Acting in the 50 Kisses Project

I was delighted to act in « Love », directed by Phil Peel, screenplay by Rob Burke. When I first heard of the 50 kisses, I told myself « I really got to be in it ! ». I searched through the web, but I couldn’t find any team or film-maker taking part in the competition. So, I posted a message on the project’s page inviting directors to visit my website www.lulasuassuna.com and watch my showreel.

I knew the chances of someone with an appropriate role for me, coming across my message, watching my showreel and inviting me for a casting weren’t particularly good. A couple of weeks later, though, I received an e-mail from Phil sending me the script and inviting me to play the lead in his short film. I took a look at his website and I was very impressed by his good work. Plus, no audition required ; what a great honour ! I really liked the script and specially, my character : a tourmented man intending to do something really gruesome. An essential touch of darkness and bitterness among those 50 kisses.

After receiving some feedback, the writer made some adjustments to the text and a tragic flashback scene was cut. « What a pity », I thought: a bad thing happening to the character is always a good thing happening to the actor. In terms of logistics, however, that made things a lot easier for us.

My role is silent and that made things a bit tougher. What you say is always a consequence of what you think and feel ; delivering your lines usually entails a natural understanding of your character’s needs. When the script gives you nothing to say and a lot to do, the stakes rise. You must create much stronger backstories and subtext than usual. You must keep them all permanently pulsating in your head and guts, cause nothing’s on the paper. Only then you can reinforce your character and underpin each one of his actions without the lines’ support. Not an easy task. Especially not when shooting inside the tube with lots of distracting thing all around and people constantly staring at you. I definitely had to strengthen my attention. No coffee breaks and fooling around between takes this time, but I just loved the novelty and the challenge. Oh yes : and scaring some peaceful passengers was really fun too! Thanks to Philip, our excellent cast and crew for the great day. The final result is gorgeous ! Now, let’s hope for the best !

Lula Suassuna

 

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