Actor Spotlight: Helena-Alexis Seymour!

Actress Helena-Alexis Seymour
Actress Helena-Alexis Seymour

 

Born and raised in Cornwall, Ontario, Canada, actress Helena-Alexis Seymour first discovered her passion for the performing arts when she entered the world of competitive dance during childhood. Having attended the same dance school as actor Ryan Gosling, an Ontario native, Seymour established herself as a well-rounded dancer, model and frequent beauty pageant contestant before discovering her prowess as an actress.

“I was already involved in competitive dance & loved to perform, so when I found acting at the age of 7 I realized it was the perfect avenue to perform in a way that allowed me to voice my personality,” said Helena-Alexis Seymour.

While she is known today for her diverse talent as an actress, Seymour continues to use the tools she learned early on in order to further her craft. As a strong dancer and lover of yoga, Seymour explained, “I am very connected to my body and my breath, which I think is the most important thing. If you connect your emotions to your breath and body, you can act and react on instinct, which makes for a very natural performance.”

A hot young talent who has worked with entertainment industry icons like Oscar Award winner Catherine Zeta-Jones, three-time Emmy nominee Vanessa Williams, Golden Globe nominee Michael Keaton, Emmy Award winner Zach Galifianakis, and many more, Seymour has had a whirlwind of success in the film industry.

While Helena-Alexis Seymour’s vast body of work includes several multi-award winning films, she notes her character Chantal from the HBO/TMN TV series The Line as her favorite to date.

“Chantal had the most interesting story with so much depth to her character,” said Seymour. In addition to Chantal being her favorite role, Seymour referred to working on the series as one of her best life experiences yet. “The character reminded me of myself in many ways, because synchronically I was going through a rebellious teenage phase of my own at the time. Mine wasn’t like Chantal’s, but it helped me relate to her.”

Directed by Gemini Award winner Shawn Thompson, and Toronto Female Eye Film Festival Award winner Gail Harvey, The Line focuses on the intricate underground lives of drug dealers. Displaying the true depths of her acting craft, Seymour portrays her character Chantal through multiple stages of drastic change in the show. Beginning the series as a bright and innocent teenager, audiences see Chantal turn into a female drug pusher after falling victim to the corrupting influence of her boyfriend. The Line, which also starred Daniel Kash from RoboCop, On The Road, Cinderella Man and many more, was highly acclaimed in Canada and received the prestigious Gemini Award.

Seymour also recently starred in Lifetime’s dramatic thriller film The Husband She Met Online, as well as the science fiction film Rulers of Darkness.

Directed by Curtis Crawford, The Husband She Met Online dives into the horrors of online dating gone wrong, and follows Seymour in the role of Elise. Seymour costarred alongside several successful actors in the film, including Jason Gray-Stanford from A Beautiful Mind, Flags of Our Fathers and Monk, as well as Meredith Monroe from Minority Report, Dawson’s Creek, The Closer, The Mentalist and Criminal Minds.

In the film Rulers of Darkness, which was directed by Dale Windle and received the Royal Reel Award at the Canada International Film Festival, Seymour starred in role of Kelly. The film follows a young man as he searches for answers to his mother’s mysterious death, only to discover a terrifying entity in the woods, which threatens to take his life as well.

An incredible actress who’s diversity has landed her roles in a wide range of films and television shows, be sure to keep your eyes out for this unequivocal beauty.

 

 

 

 

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Saxophonist Gianni Vancini’s New Album Helps Audiences Get Their Groove On!

Gianni Vancini
Saxophonist Gianni Vancini

World-class saxophonist and touring musician Gianni Vancini has touched the hearts of audiences around the globe with his sweet and soulful sound.

Earlier this year Gianni Vancini released his sophomore solo album entitled Get Your Groove On, which garnered a huge response in both the U.S. and Italy. Pre-releasing the first single from the album, also entitled “Get Your Groove On”, Vancini knew the album would be a surefire success after the single was rated on The Smooth Jazz Network’s top 20 charts for the week of September 28, 2013.

With track listings like “Didn’t You Promise” featuring Selina Albright, and “Thinking About You” featuring American jazz musician Terry Wollman whose recent single “Mandela” spent five months on Billboard’s Top 20 reaching No. 1 on the Smooth Jazz Top 20 and No. 4 on the Billboard charts, Get Your Groove On gives audiences that mix of smooth jazz and R&B that Vancini is known for.

