In 2016 we’re looking forward to many much-anticipated blockbusters to hit the big screens—but our first film for the New Year is none other than the indie OTHER PEOPLES CHILDREN, starring Diane Marshall-Green and Chad Michael Murray. And I got to say, what a way to ring in the New Year! If you’re living in the NYC area, I suggest you check out a screening at Village East Cinema, January 1st-7th. And experience this raw, gritty, and completely genuine film about a lost soul figuring out her life after the death of her estranged father. Sounds familiar? Of course, because we’ve probably been in Sam’s—the main protagonists—shoes a time or dozen. For the passionate artists, and/or millennials out there, this is the film for you. Wholly uncensored, fresh, and as far away from the implausible Hollywood storylines we’re constantly fed. OPC is a breath of fresh air that I hope gets the recognition it wholeheartedly deserves.
Hollywood News Source was lucky enough to talk with the films lead—Diane Marshall-Green—and I not only want to praise the film, but Diane herself. When I finished watching, I was like okay that was really good. Then the credits rolled and not only was she a producer, but she did the artwork for the character of Frank. I had to restart the movie and watch it again. It was fantastic and she is definitely someone to keep an eye out for.
Don’t believe me? Check out what Diane had to say about the film, her co-stars, and her upcoming projects for 2016!
Hollywood News Source: So first, what drew you to this project?
Diane Marshall-Green: A friend of mine actually from NYU had written it as a play, originally in New York, and I went to a staged reading as a play and I just really loved it. I loved Sam’s journey and how she kind of felt very relatable in the way that she goes through all the emotional ups and downs that I feel like we all go through in our twenties. But she goes further than I feel like the regular person would go—she doesn’t have a lot of boundaries. And I think like a general person, like I obviously make much smarter choices than Sam, as a women. But I really love that Sam sort of does all of this from her open heart and she isn’t closed off or judgmental, even though she sort of has this upper class upbringing. She’s very lost, she’s looking for something, for love and acceptance, in any way she can get it. I just thought that it would be an amazing role to get to play because she’s really complicated and a lot of the women roles that they write are very simple—like she’s the girlfriend, or she’s the bitch.
HNS: Yes, very two dimensional
DMG: Yeah! And she was very real to me. She felt like that friend you’d want to have an intervention with and sit down and be like “what are you doing?” because you love her. So yeah, I just really fell in love with the role of Sam and really wanted to play her. My girlfriend Adrienne Harris gave me the rights to the script and she was like let’s produce it together, and we just sort of took it out of her drawer and set about making a movie.
HNS: I definitely enjoyed the character of Sam, because like you said, she really embodied that moment in your life when you’re lost, especially after a tragedy, and she’s searching for her voice and purpose so you, as the audience are able to relate to her.
DMG: You got it—that’s exactly what we were going for and what I got when I read her.
HNS: And at the end of the film, it all kind of came full circle with Sam figuring out that it’s what Frank had been telling her all along, to find her passion for what she was doing.
HNS: And after the whole situation with PK, if you think a few years ahead, where do you think Sam would be?
DMG: Oh, that’s an interesting question. Well I mean I would hope that Sam continued to follow her passion and really figure out what it was. Really get the contents to actually put together her Frank movie. And I hope that Sam ends up with Josh.
DMG: So that’s what I hope for and that she gets close to Ariel again.
HNS: Yes, I had some mixed emotions with PK because at first I was like aww, and then I had to pause and be like are you coning her? And then it ended up being something completely different and I was like, why didn’t I think of that!
HNS: So what was it like working with Chad Michael Murray and Scott Patterson?
DMG: It was great, it was fantastic. They were both total pros. And Scott was actually really interesting because he only had one day of work, and we actually have the same manager. So I already knew that he was a really cool guy and I wasn’t worried about it. But we had to make our relationship quickly because in an independent film you don’t have the luxury of having a lot of rehearsal—we just didn’t have a lot of money for time because that’s really what money buys you in film making—it’s time. And when Scott came on set it was really crazy, we had this instant rapport. It was very weird, he really felt like my dad, and I know he felt the same way because even when we were working together I got like a twitter alert from Scott while we were still on set, that he had posted a photo of us that said “my on-set daughter” and I was like that’s so weird because I feel the same way about him. With Scott, it couldn’t have been better. We could not have casted a better Frank. He’s so different in this part and really deep and charismatic and we had an instant rapport. And Chad really took a major turn for this movie too and he also was a total pro—he was really committed to making his character real. Everyone was just really great, everyone was a pro, and on a film with such little time you could really see it. I think that’s why the movie sort of comes together the way that it did because everyone was really certain as to who their characters was.
