Manoush why don't you start us off with a visual
and describe the room or place where you are
answering these questions?
Hi Owen! Right now
while doing this interview I'm sitting in my
garden here in New York, enjoying a wonderful
warm and sunny summer day with my 2 dogs.
I want to hear a little
bit about how you got started making films. How
did your being cast in the wonderful movie
'Amelie' come about?
into the movie business was actually totally
unspectacular. During one of the 1997 shows with
my then band ANAYKH there was an underground film
maker in the audience who, after the show, asked
me if I was interested in acting and wanted to be
in one of his new movies. I didn't know the guy
and didn't know how serious he was so I was like
"whatever". He gave me a screenplay and
a couple of days later I started reading it one
night when I couldn't sleep and I was like
"Hell yeah I like it". So I called him
like 2.30 or 3.30 am to tell him I want to do it.
Actually TWO movies we started shooting in 1998
were awful and amateur and I don't even remember
more than the working titles or if they've ever
been released but somehow I received more offers
from people in the independent movie scene after
word was out that I went into acting. So next
thing was that German agent Tanja Schwichtenberg
asked me if I wanted to be in Jean-Pierre
Jeunet's new movie AMELIE. It was a really small
part but what was I to expect as a beginner in
the movie business. Actually I didn't even want
to be in AMELIE because the movie as such was
nothing that I would even watch myself but Tanja
insisted and told me WHO Jean-Pierre was, how
important it would be for me to work with him if
I wanted to go on making movies and that he had
made "Alien - Resurrection" too - so I
was game and I'll be forever thankful that Tanja
insisted because after AMELIE the offers just
kept coming. But hell, still I'd rather played a
role in "Alien - Resurrection".
You have made
several films with German horror Filmmaker Marcel
Walz such as "Popular"
(2008), "La petite mort"
(2009) and "Avantgarde"
(2010). What do you think makes working together
such a solid connection for the both of you?
met Marcel Walz for the very first time I met an
aspiring young filmmaker with visions and a big
talent. All he needed was professional cast and
crew and so we took care of that. With Marcel and
me it just was an instant click and spark. When
we get together there is just a tidal wave of
creativity - we are a perfect team and we became
like brother and sister over the years. We give
each other so much and when it comes to
creativity we really complete each other. We are
best friends and the perfect team - what more
could we wish for.
I want to hear
all about your role as Olga in 'The
Super' with Lynn Lowry, Raine
Brown, and Ruby LaRocca. Give me a teaser that is
going to make it irresistible to Racks and Razors
haha - Olga is one of the most vicious and
deranged characters I've ever played in a movie
and "The Super" is one of the most
vicious and deranged movies I've ever been in.
It's an ultraviolent mirror of traumatized human
psyches, depravity, perverse murderous obsessions
and madness. You name a horrible level that a
human being can stoop down to and hell we topped
it. I don't want to give much away but I know
that "The Super" will shock and
fascinate people at the same time especially
since it's not full of violence just for the sake
of violence but a precise psychogram of the lead
characters, explaining this extreme violence and
the roads that lead these characters into it.
Tell me about
your work in the upcoming film '15
Til Midnight' with Devanny Pinn
and Brandon Slagle.
read the screenplay and was fascinated by it but
let me make one thing clear. I didn't really play
a role in it but just did a cameo appearance and
so I will leave it up to Brandon Slagle and
Wolfgang Meyer to fill people in about "15
till Midnight". All I will say is that this
movie is a very fresh and innovative film.
I also want to
hear about your band Cyanide Savior for which you
write, sing, and compose songs. What style do you
consider it and what other band/artists do you
think sound somewhat similar?
think we have created our own style with Cyanide
Savior so I wouldn't want to compare it to other
bands or artists since doing so wouldn't really
do others or Cyanide Savior any justice. Cyanide
Savior, by the way is not really a band in the
common sense anymore. We are a studio project
that sporadically releases songs. There won't be
any live shows - last but not least because my
vocal chords are so damaged that I Wouldn't even
be able to play shows anymore as I did in the
90ies and early 2000's.
Is the place
you go to as an artist when you are on stage
singing with your band and when you are acting in
a movie the same? Are they both parts of the
artistic process? How are they alike or
it's the same, it's all about the performances,
all about the movie or the song. It doesn't
really matter if you work in front of a camera or
live on a stage. It doesn't really make a
difference if you perform a song or play a role.
As I said, what counts is the artistic part, the
performance and it's artistic and entertainment
Do you have any other
upcoming projects you would like the
racksandrazors.com readers to know about?
the great Parrish Randall is in pre-production
for a project and offered me a fantastic role in
it, my dear friend film maker Geraldine Winters
has 2 projects in development and Marcel Walz and
I are working on three new projects for the next
2 years. Unfortunately at this point I can't go
into any details about any of these projects but
yeah there's some real good stuff coming.
