Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Pheaturing Rachael Drummond

Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile for a Tuesday. How are you? What's going on?  Former Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley announced over the weekend that he will be seeking the Democratic nomination for president in 2016. He has yet to clarify whether this is an act of pure delusion or if he maybe just has a book coming out soon.  A Canadian judge has ruled that three of the biggest tobacco companies must pay $12 billion dollars to Quebec smokers for not providing information on the health risks associated with smoking. "The companies earned billions of dollars at the expense of the lungs, the throats, and the general well-being of their customers," Superior Court Justice Brian Riordan wrote. JTI-Macdonald, Imperial Tobacco, and Rothmans, Benson & Hedges say they plan to appeal black, tarry infringement of justice. Do you know what the difference is between the Surgeon General and the Surgeon Specific are? The Surgeon General says smoking kills. The Surgeon Specific says you will die November 15th 2037 from complications arising from a tumor in your left lung.  Academy Award-nominated actress Emma Stone has been making headlines recently for her role as a half-Asian Hawaiian hula dancing expert in Cameron Crowe's new film Aloha. Reactions from the media range from "I'm not buying Emma Stone as an Asian-American in Aloha" to "Literally Why."  Twentieth Century Fox announced (probably due to a sense of obligation) that Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson has for some reason agreed to star in a remake of John Carpenter's 1986 cult-classic action-fantasy film Big Trouble in Little China that some executive probably figured they'd have to get around to making eventually. Sorry to have been the one to inform you. I am very excited for Emma Stone to play Wang Chi in the remake. Haha.  Scientists have discovered that female sawfish in Florida have been reproducing without engaging in sexual intercourse with male sawfish in the area. These births seem to suggest both that such virgin births may be more common in nature than previously assumed and that Florida fish dudes are just as off-putting as Florida human dudes. Imagine the towering achievements in aquatecture if sawfish and hammerhead sharks ever get their shit together.  The former Olympic athlete and current reality star formerly known as Bruce Jenner makes her premier appearance as a Caitlyn Jenner on the cover of the July issue of "Vanity Fair." The issue's photo spread, taken by legendary celebrity photographer Annie Leibowitz, seem destined to stir up a lot of controversy with culture warriors and confusion with people who don't think they could find 65 year old transgender people attractive. I do have to say that "Family Guy" called this about four years ago.

See?  Yesterday I ate at a really good Chinese restaurant in Orlando. But there was something just not right about it...

Awww. Actually, the restaurant was really good. If you live or visit Orlando go to Ming Bistro... but don't expect to get a fortune cookie there.  So, as you know one of my favorite places in the world is Port Jefferson, New York where I grew up. Well, I have to show you this... this happened in Port Jeff Harbor yesterday...

What the hell? I have no idea.  So, you kids know who Helen Keller is, right? I saw this poster and thought something just wasn't right...

I'm going to hell. Okay, and now from the home office in Port Jefferson, New York here is...

Top Phive Things Overheard In Kim Kardashian's Womb
5. This umbilical cord is just a constant stream of Red Bull and diet shakes!
4. When mommy was napping yesterday, North whispered to me to "stay inside for as long as I can."
3. How did E! get cameras in here?
2. I'm not born yet and even I know not to sign documents from Grandma Kris without getting legal representation!
And the number one thing heard in Kim's womb is...
1. My ears have barely developed, but I already don't like what I'm hearing out there!

Kim Kardashian 
Clicking on links about her won't make her go away you know?

If you spot the Mindphuck let me know. Okay, so, you know I live in Florida. Well, stuff happens here in Florida that happens nowhere else. That is why I have a pheature on the Phile called...

Last weekend, a... you guessed it... Florida man was found peacefully dozing on the couch of a home he had broken into. The homeowner roused the 29 year old Timothy Bontrager around 7:30am and demanded to know what he was doing. He apologized and went on his way only to be scooped up by the police a little later. It turns out Bontrager had tuckered himself out pilfering credit cards and writing some personal checks to himself... the little guy had a big day and got too sweepy!

The 37th book to be pheatured in the Phile's Book Club is...

Phile Alum Patricia Cox will be a guest on the Phile in a few weeks.

Today's guest is an actress I am sure you have seen on TV in different commercials or TV shows. Recently she could be seen in the movie The Shower that she also produced. Please welcome to the Phile, the lovely... Rachael Drummond.

