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THE BIG INTERVIEW: FTN interviews actress and film-maker Alexia Anastasio

March 31st, 2014 by Marc Comments

Alexia Anastasio is an artist, actress and film-maker. She was featured in HBO’s Bored to Death, VH1 “If you like…” commercial and Vetiver “Everyday” music video. Her work on the feature documentaries includes: Editor of Vampira: The Movie; Associate Producer of The Wild World of Ted V. Mikels; Co-producer of Beyond the Noise: My Transcendental Meditation Journey; Director of Adventures in Plymptoons! documentary on Oscar nominated animator Bill Plympton; Director of documentary, Ginger Girls: The Secret Lives of Redheads and Director of narrative, Little Fishes.

Alexia has been breaking barriers with her work and is a regular on the film festival circuit. Her 2012 documentary Adventures in Plymptoons! about Oscar-nominated animator Bill Plympton can be seen on Hulu, Netflix and on DVD. Her current projects include another documentary, an exploration o red-headed girls called Ginger Girls and a narrative film called Little Fishes, which is raising money on Kickstarter. Little Fishes is a work based on the erotic writings of poet DH Lawrence and has been a personal project for Anastasio. Little Fishes is a story about love and freeing yourself from past mistakes and life challenges.

FTN: Is this one of the best performances of your career?

AA: I believe so, Yes. I believe I jumped quite a number of hurdles in this film. I pushed myself. I like the courageous film-makers that have gone before me, like Maya Deren, and I try to channel them. It’s all about self-expression and the work itself. I like to give as an artist and perhaps I give too much and get exhausted. But it’s the craft that stands up in the end. I want to be admired for taking risks and being daring in my life and career.

FTN: What was your relationship like with your co-star Brenna Gwyn Snowe who plays your girlfriend in the film?

AA: I worked with Brenna in one of my first short films that was an all-female version of Oscar Wilde’s Salome. I flipped the script and made myself the centre of the story by finding out what was personal about the lessons of Salome. I used some modern day props and stage-lighting, but rooted the piece in the silent film-making era, which was inspired from Alla Nazimova who played Salome in the 1923 version. Brenna is comfortable to work with and always ready to try new things. Our bathtub scene (below)was very emotional.

“But it’s the craft that stands up in the end. I want to be admired for taking risks and being daring in my life and career.”

FTN: Has making this film made you more conscious of the fact that there are many people who don’t spend enough time on their personal growth?

AA: Yes, it definitely opened my eyes that many people are just trying to keep with with society’s notion of what makes people happy. Ultimately, it comes down to the Self. Life can change in a heartbeat. The moment that reality hits you, you realise that it’s you who has to change. There are a list of human needs and they include spiritual growth, which is critical for the artist. It’s all about giving it your all, suffer the consequences later or enjoy the spoils. It’s not whether you spent time, it’s whether you invent time.

FTN: Do you get homesick a lot?

AA: I love travelling and meeting people. My mother instilled the travel and adventures bug in me very early on and I honor that feeling of curiosity. Some of my best memories are from road life but, to be honest, it can have its lows. Home is where the heart is, to use an old cliche. But it’s really true, you take everything important with you. It’s OK to have sea legs, but you have to prepare yourself for a lot of uncertainty. For film-makers, you have to move yourself around to get energy and focus.

“It’s OK to have sea legs, but you have to prepare yourself for a lot of uncertainty.”

FTN: Do you think you’ve achieved most of the goals that you set for yourself as an actor/director?

AA: It may be great to achieve a solo show at a contemporary art museum, write a book and reach 4,000 Instagram followers, but true achievement comes when you know you did a good job and other people know it. Goals are fine to set if they get you to raise the barre. When I took on Little Fishes, I knew I had a killer goal of making a great statement with film. To take it to the next level, however, is putting my passion to the test. Instagram is not a measure of one’s spirit, but of course, it’s nice to have followers. (laughs).

Check out Adventures in Plymptoons! on many platforms like Hulu, Vimeo, Amazon by going here
You Can sign up for my email list and get updates whenever I have a new project on my website
And you can view the new trailers and sneak peak scenes and even give to the campaign for Little Fishes here

Let us know your thoughts below, @NerdFollowing on Twitter or on Facebook

Marc is a self-confessed nerd. Ever since seeing Star Wars for the first time around 1979 he’s been an unapologetic fan of the Wars and still believes, with Clone Wars and now Underworld, we are yet to see the best Star Wars. He’s a dad of two who now doesn’t have the time (or money) to collect the amount of toys, comics, movies and books he once did, much to the relief of his long-suffering wife. In the real world he’s a graphic designer. He started Following the Nerd because he was tired of searching a million sites every day for all the best news that he loves and decided to create one place where you can go to get the whole lot. Secretly he longs to be sitting in the cockpit of his YT-1300 Corellian Transport ship with his co-pilot Chewie, roaming the universe, waiting for his next big adventure, but feels just at home watching cartoons with his kids….