With the recent release of her new movie ‘Brampton’s Own‘ in select theaters and on-demand, Rose McIver was interviewed about this new movie, the last season of ‘iZombie’ and more. Find below, the interview she made with Fred Topel.
Source | Monsters and Critics: Is that you singing in Brampton’s Own?
Rose McIver: No, unfortunately it’s not. It was hoping to be but I was on something else at that time, so I couldn’t get to the ADR session. I was very frustrated about that. I would love to sing but she did such a great job, the girl who did it.
M&C: Do you ever long for the smalltown life vs. Hollywood?
RM: Very much so. I’m from a small town. I’m from a little beach town outside of Aukland in New Zealand.
So there’s a lot of me that connects to this film and the distance from family and from your old high school friends and what you knew. I moved to the other side of the world, but at the same time, I’m also aware of how much of that is actually nostalgia rather than the reality of what it would be like if you moved home.
For me, these things were all things that I think about a lot. I think it is a very massive challenge to navigate as you move to a big city and try to pursue your dreams, is how to not overlook the people that you love and the things that will be there ultimately in the end.
M&C: That’s a good point that there’s a large nostalgia component. How important is it to move on and move forward, and balance that with looking back?
RM: I have a friend who says people and things are in your life for a reason to cease in their own lifetime. I think sometimes we feel when something has ended, part of the grief is thinking they never existed to begin with.
You kind of let it go like it died. It’s actually allowed to have still had the impact that it had at that time. I think their relationship, even though over the course of this film it doesn’t work out, I think it doesn’t detract from the fact that they had something very special at a particular moment.
That can still live on.
M&C: Was it refreshing that Rachel was right, she had a sense that Dustin would always choose baseball and she had to be responsible for her own desires?
RM: Yeah. I think that she wanted so badly obviously for it to work out, but you can’t control anybody else’s decisions. She had made an immediate kind of reactionary response and got engaged to the wrong person.
So I’m glad that I think she does have a huge amount of growth in the film where she learns that that’s a band aid solution. That wasn’t working either.
I hope for her that ultimately at the end of the story, she goes forward knowing that she’s not going to be able to change anybody else and she just has to stay open to the things that land in her life that are right for her.
She can see that this wasn’t that thing at this present time. I’m impressed that she’s able to let that go. I know a lot of people who don’t and suffer a lot of pain because of it.
M&C: Do you get offered a lot of romantic comedies where it is about a woman who’s just looking for a man?
RM: Yeah, most of the time. So to me the fact that she actively decides to let this go was very important because I think it’s very easy to find material where the male character’s narrative is just projected onto the women around him.
I think this was one where she has her own growth. She has her own vulnerability and story that changes. That was really important.
M&C: Or even where it’s a female protagonist but it’s all about finding a boyfriend or a husband. Those can be fun but it’s nice that there’s a movie like Brampton’s Own too.
RM: Yeah, exactly. I think that we’ve seen enough of the same story told the same way that it’s fun when it’s subverted or reimagined. In this particular instance, just being able to be another character in the story who isn’t just a prop for his own emotional journey is really fantastic.
M&C: How hard has it been to find movies that fit in your hiatus?
RM: Well, it’s not going to be anymore. I finish iZombie in February. Then I’m open to whatever happens next.
It has been a bit of a game of trying to work out dates. Also, I like to spend time back in New Zealand when I’m not shooting so this one just came.
It was very serendipitous. It was at the right time with the right people. Michael Doneger had so much heart and had a massive team of people who were going to really work because they loved the story, because they loved the simplicity and the lack of big shock factor/blockbuster vibes.
That wasn’t what he was going for. It’s a small intimate story that you could watch and connect to. It came up just at the right time. He was such a lovely human so it just worked out great.
M&C: How did the film come your way?
RM: Michael approached me. I guess he knew some of my work and knew Alex Russell, and just pulled us together.
It was very fast. We were able to meet up and get to know each other a little bit, but as is the nature of these films, it’s kind of go, go, go and the discoveries happen on camera.
We met up and got to know each other. We went for a couple of coffees and to hang out a bit. Then we were shooting. It was great.
