Watching video interviews of Suzi on YouTube and other sites, you’re immediately seduced by her charming disposition. Suzi’s like a 50s star with a touch of Doris Day sweetness coupled with that sexy Jayne Mansfield smile. And you wouldn’t be wrong thinking how approachable and cute this New York actress and model really is, or how much she loves her work and just how passionate she is about mastering all the facets of her craft. Behind those clear green eyes beats the heart of a very strong-willed and enthusiastic scream queen. This girl’s not afraid to bleed for her art, or have others bleed for her, well if the director has any sense!!!
Proof of Suzi’s amazing workload and dedication becomes obvious when you realise that this statuesque beauty has already appeared in well over 50 commercial shoots for magazines as diverse as GQ, Esquire and FHM to Femme Fatales, Bizarre and Horror Mania to commercials for Olive Oil, Entiise Lingerie and Sheer Skin. Talk about truth in advertising!! Suzi is the real deal and her employers know it because there have already been trading cards, music videos, DVD box covers, Fitness promos, calendar shoots and even the odd bridal house promo and Suzi’s career is still very young. And this svelte, five-foot-seven babe who boasts a stunning 36-27-37 hourglass figure and a smile which could light Manhattan for a month, could still kill you with a well-placed stiletto or an old fashioned carving knife.
And if that isn’t being busy enough, Suzi has also shot some 40 plus movies in the last seven years, making her film debut in the horror genre in 2002. Flash forward seven years, a nd Suzi is a leading actress working films with legends of the horror genre like Ingrid Pitt, Sybil Danning, Tom Savini, Debbie Rochon and Gunnar Hansen. And yet Suzi has also made several appearances on the afternoon soapie, As The World Turns!!! Go figure. Oh, and she appeared in the romantic comedy musical, Music and Lyrics with Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore. This girl is seriously in danger of being kicked out of the Horror Union with excursions like this. This should be the question you put to Suzi next time she is signing one of her sexy photos for you at Chiller, or your favourite Vampire outpost.
Of course, being a total sweetie, the lovely Suzi was kind enough to answer some questions for me about her life and career, and if you want to learn a whole lot more about this beautiful talent, then check out her terrific website:
Which is chock full of great signed DVDs and 10x8 glossies, and where you can even book Suzi for a show or photo shoot or any major project that you might have in mind!!! Or just to find out where you can meet Suzi at a convention, or learn about her many new films, or other news like her great new signed Terror Cards….
David: Did you sign your first autograph as an actor or model, and how did you feel about your very first signing request?
Suzi: I signed my first autograph as a wily primate. I believe it was at the Chiller Theatre Horror Convention in New Jersey - the big bi-annual horror bash. I believe my first convention was in 2002. They say the freaks come out at night. Well let me tell you, the freaks come out at Chiller. But I mean that in a most loving way of course. ;-) It was cool, indeed. It's a flattering thing that people enjoy your work enough to request an autograph. Even if I am just a furry primate. I'm such a fan of horror though - I found that I way prefer to wander around the convention and buy stuff and talk to people, rather than be stuck behind a table all day. My last Chiller convention was quite exciting, as I was hired by AMC (American Movie Channel)! to co-host a few MonsterFest episodes. We interviewed several celebs at Chiller, and then the interviews were edited and polished by AMC!
David: You are a prolific actor with over 40 movies in just seven years, which means long hours, extensive make up sessions, script reading and also a lot of travelling and I wondered how you coped with your hectic schedule and what is the best part of filming for you?
Suzi: I cope with the stress and craziness by smoking copious amounts of ganga. What's so ironic about interviews is that probably only half the things I say are true (Ok, maybe three quarters, depending on my mood that day ;-) , and the rest are jokes. But some people just don't get it, or take things way too seriously, and then the rumour mill will start - Suzi Lorraine is in rehab! She's on crack! Or something like that. It cracks me up. But seriously, I really enjoy the entire process of filmmaking. I’m so grateful to be working. There are so many actors that would love to act, but just can't get a part. Or, they work once, and then are out of work for months or years. So I'm extremely grateful that I have the opportunity to create and to do what I love. In terms of balancing everything, I just try to pace myself, and whenever possible, I try to take off one day a week. Sunday is my "sacred" day I guess you could say, and I try to keep it clear for relaxing, chilling with friends and family, dreaming of rainbow ponies, brewing up magic potions, you get the idea.
David: of these many films which do you think represents your best work, which is your favourite and which do the fans ask you the most questions about?
Suzi: My favourites are "Won Ton Baby!", "Bikini Girls On Ice", "Claang: The Game", "Destined to Be Ingested", and "Sea of Dust". Here are links to a few of the trailers!
BIKINI GIRLS ON ICE
DESTINED TO BE INGESTED
I think these are the movies that represent my best work, and they are also the most recent and definitely have the best production values. They're the ones I'm most proud of. Fans have been asking a lot about "Won Ton Baby!' simply because we have been engaging in shameless self promotion and trying to blast people from here to Antarctica with all things Won Ton Baby. Interestingly enough, a lot of people ask me about "Music and Lyrics" and working with Hugh Grant. I think this is because it was a studio film that many people were familiar with. You have to dig deeper in order to even locate many independent films. I give my fans credit for that. They are crafty.
David: Lots of funny things happen on films sets and I wondered what has been the most interesting incident you’ve encountered so far while shooting a film?
