- 1. TANNA FREDERICK'S VIRTUAL REALITY
TANNA FREDERICK'S VIRTUAL REALITY AND MORE
By Shirley Craig
Tanna Frederick is a multi-talented artist, actress and producer. We know her from her many stage performances here in Los Angeles and particularly, the award-winning play, Train to Zakopane, that sold out to record crowds last year. This year has been very busy for her so far as well. The 2016 Iowa Independent Film Festival, of which she is a founder, took place on the weekend of Sept. 16-18 at the Historic Park Inn Hotel in Mason City, she starred in Henry Jaglom's new film Ovation and is opening tonight as both the lead actor and director in A.R. Gurney's hit comedy, Slyvia, at the Odyssey Theater in LA.
Recently, we were lucky enough to talk to Tanna about her groundbreaking virtual reality film “Defrost,” which was shown at the Sundance and Cannes film festivals earlier this year.
Did you choose to be a producer on this series, or did the production choose you?
Production chose me. I’m not a ‘waiter’, I’m a ‘doer’. If I get swept up in the passion of a role in a project I set my mind to making it and I’m fully immersed and do whatever I have to do to get it done. So finally I just gave up at denying the fact that I like to spin a lot of plates in the projects I do and just took on more and more responsibilities.
In your experience, what does it take to be successful in this field?
Gosh. I think I’m the last person that has a healthy answer to that. I think I always am dabbling in the feeling of discontent and the feeling of not having accomplished enough that results in needing to do more, be more, discover more, learn more, and perfect more. The hunger to be better keeps me going. The active free-fall of taking more risks and trying out things to feed my soul as an artist and changing and being willing to admit that essentially, after acting for almost 30 years,I feel sometimes I know less than I did when I was nine, is just where I’m at. So it’s not a choice to be ‘successful’, it’s just a life or death question of survival and needing to create the illusion for a search of meaning in my life. Though I do feel, having pursued ‘the road less traveled’, I’d like to think maybe buried in all this esoteric babble is a sign either I’ve lost it or am getting somewhere cool!
As a multi-genre actor, I imagine you have worked hard to multi-task in your career, balancing a hectic life and work schedules. How difficult is it to both produce and act in a virtual reality series like Defrost?
It’s much, much easier. Or at least I trick myself into thinking that for now until I get on a set in which I can just sit back put my feet up and indulge in the amenities in my trailer.
Look, it’s exciting. We were, at that time to our knowledge, and still to our knowledge the first VR episodic narrative. Who wants to sit on the bench? When exciting stuff is happening it’s all about being in the game and breaking every metaphorical artistic bone in your body to stay in from the first quarter through the finish. There’s no better rush, no matter how stressful, frightening, impossible it is. No matter how many teeth you lose, as a producer you’re right out there managing and activating every play on the field. That’s living life to it’s fullest for me. If I go home at night and I’m mad as hell and want to spit, I still wake up the next morning and get in the shower and wonder how I’m going to get through the next day, who’s may be mad at me, who I need to make feel good on the ‘team’ and how I can do it, and most importantly how do I make the director feel safe and comfortable and give him all the tools he needs to get his job done, that’s a never ending equation that keeps me going.
Let's talk about working on a VR set - Is working with the Garrison character any different than working on a live stage with an actual person?
Considering humans have two eyes and a VR camera has eight to fifteen ‘eyes’, it’s a little like talking to an alien. But if you substitute that alien feeling for a thawed mother then the acting actually is a bit more convincing hopefully. Randal Kleiser was a brilliant director on this set, and had us do most of the rehearsals with Kelly Desarla, playing Joan Garrison, sitting in the wheelchair so we could all develop a human connection with her. By the time we were shooting, we had that established.
Why is VR the best medium for this story?
