Beautiful actress Serena Lorien recently played alongside Darryl Hannah and William Baldwin in Garbage, now she is back to star as Nina in the new action fantasy film Welcome to Purgatory.
Welcome to Purgatory, directed by Gene Fallaize, follows three fresh-to-the-afterlife arrivals – Willis, Danni and Taylor – as they navigate through this original vision of the hereafter, helped along the way by faithful Guardian Paul and long-standing survivor Nina (Serena Lorien). They find the afterlife in shambles amidst an escalating war between good and evil. All the usual rules and guidelines of the afterlife have been shattered. The arrivals soon learn that both pain and pleasure can be experienced, and while death may not be final, it leads directly to the Seventh Circle of Hell. Once trapped in Lucifer’s very own domain, they must find a way to set things right again… before Heaven is ruined forever.
Serena’s recent credits include: Garbage, Dreamz and Poe. Welcome to Purgatory is produced by London based company Cupsogue Pictures, the film will be shot in Pinewood studios and is set for a 2014 release.
FTN: Serena, thanks so much for chatting to us. Welcome to Purgatory is a fantasy film set in the world of angels and demons, not seen since Christopher Walken starred as Gabriel in the Prophecy series. How did you come by the part of Nina and are you having to do much research for this role?
SL: Yes, I’m definitely excited about the genre and concept of Welcome to Purgatory, as soon as I read the script I thought about how much fun this role and film would be to shoot and how I had to get this part. I was contacted a few years ago by a casting director that, at the time, was working with Cupsogue Pictures (the Production company producing Welcome to Purgatory) who had found me and some of my work via, of all things, Twitter, I did voiceover work in their next project and this time I was contacted directly by the Director, Gene Fallaize, to put myself on tape for the role of Nina. I was up against a name actress, but thankfully they saw from my taped audition that I could bring a lot to the character and went with me for the role.
FTN: Welcome to Purgatory features an impressive cast, including Jack O’Halloran who played Nom in the first two Superman movies. Are you excited to work with such a highly regarded fan favourite actor?
SL: Funnily enough my voiceover role in the above mentioned project was alongside Jack O’Halloran, although we recorded at different times, so I never got to meet him. I have heard wonderful things about him as a person and I know he’s a fantastic actor, so I’m excited to be working alongside him in WTP and of course who doesn’t love the original Superman films?
FTN: With the current phenomenally successful television series of True Blood and Supernatural, both dealing with demons of a sort, do you feel that the audience is wanting more supernatural thrills as opposed to the previous types of summer chillers and thrillers such as the Final Destination film series?
‘I think there’s always a general curiosity with the Supernatural for most people and a fascination with the unknown of what happens to us after death…’
SL: I think there’s always a general curiosity with the Supernatural for most people and a fascination with the unknown of what happens to us after death. The subject and questions are usually there in the back of people’s minds, making them wonder what will happen to them in the afterlife, whether they’ve led a good enough life to go to a better place etc. I think it’s the human element to a story about demons that attract people to it, if that makes sense, whereas with other types of chillers/ thrillers a lot of them are about things we will never experience in our lives, so there’s only so much of a connection that can be made, whereas death and the concept of mortality affects us all. Additionally, there are few things that haven’t already been done to give shock value to a film and I think some are tired of a film made purely for the sake of that.
FTN: The trailer shows the cast in some very physically demanding scenes. Will you have to go through any physical training for the role?
SL: I do have some physical scenes, although not as many as the lead male role, I have started Kickboxing again several times a week and am on a program to increase my fitness level.
if I didn’t enjoy a good challenge I wouldn’t have pursued an acting career in the first place, so I’m ready and raring to go!
FTN: Welcome to Purgatory is due for release shortly, and it seems that it is a story that may not be concluded in one film. Are there any plans for a sequel?
SL: Hmm well that would be telling, wouldn’t it!?
Ok then, I suppose I can divulge, yes Welcome to Purgatory is indeed a Trilogy which is another very cool aspect for me working on this project, the director is keeping the actors in the dark as to where the storyline for our characters is headed which is exciting and yet challenging in the actor’s process of making firm background choices without knowing how the character ends up, but I welcome this new experience and if I didn’t enjoy a good challenge I wouldn’t have pursued an acting career in the first place, so I’m ready and raring to go!