Accompanying Gianni Vancini’s masterful abilities on the saxophone, the album includes a long list of collaborations from internationally renowned artists like bassist Alex Al who spent the last decade as Michael Jackson’s bassist and keyboardist, guitarist Sheldon Reynolds of The Commodores and Earth, Wind, and Fire, keyboardist Greg Manning who is a three-time certified platinum producer for Universal Music Switzerland, and drummer Ricky Lawson who passed away last year and was known for his work with Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson and Eric Clapton.

Get Your Groove On serves as a testament to Gianni Vancini’s versatility as a musician with the overall album commingling elements of funk and pop alongside his classic jazz and R&B sound.

Over the course of his career, Vancini has developed a dedicated international fan following with audiences all over the world regularly turning to his music for an infusion of spark n’ step that helps them get their groove on.

While some of his most notable international performances include famous venues such as Sanremo, Italy’s Ariston Theater and Rome’s Il Gran Teatro, Gianni Vancini notes the Olympia in Paris, and the Casino Rama in Toronto, as his favorites.

“I love the Olympia for what it represents, and because it means that I am in Paris, a city I can help but love, and the Casino Rama because it has the most amazing acoustics,” explained Vancini.

The Olympia is known for showcasing the word’s top musicians, including Edith Piaf, Judy Garland, Tina Turner, Madonna, Janet Jackson, Björk, The Jackson 5, and many more household names.

Cinematographer Johanna Coelho, A Visual Psychologist

One of the most captivating things about a film, or rather, a good film, is the compelling nature of its imagery. The way a single shot can effect our emotions as an audience provides cinematographers with the powerful tool to create a visual language that runs along with the film’s story.

French cinematographer Johanna Coelho falls into the group of cinematographers who are known for making films that draw viewers in with their film’s visually stimulating imagery and leaves them with an emotional experience.

Coelho explains, “Images have always been a passion for me. From an early age onward I was very interested in understanding how we can visually transmit feelings and emotions.”

What separates the best cinematographers from the mediocre is their ability to shift the mood and style of the images in a way that is cohesive to the ever-changing elements of the story— but more importantly, they need to accomplish this without the audience noticing.

If viewers become preoccupied with the images in a film to the point of overshadowing the story, then the purpose of film as a medium for expression has been lost.

This subtle balance is something that Johanna Coelho, and the rest of the world’s most renowned cinematographers, recognize and execute on a daily basis in their work.

“My job is to create images that represent the vision of the director in the film,” said Johanna Coelho. “I have to be able to interpret emotions visually and create the story’s various atmospheres in the best possible way. I like to say cinematographers are visual psychologists.”

Coelho, who is originally from France, has worked on an impressive list of projects that not only show her diversity when it comes to choosing what images strike the perfect balance in the way of what’s appropriate for contrasting genres, but also display her unparalleled abilities to propel the overall energy of the story to a place that visually impacts viewers’ on an emotional level.

As the cinematographer, also known as the director of photography, of the film Scaremonger, which debuted earlier this year, Coelho was in charge of creating a juxtaposition of imagery that had elements of both realism and fantasy. The film centers on the story of a mother worried for her son who is being bullied by the neighborhood kids.

“The director wanted to treat this social issue as a dark fairytale,” said Coelho. “I had to create this magical atmosphere for the mom’s nightmares versus a pretty realistic look for the day scenes. We created gigantic shadows representing monsters appearing on the walls, we tried to make them happen as much as we could on set, and for some of them we had to use VFX. It was very interesting to see what the limits of what we could achieve on set with the resources we had were.”

The outcome of the film serves as a testament to Johanna Coelho’s extraordinary creativity and skill as a cinematographer. The film did astonishingly well on the festival circuit where it received the awards for Best Narrative Film at the 2014 California International Shorts Festival and Best LGBT Film at the 2014 Fulbright Film Festival, as well as was an Official Selection at the IFS Film Festival, Serbia’s Cinema City Festival, Costa Rica’s International Film Festival, and the renowned Montreal World Film Festival.