Because conceptually even though this was Randal’s story meant to be turned into a film that he originated in film school in 1968, this is a prime example of “the enemy of art is the absence of limitations” as Orson Welles used to say…The equipment wasn’t available at that time or even conceived of so it was put up on a shelf. There are many, many gorgeous stories out there. The artist’s job is to figure out the most conducive and effective way to tell them. The 1968 script which was our pilot made it into Sundance. From there Randal branched off into 11 more episodes. Not every story should be told through VR, but not every short or script we write should be discarded because you never know where the gold is going to be mined from.
Do you consider the machine sit-in kit for Joan as a whole person when delivering lines or are you considering the personhood of the pending audience that will embody her?
I have had a very good rapport working and friendship-wise, with the woman who played Joan - Kelly DeSarla - for a number of years. I have done two stage productions and two films with her. So I didn’t play the camera as the audience, I played it to her with my attachment to her emotionally. That’s what I’m paid to do - fall in love with a toaster if I have to. And I really, really love toasters. See what I did there? You believed me, didn’t you. Bam. That’s what an Oscar looks folks.
How do you train for a role like this?
Randal and I went down to 3ality, where Steve Schklair and his amazing team Bettina and Matt gave us a 20 minute run down on the Ozo camera I think a day or two days before shooting. I got a couple chances to futz around with the camera, figure out depth of field as an actor which was better for viewer visibility and which was better for emotional effect, and then after the eight or whatever takes we did, I watched the monitor and just learned from my own observation. So it was really fascinating, learning on the spot. There wasn’t much material to take and ‘train’ from because ours was one of the first narrative series of VR that contained ‘episodes’ and had experienced actors in it.
In the study of acting, many methods of extracting performance are used to hone the craft - working with an entirely new phenomenon called "Empathetic Immersion" changes everything! Is it fun working with the prop?
Our VR series is definitely one of the empathetic pieces out there. That’s why I wanted to be a part of it. No one knows how kids’ brains will be affected in fifty to two hundred and fifty years of evolution with the technology of today. Minecraft, gaming, ‘Call of Duty’…It’s a bit frightening personally how a sort of Cartesian ‘Brain in the Vat’ possibility could emerge where we utilize our bodies and emotions less and less and instead just have all of our sensory items fed to us through pieces of technology, it is alarming. So when I saw a chance to assimilate the potential VR or new tech into something which can be used to draw upon human emotion I thought, “Maybe I’m contributing to something good coming out of this tech”. And it became a way to be a part of the solution of presenting other options - other than the countering the minds of young people than alienation and isolation - created by technology through empathy (‘Are you Joan?’) and good first person POV storytelling.
What is it like to leave to chance the line of sight and direction of the main character's feelings and observations when shooting in VR because the audience is in more control of what they are going to watch than with a traditional film?
We never left it to chance. We had complete control and need to keep complete control over the process in this new medium. It’s very, very calculated - the acting, the blocking, lighting, when we were out of range (of course we were never out of range for the most part because it’s 360 with a slight ever so tiny sliver of a blind spot right behind either side of the eight eyes), factor in on which of us the audio was on (in other words what information needed to be relayed and character was administering that information.
After working with modern technology as intimately as you have producing this VR film, what do you expect producing a series like Defrost will take your career in the future?
I am now creating VR narrative episodic content in the midst of my theatre and film work, but have to admit seeing ‘outside the box’ through VR/AR is giving me a whole new outlook on ideas and storytelling.
In the movie business, a producer's input during the actual movie depends on a relationship with the director. It is sometimes very hands on, sometimes, a sit back and watch the magic happen experience...how does it differ working in VR?
In such a new setting, being one of the first narrative VR’s and new actors, scripts, camera, etc., I was proverbially and literally screwed if I dropped the ball at any step of the way. I kept myself in the game the best I could, asked a lot of questions, worked hard to figure out the answers to problems with our top notch cast and crew, and just kept going and made sure our engine powered and running.
In film, a producers job may be more entrenched or locked down to in an idiom of the studio system or a particular player’s adherence to a particular filmic diatribe, but so far in narrative VR, filmic VR so to speak, is being exceptional, new, and unexplored.