Me: Hi there, Rachael. I cannot believe I am interviewing you. How are you?

Rachael: I'm great, thank you, Jason! I'm honored and flattered to be asked.

Me: I first noticed you when you were on that Kayak commercial. You have done a lot of commercials though, right?

Rachael: I've been lucky to have acted in quite a few. I love it.

Me: Which one was your first?

Rachael: My first was a Progressive ad with Stephanie Courtney as Flo, it was a great experience! She is so hilarious and does a ton of improv on set.

Me: I have to show a picture of you from the Kayak commercial which I am sure everyone has seen...

Me: Okay, I have to ask, how did they do that commercial? I am guessing with quick edits to change your hair, right?

Rachael: So cool, right?! The hair is actually animated. We shot it both ways, one with crazy hair, one with nice hair, and I wore tracking dots on my face. I had to match my movements and then the animator worked his magic.

Me: Was that a fun commercial to do, Rachael?

Rachael: It was really fun, I even had a personal masseuse on that set. I thought the producers were kidding, they kept saying "do you need a break for a massage?" but it turned out to be a real thing to avoid an on-the-job injury from shaking my head for many, many takes. Maybe the producers spent enough time head banging in mosh pits in the 90s to remember the pain...

Me: Haha. How many takes did you have to do to get it right?

Rachael: I didn't count, I should have! The hair stylist is the award winning Yuichi Kojima. His website is yuichikojima.com. He spent 4 hours creating the styles and then had to re-sculpt them after each take because I'd totally screw them up each time. He'd probably say we did a million takes.

Me: You did a number of Toyota commercials... and one I have to mention is this black and white commercial where you are rapping. Was that fun to do?

Rachael: So much fun! I was 5 weeks pregnant so I was nauseated but having a blast.

Me: Do you sing at all, Rachael?

Rachael: I like to sing but no one likes to hear me sing. So... yes!

Me: Was that rapping hard to do? You certainly had the moves down. More than I could of done.

Rachael: It was actually lip synching and the director, Jody Hill, was so frustrated with my white-girl moves. He said at one point, "can you not move your arms and dance at the same time?" Haha! But you can actually hear me rapping in some "Hilary Clinton Raps" videos my husband and I made during the democratic primaries 8 years ago...

Me: Alright, Rachael, where are you from?

Rachael: Originally from Sonoma, CA.

Me: Are you based in California now?

Rachael: Yes, Los Angeles.

Me: You are married with kids, right? How old are they?

Rachael: I am! My kids are 2 and 4 going on 53 and 14, respectively.

Me: What do you think of your acting?

Rachael: Wow, I've never been asked that. I think it varies from project to project. Sometimes I watch myself and cringe and sometimes I'm pleased.

Me: Haha. I was meant to ask what do your children think of your acting.

Rachael: Ooh! My kids are always just worried when I cry or act scared. So we talk about pretending a lot. When I get home from shoots or auditions they say "were you scared? Did you cry?" But they love that I was the mayor of the fresh beats on "The Fresh Beat Band."

Me: Did you always want to be an actress or comedian?

Rachael: Yes. Since I was 13 and my best friend informed me we'd be actresses. I was quite the follower, evidently.

Me: You do mostly comedy, am I right?

Rachael: Yes, it's so cheesy to say but making people laugh is the greatest joy.

Me: Did you study acting or comedy anywhere?

Rachael: I was in acting class throughout junior high and high school. I studied acting at Boston University. In Los Angeles I studied comedy at Groudlings and iO West, and I've always stayed in acting class as well. Acting isn't something you just learn and then do. You have to keep practicing and developing or you get rusty.

Me: I tried my band at stand up comedy years ago but gave up... kinda wish I didn't. A lot of people told me I should do improve and I thought of it. You're in an improve group called Trophy Wife. How long have you been part of that group, Rachael?

Rachael: Trophy Wife was a MainStage team at iO West since 2005. I joined in 2007. I highly recommend improv, it's scary but so rewarding, fun, thrilling... You should do it!

Me: Do you like doing improve?

Rachael: I love it. And I think most of my work professionally as an actor is because I'm an improviser. Improv hones storytelling skills for sure.

Me: Where do you guys perform? We are on hiatus now but our website is trophywifeimprov.com you can always check for updates.