Poster from the film Scaremonger
Poster from the film Scaremonger

Actor Yohan Lee in the film ‘Runaway Dream’!

A talented actor whose ease and grace on film have landed him roles in numerous productions, South Korean stud Yohan Lee proves he has what it takes to make it in the American film market.

Born in Seoul, South Korea, Lee discovered his love for acting at a young age. Having starred in the films Runaway Dream, The Phone Call, Comfort Girls, Road to Utah, Clippings, With Love to this Crazy World, and many more, this hot young actor has already created quite a buzz for himself in both Korea and the United States.

In the film Runaway Dream Lee plays the leading role of Mark, a hotshot Beverly Hills real estate broker who appears to have it all, a beautiful blonde wife, a 10 million dollar home in Bel Air, luxurious cars and astronomically priced watches. Runaway Dreams shows how easy it is to have everything you want one second, and lose it all within a heartbeat’s time. The film’s climax comes when Mark unassumingly leaves his office to meet a client, but is intercepted by two ruthless criminals instead. The thieves strip him of his shiny Rolex, thousands of dollars in cash and his brand new Mercedes Benz. Mark, who is left stranded and bitter, embarks on a mission to find his assailants and bring them to justice, however, after finding his Mercedes in a pile of burned scraps he must come to terms with his broken ego and figure out how to move on with his life.

Lee is incredible in the role, which displays his ability to move through drastically different emotions as his character progresses throughout the film. Written and directed by Daniel Abreu, who is also known for the film James & Quinn, Runaway Dream was produced by Daniel Anthony Films. Yohan Lee stars alongside well-known actress Lisa Jai in the film. Jai, who is known for a long list of films and television series’ including Creed, Resident Evil, Balance of Power, Tales from the Cryptkeeper, The NeverEnding Story, and Pillars of Freedom, plays the role of Linn in the film.

Multi-talented Actress Daniela Junko

Actress Daniela Junko
Actress Daniela Junko

A dynamic actress who’s starred in a wide range of films, Daniela Junko proves her range as an actress with each new role.

In the feature film Rough Mix, Daniela Junko stars in the dramatic role of Janelle, a rich and lonely pop star whose life is a sham. From the outside Janelle’s fans think she has it all– money, fame, beauty, and a seemingly happy marriage; but in reality the talented beauty is unimpressed by her own success. With a deep yearning for true love, the film follows Janelle into a dark despair exposing the pain and suffering that often accompanies life in the spotlight. Rough Mix, which is intended for the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, shows Ms. Junko’s ability to tap into the deepest and darkest emotions with ease and realism. A surefire success, Rough Mix also stars award-winning actress Rebecca Lim who has received prestigious accolades including Actress of the Year from the 2010 Elle Awards, Best Actress in a Leading Role at the 2010 Asian Television Awards, as well as three Star Awards for Top 10 Most Popular Female Artists, and others.

While Rough Mix displays Ms. Junko’s capacity for playing characters in the throws of overwhelming heartbreak, as you can see in the last scene of the film (included at the bottom of this article), Junko’s role as Jessica in the horrifying film The Incision shows her ability to portray pure evil as well.

“The movie is about organ trafficking, and Jessica is the bait. She’s a heartless woman who attracts the victims with her pretty smile, and flirtatious attitude,” explained actress Daniela Junko. “Further proving the true depths of her evil nature, audiences see in the end of the film how children are victimized as well, with Jessica being the one to drag them in.”

In the film Big Bash Junko stars as the female counterpart of a zombie obsessed couple whose dream of killing zombies finally comes true when two creepy brain-eating fiends appear outside their apartment window. Big Bash was one of the top 25 films chosen for the Cathay Motion Picture Awards 2012, an event to commemorate the 77th anniversary of the Cathay Organisation, Singapore’s leading luxury, lifestyle and entertainment group.

Not only is Ms. Junko a multi-talented actress, she is also technically a genius! With an IQ of 135, Daniela Junko’s intelligence level places her in the top one percent of the population. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for this hot young star as she has a huge career ahead of her!

 

Maria Patricia to Star in New Film ‘Blood Punch’!

