Cast and Filmmakers Talk Creating 'Not So Union' and Playing Actors as Actors
A night that began with rain was not nearly close to coming in between the red carpet and the actors and filmmakers of a new and highly anticipated web series, Not So Union. Co-created by actors Michael Steger (CW's 90210) and Brandee Steger, this seven-episode series follows the lives of six non-union actor friends living and aspiring to work in Hollywood. Iconic Chica got to interview some of the actors and filmmakers of the show, including celebrity guest stars during their red carpet event.
As working actors and understanding not only the craft, but also the hard work of becoming an actor, Michael Steger shared his inspiration on creating Not So Union. "I wanted to tell a story about actors. A story about what no one ever sees and that's what happens inside the acting class." Brandee, who co-created the show with husband Michael Steger added, "We also took this awesome class from this woman who came from New York where she talked about color exercise where she yelled out a color and we had to become the color. We were in this room with all these amazing actors and we were like acting like these colors. But there was a moment where I think we both checked in with each other and we were like, 'we looked like fools.'" On showcasing what the reality of an actors life is and can be, we asked the couple if they thought aspiring actors would reconsider becoming an actor after watching the show. They agree it's quite the opposite. "No, I think it's gonna inspire them to do it more. When I heard Brad Pitt was working for El Pollo Loco dressed as a chicken- I mean every actor goes through that. But no one ever really talks about it. Everybody has a struggle no matter what form that struggle is," said Michael. "And if it's in their heart they're gonna do it no matter what," concluded Brandee.
The group of actor friends trying to reach the goal of becoming a working actor consists of a highly energized and dedicated cast. Chelsea Taylor, who plays Samantha Henry told us her character is one of those dedicated people who work "really really hard." She told us what it's like to play an actor as an actor and admits it's a lot of fun. She said, "The pressures off. Even though she [her character Samantha] probably runs at the same pace that I run at, it's a little more of how to have fun with, as opposed to how to have all the pressure with it." As for her favorite character in the show, she tells us Dan Darcy, played by Joshua Hoover, is a favorite, particularly because of their "love interest" and the dynamic between the two characters. Dan Darcy is the guy who's completely into Samantha but as she explained, "she's oblivious. She literally has no idea that that's real. That that's happening! But I love him because he is so much fun and he's so sweet and he'll just do anything."
To add some spice to the show is Christina Hooks, who plays Billie Fishburne. She says Billie is "the unpleasant older sister." On bringing some of the drama into the show with her character, she expressed "I think people love to hate it." We also asked her what she's excited for people to see and she said, "the honest interaction between all of these growing actors. I think it's a very real thing." She told us she's not an actress, but as a producer she's "around them all the time...and sees this is something real that they go through." We also caught up with producer of the show Nicole Sangari, who expressed her thrill on being part of such a fun project. "Certain projects have great energy and you know it's gonna be good and this is just one of those projects."
Bringing some of that dark comedy that completes the show is Bayne Gibby who has an interesting role as an actress since she gets to step into the shoes of a famous and highly requested acting teacher. On giving life to her character Elia Rosenberg she explained, "It's actually really fun 'cause I got to say anything that I wanted to say and sort of live out the fantasy of being a mean person for a couple of days."
Among the celebrity guests were Edy Ganem, who worked with Steger in their film Ana Maria in Novelaland. She commented, "I absolutely love his work and I think he's so talented and I'm excited to see his webseries." Josh Zuckerman (90210) said, "I think it's a very scary thing to be an actor in a lot of different ways. Not the least of which is being in the entertainment industry and the film industry in LA. So I think they'll have a lot of fun exploring that in Not So Union."
The self-funded series, filmed entirely on location in Los Angeles, launches exclusively on the series' YouTube channel www.YouTube.com/c/NotSoUnionTheSeries with a two-episode season premiere this Thursday September 17th at 12noon. New episodes will follow every Thursday through October 22.