Q: When and where were you born? What was your upbringing like, and what
are your parents like?
A: I was born in Conyers, Georgia-a small town outside of Atlanta. My upbringing was very simple, and I believe very "normal", comparatively speaking. :-) My parents were very supportive of me and insured that I got a good education, ate dinner with the whole family every night, and learned the wrong and right in the many challenges that life would bring. I'm very lucky-they continue to support me even to this day from 3000 miles away!
Q: I read about your past musical theatre experience in Jason Paul Collum's
interview. Do you have any aspirations to renewing a career in that area or
returning to acting?
A: My first beginnings were in musical theatre. I started at the age of 9 years old, I believe, in a production of GYPSY where I played Baby June. The theatre is a magical place, and yes, I would love to do theatre again. I'm getting a good dose of it already, as I am currently studying with the Howard Fine Acting Studio doing intensive scene work on the stage. It's wonderful. I love the theatre.
Q: It seems like your 1989 appearance on "Who's The Boss?" was your first.
Any memorable experiences?
A: Oh yes! It was my first television appearance, and Tony Danza and the whole cast embraced me like I was with them the whole season. Tony Danza sent me flowers, and I believe I still have the card that was attached to them. It was a whole new realm for me, and I learned A LOT in that week.
Q: When you auditioned for "SPM 3," what role(s) did you read for, and what
scene(s) did you act out?
A: If I remember correctly, it all went very fast. They could not find a 'Diane', and I was called at the last minute. I think I read the beach scene, but can't be certain. I read with Sally at first, then I remember someone else coming in to watch me read, and it was a done deal. I pretty much was told on the spot that I had booked it, and that rarely happens in this business.
Q: Did "SPM 3" have any other shooting titles other than "Stab in the
Dark," "Stab," and "Nite Lite?" What was the title on the film's script?
A: I know of no other titles than NITE LIGHT, and that title was on the cover of the script.
Q: When I asked Sally Mattison if any of the cast members were difficult to
work with, she was quoted on saying, "I'd put two of them in the slightly
difficult category -- nothing dramatic like stomping around the set. I'm not
going to name any names on this question. Overall, though, the cast was very
fun and easy to work with." Could you shed some light on this topic or
would you rather keep it hush-hush?
A: Honestly, I don't remember anyone being 'difficult', per se. I think the production was on a limited time schedule, and all I can say is that it did get a little intense at times. But as far as anyone being difficult??? Not that I can remember. But, I was also just a character in the script, and not the director of the whole production, which is a huge responsibility.
Q: Right before your character is drilled in the side, you are running
across the screen with the wound already intact. Was this due to shooting
conflicts or something else?
A: OH MY GOSH !!!!! I had no idea about that. Looks like I'm gonna have to take a look again, huh? I do know that the very first day of shooting was in the basement when we were trying to escape, and I had that wound put on that VERY FIRST DAY. I think I even slept with it on a few nights at a time because the make-up job was extensive for it.
Q: I hear that you'd met Brittain Frye prior to shooting of "SPM 3" and
that you were very fond of Hope Marie Carlton. Do you keep in contact with
them or any other "SPM 3" cast or crew members these days?
A: I knew Brittain Frye prior to shooting because he and I were studying in the same class with the same instructor. I'll never forget breezing into class to tell him I had just booked a movie. He told me he had done the same, and he and I laughed and laughed when we put two and two together. As far as Hope is concerned? Yes, I adored her. I was somewhat nervous it being my first film, and Hope always had a carefree way about her. Took all my nerves away. It would be great to see both of them, but the industry can move really fast and unfortunately I lost touch with all the cast and crew members.
Q: What was it like working with Sally Mattison. Did she seem like she
knew what she wanted to set out and accomplish?
A: Sally was great. As I mentioned, we had a lot to do in a small amount of time, and even when things got a little pressing-she knew what she wanted, would take a breath, and we would charge forward under her direction. Long days and nights to get it all accomplished.
Q: Being on
a horror movie set, did you have any scary instances working on "SPM 3," besides
almost freezing to death during the beach scene?
A: Oh, that beach scene was SO COLD. I would have to say that the beach scene was the scariest thing of the whole production. That, or the pogo stick. Trying not to literally hit Brittain on the head with it. I was very scared about that. And I think I actually did one time. Yikes!
