it’s a mental health issue and then cutting funding to mental health initiatives will not fly! Addressing gun reform can be a much faster band-aid while we implement plans in communities of people struggling with mental health issues. It’s easy for us to feel small and powerless in our world today, but it’s when we stop speaking up that we let people get away with it. We must hold our officials responsible and help to elect people who accurately represent their neighborhoods.
It’s easy for us to feel small and powerless in our world today, but it’s when we stop speaking up that we let people get away with it.
You have the cutest pets: Milo, a bunny, and Kora, a puppy! Do they get along and do they travel with you?
Oh my gosh, I’m obsessed with my children! Milo, we got three years ago and he’s an adorable little Lop-Eared bunny and Kora is a tiny Klee Kai baby at 4 months. Everyone told us they weren’t going to get along, and Milo was going to have to live in a different room his whole life. But when we got Kora, she was actually smaller than the bunny, so she was kind of scared of him and didn’t know what he was. Now they totally get along, she tries to pet him sometimes!
Was there a moment you have ever been star struck?
I have loved the show Orphan Black since the pilot came out, and one year at Comic Con, I bumped into the lead of the show, Tatiana Maslany. Like literally bumped into her… on the dance floor. It was hilarious and we started dancing together and talked a bit. I played it totally cool and I really sold it, but the second I was alone, I started sobbing! I can’t even explain it, but I guess I was just so happy that I had met such a talented actor that I couldn’t hold it in, haha.
What advice can you give to aspiring actors?
Keep at it! Everyone has a different path in life, and it gets really easy to compare yourself to your peers or even people you’ve never met! If you’re enjoying the art, keep going with it, and just know that you’re time will come, and your path will light up.
STORY MOLLY GREEN
PHOTOS STORM SANTOS
HAIR & MAKEUP CAITLIN KRENZ
STYLIST GABRIEL LANGENBRUNNER
Read more in Volume III, Issue No. 002 – Spring 2018.1 Love