Interview With “Isabel And June” Star Kendal Brenneman! (@Kendal_In_Wonderland)
Photo Credit: Josh Southorn
We recently had the chance to chat with Kendal Brenneman about working on “Isabel and June,” working on short films, upcoming projects and more!
- How did you get involved with the project “Isabel and June” ?
Isabel and June was a concept that my friend Gia Carol and I dreamed up last year when we were brainstorming a scene to write for ourselves. We wrote the scene and then shot it with the wonderful Dan Hertzog, who loved it so much that he decided to take it on as his next feature-length project.
- Which character did you portray?
I played June, Isabel’s sister-in-law.
- How would you describe her?
Our characters are still in development, but I would say that June is a pretty independent woman, but also very loyal and protective. She’s basically “the man of the house” when we begin the movie.
- What is a behind-the-scenes secret you can share with us?
The preview scene that we shot was basically shot backwards, line by line, because our youngest actress, Zoey, couldn’t stay with us all day. So we shot what we could with her first. Originally, we had had June holding Zoey’s character, Anna, throughout half the scene.
- What was your favorite scene to film?
So far we’ve only done one! Being a perfectionist, I look forward to doing it again, and better! Everyone else was wonderful, but I was wearing too many hats that day and was too distracted to do my best work. It was quite fun to finally film a scene dressed in my preferred wardrobe, though.
- What was your favorite part of the entire experience?
I have to say, I was so grateful to have found Dan, otherwise I’m sure we wouldn’t have created something nearly as beautiful and professional. When we first decided to create a scene for our reels, we thought it would be a simple little affair, but Dan was on top of it. We even had a callsheet, I believe! And for him to be inspired to want to elaborate on our script and make the dream of a feature film a reality was really a marvelous surprise.
- How was working on that project different from others that you’ve worked on?
Well, when I work on another person’s project, there are positives and negatives. You have much less control, which on the one hand can be frustrating, but on the other can also be quite freeing. You can focus on your one job. You’re also always waiting to get a “yes” from someone, when you’re seeking work. But when you create your own projects, everything is up to you. Which is again, good and bad! This one was different as well from the other short films I’ve produced and acted in. My previous short films were created for a specific film festival, with time constraints and requirements. But we took our time developing this story, and writing it, and really made something we cared about. Going forward, it’s going to be a joint effort between Gia, Dan and I to create something we’re proud of.
- Can you tell us about the short films you produce in Paris?
There were two. The first one was the very first short film I’d ever produced. I had left LA after unsuccessful attempts to get friends to work with me on producing short films or web series, and a lack of auditions for other things. Originally I had planned to produce a comedy web series in Paris, but found that I was not even making myself laugh with anything I wrote. Then I decided perhaps a short film would be good practice. I was aware of the 168 Hour Film Festival in LA, it’s a Christian film festival and I’d been involved in 2 or 3 competing films previously, so I decided to register a team for that. It was a strategic move, since by making a foreign film, I would also be up for the Best Foreign Film award and the competition wasn’t as tough for that! We did get nominated, but didn’t win. That first film did well, with 8 nominations. The second film I did for the same festival a year or two later, and we even did it in French. It was quite a challenge!
- What inspires them?
The first one was inspired by my own experience in France as an expat. Several other expats commented on how they could relate, once the film was done. I love living abroad, I love France, but it can be difficult to be in a place where you struggle with the language, or making friends, and just miss the things you took for granted before. Like garbage disposals. The good old Insinkerator! The second one was pure fiction, and mostly my friend Jack, the director’s, idea. Isabel and June came about because Gia and I really wanted to do a period film. We both love vintage clothing, and historical stories. So even though it’s quite a challenge – we took it on!
- Do you have any other upcoming projects you’d like to share with us?
I’m afraid I have none at the moment, however… there is a role I’m dying to get. I know there is a series in development based on the life of Audrey Hepburn, and as one of her admirers who is lucky enough to be a 5’7″ brunette with a tiny waist, I’m hoping I might have a chance at it. It’s one of the main things I’m focusing on this year. I’ve been taking more ballet classes, learning Dutch, and even hired a dialect coach to help me perfect her speech patterns. I almost don’t even care about any other work!
- What are your social media accounts?
I’m mainly on Instagram these days, @kendal_in_wonderland , but occasionally I post things to YouTube as well, under ‘kendalismyname.’ At the moment I’m documenting my audition preparations for that above mentioned Audrey Hepburn film, since many of my IG followers wanted to hear about that!
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