New creatives coming onto the scene have little ego and are eager to show product they’re stoked about, so there’s not a lot of hubris attached to VR. Everyone feels that on set, the actors even vibe it. So the result is this really cool almost advanced media class or master acting class where everyone knows they’re experimenting and creating something really bad-ass for future historians; a group that doesn’t want to muck around because they’re doing it for the cool part of the project which is being lucky enough to be a pioneer of VR and sucking up the glorious unsatiated nature of an artist to reinvent themselves.
Slyvia opens tonight at the Odyssey Theater in Los Angeles. The play is performed Thursday thru Saturday at 8pm with a matinee on Sunday. For tickets click here.
For more information about the VR series DeFrost visit their website here.
- Created on 21 October 2016
- 2. Center Stage: An Interview with Tanna Frederick
An Interview With Tanna Frederick
By Shirley Craig
Tanna Frederick's life has been a stage life. Writing, directing, producing and acting since childhood, she has been instrumental in carrying off adaptations, indie film projects and on-camera performance. Most of her days are spent planning the next venue, and the next. Weekends are often back-to-back shows in the same theatre—adding to the mania. Frederick tells Reap in an interview that she is doing great, that she's elated, exhausted and very happy after an all-day double bill of Amiri Baraka's Dutchman and Train to Zakopane, a new play by partner, Henry Jaglom. Frederick explains how they pulled off switching out the sets for both plays, pushing the main train car to the back and reading on the same stage setting a row of folding chairs to mock a subway.
Frederick first caught the acting bug, she says, when she was 8 years old. "I knew I was very passionate about the arts, and I started out doing ballet in first grade and my teacher said to my mom, 'You know, she does her own thing.' I don’t remember much, except I remember her correcting my feet all the time and my just wanting to freestyle it. It was a kind of an exclusive dance company in Iowa and the teacher sort of suggested to my mom that maybe I should go in another direction." Frederick says with a laugh.
Even at that age, Frederick says, she marched to the beat of a different drum. She began taking classical piano lessons, which she soon realized she loved. Studying classical piano brought a passion to her life and she took to it right away. " I practiced all the time, and then I remember going with my Girl Scout troop to see the musical Oliver at a local children’s theatre and it was so great!” Frederick says. The musical played to a full house, and she and her fellow scouts sat in the aisle. "My best friend was playing Oliver and I remember watching it. It was my first theater experience and I just remember being completely mesmerized. And when the Artful Dodger walked on stage, I just knew in my body and my soul, I knew I'd found what I would be doing for the rest of my life." Frederick says.
She joined the little children’s theatre the next year and started doing every role possible there. Before Frederick knew it, she was the actor friends were coming to see onstage. "I was trained in this children’s theatre by my director to be very professional—we were. I mean, we were treated as adults, and so even then as I was doing theatre with adults, kids and with high-schoolers, there was no room for any unprofessionalism and that was one of the greatest gifts that I was given, because it became ingrained: 'You will not chew gum on stage. You will be quiet when the other actors are up there. You will learn all of the stage directions. You will come to the other shows. You will tech other shows. You will write in your scripts with pencils so you can erase it.' There was no discrepancy between adults and children and the expectations for actors, and that was fantastic."
Frederick stayed with the children's theatre well into high school. She did summer musicals, and her career began to take off. In the auditorium at the local community college, Frederick performed in a 1,200-seat venue. For the most part, Frederick managed to lock in one of the lead roles, and produce and even structure their performances—this was true ensemble. This experience would be the foundation of her career. It was, Frederick recalls, the breeding ground for an actress and an artist in Iowa.
The art of learning competitive performance was one that she would learn to take in stride. “We were very competitive, and we also went all over with our choir competitions. We were well-respected. Again, it was just a very vivacious playground yet, at the same time, institution that was being upheld for us to be nurtured in as blooming artists,” Frederick adds. When she received a full scholarship to the University of Iowa for theatre, she knew there was no going back.
