Female-centric action horror ‘Revenge Ride’ has its UK premiere at this year’s Grimmfest 2020 Online Edition this October.
We got the chance to quiz actors Vanessa Dubasso and Jake Lockett all about this brutal biker revenge flick.
How Did You Get Involved in Revenge Ride?
VD – I got an audition for the role and was immediately attracted to the fact we had such a great female cast and it was action packed. I really enjoyed the rebellious factor and we have characters who go through traumatic incidents and are supported by their female counterparts.
JL – I had done tapes previously and the filmmakers reached out to my manager and offered me the role. Then it was just about reading the script and I got it at like, 11pm on a Saturday and was heading to the set two days later, so it all happened quite quickly. It seemed like a fun script and I like the fact I could play a bad guy and it is fun to play opposite what you are really like.
I loved the female biker gang, which I found quite unique and I enjoy the power struggles between the biker gang. This is something that is often overlooked, especially in a drama and it was great to see this female group come together.
There are some scenes that are hard to watch, were they hard to film?
VD – Jake and I had already worked together so we already were comfortable with each other during some of those difficult scenes. They were hard scenes but it is important for people to see these scenes play out on screen as they do happen in real life sadly.
How hard is it for you to play a believable ‘villain’ in Revenge Ride?
JL – I think it is important we try to humanise these characters, even the bad people as it could be easy to dismiss them. The people that commit these sort of actions are not running around in masks, this is the guy who is next door. We do see a lot of athletic and white privilege in the world today, so its important that these people are the heroes one minute and your worst nightmare the next.
How did you look to portray ‘Fraternity Culture’ on screen?
JL – Sadly, there are situations where bad things happen in those environments. I think a lot of the struggle with this role is understanding how people can be okay with that sort of action and carry on with their lives. We are our environments a lot of the time, we are not born into those types of psyches and we learn particular actions from the people we spend a lot of time with. It is important to portray characters that are struggling with that balance and show how they feel and how they react to the world being perceived to be ‘against them’.
There are a lot of people out there that still don’t have to reveal this sort of actions and if we don’t speak we are the mute, we are the silent ones.
VD – She is a very innocent girl in the wrong place at the wrong time and is victimised by these boys. She then wakes up on the pavements and is being branded a slut by her peers who are quite malicious to her. All we want when we go through traumatic experiences is for people to listen and she finds this with the female biker gang who have all gone through something similar. Mary is then allowed to grow her strength and her confidence and surpass this traumatic act which has happened to her.
As part of a female ensemble cast, who did you enjoy working with the most?
VD – Polyanna and myself spent a lot of time working together on scenes in the hotel rooms and she is so fantastic. It was easy to do scenes with her, it was like living real life with her. We did rewrite some scenes slightly to make them more authentic to us and she is such a bad ass and just so much fun to work with.
Did you research any particular cases to help get into the head of the Mary character?
VD – I had read some real life cases and also read some articles with apologies from the aggressor which hit hard. As a human being we know these sort of actions are not acceptable, but I was curious to see how or why someone would do this sort of thing and if they feel any remorse afterwards.
There are two sides, where women are trolled and beaten down for speaking up but then there is also things like the #MeToo movement where there is a support system of women who will listen.
Jake, who did you enjoy spending time with on-set?
JL – We had a pretty balanced set, and I got to spend time with Polyanna (McIntosh), Diego Boneta plus the rest of the cast, including Vanessa.
I had some great conversations with Serinda Swan about causes she supports that speak out against human and sex trafficking, something she is passionate about.
Myself and the director Melanie Aitkenhead had some great talks about character development. One of the most collaborative efforts was one of the film’s big fight scenes which had a lot of the main cast involved.
With losses on both sides, does a film like Revenge Ride show violence is not the answer?
VD – Characters like Trigga who carry so much hatred around with them are not always sure where to draw the line and in this case it could have dire consequences.
Jake, how was the ‘branding’ scene to film?
JL – There was a lot that went into making that scene quite believable. With people covered in dust with their pants down there was a lot of vulnerability in that, and we wanted to make sure it looked authentic. Some of the women holding us were part of the biker gang and they would really get into it and forget we were on a film for a second. We had to be like ‘I like your energy but I do want my hair at the end of this’ (laughs).
Revenge Ride has its UK premiere at Grimmfest 2020 Online Edition between 7th and 11th October 2020.