An interview with actress, Ellie Cutright
“The Dust That Floats Behind The Sky” is an official selection for the Fifth Annual Charleston International Film Festival. This is your first experience acting on film and you are already hitting the circuit. That doesn’t happen to many people, how do you feel about that?
I am excited beyond belief; nervous, proud, anxious, and feeling accomplished!
Tell me about your role in the film, what did you like about it?
My character is Caroline, a teenage girl who starts out normal but then gets lost in the dark world of drugs that she can’t seem to escape from. The choices she makes lead her on a rollercoaster and it stops with a life-changing event. She is complex in that she is both strong and broken. This role was a bit more difficult than the roles I have played on stage, but that’s what made it so enticing. The thing I enjoyed most about playing Caroline was that she was the complete opposite of myself. Everything about what she was going through was completely foreign to me, so it required a lot of acting on my part as well as great direction from Charlotte Savage. It was quite a learning curve.
What was the most challenging part of learning how to act on film?
I think the most challenging part of learning how to act on film was getting used to the flexibility! I was used to doing live theater so if someone was to do something wrong or miss a line, you always had to be ready to jump in and save them; but with film I had to remind myself not to go off on some weird rambling because it was written a certain way and they had the option of starting over until it was the way they imagined!
How long have you been an actress and what drew you to do this kind of work? Did you go to school for it and if so, where?
I did my first play when I was six years old and I had always taken drama class at my high school; but I would say the time I started considering myself an actress was in 7th grade, three-and-a-half years ago! I was originally drawn to acting because I had fun doing it and it was my favorite class at school. I went to showbiz school at South of Broadway Theatre in North Charleston where I performed in several plays including, “Power Play” which received rave reviews because of its subject matter about High School bullying and violence. I realized then I enjoyed taking on roles that provoked a response.
What do you hope to achieve in your career as an actor?
I would just like to keep acting a part of my life as long as I can! I would love to become famous and make a career out of acting, but I really just want to make sure it stays something I love to do and not something I feel like I have to do.
Why is acting important to you?
Acting is important to me because it’s a way to just forget about the bad things going on around you; leave all that at the door and just be happy! There’s a freedom of expression that it comes with and it never grows old.
Tell me about the people you worked with on the set of the film. Who do you like working with and why?
I worked with so many talented people on set, Cierah Sargent is a phenomenal actress; Charlotte Savage is an incredibly inspiring Director and Writer; Owen Hamilton is dedicated and professional but also fun to work with. They are amazing at what they do and were really patient with me in teaching me how to work on camera and how to get comfortable with the subject matter. I feel so privileged to have gotten the chance to work with them. I never would have thought in a million years I would be part of this wonderful group of talent! I loved every minute of it. I felt lucky to be surrounded by people who were so professional. They really love what they do and are very dedicated to their work and that speaks volumes to me. It was the kind of experience where you can’t wait to wake up and go to work everyday because you know you will be surrounded by talent and greatness.
As an actor, do you have any advice you’d like to give to aspiring actors?
Advice I would give to aspiring actors is to never give up, if this is something you like to do then chase it, don’t bring yourself down by thinking your not good enough. But, at the same time don’t assume you are the best, there is always room to grow!
Click here to see the Trailer for The Dust That Floats Behind The Sky
THE DUST THAT FLOATS BEHIND THE SKY
Wednesday, April 11th Block 2 ~ 9:00pm
Drama (24 mins.)
SC, World Premiere Director/Writer: Charlotte Savage
Producers: Owen Hamilton, Charlotte Savage, and Marissa Power
Cast: Cierah Sargent, Ellie Cutright, Mya Long and Kennedy Coupe
Synopsis: Life-long friends, Caroline and Kylie, grow up from children playing to teenagers lost in a world of drugs. We see them experience the first thrill of rebellion, the pleasure of temptation, and destruction of their idealistic lives as Caroline is faced with a life-changing event.