"The writer’s workshop in Iowa was amazing. New playwrights were constantly coming in and new material was constantly being performed. Everything was just rich with new plays and that really taught me the craft." Frederick sighs. "It's crazy. I had the most fun in that medium. In the most interesting plots and plotlines from different artists whom were all exploring and trying out their work and it was daring and crazy. I would always somehow find the way to connect with the character, no matter who that character was, and I would take it on. It was a really a great place for me to learn," Frederick says.
Frederick recalls that her life nearly took another direction, but her parents discouraged her and she agreed to go on to college. "After high school I almost moved to New York and was actually offered to room with a younger Uta Hagen—my uncle was friends with Uta's daughter—and they wanted her to live in the city and study at the Herbert Berghof Studio! Much to my chagrin, although I guess I’m thankful for it now since my career wouldn’t have panned out the same way, I went to L.A.,” Frederick says.
Frederick just packed up her little Honda and moved to the Golden State, and she says everyone thought she was nuts. "I didn’t know anybody here, but I just knew it was the right decision to make if I wanted to do theatre and to get the television and the film credits under my belt. I’m very glad I made that decision.”
"I wanted to do film,” she says." I was already waiting tables trying to do my survival job, and pay rent with that—and I met Henry Jaglom.
"Henry gave me his original script of A Safe Place and said, 'If you want to take this and do a scene for acting class, fine. I think you’d be brilliant at this role and I haven’t said this since Tuesday Weld and Karen Black played it, but you’re perfect for this part.’” Relieved, she read for it and was happy to fit right in. It was spot-on casting to play the role, and Frederick asked Jaglom if she could have the rights to it as a play, thinking she could go all the way with it. "I felt that if he would give me the rights free, I could find a theatre to produce it, and he did." Jaglom had only done this once before, charging a fee of $600. "I knew I had something that was quite worthwhile," Frederick adds. "There was never a stage production by Henry Jaglom done anywhere all over the world and I was getting the rights for free, which was incredible, and I knew I was perfect at the lead. The Beverly Hills Playhouse at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles was to be the venue, and we had a producer who believed in the company and it was all set," Frederick says. “After Camelot Artists got the play produced and ran the production for eight months, I felt like I truly had made it. Henry came to just about every single show," Frederick says, and that’s when I made the hard transition from stage to film acting. Frederick worked very closely with Jaglom. She says there were days where she “just wept,” but that her frustration culminated into Hollywood Dreams getting done. Next, she portrayed an 'Eve Harrington' kind of character in Hollywood Dreams who ends up turning love away, which was not so joyful. But despite this, Frederick says, the role was a joy to make, and it “sealed the deal” that from then on, Jaglom and Frederick were going to keep working together. And eventually, real-life romance would add to the mix. "We had a ball working together," Frederick explains, "Like I said, it was not always easy with peers, but, by that time I had been under fire from him and I was used to his way of working." Of her partnership to Jaglom, Frederick says, "That’s just one of those things that happened over the course of 13 years making films together." From the first project, to the last, she recalls, that shooting his movies were awesome experiences quoting “sheer heaven and sheer excitement and amazing—a dream come true.” Frederick says the added bonus of getting to work with a brilliant mind was that in the process, not only did she find love; she found her place on the screens of the indie film world.
"So, I guess we’ve been making films together for 11 years, but we’ve done a number of plays and a number of films together. So at a certain point, we just sort of realized we’re best friends and that we loved each other and that was just, it was always there, kind of. What a neat thing that an actress could encounter, creating films with somebody who she loves and vice versa." Theirs is a true indie Valentine story.
