Rogue Warrior : Robot Fighter star Tracey Birdsall returns to the sci-fi genre in 2018 with The Time War. We caught up with her and asked her to look back over 2017.
Looking back on the year, how successful for you was it?
2017 was really a most wonderful year on a professional level. It’s always a joy to see a project you’ve worked so hard at – release into the world. It was also a year of creation as we were in the process of filming The Time War, which is due to be released in 2018.
What was the highlight?
I do believe that the theatrical premiere of Rogue Warrior was the true highlight for me!
What was the most surprising bit of feedback you heard about the movie?
It always amazes me when people pick up on the subtle nuances of a film, as the nuances are not really meant to draw attention. It’s the true sign that someone was completely on the journey when they discuss the nuances in great detail. That was surprising to me that some people were drawn to it at that level.
How long had you been working on it for?
It was a good two-year project from start to finish. We planned on shooting approximately four weeks, but with additional scenes and re-shoots, production was a drawn-out 80 days spread over many locations, cities, states, and two countries.
And was the press campaign equally as long?
The press campaign started prior to filming and sporadically continued all the way through the release of the film. I do believe, especially with science fiction, that you have to take the fans on the journey with you…
How important do you feel it is to do press for a film?
Again, I feel with science fiction, in particular, you take the press and the future audience along the journey with you. Releasing information along the journey allows people to get excited about the film, to build awareness of the film, and gets them thinking and guessing. With independent film, it also builds awareness – since we obviously don’t have the budget that the big studios have.
Can positive and negative reviews affect the performance of a movie?
I’ll answer this from a viewer’s perspective and bring it back around… When I read reviews, I look for reviews where they obviously watched the whole film. Statistically speaking, when someone wants to review a film, we keep statistics and can see if they watched it, skimmed it, or didn’t watch it at all. Some of the majors, we’ve found, don’t even watch the film so I can only imagine that they watch trailers and read what they can find and make a review. As a viewer, I take this information in with me when I read reviews on other films. Can it affect the performance? One would think so. That said, however, we get reviews from all perspectives. One major outlet (who did not watch the film and wrote a harsh review) came out just before our physical media release – yet the film sold out in a few days. So I’m not sure if the reviews are relevant either way.
It’s the end of the year, so let’s talk ‘years best’. For you, what was the best movie of the year?
I would personally have to say Logan, as a huge Wolverine fan back as far as I can remember.
Anything you were disappointed by?
I’m not usually disappointed in films, although I like some more than others. Films require a huge amount of effort and should be valued for their merits.
What about movie music? Any soundtracks you were impressed by in 2017?
I thoroughly enjoyed the soundtracks for both Wonder Woman and War for the Planet of the Apes.
What about TV? Anything you think ‘ruled’ this year?
I’m completely obsessed with The Crown! I also really enjoyed The Handmaid’s Tale.
If you could have been involved in any one movie this year what would it have been?
Wonder Woman – such female empowerment in such numbers!
What does 2018 hold in store for you?
The Time War will be released in 2018, along with a comedy feature I shot in 2016 called Who’s Jenna…? Lots ahead in 2018!
Is there a genre you haven’t tackled that you’d like to next year?
The Time War tackled several things I hadn’t tackled before, not specifically in genre but moreover in time travel, playing multiple versions of myself throughout time, and tackling destruction and mental/emotional damage. I do believe I’m due for a good rich drama, or a fresh comedy.
For those wanting to buy a film of yours, what would you recommend and where can they get it?
Rogue Warrior: Robot Fighter is currently available at Amazon.com, streaming on iTunes, Vudu and Google Play (among others)!