Although best known for her roles in front of the camera, actress and model Tina Krause may truly be described as a cinematic renaissance soul. Screen writer, producer, director, and cinematographer are just a few of the hats this talented artist has worn. Now Tina’s hard at work on a new film, Limbo which she both wrote and directed. Tina was gracious enough to take some time from her busy schedule to talk a bit about her new film and about her work as a filmmaker.
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Nic–Tina, you’ve been involved in more than 50 films over the past decade, and now you are making your own film. What prompted you to take the plunge and make your own movie(s)?
Tina– Hmmm…. Good question. Well, for the longest time I wanted to know what it would be like to be on the other side of the camera. I wanted to see what the director sees and all aspects of it. I was interested in the look of the overall project and learning about lighting etc. What really caused me to take the long awaited plunge into the dark depths of movie making was … at the time of this great epiphany there were a lot of horror films being made about Vampires. I was really getting sick of vampire movies and wanted to see something different other than a crazed killer on the loose… not that these things aren’t good but I really wanted something different and so as they say… if you want something done (the way you want it) then do it yourself…and I did. After a few glasses of wine and a couple of books I sat down and wrote a script. Shortly after I shot and directed it and this is where the nightmare begins.
Nic– Which did you find more challenging, writing the script or taking on the role of director and trying to bring the images you’d created on paper to life?
Tina– I think I am going to say directing, just because what I am imagining doesn’t have obstacles going against it at the time. What I mean by this is I got it on paper. Cool! But the day of shooting everything goes nutty. I may not have the location that I wrote the scene for and will have to change it on fly or the actor may not be able to pull off the scene too well and I may have to do something to make that better or what I envisioned is not looking at all like I wanted and I would have to change something with out throwing the whole idea off. Writing isn’t the easiest thing to do either….. I’ve had many a re-write.
Nic– Was it difficult (physically and mentally) working both in front of and behind the camera in the same film?
Tina– Oh man. This is what I don’t ever recommend doing especially if it’s your first film or even your third. Don’t direct and make yourself a lead or a character that shows up a lot in your flick… DON’T DO IT!!!!! Luckily I only play a waitress and that’s because I lost an actress last minute for that part…. not the most important part so I figured FUCK IT I’ll do it. Yes, it’s hard to do all that and still direct and shoot your film which is what I did. I will tell you this; the shoot took lots of long hours. I was exhausted and am damn glad I didn’t try to pull off a lead role or something silly like that.
Nic– You mentioned that there are too many vampire and slasher type films being made today. What do you think is the reason for this and the deluge of remakes and sequels that Hollywood seems determined to turn out?
Tina– Vampires and Slasher flicks are an easy sell, everyone is familiar with them and it’s not a hard concept to put together. Horror bases a lot of its sellable characters off of those types of movies and depending on what is out there at the moment will dictate the trend to follow. The same for Hollywood in regards to sequels, if a movie does well then they make a part 2 and 3 and 4 etc. It’s all about the sell and maybe a lack or a fear of trying new ideas.
Nic– Tell us a bit about your newest project: Limbo.
Tina– Limbo can be called a symphonic horror, as someone put it to me. It’s the journey of a lost soul making her way through purgatory. The movie goes back and forth from reality to what dwells in the subconscious mind or dream state. The main character begins to lose her mind as she starts to realize how tainted her soul is by the all the tortured souls she encounters.
Nic– So Limbo is more of supernatural horror film then?
Tina– Sort of – not really. Supernatural indicating some kind of act to stir up some kindred spirit, NO. This is purely physiological and having to do with one’s own issues within themselves and how it effects them. There is no séance or witchcraft or summoning up any demons etc. This is what is inside someone’s mind due to how they lived life or not lived life so to speak.
Nic– Can you think of what inspired you with the idea for Limbo?
Tina– I sort of experienced this, not by a dream but by a dream state I was in for lack of a better term. The images were burned into my head but are not as tame as they are in the movie – I had to make do with what I can use as far as location and such but I tried to get the feel of it the best I could.
Nic– When you are not making movies, what are some of the films you like to watch?
Tina– Porno! I can’t get enough of it…. Just kidding. I like to watch a bunch of things like a good comedy, drama, action and yes of course horror but I find that some really good horror is in foreign film, like The Kingdom, The Addition, Infection, Santa Sangre, The Butcher, and Once Were Warriors. On the American side of things… Blade Runner, Jacob’s Ladder, Snatch, True Romance, Mulholland Drive, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, The Shining, Being John Malcovich, A Scanner Darkly, Pulp Fiction, Donnie Darko, Vanilla Sky, Risky Business, 12 Monkeys, Eternal Sunshine of A Spotless Mind and of course Scarface.
Nic– Now looking back at the films you’ve been involved in, which has been your favorite role so far?
Tina– I don’t have a favorite because a lot of them were so different from each other that I like them for such different reasons. More Than Money’s Worth, The Recovered, The Thirsting, The Dinner (silent) The Pump Boys, man the list goes on.
Nic–If you could go back and star in any one film, what would your dream roll as an actress be?
Tina– Okay this is a strange one because I have two answers for this one. The first would be True Romance because I absolutely love the character of Alabama Whirly. The movie has an incredible cast and her character is great. I especially love the part when she kills one of the mob guys with a toilet cover… AWESOME!
The other is not a favorite movie of mine although I did like it and the more I watch it the more I like it. The main female character in Eyes Wide Shut. I like it because she goes through a wide and challenging range of acting, and the scene that really portrays this is when she and her husband are smoking a joint in bed and she confesses her secret feelings for another man and how she kept it to herself all this time even through her marriage up to now. That scene was so strong and so true to what someone might feel and could never say. I now have a whole new respect for Nicole Kidman as an actress. It’s scenes like that and the one mentioned above that get me to really get into a movie and if I ever had the chance to get into character like that …. Well all I would be able to say is WOW… (not whip out Wednesday for all you Radioheads).
Nic– We’ve talked a lot about your current work and your career, but how did you actually get started in the business?
Tina– Once upon a time……. I was walking through a chiller convention many years ago with my sister looking for a Friday the 13th mask… she wanted it real badly. It was towards the end of the convention so I was rushing to as many tables as I could to get this mask and someone stopped me and asked if I was an actress. I said no but if I lie and say I am will I get work? And well there you have it, history in the
Nic– So you didn’t set out to become an actress and filmmaker?
Tina– No, in fact when I was little people used to say… you should be an actress and I would respond… NO WAY! I don’t like memorizing things. Well, never say never is all I can say now because as it turns out this
is what I’ve become… funny isn’t it.
Nic– Talking about one of your other films for a moment, Jay Bauman [Writer/Director of The Recovered] suggested I ask about your thoughts on the relationship between steak and one of the films you’ve starred in, The Recovered.
Tina– AH STEAK!!!!!!! My hero! Steak saved my sanity thank you. Once on a cold rainy brisk night of not being able to see 3 feet ahead of you and being rushed to a set even though you’re right on time. Long hours of packing and unpacking pills, tossing and turning in bed and lots of looking around. I came to the conclusion that no matter how late we shoot I must have steak for dinner!!! I NEED RED MEAT! I believe we all needed a dose of red meat that night and by jolly we got it! A nice healthy dose of good ole bloody thick STEAK!!!!!!!!!!!! And to prove it… here’s a pic… you see how crazed we looked with the mere thought of not getting red meat?!?!?!?!
(Editor’s note: I received the photo, but due to quality issues decided against using it in this interview.)