Like many of the other ladies I’ve interviewed, actress Marie Lynn has a strong background in dance, having studied several forms of it from a very young age. Unlike many of the other ladies I’ve interviewed, she has a B.A. in psychology and worked as a behavioral therapist for two years. That was before changing career paths to one that includes modeling in sexy 70s-style bikinis, running on a treadmill with a fake bomb strapped to her, and falling prey to psychotic killers on screen.
A native of Chicago, Marie didn’t fully get into acting until she was “old enough to sign her own release forms,” which is often the best choice for performers. She studied acting formally after moving to Los Angeles, where she currently lives. Besides credits that include roles in such films as Rules, Burlesque Massacre, and Afraid of Sunrise, Marie’s also landed parts on TV and has modeled for some of LA’s most talented and creative photographers, as her modeling portfolios show. In fact, it was very difficult choosing just several photos from them to go with this interview.
CHRIS CHARLES: Great to have you featured here, Marie! I know you’ve done several interviews before. I’ll try to ask you some questions you’re not sick of answering.
MARIE LYNN: Haha …thank you very much for having me, I am flattered.
CHRIS: You started modeling and acting as a teenager. Have you always wanted to be in show biz for as long as you can remember or did you ever consider any other careers somewhere along the way?
MARIE: Yes, I have wanted to be in show biz for as long as I can remember. I started as a dancer at two years old and always wanted more. However, entertainment was not exactly an accepted career to pursue, so through “reality,” I did look at other things I might be interested in. Including but not limited to President, astronaut, lawyer, math/dance teacher …and I actually was a dance teacher for about two years. I did also tutor math as well as taught my sophomore high school trigonometry class for two weeks (laughs). There’s something new I haven’t told anyone. I also was very interested in psychology and went on to obtain a bachelor’s degree in psychology and worked as a behavioral therapist for two years.
CHRIS: Wow, that’s quite a career change you made. I understand you also went to bartending school. Is that your current “day job”?
MARIE: Oh no! (laughs) Darn co-workers! They’ve blown my cover by putting me as a co-worker! Haha, just kidding. It is one of my jobs. I bar tend for private parties or large events around LA. But mainly I promotional model on the weekends, and act during the week. I really don’t do much bartending anymore, but have worked with some awesome people.
CHRIS: As I was browsing you photos from some of your modeling shoots, I sensed a sort of retro-70s theme to many of them, particularly the bikini shoots. Am I correct?
MARIE: Yes! Some are retro-stylized. I love doing different things and especially love the photography look from the 70s.
CHRIS: As do I. Speaking of your photo shoots, I caught your cheerleader shots. I’ve done a few features on professional cheerleaders, so I have an obses…uh, fixati…uh, interest in them. So, what was the “R” on your uniform for and were you ever actually a cheerleader in school?
MARIE: Oh my goodness! (Laughs) I shall try and keep this brief as to not bore you. First, no I was not a cheerleader in school. I WAS however what we called a “pom-girl” or a girl known as a dancer with pom poms during half time at all the games. The cheerleaders at our school were on the sidelines during the games, and our pom team would specialize in dance routines that we’d perform at half time at basketball games and football games. We’d also compete in competitions with other schools. Basically pom-girls were dancers, and cheerleaders were gymnasts, but my pom uniform looked like a cheerleading uniform. Unfortunately we were not allowed to keep it. The “R” on that particular uniform was actually one of my best friends from childhood’s school. SHE was a cheerleader …and when I needed a uniform for a shoot, I actually got lucky and she let me borrow her sister’s uniform. “R” was for “Rydell High.”
CHRIS: Wow …I thought that high school only existed in Grease. Anyway, what were you like in school?
MARIE: Extremely studious and obsessed with getting good grades. I really love to learn, and can be a perfectionist at times. I guess I was kind of a geek, but looked like a “cheerleader.” I took honors and advanced classes and graduated with just under a 4.0. I don’t remember exactly what it (my GPA) was. I was also really quiet and shy. I had some friends who knew me, but for the most part I think I was kind of a “mysterious” girl to people. But if you tried talking to me, I was nice to everyone and would be happy to talk. I was always open to people and appreciated when they sought me out. I danced every day on the pom squad and other dance company after school and when I wasn’t doing that I was studying, doing homework or working at the grocery store. I always wanted to do “drama” but didn’t have time with all my dancing. I finally got into acting after high school.
