Every week, we're featuring interviews with the cast and crew of Rooks. This week's spotlight is on actor Eleanor Langthorne.
Eleanor’s journey on with Rooks began before the final cut of Crossing was even locked. “I had an amazing experience [on Crossing]! [Robert] really knows how to tell a great story. As soon as he told me he had an idea brewing for another project, I knew I needed to be involved.”
Interestingly, neither she nor director Robert Maynard ever considered her for the role of Nissa. Eleanor had originally intended to play Edi, the role that was eventually portrayed by Michela Lamparelli. However, when Michela read for Edi, Robert reconsidered things, rewrote Nissa to be a better fit for Eleanor, and cast the actresses in their respective roles. Things have a way of working out…
And work out they did. Eleanor is brilliant as Nissa. On developing her character, she says, “For me it really started with analyzing the script. What are Nissa's relationships with the other characters? How does she view them, and how do they view her? What drives her? What is she afraid of? What is her deepest desire? Things like that. It's interesting playing a character with powers too. It's fun to imagine how that would influence your perspective on things.”
In case it’s not clear, Eleanor really takes her craft seriously. She’s an actress through and through. “For me, it's the love of the art. I have always just loved acting so much. It's so rewarding to use your imagination and really explore a role.”
But it didn’t stop with acting for Eleanor on this film. Her character Nissa is something of a leader to a group of characters in the film. Life imitates art in this case, because Eleanor also produced the film alongside Robert. Building relationships with the cast and crew was a huge part of what made production of Rooks so much fun to her.
She particularly enjoyed filming at the cabin in Sutton: “We shot so much of the film there and it was always so much fun just hanging out with everyone while we weren't filming. It felt like home!”
Filmmaking brings a lot of challenges, and Eleanor and the crew faced up to them at every turn. Seeing the fruits of that labor will be a momentous occasion for her at Premiere Night: “I'm just so excited to see all of the shots that we worked really hard to get. There are a few that took a lot of crew members to set up, or we only had a limited number of takes to get right so the pressure was really on. We should release a version of the movie with commentary so the audience can be in on everything that was going on behind the scenes!”
Fun as it may be, we’ll leave the DVD commentary for a later time!
Eleanor's favorite film is Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, and her favorite actor is Meryl Streep.
When she’s not acting, you’ll find Eleanor training dogs or making music with her band, Vices Inc.! In fact, you'll actually hear two Vices Inc. songs in Rooks!
Eleanor worked on a short film that should be releasing soon, entitled Viola, and by pure coincidence, Kaleal Cerafici is also a part of that project. You can see all of Eleanor's work featured on her website.
See Eleanor as Nissa in Rooks, premiering at The Strand in Dover, NH, on December 17. On Amazon Instant Video December 23.
Want a printed copy of this poster? You can pre-order and pick up at Premiere Night!