Q: When "SPM 3" was originally released to video by New Horizons, there
was an R-rated and an unrated version. Fans thought that the unrated
version had everything intact until the film was released to DVD with yet
more additional scenes. Do you know why this was done, or if any other
scenes were cut or altered?
A: I really have no idea about that. Again, I need to take another look……
Q: Why did your
character have to die? That has to be one of the most upsetting endings I've ever
witnessed… They should've gone with the original idea of you living.
A: We shot it both ways, and I have no idea who made the decision to let me die at the end. I was surprised myself when we had the screening because I honestly thought they would let me live. Diane dying was probably more shocking and dramatic, so that is probably why they chose that ending.
Q: I am so puzzled as to what Keely Christian is up to these days. Do you
have any idea?
A: I have no idea where Keely is or what she is doing. I have not seen her in quite a few years besides running into her at a few auditions shortly after the film was released.
Q: I've heard that Lulu Wilson wasn't the actual name of the actress who
plays Juliette in the film. Are you allowed to say anything about this?
A: I honestly don't remember, or perhaps I could comment.
Q: Do you have any film memorabilia (pictures, script, etc.) that you
could share with me?
A: The only thing I have is my actual "wound" saved. The plastic piece that passed as my drill wound. Not sure that you would want that, right? Couldn't give it up, anyway. It's way too sentimental, believe it or not.
Q: Out of all your TV guest appearances on shows like "Who's the Boss?,"
"Valerie," "The Fanelli Boys," "Diagnosis Murder," and "Frasier," which were
the most enjoyable?
A: It's very difficult to say which has been "most enjoyable." All productions and shows have different experiences, good and bad, and there's a different vibe to every project I've worked on. I would say ALL enjoyable.
Q: I'm really eager to see "Something to Scream About"--really interesting
line-up of some of my favorite scream queens. What was that all like, and
did you get to meet anyone new?
A: I'm also anxious to see "Something to Scream About." Jason called me a week, or so, before he came into town, and we just took an afternoon and did the interview with a camera and a little make-up. Jason is quite an individual, and it was a pleasure to see him and work with him, as always.
Q: Jason Paul Collum is a really interesting person to talk to, and I know
you think the same. What are some people you're the closest with, inside
and outside your career?
A: I would say that I'm probably closest to my sister who still lives in Georgia, and my other friends range from industry-involved to, more so the non-industry friends that keep me grounded and aware of the simple things in life and a slower pace. Oh, and my two cats !!!!!
Q: Out of the rest of the films you've done, such as "Liar Liar" and "My
Boyfriend's Back," which roles were your biggest and most favorite to work
A: Again, every experience is unique, but I really enjoyed working on The Heidi Chronicles because I was on set and in the recording studio to record the single for that dance hall sequence.
Q: What was it like to work with Jamie Lee Curtis ("The Heidi
Chronicles"), Alyssa Milano ("Who's the Boss?"), and Jim Carrey ("Liar
A: Oh geez, what a question! They were all very professional and down to earth. Very friendly and supportive.
Q: Anything that you want to do that you haven't already accomplished?
A: Again, what a question !!!! SO MUCH. I would love to explore my musical side some more, do a stage production of SONG AND DANCE (Bernadette Peters), and also (on a personal note) perhaps do some good for the many charities I believe in and the many issues that affect our environment and clean, healthy living.
Q: What's your personal opinion on horror movies?
A: I think horror films are great. They are their own little niche. The blood does sometimes get to me, but they are a lot of fun to watch especially after knowing what actually goes into making them.
Q: What's Brandi Burkett up to these days?
A: WOW. I'm up to a lot these days. Very busy, and I love it. I'm studying acting intensely again, starting fresh with a new agent, writing a lot of music, trying to get a single released, and I guess just living my dream, because there's nothing else I feel I can, or want, to do!
On a last note, I'd like to say how much I enjoyed interviewing Brandi. She is one of the sweetest people I've interviewed so far. I want to thank Jason Paul Collum once again for making the whole thing possible. And for those who were wondering how the alternate ending went in which Brandi's character, Diane, lived in SPM 3:
"If I remember correctly, Keely came over and put her arms around me and cried and said -in effect-how happy she was that I was still alive........
*BIG*........."I think." :)
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