CHRIS: I see your modeling work cover a wide array of themes. Retro, humorous, dark …oh speaking of dark, is the barbed wire photo still your favorite? (Showing Marie I’ve done my homework )
MARIE: YES! It’s kind of dark, mysterious and emotional with different meanings and interpretations, which is what I love about it. I see it as artistic. It really reflected how I felt at that exact time in my life. Fighting through the bare toughness of things in life but not letting it slow me down or make me surrender. Coming out of the dark shadows and about to show something you’re not expecting. Surviving the thorns on the naked flesh and about to lash out with a vengeance. The “you will not know what hit you,” sense of anticipation. The image was not about beauty, it was about art. It was a shoot I suggested and luckily had a photographer who had the same vision and we captured it.
CHRIS: You’ve done mostly horror and are a horror fan, but said you’d also like to do more of other genres like drama, action and comedy. How would you react if you were referred to as a “Scream Queen” because of all the horror/slasher films you’ve been in?
MARIE: In a sense I would be flattered, because that title offers up quite a sense of accomplishment and/or talent, but at the same time would feel it to be unworthy. In the horror films I’ve done, I actually rarely am a screaming type of character and I honestly think that is a necessity in that title. I do have a crazy scream but that is not what I’d like to be known for at this time. There’s actually only one movie I’ve done with it in it currently. I think there are others in this community who are much more deserving of that title than myself who have done some really intense roles in horror and give you that shock and awe value you’re seeking in those films. I’m more or less just a character in horror films, but not the screaming blood covered actress going through Hell in them.
CHRIS: Some of the horror movies you’ve appeared in have some great posters, which brings me to this question. I’m sure you’re familiar with the poster for the original I Spit on Your Grave with the rear shot of the model carrying the knife. I asked the star of that movie Camille Keaton, if that was her, because I always wondered if it was. She informed me that it wasn’t. Anyway, I have the same question for you: Is that your backside on the poster for Burlesque Massacre?
MARIE: No, it is not my backside on that poster.
CHRIS: Was your role in that one (Burlesque Massacre), one of your favorites?
MARIE: My role in Burlesque Massacre was an interesting one. Very short, but she goes through a lot in those few minutes. I will be the lead in Burlesque Massacre 2, so I am looking forward to that role. All of the roles I do are my favorites 😉 I just love acting and being on set, each role has something different to offer.
CHRIS: The short film Friday the 13th – The Storm, opens with your character Kerry, and her girlfriend necking on the beach and Kerry talking about an ex-girlfriend she just broke up with. So, two questions: Whose idea was it to go with a “non-traditional” couple and was that scene at all difficult or awkward for you to do? Oh, also sorry to see Kerry was killed off so fast.
MARIE: Haha …well thank you (winks). It was the director’s idea, and yes it was a little awkward for me to do. That was the first time I’d ever kissed a girl… so it was strange for me as I’m sure as well for the other actress.
CHRIS: I see (debating whether to ask Marie if she, like Katy Perry, liked it, but deciding to move on). You said The Call Girl,now known as Lucid Fear, was your first starring role. It’s still in post production but can you give me a little insight into your character and the storyline?
MARIE:Lucid Fear is my first starring role in a feature film. It’s a psychological drama/ horror type of film. My character has some things happen in her life to cause her to drastically change from a person living one life, to a person living a completely different life. You’ll have to watch to see what happens. There’s not much more I can say than that.
CHRIS: Have you ever had to really research a type of character for a role because she was so unlike you?
MARIE: Yes! In fact, those are the roles I seek, because that’s what it means to be an actor. To be someone completely different than who you are in real life. I did research for my role in Lucid Fear, because there are drugs involved in the film, and I’ve never tried a single drug in my life…. so that was extremely difficult for me to try and gauge what this girl was going through and how to portray it as real when it is in fact all make believe. I talked with people who’ve done drugs, and asked questions, I researched videos and I just tried answering a lot of questions I had about it. I didn’t have a lot of time before we went into filming so I wish I knew more before going in, but sometimes you just have to do your best with what you have in the moment. It was a very “fly by the seat of your pants,” kind of filming. I’m a very prepared kind of actress, I study hard and do homework before going into a role and really dissect a script. So not having any of the preparation was especially unusual for me.