Never forgetting her roots, Frederick created a film festival in her hometown in Iowa, The Iowa Film Festival. Frederick muses about how the best part about the October event is being able to give back to the kids and the filmmakers there, and to bring more encouragement into the community where she got her start. The pride of American architecture—the Historic Park Inn, which is the only Frank Lloyd Wright hotel in the world—lends all its refurbished glory to the magic of independent film. “Frank Lloyd Wright was there and his students were there,” Frederick says, “It is just an amazing place to hold the festival. We put together a couple of screening rooms and it’s also been a lovely place for the filmmakers to stay while showing their films.” Frederick says she never would have been successful in any other line of work, saying, she ‘had to be fair to her heart and soul and passion.” She is still learning and developing as an actor and collaborator, still working hard and as often as she can.
Of Jaglom’s current production, the onstage production of Train to Zakopane, Frederick says she had mixed emotions upon her first reading of it, calling into question many moral issues that still press audiences today. “I think we’re in the correct political landscape right now where people need some sort of emotional event. They need somewhere that’s not just an intellectual acknowledgement of these fires that are raging around the world in terms of racism, anti-Semitism. They need somewhere to actually feel something. And I think that this play is so important and people being able to support this play, I think, gives them a feel as though they’re doing something because they’re sort of reconciling with their own ideals, especially being a town full of Jews, their own belief systems about—it’s the most difficult play I've ever done because the whole second half is a love story about an anti-Semite and a Jew.” Frederick explains.
Frederick’s challenge was to make her character likable and to get the audience to sit in their seats for the second act, despite the vehemently difficult plotline. Frederick says she felt physically sick after reading the script. So much so that she was unsure about taking it on even at this stage of her career. “I thought ‘I can never do this. Nobody’s going to want to see this. I’m never going to get hired in this town again.’ But Henry was very passionate about making it and with Gary’s brilliant direction and a wonderful, wonderful, wonderful cast I just went for it.” Frederick compares her co-star Mike Falkow as a modern Leslie Howard. Laughing, she adds, “It’s his elegance and his poise. I really see him as that and Henry does too, and he makes this character. We’ve worked our assess off to really develop the love,” Frederick explains.
“Now I've come to a place where I’m really passionate about the story, the character, what people walk away with, and know what I need to do to bring the forgiveness in there, to bring the reconciliation of these two characters, to help people understand where seeds of hatred come from. And it’s been quite amazing. I’m actually, I don’t want to say having a good time doing it, but I do want to say I’m having a joyful time playing the role.” Frederick embraces the history and the importance of telling these kinds of stories, but admits that working on this project has changed her forever. “I've done beautifully, wonderfully storytelling plays like The Rainmaker that we ran for a year and got standing ovations for. It’s beautiful storytelling. It’s lovely. I did Sylvia, which was so much fun because I got to play a dog. But doing this piece right now at this specific time for everything brought me such pain.” Frederick says. “I was a mess during rehearsals, but the international relations political science geek in me is thankful that I have something right now that means something. Sylvia—yeah, it was a fun play—but I don’t think right now would be the time to do something like Sylvia.” Frederick says.
“Today, we need plays like these. Now is the time to do something that does create change. I believe one of the ways that people can change is through emotional understanding. So, yes, it’s been a tough ride to really feel in my heart and really grasp the fact that, as an actor, I have to look at the role of Katia as a protagonist in order to explain where her hatred comes from. … The audience has been incredible because it’s like I come out, and there’s Holocaust survivors and Polish Jews. It’s amazing, the specificity of Henry’s story about his father. And using the complete specificity of that has given this play a universal understanding, if you will, because everybody has specific stories from that time.” Frederick says.
