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Home | Interviews | Interview: Julia Campanelli (Dementia 13)

Interview: Julia Campanelli (Dementia 13)

Hi Julia, how are you?

Julia- Hi Janel. I am great!

So tell us a little bit about preparing to play Gloria in “Dementia 13.” You did such a good job and you played Gloria with humanity and did such a good job.

Julia- Gloria, well Gloria, I think first that it was a well-written part. I mean usually the moms in horror films aren’t written as well as this one was so that was fortunate for me so it was easy for me to prepare for it because she was so well rounded. I wanted to put a lot of humanity in so she didn’t come across as a steely matriarch. She had a lot of layers to her but the writing made it really easy for me.

I saw that also. You played with humanity and there was personality and take charge in her.

Julia- I didn’t want to make her one-dimensional. I think, like I said the writing made it easy and the director Richard LeMay he really was just so super that and he created such a safe set and I felt so comfortable to play with it and explore the character so much. All the other actors were terrific to work with so we really had so much fun doing it that it was just such a joy working with them and playing this character. I really liked the character that I played in this film. I think she was just so wonderfully unfiltered, I mean she just really didn’t care what other people thought about her. There’s a lot of fun in playing somebody like that because I’m certainly not like that. I am very judgmental of myself. Gloria, no she doesn’t care. She is rich enough and she’s been through so much. The family has so much history and secrets and she sort of clings to all that when the rest of her family would like to forget it all and move on but she doesn’t let them because I think it’s important for them to remember that with this immense wealth that they have they also have the responsibility of knowing where it came from and what it’s done for them all. It’s really ruptured the family and that’s why she feels she has to give it away to a charity.

I know you mentioned it was great working with Richard LeMay and the cast but did you Richard have a certain plan for you to play Gloria or did the two of you work on that?

Julia- Yes we talked about it. We were pretty much on the same page. He is very generous and encouraging. He was fearless in the way he was directing too so it was really fun to work with somebody like that who is flexible enough to just let you play with the character and you know bring a lot to it and then you both decide what is going to work best for the film. We did a lot of exploring and the actors playing my children are so talented and so much fun to work with and we really had a blast working on it.

There are a lot of intense, horror-related creepy great moments. Did you face any challenges while filming?

Julia- Yes we did! You know we filmed it in a haunted castle and it was legitimately haunted. We all felt it. This place where we shot it, this castle in Connecticut it was without a doubt a haunted castle. Some of the crew members had the misfortune of having to spend the night in the castle a couple of times and they swear there was something there. There was an entity in this castle and we all felt it so there was that. There was this presence that we were dealing with and the fact that we were shooting a horror film there. I think it really gave our film an essence you know I think we were able to convey that into the film. It was also a very physical film. There was a lot of running around. My character had a lot of running around and obviously a lot of screaming. You know everybody is running around screaming and there was a lot of physicality in it. So there was that and shooting a film when you are working twelve or fourteen hours a day it’s always challenging and always a challenge to stay in the moment and also to stay upbeat and have fun. We all had such a good time working together and we couldn’t have asked for a better cast or crew. They were all just super.

Have you seen the film yet because you do an amazing job in it?!!

Julia- Oh thank you! I can’t wait to see it, I haven’t seen it yet! I get to see it in New York in ten days. I’ve seen some clips from it and it’s gorgeous and absolutely beautiful.  I got to see me and I really got a kick out what I saw what I was doing on-screen.

Oh Julia, you are good in the movie. I can’t wait for you to see it!

Julia- Oh thank you so much! Oh my goodness that is wonderful to hear. It puts a smile on my face.

Now what do you want to say to the fans who will watching the film?

Julia- Well you know in addition to working in a haunted castle and in the film there’s a ghost and there’s also for me there is a specter of Francis Ford Coppola there you know. I hope we do it justice. It is a re-working of the film. It is an adaptation of it but I think it is a huge responsibility so I think the fans of the original are going to come expecting a lot and I think the film delivers. I hope everybody feels that way that we did it justice and that we did Mr. Coppola justice with his original material. That’s a pretty heavy burden to carry but from what I’ve seen and just from working with everybody, I think we delivered.

I cannot speak for the amazing Francis Ford Coppola but I think you and the cast did deliver and especially you did a good job.

Julia- Thank you! I think it’s such a ruptured family situation as it is with many families but they all come together for this one memorial ceremony for the eldest daughter who had died a tragic death on the property and they all do it so they meet once a year otherwise they don’t talk to each other very much. So I think because Gloria is such a lioness the children respect her enough or fear her enough they do follow her wishes and they do meet up for the ceremony. I think it is a great journey for them.

What are you working on next?

Julia- Well I have another feature that is in post-production. It is not a horror film. It is like a genre comedy. I play this German woman and it is a hysterical part for me so I really got to stretch on this role. I can’t wait for it to be released. It reminds you of Woody Allen’s black and white films. I mean it’s absolutely gorgeous. I also just finished shooting a music video for a rapper which was so much fun. But I hope to do some more horror films, this was my first horror film and I really loved it. I really love the genre. I am a filmmaker myself as well and I currently on the festival circuit that has won a hand full of awards already so that is keeping me pretty busy right now and then I have some other projects that I’m writing that I plan to star in so there is a lot going on.

Is the film “116?”

Julia- Yes it is “116.” Hopefully it will be playing at a festival in LA!

“Chiller Films will release the horror thriller film DEMENTIA 13 in Theaters on October 6, 2017 and on VOD and Digital HD on October 10, 2017.

This is a retelling of the Francis Ford Coppola directed 1963 film of the same name which was produced by Roger Corman.

DEMENTIA 13 is written by Dan DeFilippo (The Invaders and Chilling Visions: 5 States of Fear) and Justin Smith (SiREN, THE BOY), is directed by Richard LeMay (Blood Bound, Naked As We Come) and stars Channing Pickett (Redheads Anonymous), Marianne Noscheze (Horror Time), Christian Ryan (Celebrity Ghost Stories, Casters), Julia Campanelli (116) and Ana Isabelle (The Eyes, Lost Cat Corona).”


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