Alana de Freitas is an Australian born actress who has starred in a number of feature films. Acting since the age of nine, Alana has studied the craft extensively and had recently enjoyed lead roles in several feature films. Alana’s first foray into professional acting was in 2002 when she landed a role in “Queen of the Damned.” She has since starred in films portraying everything from reporters to teachers. She was one of the six lead cast members of a TV series called “Snowpeck,” in which she played a lovable but unlucky-in-love ditz. She was also a host on “LifeFunk TV” where she sourced new talent in the fashion industry and conducted interviews with up-and-coming designers.
Alana’s most recent work includes a starring role in the upcoming horror feature film titled “Bashira” and the lead role in the independent feature film “Before the Dawn” that focuses on the forbidden relationship between a teacher and a student. Additionally, she is booked to star in an upcoming comedy movie titled “Cash Collectors.”
Alana recently granted an exclusive interview where she discussed her career in the entertainment industry.
Meagan Meehan (MM): How did you decide to enter the film industry and what types of roles do you enjoy playing the most?
Alana de Freitas (AdF): I don’t know that it was ever a conscious decision. As a kid, I always gravitated towards acting, and drama class, and making my brother and my cousins put on shows for my family. It was more of a natural progression. I really enjoy getting to play gritty roles with a lot of emotion and high stakes. Getting to embody different lives and experiences is what I love about acting.
MM: Do you prefer acting in movies or TV more, and why?
AdF: Tough question! With film, you have such a limited amount of time to get the story arc out – everything is condensed, which I quite enjoy. In television, you have more of a luxury with time to gradually reveal different elements of your character, and you get to work through numerous storylines throughout the series. If I had to pick one, and I’m making this from a strategic mindset, I would say film, because it allows me to move onto the next project, and ergo, more characters over a shorter period of time. But it really just depends on the role, the story, the character, the team, etc. There are so many different factors that go into every project; it’s just too hard to choose.
MM: How did you manage to secure some of your lead roles?
AdF: Lead roles often require a number of auditions, and chemistry reads with the actors you may be playing opposite. Quite often you will be requested for a self-tape after your reps have submitted you for a role. After that, they want to see you in person. But so much can go into it. Someone may have written a role with you in mind, or you may have an existing working relationship with the director. Or even another actor may suggest you. Every project is different.
MM: In one forthcoming film, you play the lead role of a teacher who is having a relationship with a student. So, how did you mentally prepare for this role?
AdF: The film is called “Before the Dawn,” and it should be released very soon. I had done chemistry reads with Jared Scott, the actor who plays opposite me as the student, Jason. Jared is so charming it made my job easy to cultivate that chemistry. It’s the fear factor, with relation to the forbidden nature of the relationship – that takes more work. The push/pull feeling that comes with taboo relationships. I think we all know the feeling of being afraid of getting caught doing something we know we shouldn’t be doing. It’s hard to explain, but I just borrow that feeling from my real life.
MM: What was the filming process and time like, and what’s your favorite part of the movie, and why?
AdF: We shot this film over a few weeks in the heat of summer. Not being able to use the air conditioning because it would affect the sound – I don’t miss that. But it was a lot of fun. We were like one big family, the cast and crew. It required all-hands-on-deck working with such a tight schedule. Without giving too much away, my favorite part of the movie is when Jason and Lila (my character) first cross the line into ‘inappropriate relationship’ territory. I enjoy this part because you can see the struggle Lila is undergoing by trying to deny her feelings and do the right thing.
MM: You have two other starring roles coming up. Tell me about those?
AdF: I filmed a horror movie that should be released in early 2020. It’s called ‘Bashira’ and is about a Japanese entity that wreaks havoc in the life of my character’s family. I am also about to film a comedy called ‘Cash Collectors’ alongside Michael Madsen, Angie Everhart, and Johnny Messner. It’s about a reality show that’s in its third season, where the contestants forcibly collect from people who have defaulted on their debts on live television. My character is the showrunner – it’s a lot of fun!
MM: What are your ultimate career goals?
AdF: I’m a little bit superstitious, so I like to stay quiet on the specifics, but I have a number of directors that I would love to work with. I would love for my films to be selected for the big festivals. Mostly, I just want good, meaty female roles, and to work with diverse cast and crew. I’m a big believer in the vision board – it helps keep me focused on my goals. I’m also a chronic list-maker!
MM: What are your thoughts on film festivals?
AdF: I think they’re great! ‘Before the Dawn’ is doing the festival circuit at the moment and racking up a number of laurels. I feel really proud that it’s getting some recognition because we all worked so hard on it. I think festivals are particularly valuable for independent films because they don’t have the same marketing budgets as studio films. So it can be a great way for the film to get its name out there, but also for filmmakers to start making a name for themselves. More than anything, I think they are great networking opportunities, and that’s really what this industry is all about!