Train to Zakopane is running through March 28 at The Edgemar Theatre in Los Angeles. With onstage performances still to come and two other films in postproduction, 2015 is already kicking into high gear. Frederick’s own film, Garner, Iowa is to be shown in this year’s Iowa Film Festival. “Working on Garner, was amazing. We shot in the freezing cold. We shot in the ungodly heat. We shot with local crew, local cast—the talent is amazing. And so that will be coming out in 2015, and I’m so excited for it to come out! It is a gorgeous, breathtaking film, for women especially, and confronting the stigma against mental illness.” Frederick has played many a damsel in distress, and she has played quirky, whimsical characters in Jaglom’s films with great success. But playing a mentally ill woman in a small Midwestern town—in this role she presents a very serious, tough, Olive-Kittredge sort of gritty woman. Frederick says, “We showed a short sneak preview at the Iowa film festival last year. The response was so incredible. Many people came up to me and told me their story after: mothers who were bipolar, people who had struggled with bipolarity, people whose kids were bipolar. Their stories were incredible and again, to me, doing work that creates a dialogue, that just sparks any sort of talk about something that people are not inclined to talk about or are too frightened to talk about, that is the kind of work that I find myself drawn to,” Frederick adds.
As if Frederick’s schedule was not crazy enough, she is also training for the LA Marathon. She is raising money for a village in the Ben Tre district of Vietnam, where funding is needed to install a hundred water filters. “I had a really hard time the last run and was very discouraged. This time, for this cause, I just said, ‘You know what? I’m just going to run this.’ I’m going to run it to raise money for our kids and our clean water initiative, and I’m not going to care about what happened last time.” Frederick laughs. “I've been doing my long runs and training and taking the pressure off and it has brought the joy back to my running, which I love doing, and it really does help me onstage to get rid of all the chaff with doing the shows. It’s a necessity for me to do something as equally as difficult physically as what I’m doing onstage,” Frederick says. “That is how you do it when you know it is all you can do. You just get back on the horse and keep on riding.”
Frederick’s life is a true Hollywood story. Gaining happiness, experience, continuing her fitness, keeping up with a creative partner, and managing to pull it all off so gracefully.
- Created on 09 February 2015
- 3. March Issue
- ... Advent of New Expression By Alfredo Madrid Tanna Frederick Proves Hollywood Dreams Can Come True By Shirley Craig Visionary: City of Lost Children - Phnom Pehn's Phymean Noun By Mende Smith Magica ...
- Created on 10 April 2014
- 4. Tanna Frederick
Tanna Frederick: Her Story
The Plot Of One of Henry Jaglom's Movies?
By Shirley Craig
The plot of this movie might be familiar - a struggling young actress from middle America who can't seem to get a break happens to meet a well-connected industry vet who envisions her as a future sensation, and a movie star is born. While that was the story told anew in Henry Jaglom's feature, the acclaimed Hollywood Dreams, it also happens to be pretty close to the real-life story of the film's dynamic and engaging leading lady. But actress Tanna Frederick, who drew raves for her tour-de-force as aspiring starlet Margie Chisek, is quick to point out that although they have similar stories, she's far from the chaotic and sometimes naive Margie.
Audiences who have seen Hollywood Dreams and Queen of the Lot might be forgiven for making that mistake, as Frederick's uncanny rendering of an ambitious and charming starlet who can barely restrain her fragile emotional state, is a compelling portrait of an actress in the tradition of Bette Davis' performances in All About Eve and Dangerous; and Gloria Swanson's painfully deluded Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard.
Indeed, many critics have harkened back to an earlier era of screen star, noting that Frederick's screen presence recalls a "young Bette Davis on crack" and compares favorably to legends like Lucille Ball, Judy Garland and Fanny Brice. "Hollywood Dreams is driven by Ms. Frederick's no-boundaries commitment to her broken character," wrote the New York Times, "a performance that is startling as it is touching."
"Bette Davis is my inspiration right now," confesses Tanna, who, like Margie, is a devoted cinephile. "I don't feel that I can possibly compare to her, but I admire the way she was always in the moment, and the way that theatre and her life and her art were inseparable." "Comedy is based on pain; most great comic performers have great pain and live in a huge amount of denial."
"There's an early tragedy that translates into a masking, and there's a strange truthfulness to that. I wanted people to have sympathy for Margie, but be a little confused as to whether they loved her or hated her."