In the smaller
budgeted horror movies and such some very
interesting things can happen on set. What is the
craziest, scariest, or simply most unusual thing
that you've ever witnessed on a movie set?
shot "La petite mort" we thought a lot
about the locations too and finally found a club
called ''Jails'' right beneath Europe's biggest
gay club in Mannheim/Germany and it turned out to
be the perfect location for Maman Fabienne's
''headquarters''.''Jails'' is kinda like a couple
of darkrooms and bar: dark seedy, creepy with all
kinds of toys and S/M furniture everywhere. It
took us 3 bottles of antiseptic to clean a spot
where we could sit and relax during the shooting.
No kidding, this was one of the creepiest places
I've ever been to. I used to call it
career and popularity I'm sure you've had fans
ask you some very strange things. What's the most
unusual thing you've been asked?
convention we had a guy who wanted to take
pictures with actresses which as such is nothing
unusual and very welcome. But this guy asked to
be strangled and also wanted photos with him
wearing a dog leash and collar which of course I
refused to do. So started insisting and even
offered money and then walked away totally pissed
off when I told him there's no way in hell that
I'm going to take that kind of photos with
werewolves, vampires, witches, creatures, aliens,
psychos --- what does it for you horrorwise and
these characters alone do nothing for me - it
really depends on the movie.
What was the
first movie you saw that scared the shit out of
definitely "Dawn of the Dead" (1978). I
was like 13 or 14 when I first saw it and as much
as it fascinated me it REALLY scared the shit out
of me. After watching it for the first time I
kept looking under my bed, in the closets and
behind the curtains before going to bed. I'm dead
serious; I did that for a couple of weeks.
pulling the car into the Manoush Drive In. What
three horror flicks are on the triple bill for
tonight and what goodies are they going to be
serving up at the concession stand?
that's a difficult one. Let me see. I'd choose
"Phantasm" (1979), "The Medusa
Touch" and "Dracula"(1958 or
1992). I love the atmosphere of these movies and
I think they're among the best horror flicks ever
What is the
best Halloween costume you ever had?
it or not but I've never been into Halloween
costumes. I can't tell you why but fact is that
I've ever been into that. I mean I love
Halloween; it's one of the greatest times of the
year but costumes? Not for me - no particular
What is the
craziest thing you have ever done?
Oh lord; you
really want me to tell you that. Ok here we go
and shit yeah it IS crazy. Around the year 1995
there was a guy who tried to meet me and tried to
hook up with me. Whatever club I went, whatever
diner I went - he was there, came over and talked
me into a coma. So one night I had dinner at my
then favorite diner and surprise surprise he was
there, spotted me, came over and sat down at my
table. That bloke was really weird, talking about
himself and how great he was all the time. We
gave him names because of that and called him
"John Wayne Johnny" or "Bruce Lee
wanna be" since he presented himself as the
greatest thing that ever walked the earth. Anyway
- so that one night he sat down at my table and
immediately started rambling about himself and
about that new Bowie knife he just bought and
started playing with that knife right in front of
me, trying to impress me by holding the blade in
his closed fist and all that shit.... pulling it
out without hurting himself while telling me he
doesn't feel any pain ever. Now to prove that
"I don't feel any pain ever he pulled out
lighter and let the flame go over his arms and
hands. God this bloke was a pain in the ass and
at one point I had enough and decided to freak
him out and get rid off his sorry ass once and
for all. Remembering and old Sid Vicious story I
took that knife from him and cut myself in the
palm of hand, bleeding all over the plate,
bleeding all over my food and just kept eating.
Well it worked, the guy went deadly pale and left
like the devil himself was after him. I guess
that was the craziest thing I've ever done and I
remember I regretted it immediately because it
bleed too much and it hurt like hell although the
cut really wasn't that deep. I hung out with
gangs way back then and even for a girl I think
behavior like that wasn't such a biggie way back
then. Today I think cutting myself with that
knife to scare that bloke off was kind of crazy -
nothing I would even consider doing nowadays
Do you have
any collections, obsessions, or true loves?
- collections, true loves? Oh yeah, horror movies
(my husband Chris and I have a horror collection
of like 3000+ DVD's), and classic American cars
from the 60ies and 70ies. My father used to
import such cars when I was a child and living in
Europe so I grew up with them and learned
everything about them which led to me really
you in real life?
nothing really, if something gets scary I keep
telling myself that fear is just an emotion.
Works every time except when it comes to spiders.
I can't even say WHY but spiders scare the hell
out of me.