Suzi: I was shooting "Claang: The Game" on location in Italy. There was this really dramatic scene where my character had the m isfortune to be subjected to some medieval torture. Bring out the rack! I was dragged onto a ledge by my captors, and there were these huge torches everywhere! It was a windy night and the wind was blowing the fire all over the place. I was thinking to myself, "awesome, one false move and I go up in flames." Hell, but at least I was in a beautiful town, and it sounds more glamorous to say you died in Italy than in New Jersey. My hair was blowing in the wind, and it was getting close. So I tried to explain the situation to the crew, but with a slight language barrier, they probably didn't understand and just thought I was being a stereotypical American diva. ;-) I could just imagine - "Oh the princess wants us to extinguish the flames? Does she want us to fan her and feed her grapes too?"… Haha. But that was definitely one of the greatest filming experiences I've had so far. The people I worked with, including director Stefano Milla, were absolutely wonderful people, and we all shared a passion to make a beautiful film.
David: You have worked extensively with some equally beautiful scream queens like Misty Mundae and Debbie Rochon and I wondered if you have an unusual story you can tell us from working with one or all of these actors?
Suzi: I was working with Debbie on the set of "Won Ton Baby". It was probably around 5am at the time, and we had been shooting thru the night, so everyone was a little delirious. The detective who played the lead opposite Debbie had left for the day, and we were shooting the scenes that didn't require him to be in. Since we didn't have him there to read his lines, Debbie actually took the initiative, and said the last few lines for the detective in order to cue us all to the subsequent lines. So the detective's line was "That's it! I'm calling child Services". So every time we got to that point, Debbie would do this hysterical ventriloquist thing, and slur "child-services" in this deep guttural voice and without moving her lips. By the second take, we were literally rolling on the floor. "Child services" became the inside joke phrase for the rest of the movie.
David: Speaking of scream queens, I should also mention that your new film starring Hammer Film legend, Ingrid Pitt is called Sea of Dust, however I believe that it has something of a history and was made some time ago and has since been reworked and I wondered if you could tell us more about this film?
Suzi: Ingrid is a true icon, and I am a great fan of hers. I definitely look up to her, and would be happy to achieve even half of the success that she has. Oh my gosh, I would LOVE to be in a Hammer Film someday! She's another actress who just has this terrific sexy and commanding presence. It's a rare quality and it's hard to put your finger on, but you know when an actor like this walks into the room.
Unfortunately I didn't have scenes with Ingrid, as my scenes were shot after she had already wrapped. "Sea of Dust" is now complete, and actually won best feature film at the Rhode Island International Film Festival last fall. It is an absolutely beautiful, surreal film and has lots of heart. Oh, and gore. And Tom Savini!
David: You’ve appeared at a lot of different autograph conventions and I wondered if you could share any of your more unique fan requests? And which convention remains your all time favourite?
Suzi: The most unique fan request I received at a convention was from a serious comic book fan, who asked me to write a scene in a comic book for him. There, on the spot, he asked me to handwrite the next scene, using my own imagination and a few parameters that he gave me. He must have liked what I wrote, as the following season I saw him at the same convention, and he hired me to write for him again!
David: You have built a huge Alice Cooper collection and I wondered if you could tell us about your favourite signed item and how you obtained that particular treasure? And do you collect any other autographs?
Suzi: I have a signed copy of "Dada" which is a slightly obscure Alice album, but still a great one. When I met Alice at the Horrorfind convention in Maryland, he told me that was the creepiest album he ever recorded, and all kinds of strange and supernatural things were happening during that time. We took some vi deo of me meeting Alice, and I really should post it on my website. He was absolutely awesome. He really inspires me greatly in my work.
David: And a question I always ask actors is that if anyone in history could sign a photo for them, who would it be and what would you like them to say in their dedication?
Suzi: I would like an autograph from one of those flying devil monkeys from "The Wizard Of Oz". I would leave the dedication up to the monkey, and have him surprise me.
David: You have done a lot of writing, and I wondered if you planned to pen your own take on the horror genre, and if so what style of the genre would you most like to recreate?
Suzi: I actually came up with the story idea for "Won Ton Baby!" It was something I had been throwing around and re-working over the course of a couple of years, and it finally came to fruition when I teamed with my friend James Morgart, who took the idea and developed it into a fully-fledged screenplay. I also co-produced the film. I'm very, very fond of the "horror/comedy" genre, and WTB is an example of this indeed! The story surrounds an angry young fetus infetu (parasitic twin) who resembles a cross between a baby sumo wrestler and Elvis Presley. Check out more at www.wonton-baby.com
David: What brings the most joy to your life beyond the blood, gore and hours of makeup?
Suzi: Oh. that show on Adult Swim "Metalocalypse"
David: Can you relate a particular story from your life that tells us something different about Suzi Lorraine the person from the beautiful actress who haunts our screens?
Suzi: I know every single word to every single song on the "Hair" the musical soundtrack!!!!.
I am a fan of theatre, and have a close friend who is a theatre critic, so I get to see quite a few shows in NY. However, I have never acted in a play.
I love animals, and wanted to be a veterinarian when I was growing up. I would love to own a farm someday. I have two baby black cats. One of them sings. He has a lovely singing voice with great vibrato.
(c) D Priol 2009
(c) Photos to their various owners and used here for illustration purposes only