To start things off, can you introduce yourself to the readers?
My name is Chakra O’Connor and I am an actor from Co. Meath currently living in Co. Sligo in Ireland.
What is the best thing about working in horror?
The tension we collectively created and experienced was both exhilarating and special. Finding the subtext, I felt I gained a close connection with the cast, characters and context on a deeper and sometimes darker level quite quickly which surprised me.
Stepping on set brought me to a place very far removed from my own reality but drawing from personal experiences allowed me to tie two vastly different worlds together. I also love horror in any form it takes, so I was naturally passionate about this project.
Can you say anything about your movie you have been in?
I think the title reveals a lot about this film in more ways than one, if you want to look
beneath its surface. The film is heavy, earthy and it pounds.
What I like about this film is it deals with very real characters one could identify with quite easily, allowing you to feel closer to them on their joint and individual journey. Although you see three friends come together, it feels very lonely.
What inspired you to be an actor?
When I was a child my Grandmother took the role of my Father, so I spent half of my
time with her since my parents were separated.
She would repeatedly play her favourite classic 1940s Hollywood films and they became mine. As I was bullied in school, I found relieving escapism in this world and their characters and longed to be like those “beautiful people” who could express their internal drama and thereby create art and history and be
loved for it.
How did you prepare for the role?
Any role I prepare for including this one involves reading and re-reading the script. I
find each time the script is read you discover something different be it about the
character, context or subtext.
It is also important for me to let those discoveries rest and settle without becoming attached to them, as you have to remain flexible and open as an actor. As I said previously, I also drew from my own personal experiences and found a place for mine and my characters to meet.
I imagined my character’s social and cultural context and even searched for people I have once met that have may have had crossovers with her. Physicality is generally the main gateway I use to access a character (or as I prefer to say, allow myself to be played upon by the character) however, not all characters can be unfolded this way.
In this instance, her psychology revealed itself first followed by her physicality. Speaking with the cast and director openly was also very helpful so I found a lot of guidance through them, having that unreserved relationship was constructive.
Can you tell us about the greatest moment in your film career?
Actually, the greatest moment in my film career was my first film audition, simply
because it felt incredibly intimate and momentous. Before that moment, being primarily theatre trained, I wanted to work solely in theatre but from then on a door opened for me and I knew I wanted to pursue film alongside theatre.
Something had clicked for me that hadn’t before and it was magic, the beginning of a journey. That was also the moment I landed my agent.
What are some of your upcoming projects?
That is difficult to say at this moment given the current global circumstances. However, I am planning to set up an environmental group in my town as well as hopefully being involved in a separate acting related project surrounding environmentalism, Irish mythology and culture depending on funding.
What is the last horror film you saw? What did you think of it?
Midsommar (2019) directed by Ari Aster. This film was absolutely beautiful, the only
other horror film I can think of that captured that level of beauty, empowering femininity and stirring emotion was Brian De Palma’s Carrie (1976). Florence Pugh who plays the lead role “Dani” is exceptional, I could not take my eyes off her, she gave everything to this part and to us.
She is raw, expressive and unforgiving just like this story and it is all set in the breath-taking scenic backdrop of Sweden. Beautiful.
What is your favorite horror movie and why?
The Conjuring (2013) directed by James Wan. It was so effective, chilling, eery and I
will never watch it again deeming it a successful horror film for me.
Set in 1971, it carries the style of a traditional 1970s horror without being overly polished, watching it you could mistake it for being an authentic film from that era as opposed to an imitation.
Where can we find out more about you and your work?
On my Agency’s website “O’Sullivan the actors agent”.
What is your personal definition of horror?
Anything that tries to expose the “dark” truth, and we the audience view that journey of exposure.
Favorite country or place?
Anywhere where there is clear ocean water and sand. I do love the west of Ireland for
that reason, mountains and sea surround you, the air is sharp and there’s green!
Did you know anything about Sweden?
I know Sweden have a commendable use of renewable energy with low carbon
emissions, I admire Sweden for its sustainability and progression towards an
environmentally green future.
I have never been to Sweden but I would love to go to see their charming romantic landscapes and hear their melodic language spoken.