M&C: Is there a specific Brampton accent you were doing?
RM: No, no. I think what’s great about the film is it’s not localized. I felt like anybody can watch the film and feel like it’s a small town that they’ve come from. We tried to steer away from that.
RM: [Laughs] It is. It’s a shorter time in the chair. It was fun. I really liked it. I managed to steal a pair of jeans afterwards.
They were really close to how I like to dress anyway. It was not too much of a distance to leap into a character.
M&C: What kind of jeans were they that you wanted to take them home?
RM: I don’t even know the brand. They had to cut the brand off because you’re not allowed to market anything.
M&C: What sort of fun did you and the cast and crew get up to off camera?
RM: We were filming in an ice cream store so that was just dangerous. There was lots of ice cream.
There was a beautiful outdoor area with lights everywhere. You’re doing night shoots somewhere and there’s gorgeous lights, it almost feels like you’re at a bizarre party.
It was just like a very mellow, nice social hangout, very, very social. Jean Smart was such a trooper. We got to hang out and have a glass of wine afterwards, it was lovely.
M&C: What town were you filming in?
RM: We were in Los Angeles. It couldn’t have been more convenient. It was down the street from home.
M&C: That’s so unusual to film movies in L.A.
RM: Yeah, yeah, crazy but it worked out. They did a great job of finding good locations in Los Angeles that were available. It was wonderful.
M&C: What sort of things are you looking for after iZombie?
RM: I’m not sure. I just did a musical back in New Zealand that will be coming out in February so I’m thinking about the music side of things again a little bit too. I’m just open.
M&C: Has it been bittersweet filming the final season of iZombie?
RM: Yeah, it has been. It’s great that we know it’s ending so we can tie up loose ends, but I love this cast and crew so much. I will miss them very, very much.
Yeah, we’re halfway through today actually, halfway through the season.
M&C: Can it ultimately have a happy ending for Liv?
RM: Yes, for sure. I think you make your own happy endings. I think she’s got some great people in her life.
I don’t know exactly how it’s being worked out but I can see where they’re heading. I’m a big champion of it. I think it will be a beautiful outcome.
M&C: Does the iZombie fan base come and support you for other projects like Brampton’s Own?
RM: Yeah, I’ve been so lucky. There’s a couple of really amazing social media accounts, these fan accounts that have just been incredibly supportive of my career.
They’ve gone back through the archives and found films that I did back in the day. They always alert people to what’s coming out. They’ve just been amazing and they’ve supportive Brampton’s.
That means a lot. It’s an independent film and you really appreciate people talking about it. It’s a word of mouth kind of story.
It feels to me like the kind of film you watch at home on a date night while the kids are asleep. It’s not a film you have to see in the theater. You can really make a night of it and get the value of the film in your living room.
It’s the kind of thing where when these fan accounts talk about the show, I know that really helps. It helps get the message out and helps people see it, so I’m very appreciative.
M&C: Do you ever go back and watch your old Xena episodes?
RM: I haven’t. Sometimes I’ve seen clips of them. New Zealand was like the sword and sandals capital. We had all of those shows shooting there.
Any New Zealand actor that ends up having a career internationally, you’ll be able to dig through and find them on Spartacus or Legend of the Seeker which is one I did.
M&C: Do you have a dream role you’re dying to play?
RM: No, I’m not a huge goal setter to be honest. I really feel like any time I have very solid plans of how it’s all going to go, it doesn’t work out that way. So I’m just open and I try to stay open, and be willing to be surprised by what comes next.
There are plenty of characters out there that I would like to play. Maybe in the future they won’t all have a white wig and won’t eat brains.
M&C: Do you take a different approach to fantastical characters like Liv and real world characters like Rachel?
RM: Sometimes the material demands that you bring a certain kind of texture to it, but a lot of the time with Liv, what I always try to think about is how to play Liv underneath it all and not to play just the brains and just the devices that we have in the show.
Just try to keep people caring about her because we have to stay on her side. Ultimately, it’s a genre show but it’s dealing with lots of very real issues. We try to touch on political things and we touch on current events.
To me, it’s important to still have as much integrity as I can when I deal with that sort of material.