HNS: And you definitely see it come across on the screen because everyone felt so real—so raw. They were all very well portrayed.
DMG: That’s so cool!
HNS: And so you made this transition from actress to artist, how was that like?
DMG: Well I’ve always done both my whole life. Because art isn’t something I need another person’s permission to do, whereas acting you’re really always looking for jobs, and looking for someone to give you a job. Which is another reason why I made this project so I sort of gave myself this job that I’ve been looking for. But with art it’s always been something that I’ve always just done. And when we were looking at ways to save money for the movie, the director (Liz Hinlein) and I sat down and she said “do you think that you would want to do the artwork for Frank?” and I was like yeah, I think I can do it and I know we can get me for free.
DMG: So we just bought a few huge canvases and she gave me the direction in which she wanted to do it, and it’s totally different than the artwork that I usually do. I usually do very realistic portraits of people and we just started painting it and his artwork really didn’t feel like my artwork—it felt like Franks artwork. And then in some of the scenes, Scott is actually painting on the Frank painting—with real paint. And he was so worried. He was like “is this going to be okay?” and I was like no really, it’s really for you. I don’t have any attachment to them. They really felt like franks pieces.
HNS: Wearing so many hats, with being a mom, wife, artist, and actress, how do you balance it all?
DMG: You know, not well. [Laughs] I think you’re more than one thing on any given day. It just depends, like right now I’m in Charleston with my husband and his family—it’s where he’s from—and mostly I’m just a mom right now. I brought a water color pad while I’m down here, but mostly I’m just being mom. And then they’re days when I have business calls set up and I have a bunch of auditions—everything kind of takes its day—I’m always a mom of course, but I’m not trying to do a huge painting on a day I have a big thing. Like if I’m having a meeting, everything goes on the back burner except for being a mom, and I go for the meeting.
HNS: And with 2016 right around the corner, what can we expect from you?
DMG: I have a really cool—potentially really cool painting project. It doesn’t have a home yet. I’m not supposed to publicize it yet so I won’t. I have the rights to the book Bad Behavior which is written by Mary Gaitskill and it’s another really cool story. It’s mostly about women on the lower eastside of Manhattan—and it may not be set in Manhattan, we may set it in Los Angeles—it depends on what the writers decide. But I’ve partnered with Karyn Kusama, she’s an incredible director, she actually directed my husband recently in the movie The Invitation but she did Aeon Flux with Charlize Theron and Girlfight with Michelle Rodriguez. She’s a really cool woman, and I couldn’t like her more—she just has incredible taste and so she has loved this book since she was young. I went to her and said, hey I have the rights to this book and I want to make it into a TV show. She was like this is an incredible project and so right now we’re producing it along with Adrienne again, Adrienne isn’t going to be the writer on the project but she is going to be a producer with me. So hopefully you’ll see a television project called Bad Behavior coming from me hopefully in 2016. I would obviously be one of the leads in the show and then beyond that just more painting and auditioning for things. Hopefully someone will give me a job and then you’ll see me in something else.
HNS: Definitely! Well thank you so much Diane for taking the time to chat with Hollywood News Source.
DMG: Well thanks for calling! This was actually a really fun conversation. And thank you for watching the movie twice! I’m so happy that you totally got it and that you really understood it, like that makes me so happy. You were exactly who we made the movie for, like young cool women, so I’m really glad that you just totally got it.
HNS: I’m a sucker for these kind of movies anyways.
DMG: Me too! I’m like if I wasn’t in this I would love this! So I’m really glad that you felt like that too.
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Other People’s Children Teaser Trailer from Eugenio Richer on Vimeo.