Apple TV+ launched the long awaited science fiction series, FOUNDATION, at the end of September and I featured as Zephyr Gilat in Episodes 6, 7 & 8 which aired in October. The production was a huge undertaking with most of the filming taking place during the pandemic and it paid off with the series being picked up for a second season. Spoiler alert – as I don’t die in Season 1, you never know, I might be back for Season 2!
In Australia, the Sydney Science Fiction Film Festival was held from 11 – 14 November and included the short film, REMOTE VIEWING, which was created by the acclaimed conceptual creature designer, Jordu Schell, whose CV includes work on Avatar, Planet of the Apes and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice to name but a few. I play Dr Lauder, a scientist at the engineering facility NASC, monitoring a project on genetics and I’m happy to say that this creepy, little film, was nominated for the festival’s Best Short Film award.
Earlier in the year, the UK union for actors, Equity, put together a Code of Best Practice to protect actors with regard to the problems that have arisen from self-tape and Zoom auditions. In October, I spent time liaising with the US screen actors’ union, SAG-AFTRA, in an attempt to address the same problems in the US and to make sure that actors are not put in a position where they are expected to be available 24/7 to audition. SAG-AFTRA have confirmed that they are looking into this “important topic” and have informed me that the issue will be addressed in the next SAG-AFTRA Magazine which comes out early December 2021. Actors have now been self-taping for well over a year and having had my last, three episodic auditions come in late on a Friday afternoon for me to self-tape over the weekend, I really hope that the issues are addressed soon. Many actors are suffering from burnout and the union needs to step in and protect us.
I’ve attended many screenings over the past few weeks and although this film recommendation might not be everyone’s cup of tea, I would love people to see Kenneth Branagh’s new film, BELFAST, which is a semi-autobiographical story of life in the late 1960s in the Northern Irish city. Even though it is set during tumultuous times, it is a beautifully quiet film in many ways with real heart.