This week’s interview is with Alivia Latimer, a young actress just starting out her career, with a lot of great family support, in Florida.
ANTHONY: Hi, Alivia! Thanks for taking some time to chat. How are you?
ALIVIA: Hi Anthony! I am fantastic, thank you for asking!
ANTHONY: Let’s start off with the basics: How long have you been acting professionally, and what was your first job?
ALIVIA: I began my acting career in January 2011 when I started taking an on-going acting class. But it wasn’t until December 2011 that I booked my first job; a commercial for SeaWorld!
ANTHONY: Is most of your experience on stage or on screen?
ALIVIA: All of my experience has been on screen! I actually have never been in a professional theater production.
ANTHONY: You’ve done a lot of work on YouTube and the web. Tell me how you got started making and posting videos.
ALIVIA: About two years ago, I made a YouTube video with my little brother Caden entitled “The Silly Band Stealer” — a short video about a boy who steals Silly Bandz. (LOL) I got a few requests to make more videos, so “The Silly Band Stealer” become a miniseries!
I really have a passion for filmmaking, and have posted over a dozen short videos on my YouTube channel, which is currently under construction.
ANTHONY: Has posting your short films on YouTube helped make connections with casting directors?
ALIVIA: Not yet, although it would be so cool if a popular casting director saw my videos! (Preferably a Disney casting director! Haha)
ANTHONY: Tell me about your new project, “UnCovered”. What is it about?
ALIVIA: The story follows four kids who embark on a journey to uncover the mystery that lies within an old diary they find while camping out in the woods on the darkest night of the year … October 31st, 2012.
ANTHONY: What was your writing process like while you were working on the script? Did you plot it all out ahead of time, or make it up as you went along?
ALIVIA: Since “UnCovered” is a series of multiple episodes, I pretty much just make it all up as we progress. I mean, I know what I want to happen, so I just need to get it out of my head and put it into words!
ANTHONY: Did you write the characters with specific local actors in mind, or did you cast them after you’d created the characters?
ALIVIA: Most roles were created and then cast later on to local actors with little acting experience. I wanted to give the new kids a chance. But we have a mixture of beginners and professionals in the series, which gives it a nice balance.
ANTHONY: Who else is in the movie, and have they done any other filmed work?
ALIVIA: Our principal cast consists of Anthony Porrey, Allie Hendron, Kalil Hamdaoui, Ben Kyle, and myself. This is Ben’s first time acting and he’s doing a phenomenal job! Kalil has done a short film, and a lot of commercials/print! Allie and I actually worked together on an independent film earlier this year, and Anthony is just getting started in the business. So as I stated before, we have a nice mixture of beginners and professionals!
ANTHONY: How long did it take to film, and where?
ALIVIA: Well, we are taking it one episode at a time. One episode a month from July-December is the plan! We are filming around the Tampa area in cast members’ houses, parks, bike paths, and even in the woods!
ANTHONY: Did you make any changes to the script based on things that happened while filming?
ALIVIA: Yes! Right before we were about to shoot, an actor cancelled on us. So I changed things up, wrote in an entire scene with dialog and the actors memorized it in like, five minutes! The scene turned out great!
ANTHONY: When and where will people be able to see “UnCovered”?
ALIVIA: The trailer is up now and you can see it at youtube.com/UnCoveredWebSeries. The first episode premiered on October 31st, 2012 on that same YouTube channel, and episode two is up as well.
ANTHONY: Okay, now let’s talk about your acting. What other projects have you done recently? Didn’t you spend some time shooting at Disney in Orlando?
ALIVIA: Recently I have been working on tons of short and independent films, web series’, commercials, and print shoots. So you can say I’ve been BUSY! My most recent commercials are for Universal Studios Orlando and Disney World!
ANTHONY: How do you prepare for your auditions?
ALIVIA: If it’s a commercial audition, I practice facial expressions and my “happy commercial voice”! I also research any past commercials for that client and see if there is anything I can add to my performance to “wow” the casting directors. If it is a TV or Film audition, I watch Disney Channel/Disney XD sitcoms like “Lab Rats” and “A.N.T Farm” to study the actors’ comedic timing and facial expressions! I love Disney shows!
ANTHONY: The Disney shows are a lot of fun, for sure. A lot of the teens I interview are involved in charitable causes. I know you are too — what causes do you support and how can people help?
ALIVIA: I am a huge supporter of Jaylen’s Challenge Foundation, which is a non-profit anti-bullying organization. I am very passionate about the subject of bullying and do all I can to help out my friend Jaylen! He is a very special 12 year old boy with a big heart. If you would like to learn more about JCF and how you can help, read Jaylen’s touching story at jaylenschallenge.org Bullying No Way!!!
ANTHONY: And my usual closing question: What is your favorite book, and what would you say to someone who hasn’t read it to convince them that they should?
ALIVIA: I will admit I am not much of a reader, (unless it’s a script) but I have read this particular two part series called “iQ”. It’s about three kids that become involved with the FBI, CIA, and Homeland Security. It’s really intriguing if you like the mystery/ government/terrorism genre. Seriously, it’s so intense that once you read the first chapter, you cannot put the book down. I loved the series so much, I sent an email to the author asking if he would write a third book…and this is coming from someone who doesn’t read! LOL. So go check out “iQ” at your local library!
ANTHONY: Thanks again, Alivia!
ALIVIA: Anytime! Thanks so much for having me!
You can catch up on Alivia’s series unCovered on the Youtube channel and by visiting the series’ Facebook page. You can also learn more about Alivia by checking out her IMDb page, and you can follow her on Twitter as @alivialatimer.