We recently got the opportunity to sit down and chat to Stefanie Estes, star of the upcoming horror ‘Bethany’. Stefanie talked to us about her time filming the movie, from her audition, all the way through to watching the finished article.
Hi Stefanie, it’s great to sit down and chat to you.
Congrats on the release of the film! Looks like the film is getting some good attention from the media – is that a relief, knowing people not only like it but outlets are covering it?
Thanks so much! Yes, we’ve been getting some great reviews from the industry and the general media. For me, it’s absolutely thrilling! Whenever you make a film, you cross your fingers, hoping people will see it. And then you cross them again, hoping they love it. So, I’m very pleased with Bethany’s trajectory so far.
Why do you think people are enjoying the film as much as they are?
Because it mixes psychological and supernatural horror. The supernatural is terrifying on its own, but when you combine it with a character’s mental deterioration, it packs a real wallop. ‘Bethany’ is also a strong story with complex characters, and has a gut-wrenching twist at the end.
Great movies always come from the best stories! It’s even better when you have a fantastic group of people telling the story!
Did you have to audition for the movie?
Yes, I taped an initial audition and then had a callback where I read for James and some producers. I got the call a few hours later that the role was mine. We started shooting a few weeks later—so it was a whirlwind!
That’s a pretty quick turnaround.
What do you think James Cullen Bressack was looking for in your character?
In Claire, he was looking for a woman who is very emotionally vulnerable and fragile, but then also strong and dynamic when the time comes for her to fight. It’s important for him that Claire—despite her mental instability and craziness―have a soulfulness and a truth that audiences will respond and relate to.
What kind of director is James? is he collaborative?
James is extremely collaborative. We spent a lot of time in pre-production figuring out what was driving Claire in every scene, and creating a vibrant and emotionally rich history for her. He obviously knew what he wanted, but he was eager to collaborate with me to create a performance that resonates with both of us.
Did you have a screening for cast and crew? Did you enjoy your performance?
I wasn’t able to attend the cast and crew screening. But I’ve seen ‘Bethany’ and I enjoyed it. I’m happy to report that even though I nit-pick my performances, I was swept away by the film and completely forgot about it.
That’s good to hear.
Have doors opened for you as a result of being in “Bethany”?
We will have to wait and see ― knock on wood! But, honestly, doing the film is already such a blessing. It’s so lovely to get to work with seasoned professionals who are really passionate and excited about the work they are doing. So anything else will be the icing on the cake.
That sounds very promising! Hopefully your performance will be opening doors very soon! Good luck with Bethany and in all your future projects.
Stefanie Estes shines in Bethany, in theaters and On Demand this April.
After Claire’s mother dies, she and her husband move back to her childhood home only to have the abusive and traumatic memories of her mother come back and bring unrest into the house. Claire soon finds herself in a fog of past and present when her imaginary friend from childhood begins haunting her memories. What is this terrifying thing that is trying to reach out to her, and what does it want?