Helen here! AMA!

(Helen Highfield) #41

We recorded everything before hand in a recording studio and then sang along to a track on set. Some people kinda mouthed along but I would always sing full out, haha! I think it made the lip synching look better plus I really love singing those songs!

(Jaime Lancaster) #42

Thanks Bri!

(Sunny Larkson) #43

Did you ever get self conscious if you couldn’t sound like you did in the studio while running around and doing it over and over again? It’s so different, right?

(Helen Highfield) #44

Yulin is magic. She’s so insanely smart and talented. I had so much fun working with her! We actually had another director for the second season, the wonderful Mo Perkins, who was also a dream to work with. There were a couple days where we split up into 2 units and Yulin would direct us and that was really cool cause we’d already worked together and just got eachother’s language.

I’ve been lucky enough to mostly work with female directors (Yulin, Mo, Cathy Lee Crane and my bestie Maggie Levin). All of them have been really great about being available to discuss questions beforehand. And on set there’s a very chill, collaborative vibe.

(Helen Highfield) #45

Well the big thing that anyone will tell ya is you gotta be prepared. So many times I’ve seen actors freak themselves out about a big opportunity to the point that they haven’t really done the work.

The other big thing to remember is to book the room, not the job. Of course, we all want to get the job, but desperation is easy to spot. Remember that you’re just going into a room and meeting normal people with normal lives. While you want to be professional, you don’t want to go in acting like you’re there to get something right. You get to meet some people, have some fun playing pretend, and carry on with your day. :slight_smile:

(Helen Highfield) #46

Over the years, I’ve met agents at workshops/showcases and I’ve met them through referrals. Both are valid. Right now, I have a commercial agent and a theatrical manager and am taking meetings with new theatrical agents.

(Helen Highfield) #47

I started taking class at Lesly Kahn & Co. 7 years ago and she very smartly has a TA program cause you teach what you need to learn. I worked my way up the TA program and became a teacher about 5 years ago!

(Helen Highfield) #48

Haha! Uncommon advice I’ve given… hmmm… I guess just silly stuff specific to a joke in a scene. Or I’ve also been the one making the final decision on which shirt they should wear haha!

(Helen Highfield) #49

Hey! Nice to meet you! Great question. I think creators can always give more info to actors in terms of tone of the scene, references that inspired them, etc. Sometimes actors are kinda treated like these delicate objects but we wanna collaborate! Fill us in on your creative inspiration for the project, what your goals for the scene are. Also, it’s nice if you’re clear on why you need another take - if it’s a technical reason, let us know so that we don’t worry that we messed something up haha!

Also, follow up after the project is important. Fill us in on the project’s progress so we can hype it up on our end too! And of course, please get us footage for our reel cause that’s usually part of why we do low or no pay stuff.

(Bri Castellini) #50

Alright folks, that’s our hour! Give a HUGE big thanks to @Helen_Highfield for being here and being delightful today, and make sure to check out her work!

(Marc L) #51

Thank you, Helen! You have been very helpful.

(Jules Pigott) #52

Thank you Helen!!! Looking forward to seeing all your amazing stuff in the future!!

(Sunny Larkson) #53

Thank you!!!

(Jerome Keith) #54

Great talking to you Helen. I’m excited to check out the webseries!

(Meg Carroway) #55

This has been awesome- thanks Helen! Hope to see you around these forums- maybe we can even help YOU on your new producing journey! :slight_smile:

(Helen Highfield) #56

I went to school in NYC and auditioned there for about 6 years before moving to LA. I cam out here because I want to do more and more TV work and that’s what there’s a lot of out here. So really, living where the work is matters. I have friends who decided they want to do non-stop theater and moved to Florida to become a member of a regional theater company. So, being clear about what you want to do and then finding where that happens. If it’s TV and film then yeah, NYC or LA are the major places to be. There’s also TV work in Atlanta or Chicago (plus lotsa comedy and improv).

(Helen Highfield) #57

Thanks! It was so fun! My best friend, Maggie Levin, wanted to make another short film for festivals and she wrote this one for me. I’ve been hearing the advice “make your own work” for YEARS and figured I could learn something! And I’ll tell ya, what I learned is that filmmaking can get very expensive VERY quickly if you’re not creative. Luckily Maggie has produced things before and we had a couple other producing partners that I was able to learn from.

(Jaime Lancaster) #58

Especially with a handful of producers, what did you in particular end up doing on the project? Would you produce again? (I’m an aspiring producer hehe :slight_smile: )

(Helen Highfield) #59

Ooooh yeah. Well, if you have the luxury of time, then take a break and have a chat after everyone has cooled off. Then… maybe don’t hire that hothead again? Everyone is there to make the thing and if there’s someone not playing along and making it about them then they gotta go. I’m gonna guess though that the reason they’re causing a stink might have to do with their own insecurity though. So if you can talk them through what’s bothering them, great.

(Helen Highfield) #60

Thank you for having me! This was so fun and I loved chatting with all of you! I’ll be shouting from the rooftops when I Ship It Season 2 comes out and my episode of Waking Up With Strangers will come out this Tuesday! If ya wanna connect on IG or Twitter, I’m @helenhighfield. Thanks again! :heart:️:heart:️:heart:️