Hollywood Dreams, earned Tanna Best Actress at World Fest Houston, Montana International Film Festival, Fargo Film Festival and the Wild Rose Film Festival. The film took Best Picture honors at the San Luis Obispo Film Festival and Best Comedy at World Fest Houston. She was named Method Fest’s “Performer to Watch” and has also received the Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival’s “Maverick” Award.
Frederick’s relationship with Jaglom was extended to Irene in Time in which Frederick was reunited with Hollywood Dreams co-stars David Proval, Zack Norman and Karen Black, Queen of the Lot opposite Noah Wyle (the film picked up Hollywood Dreams Maggie Chase character three years later, where Chase, now an action-movie star, is under house arrest for multiple DUIs) and Just 45 Minutes From Broadway.
She has also wrapped production on two other features –The M Word with Corey Feldman and Michael Imperioli and The Farm, the first production under her latest venture, Project Cornlight that aims to develop Iowa-based films and other projects showcasing Iowa.
Frederick, a proud Iowan, knew she wanted to be a performer since childhood. "Iowa is really an amazing place for theatre. Maybe because people don't have as much to do, they spend a lot of time expressing themselves. I started doing local and children's theatre in fourth grade, and was basically doing five shows a year for most of my life."
When she went to college at the University of Iowa, she double majored in theatre and political science/international relations. Despite the daunting academic challenges of two disparate courses of study, Frederick thrived, particularly enjoying working with younger playwrights on new works. "With the playwriting program and the Writer's Workshop, I did a lot of new work. I'm so grateful for that, because when I came to California, I had a very open mind about strange, independent and unusual projects."
There were plenty of independent projects for Frederick to work in after her graduation as class valedictorian and the move to Hollywood, but like many young performers, regular paying work and success seemed far away. That's when Frederick learned from a friend that independent director Henry Jaglom had a history of responding to fan letters. Even though she'd never seen his films, Frederick wrote to Jaglom asking for an audition. The director responded by casting her in his play, A Safe Place. Her work so impressed him, that soon she was starring in Always - But Not Forever, Jaglom's theatrical revision of his earlier screen work, and preparing her to star in Hollywood Dreams. "We created a really wonderful balance," says Frederick of Jaglom, who has made a career out of casual but pointed observations about the intricacies of human relationships against the backdrop of show business. "He has this objectivity about Hollywood, having been there so long, and the film played on my subjectivity of that experience. He provided the framework in which Margie could live - he's known all of these characters as people, and I just put myself in the reality of the moment."
Meanwhile, Frederick is looking forward to hosting the seventh annual Iowa Film Festival - an event she founded. "People were so thrilled to have that festival in their community," she says. "All kinds of people - lawyers, students, regular people - were inspired to try their hand at filmmaking, and this year the event has increased threefold." She was recently named the recipient of the University of Iowa’s Distinguished Alumni Award for 2012 and also received the 2012 CineCause Award at the Julien Dubuque Film Festival.
A devoted fitness advocate whose impressive Tae Kwon Do skills can be seen in Hollywood Dreams, Frederick is also spending as much time as she can at the beach where she admits to having a "serious mistress" - the surf. "I never expected to become addicted to surfing," she admits. "I guess when you grow up landlocked, you never think about things like that. I've been doing it for a few years now, and it's provided a great balance in my life. I like the aspect of constantly facing a new challenge, and the danger - I broke my nose surfing and have gotten pretty banged up. It's a humbling experience - you're up against this creature, and if you don't respect it, you drown." As a sign of her passion for the art of riding the wild surf, Frederick started "Project Save Our Surf," an annual event she co-hosts with legendary surfer Shaun Tomson, which has raised thousands of dollars for various ocean charities and clean water initiatives. Frederick also serves on the Board of Directors at Tumelo Home. Located in Johannesburg, South Africa, the charity provides full residential care and training to children with severe and profound mental disabilities.
To learn more about Tanna and Save Our Surf, check out her website here.
- Created on 04 April 2014
- 5. Four Main Box 2
- (Sliders and Features)
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- Created on 16 November 2013