Me: Apart from doing the commercial work and the improv, you have been in a few TV shows. I saw the clip of you in "Parks and Rec" which was funny. How was Chris Pratt to work with?

Rachael: Chris Pratt was great to work with. We just stood across from each other at the permits desk, it was a quick scene. But he was very friendly and so funny.

Me: Is there anyone you worked with that you were starstruck?

Rachael: I'm in a Clorox spot right now with Nora Dunn and I've idolized her for years. I did a monologue from her one woman show for... decades. So I was starstruck when I met her. We got to do a little improv and something I said made her laugh and I felt like I'd won the lottery.

Me: Cool. I have a picture of you and Nora from that commercial I think...

Me: And is there anyone you have worked with that you wish you haven't? I myself have worked at Disney World and I have to say there's been a shit load of people I wish I didn't work with, but a lot I am glad I did work with.

Rachael: Haha... oh I bet you have great stories. No one comes to mind so I guess I'm lucky. I gotta get some good dirt on people!

Me: You did a commercial that was directed by the late Philip Seymour Hoffman. I didn't know he directed. What was that commercial for and what was he like as a director?

Rachael: It was for People's United Bank and he was amazing. He hung out with the actors, I guess out of habit. We got to have lunch with him and talk about acting and families. He wanted to direct more movies and was getting experience on the commercial front.

Me: So, do you do a lot of auditions for parts? What was the easiest and hardest audition you had to do?

Rachael: Crying auditions are the hardest. The easiest are the ones I prepare a lot for. Like a comedy that I get a lot of coaching on and feel really confident when I go in. Then it becomes fun like playing.

Me: Okay, let's talk about The Shower. That's a horror movie that you produced, am I right?

Rachael: Yes!

Me: Is that one of your favorite genres... horror?

Rachael: Noooooo! I'm so scared of scary movies.

Me: You not only produce this film but you star in it. How did you become apart of this?

Rachael: Classic story... sleeping with the director. My husband wrote and directed it.

Me: Did you cast yourself, or were cast ad then went and produced it?

Rachael: The part was written for me by the person who knows me best, what a dream for an actor. 

Me: Tell the readers what it's about, Rachael.

Rachael: It's about a group of friends who get trapped at a baby shower when a mysterious illness starts turning people into homicidal maniacs.

Me: When I first heard of it, I thought it was about an actual shower... not a baby shower. But I'm an idiot. Haha. Anyway, it's been getting a lot of positive reviews and won a few awards. You must be proud of it, am I right?

Rachael: I love it, we made a movie with a bunch of our friends we worked with in a restaurant. So it feels great to get awards and now distribution.

Me: When was it made, Rachael?

Rachael: We shot it in 2012. I was pregnant with my daughter and went into labor after I got out of the makeup chair on day 7 of our 8-day shoot. That threw a little wrench in the process...

Me: Oh, wow. More importantly where can a Phile reader see it?

Rachael: We just got distribution so we are hoping it will be available on VOD very soon.

Me: So, are you gonna be making any other films?

Rachael: Yes! We want to shoot another one this year.

Me: Is there any new commercials we can look for you in that are coming out?

Rachael: Clorox is the newest, check out me and my BFF Nora Dunn...

Me: Alright, so, here on the Phile I ask random questions thanks to Tabletopics. Ready? I don't get this one... why would you rather be a girl or a boy? That makes no bloody sense.

Rachael: Oh I'd MUCH rather be a girl, thank you! Girls rule. Boys drool. You're right, no bloody sense.

Me: Thanks so much for being on the Phile, I hope it was fun and I hope you will come back again soon. Go ahead and mention your websites, Rachael.

Rachael: Thank you! You ask great questions. RachaelDrummond.com, TheShowerTheMovie.com,  and my husband Alex Drummond's blog is a kick for filmmakers: WaiterDirector.com. My Twitter handle is @mommyactress.

Me: Cool, Rachael. And if you ever make it to Orlando I'll take you and your family to Disney. Take care, continued success.

Rachael: Deal! Thanks Jason, take care!

Man, that was a great interview. I love that Kayak commercial for some reason. Alright, that about does it for this entry. Thanks to Rachael Drummond. The Phile will be back next Saturday with Jean Paul Makhlouf from the dance band Cash Cash. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

Not if it pleases me. No, you can't stop me, not if it pleases me. - Graham Parker

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