Olly Cromack

Editor in chief of film / fashion / culture site BlogontheRails.com.
Freelance copywriter and film studies graduate. Specialist in film critique, interviews, fashion copy, popular culture, copy editing and travel journalism.

Interview with Julie Benz

BOTR: Social media is a vital tool for communicating in 2012. Is green social networking useful, and how important is it for people in the public eye to use their voice to spread its message? JB: Yes! Green social networking gives everyone an opportunity to learn more about advances in all areas of green-living. I think everyone who has a voice- especially those in the public eye- has an obligation to educate not only themselves but others as well. Some people find green living an overwhelming concept as they think they'll have to make expensive or time consuming efforts to rearrange their entire life - but making small changes to a greener way of living can be easy, right? It’s all about the small changes. For example, through Ozoshare I became aware of a growing movement called "meatless mondays" - by eating vegan one day a week, I not only help improve my health but I also reduce my carbon footprint, minimize my water usage and help reduce fossil fuel dependence. Imagine if everyone in the world made that small change in their life!!

Interview with Homeland's Navid Negahban

BOTR: There are so few great roles written in Hollywood for Middle Eastern actors, particularly leading roles. I know that Afghani actress Azita Ghanizada from SyFy’s Alphas considers herself proud to be one of the first Afghani actresses in a leading role on television. Is there a sense of pride that comes with your Iranian heritage? NN: There is... I don’t want to call myself a pioneer. There are other Iranian actors, great Iranian directors; for example Reza Sayed Badiyi who passed away last year did all the original Mission Impossibles and Hawaii Five-O, so we have Iranian people working in the industry, but I don’t know... yes I feel very proud, I feel great to be there. At the same time I see there are lots of younger actors who are getting great parts. There are great Middle Eastern actors here and the industry is changing. I think the audience is eager to learn more about that part of the world, and there are also tons of Middle Eastern people, tons of Iranian doctors - you go to the hospital and 70% of the doctors are from that part of the world. My doctor is Afghani. You see tons of Arab doctors - I mean this is one of the questions that I don’t know how to answer. I don’t consider myself as... I don’t know... BOTR: You can consider yourself a pioneer if you want. NN: (Laughing) No truly, Olly, I just don’t want to take credit. I think there have been people before me, and there’ll be people after me. I’m just a very small ring in a chain.

Interview with Devon Graye

BOTR: Some of the things you were saying to Jessica Lange, I’ve only said in my wildest dreams. Are you shocked when the script arrives at your door and you’re thinking, wow, this is me that’s going to be doing this scene? DG: (Laughing) Yes! I think when I first read it I felt like I didn’t know if I could do this; how am I going to do this? Then on the second read I thought I can’t wait to do this. Some adrenalin kicked in within me and I thought, I am afraid, I am intimidated, but there’s this over riding feeling of pure joy at the anticipation of getting to say these words that are so shocking and so vile, but not just shocking for the sake of shock value - there’s a purpose to all of it. It drives the story. So much of my character revealed Jessica Lange’s [Sister Jude’s] past, and that also makes a big difference. When you feel like you’re saying sort of vile, disgusting things and it has no purpose, then I have a harder time with that but when it drives the story in a good direction, all bets are off.

Interview with Californian band 'of Verona'

BOTR: Your music has been used in television shows such as The Vampire Diaries and Teen Wolf. Do you get excited hearing your music used in TV drama, and is working on film and TV soundtracks something that would interest you in the future? OV: We love hearing our music on shows. Our sound is rather cinematic so I think it’s a good fit. And Dillon is already starting to do some composing for TV & film, so that is definitely something we would love to do. BOTR: You're coming to tour the UK soon! Of all the gigs you've played in various locations, which has been your favorite? OV: We are really excited about finally getting to the UK. Although I think so far it has to be playing with Roger Daltry at a benefit concert in Seattle. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Interview with GCB's Mark Deklin

BOTR: Every actor has their tool box of skills and it’s great that you’ve got the swashbuckling thing, the horse riding, and you’ve also got a real personal passion for history. Does that inform your process when you’re trying to climb inside new characters? MD: Oh. You follow me on Twitter! (Laughing) There’s no question about it. When I played Mark Twain a few years ago, it’s interesting; I’m not trying to compare myself to Daniel Day Lewis, but he got a lot of flak for his vocal choices for Abraham Lincoln. I thought he was fucking brilliant, but when I was playing Mark Twain it was the same kind of thing - playing someone who is a famous historical character, we all have a notion of what he looked and sounded like - but there aren’t any actual recordings. You have to do your detective work and figure out how you think he would have sounded. You don’t have conclusive proof, you just have to mark an artistic choice, so [history] definitely informs things like that. My love of history is at peace with the fact that I’m a story teller. History is the story of our civilisation. It might not even all be true, who really wrote that story? Is that just one side of the story? You guys are seeing it now with Richard III being dug up. BOTR: How crazy is that?! MD: It’s amazing. I have a boner.