CHRIS: Ever turn down any acting roles or offers for photo shoots?
MARIE: Yes. I turn down nudity often. I’m not ready for that in my career. I’ve turned down photo shoots that have the potential to portray me in a light I don’t want to be portrayed in. Namely sexual situations and revealing images that are not artistic but gratuitous.
CHRIS: You said you like active roles. What was the most physically challenging thing you’ve had to do for a film or shoot?
MARIE: So far, the most physically challenging thing was working on a green screen where I had to run on a treadmill with a bomb strapped to my chest with a knife in my hand and I had to fall while running and look behind me. That was difficult, and to repeat it exactly the same each take, very very difficult. (Laughs) There were just a lot of factors to consider without actually hurting myself.
CHRIS: You’re also the face of the video game character “Replika.” Are you an avid gamer?
MARIE: I unfortunately cannot call myself an avid gamer. I would like to play video games, but dated someone for a long time who wouldn’t share the controller, so I gave up for a long time. I used to play a lot with my friends growing up and used to LOVE video games. It was definitely a favorite pastime of mine playing against my brother when we were kids. I plan to get back into it when my life isn’t so crazy and I can actually go out and purchase my own system and games.
CHRIS: Please don’t take this the wrong way because I mean it as a compliment: In certain shots from certain angles, you resemble a porn-era Traci Lords. Has anyone ever told you that before or am I the first?
MARIE:(After looking up Traci Lords because she’d never heard of her) Wow …thank you. She is a beautiful woman. I’m not so much into porn, but more into real life. Men are visual, women are physical. I have never been told that before, and take it as a compliment. I have been told I looked like another porn actress though, so I’m starting to see a trend …. hmmm ….(laughs). I’ve also been told I look like a bunch of other random actresses, and some A-list ones, so it’s funny to me that everyone sees something different.
CHRIS:(Hiding my surprise that Marie had never heard of Traci Lords before) So, what project are you involved with as we speak?
MARIE: I am currently filming on Friday the 13th -The Obsession webseries. Along with a bunch of others that are in pre-production stages. The webseries Circle of Influence, an untitled Halloween-inspired feature film I’m starring in, also the feature film, Burlesque Massacre 2, I’ll be starring in. Also, a few other features that I can’t speak about yet. My short film, Singularity, is premiering at the Chinese Theater in Hollywood tomorrow at Screamfest. We’re seeking funding for the feature. Lastly, my latest movie, Photographic, will be released very very soon on Amazon!
CHRIS: Well it was great of you to do this, Marie! Any shout-outs, plugs or honorable mentions?
MARIE: Thank you so much Chris! It was a pleasure answering your questions. As always find me on my website ActressMarieLynn.com and my Facebook for all your latest updates on me and my career. Thank you to all my fans and anyone who’s ever supported anything I’ve done. Thanks to you all for reading! Be on the lookout for my short film, Singularity, and my feature, Photographic, coming SOON!
CHRIS: Oh, one last question: I’ve done a couple of features on Hooters girls in the past. Do you ever wish your boyfriend at the time hadn’t talked you out of becoming one and you would have given it a try? MARIE: Um, yeah.. I think I would have made more money, and that I think would have been helpful. But I believe everything happens for a reason, so maybe my sanity is saved because of it …or whatever slight sanity I do have (gives a wink).
Marie with Crystal Swarvoski in the opening scene of the
2009 short film; Friday the 13th: The Storm
No need for a caption here. The poster says it all
Candid shot on set of Breakin’ Til Dawn
Marie at the archery range. Yes, she goes to the shooting range in heels, too.
Marie’s most recent demo reel. In the first scene, her character has just found out her boyfriend
has been fooling around with a girl who works behind a perfume counter at a department store.
Her line “What do you think she sells? Chanel No. Shit?!” absolutely kills me.