Today, storytellers all over the world are revolutionizing the way that stories are being told. In recent years, short films have seen an increase in attention with online media becoming the new platform for discovering up and coming talent in the film industry. One short film audiences should be sure to keep an eye out for in the film festival circuit is the Canadian short “Becoming Wigglesworth” starring Canadian actress Linzee Barclay, a talent on the rise.
In the span of her career thus far, Barclay has racked up some impressive roles both on screen and on stage, most recently with recurring roles on the television series’ “Reign” and “Lost Girl.” Most recently, Barclay starred in a short film titled “Becoming Wigglesworth,” featuring an all star Canadian cast of Allegra Fulton (“Mr. Meaty,” “Street Time” and “Degrassi”), Ron Lea (“Orphan Black,” “The Strain” and “Hard Rock Medical”) and up and comer John Fray (“Father Manning,” “Reign” and “The Strain”). The film is directed by Bryan Kowalsky and produced under his and Orphan Black’s Kathryn Alexandre’s production company InCamera Pictures. The dynamic duo additionally co-wrote the short film, as well.
Inspired by real life, “Becoming Wigglesworth” contains a steady mix of both drama and comedy and follows a man named David who is feeling unfilled in life. Ultimately, David decides to make a change and share this feeling with those who are closest to him.
Barclay plays a character named “Angela,” whom she depicts as a, “Self starter, a business owner and someone who knows what she wants and goes after it. She [Angela] wants it all and may be caught up too much in attaining the ‘whole’ picture and not fully aware that it may not be the right picture for her.” Expanding on this idea and the overall message of the short film, Barclay elaborated, “It was very eye opening to play with her because through Bryan and Kathryn’s script, I was able to discover how much we get in our own way in relationships; How miscommunication usually starts with ourselves. Someone can be saying something to you but you only feel what they have done to you, not heard what they are saying. I know a lot of people who have been in a similar situation as the one that David and Angela go through in the film, and I think it shows how hard being truthful to yourself and those you love can be when change is occurring.”
Initially from Toronto, Canada, where the actress also currently resides, Barclay’s acting journey began back in grade school, where she originally began telling stories through plays and musicals. In 2013, Barclay started to make the transition into short films and television with a recurring role on the hit Syfy/Showcase television series “Lost Girl,” starring Anna Silk (“Assassins Tale,” “Breakfast with Scot” and “Earthstorm”), Kris Holden-Reid (“Captain Canuck,” “The Listener” and “Underworld: Awakening”) and Zoie Palmer (“Cold Blooded,” “Patch Town” and “The Guard”). Last winter, Kowalsky approached Barclay with the script of “Becoming Wigglesworth” and offered her the part of “Angela.”
Regarding her reaction upon first reading the script and what initially drew her to it, Barclay commented, “What I loved about the script was the journey the story takes. I thought it was imaginative but also very human. It was a unique way to tell a perspective that many can relate to. Short films are very hard to do well, I believe. They are not plays and they are not feature films. “Becoming Wigglesworth” was a script that I wanted to see what it would look like in the end when I finished reading it.”
Prior to “Becoming Wigglesworth,” Barclay had worked with Kowalsky as an actor and a producer on other various film projects. Similarly, Barclay had also collaborated with Alexandre, as well. “I met Linzee the summer after I graduated theatre school,” Alexandre said. “We were both cast in a play at Hart House Theatre in Toronto. It was Tennessee Williams’ “The Night of the Iguana.” About a year after that production, we reconnected in an acting class and started chatting about the kind of work we were interested in and realized that we had very similar goals and drive. From that time on, we began collaborating on short films and scene studies that we just wanted to put on camera. Linzee was a producer on two of InCamera Pictures short films, “Bound” and “Father Manning,” collaborating with Bryan Kowalsky and I before “Becoming Wigglesworth.” When Bryan and I began writing “Becoming Wigglesworth,” we had Linzee in mind for the role of “Angela” from the outset.”
While filming, Barclay fondly recalled always feeling at ease and positively encouraged by her fellow cast mates and crewmembers. “Bryan Kowalsky, our director, provided a really supportive, fun environment and encouraged improvisation among the cast to find a naturalism within the relationships,” Barclay said.
While Barclay recalls the experience of making “Becoming Wigglesworth” in its entirety fondly, Barclay said, “The memory of working along Allegra Fulton and Ron Lea is such a highlight. They are two great talents that I look up to as performers.”
Clearly, acting is the career and industry that Barclay should be pursuing, as made evident by her sought-after talents, career success and nothing but glowing testimonials from people whom she’s worked with. “Linzee is an incredibly open actress,” Alexandre raved. “Her emotions are always brewing and she has such an infectious nature that you can’t help but be drawn to her on screen and off. She is a complete professional and a joy to work with. Her love for storytelling and laughter means that there is never a dull moment with Linzee around.”
Likewise, Kowlasky agreed with Alexandre’s thoughts, adding, “Linzee was great to work with. She brings a wonderful energy to set and is always so positive and open to re-directs or changes from take to take. Her ability and comfort with improvisation proved to be a wonderful asset on this particular film. Moreover, Linzee loves people. She loves to engage with them, listen to them, and learn about them and from them. People fascinate Linzee. She sympathizes with people instead of judging them or labeling them; She wants to understand people. I believe it is this characteristic in Linzee that makes her a great actress.”
“Becoming Wigglesworth” is currently being finalized in post-production and hoping to be released to film festivals near the end of 2016.
“Bryan and Kathryn are a power duo of talent and I feel very fortunate to have worked with them and to also call them my friends,” said Barclay. “The whole experience reaffirms to me that making stories with your friends is the best route if you can do it.”
For “Becoming Wigglesworth,” updates, please visit: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5814520/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_1
Bryan Kowalsky’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/bryankowalsky
Kathryn Alexandre’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/KathrynAlexand3