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Interview with Sugey Cruz (Cold)





Interview with Sugey Cruz (Cold)



Sugey Cruz is a Hispanic award-winning actress and producer. She has worked with many prestigious clients including Universal and Blinding Edge Films. She has had a wealth of experience on film and commercial sets in everything ranging from acting, continuity supervisor, production coordinator and supervisor, and Health and Safety/Covid Compliance.

Sugey’s current major projects include “Transient”, a sci-fi, thriller, feature film by Chris Ruppert, that is in Post-Production and “Cold”, a film she and. her creative partner, Greg Poppa, developed as a proof-of-concept, origin story for a new creative universe that they created.

When not involved in work in front of and behind the camera, Sugey spends time with her family and is involved in charitable works especially causes involving Autism and related conditions.” From Sugey’s IMDB page.

Hi Sugey, please tell us about COLD, and how this idea manifested for you?

Sugey- The script was written by Greg Poppa. Greg is my production partner, and writing partner. I did the Spanish translations for the film. We worked together in developing the film itself. The idea came to Greg while we were at the Sundance Film Festival, and we were walking around trying to get from one place to another, and there was this one cabin way up on the mountain, and he just started to fantasize and think about what kind of person would live up there. It’s so isolated and cold. It developed from there, and we made it a habit to meet at least once a week over zoom to discuss this project.

What is the most challenging aspect as a filmmaker… well, you wear many hats. Do you have any advice or words of wisdom to offer to people who want to be in this industry?

Sugey- Yes, when your first starting out, don’t just say you want to do one thing. I would try out as many things as possible, and see what you enjoy. It’s always good to learn as much as possible while on a set. I have done everything from working in the art department, PA work, grip work. It helps me as a producer. I think it helps to learn as much as you can about set life. If you have a community of filmmakers in your community, connect with them.

I was reading the summary of COLD, and it’s truly refreshing, and I don’t mean that in a happy way or in some kind of strange way. It’s nice to see a film that talks about something so important. Back in the day people could not talk about mental health, and truly taking care of yourself. The world became isolated during COVID too, and I don’t think people understand how important it is to talk about healing. Did you have to do anything special to prepare for this film?

Sugey- For COLD, the interesting thing is that the majority of the film focuses on my character. It is a character piece about this woman. She is locked in her own mind, and it’s done with this allegory of her being stuck in purgatory, and she has to fix this car, but it’s never about the car… it’s about herself. There are these other characters that are in the story, and one is a dog who is kind of a companion, but she doesn’t truly connect. A lot of times we can’t connect when we’re depressed. She sees her guide, and Greg plays the guide. It’s a reminder to keep working on yourself.

I think this film will have quite an impact. The horror genre is such an open genre. People keep a lot of stuff inside, and there wasn’t always an outlet for people so, to see films that talk about this subject. People suffer with depression, PTSD, and more so, it’s meaningful.


Sugey- You don’t what a person is going through. I always think about Robin Williams, his job was entertaining people, and it was a character he was playing. He was always on, and always laughing but it was a character he was playing. It was a coping mechanism that he learned, and people wouldn’t ask him what’s wrong. There is so much misunderstanding with mental health. I think one of the reasons that we choose to do this story is because I’m Hispanic, and in my culture, they are not as open-minded when it comes to mental health. I think finally, we are talking more about mental health in general. I’m glad there are more avenues, and everyday I’m learning something new. One of my friends has a Podcast called “Trauma Brain.” It’s about surviving narcissistic personality disorder. I think everyday we learn more and more about how our minds work, and how we interact with each other. I think anything that keeps people honest is important. I always say we came from two toxic people who came together without a manual, and they had us.


Do you think it’s gotten better culturally? When you said, “pray it away,” that hits hard. I have heard that a lot, and seeing a therapist was a No.

Sugey- You still have some of it with the older generation, and that’s how they were raised. If you’re in a culture that does respect their elders, it is something you have to deal with. But at the end of the day when something is an issue, you learn how to adjust and function. Some times that’s the reality, and you must say goodbye to certain people in your life. When your harmful to my psyche or some physical part of me. A lot of people will say, oh, if you do this one thing, it will go away, and that’s not how it works. There is still a lot of work to do. That’s one of the things that Greg and I were talking about. There will be a longer interview for the behind-the-scenes footage. At the end of the day, it is up to you. You know what these forces are.

What can you tell us about the special effects, and the team you’re working with?

Sugey- I think it’s having the right relationships with the people you’re partnered with to make a great project. We are working on things, and we have been working on things. We didn’t want to be bogged down with anything. One of the things we’re doing is that people want to see the behind the scenes “dirty parts,” not dirty parts but…

The gritty hard work, and all the work that goes on behind the scenes, I got you.

Sugey- Yes, the rough parts, and how you set up, cleaning up the locations. Pre-production, and post-production. The more prepared you are when you go to the set. We met with the special effects people; we worked on the script. We have had discussions with everyone before the film starts. I don’t have to worry because everyone knows what they are doing.

Is there anything extra you can talk about regarding the special effects? I always love the process of practical and even CGI.

Sugey- So, we have two people that are special effects artists. One if more of a practical effects artist. We did a bunch of different stuff with frost bite. There are a lot of elements of body horror. We have two great special effects artists. We did share some videos.

What was it like working with Greg Poppa on Cold?

Sugey- It was great. It was a cool experience. He added a lot more creativity to what I do.

What is next for you?

Sugey- Cold is the first part of a larger universe. We are working on quite a few projects. There is another project that is going to be a Western. We both go horseback riding. There is another one we have been talking about, and it’s a comedic series about Dracula.

You guys do a lot of great work. There is a lot of work that goes into filmmaking. You guys are doing an amazing job. Thank you.

Sugey- Thank you.

I thank you so much, Sugey. It was such an honor to talk with you as always. Congratulations, and thank you so much.

Sugey- Thank you, Janel.











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