Actress Maria Patricia in "Fruit Punch"
Actress Maria Patricia in “Fruit Punch”

Actress Maria Patricia is slated to star in the new feature-length film Blood Punch scheduled to begin filming this October. Blood Punch is the follow up to the film Fruit Punch in which Maria Patricia stars in the quirky role of Sophie, the female counterpart of a fruit punch obsessed couple that decides to rob their neighbor of his back stock of fruit punch after suffering from a grave shortage of their own.

Written and directed by Eva Yirou He, the film Blood Punch was inspired by Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, and was created to commemorate the film’s 20-year anniversary. Blood Punch continues the story line of Fruit Punch, which begins after the couple gets home from robbing their neighbor of his fruit punch and discovers two highly dangerous and professional robbers have made them their new target.

Audiences get a chance to see Maria Patricia’s knack for the horror genre in the film Host House, which was written and directed by Lok Hwa. The film follows Marla, played by Maria Patricia, an unassuming young woman who books a room on an Air BnB-esque website while in town for a job interview. Unfortunately, Marla’s host turns out to be a psycho killer who’s out for blood turning Marla’s brief stay into a suspenseful fight for survival.

“Maria Patricia was unstoppable in the role of Marla. I was amazed by how well she brought the character I wrote to life, she was even better than I imagined,” said Host House director Lok Hwa.

Maria Patricia also starred in the film noir Avinyó 36, which was shot in Barcelona, Spain. Directed and produced by renowned Austrian artist Verena Grundhammer, Avinyó 36 follows Maria Patricia in the exciting role of Helga, a German native living in Francoist Spain during the 1950’s. Making her character even more dynamic, Helga is a single mother who provides for her three-year-old daughter by working as a professional hit-woman.

“When I arrived in Barcelona, I had not seen the script yet…. So I worked on building my character, Helga, around the clock. I spent hours discussing the role with the writer and director off set in order to bring their vision alive, and find my character’s motivations to be able to kill for a living,” said actress Maria Patricia.

“Apart from that I translated the whole script from Spanish to German on our off days because the writer only spoke Spanish, but my character and her child had a couple of scenes in German. So all in all it was a very busy shoot where I wore a lot of different hats.”

 Check out actress Maria Patricia in the trailer for Avinyó 36 below.

Keep Your Eyes Out for Canadian Actor Zack Peladeau!

Actor Zack Peladeau
Actor Zack Peladeau

At the young age of 21, Canadian actor Zack Peladeau, who began acting at the age of 16, has established quite a diverse portfolio of work in a short amount of time. In addition to playing leading roles in feature films and TV series’, he has been featured in numerous commercials and has also been known to perform his own stunts.

In one of his most recent projects, Peladeau stars in Guilty at 17, a Lifetime original film inspired by true events. The movie tells the story of Devon and Traci, two high school students who falsely accuse their teacher of sexual assault. When the teacher thereafter commits suicide, the girls are left to face the consequences of their lie.

Peladeau plays the role of Jay Allerson, Devon’s perhaps too-committed boyfriend. When the couple begins to fear that guilt-ridden Traci might confess, they plot to prevent her from revealing the truth, and decide that they are willing to go to any length to ensure that their secret remains safe. What remains is a suspenseful film that concludes with an ending featuring the wide range of emotion that Peladeau is able to portray in his characters.

In Guilty at 17, Peladeau works alongside actresses Erin Sanders, who stars as Traci, and Chloe Rose, who plays Devon. Sanders is widely known for her award-winning roles in Nickelodeon’s Zoey 101 and Big Time Rush. She has won six Young Artist Awards, as well has been nominated for several others for roles on the hit television dramas CSI: Miami, The Mentalist, and Mad Men. Rose is best known for her long-running role in the TV series Degrassi, as well as for her role in the ABC television series Rookie Blue.

Directed by Anthony Lefresne and written by Christine Conradt, David Decrane, and Doug Howell, Guilty at 17 aired this summer and received critical acclaim.

Peladeau is slated to star in the lead role of Bobby Browning in the upcoming film, Where Are You, Bobby Browning?, set to be released in 2015. In this production, directed by Marc A. Hutchins, the character Maddie Brooks returns to her hometown to find her high school sweetheart Bobby Browning, and perhaps find some meaning for her life.

Keep an eye out for Zack Peladeau as he continues to demonstrate his passion for acting and his talent both on screen and off.