Great mates and partners Gina Gammell and Riley Keough discuss their first feature film 'Dixieland' and share some un-seen stills and behind-the-scenes photography from the shoot. 'Dixieland' will be premiering in competition at TriBeCa Film Festival on April 19th.
Riley - Hi Geeg, so we produced a film together and it's in competition at Tribeca Film Festival!
Gina – Yeah! When did you decide you wanted to do more than act?
Riley - When I was a kid I actually wanted to direct, not act. I made a lot of films, a lot of horror films, and also edited them; they had soundtracks and all that. Why do you want to make films?
Gina - I don’t know. I also made mini movies all through school. I was obsessed with movies as a kid and kind of always knew that when I grew up I wanted to have some part in making them. I actually didn't know you wanted to direct first, but I have seen your movies; in one of them you have an imaginary friend called Gina.
Riley - Yes, I was eleven in that masterpiece. It wasn't an imaginary friend, I was pregnant and naming my baby Gina.
Gina - Wow life imitating art? Would you name your first born after me?
Riley - Yeah probably.
Gina - We first met at a screening of 'American Psycho' in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
Riley - Yeah and I thought you were taking the piss cuz you asked me so many questions about myself. Then I realized you were just really interested in other people; that's one of my favorite qualities of yours.
Gina - Aw, that's nice. It’s hereditary; the million questions thing.
Riley - My least favorite thing is that you're late to everything, where as I’m very punctual.
Gina - What made you think it was a good idea to work together?
Riley - I just find talking to you stimulating; you are really smart and have a unique viewpoint on a lot of things that are similar but also very different to how I view things. I feel like it's good to work with people who make you question things and make you consider other perspectives that don't feel natural to you. What made you want to make 'Dixieland'?
Gina - Well, you and I had been working on a lot of different pieces of writing and treatments and I had never really shared my ideas with anyone so freely or respected anyone’s opinion as much as I did yours. I already knew I wanted to work on something with you so when 'Dixieland' came in and we both liked it all we had to do was meet with Hank (the director) and from there it was kind of a no brainer.
Riley - Yeah also, I just love the South and Hank wanted to capture something very specific that I know and love and wanted to live in. I think he did a great job at that.
Gina - Was Hank's honest approach to the South and your character, Rachel, the reason you also wanted to be in the film?
Riley - Yeah I wanted to play Rachel; I just really felt for her. She's hard and deals with a lot of bullshit in life but she's also still childlike and kind of pretends to be a grown up because life forces her to. I feel like that's very similar to myself.
Gina - That and you're secretly an aspiring stripper. What's the biggest lesson you learned producing your first film?
Riley - I learned how expensive things are; I learnt about tax breaks in different states and all of the money stuff that you don't really get told as an actor. I also learned how important it is to hire really good people that you like and want to be around a lot. You?
Gina - Yeah, I also didn't really know that a producer can be a really creative role. Once we brought on Jen Gatien she did a lot on the business side of things and it kind of became our job to develop, prepare, and protect Hank's story. I’ve always wanted to direct my own films, but Dixieland made me see that helping someone tell their story and realize their vision can be really gratifying and personal.
Riley - What are your last 6 Internet searches and I’ll tell you mine? I feel like that's very telling.
Gina - 1. Dixieland TriBeCa, because I’m trying to buy tickets to my own movie, 2. Trulia Los Angeles, I want to buy a house, 3. How do you know if your plant is drowning? because my plants look very depressed, 4. Lip-synching in slow motion, I dunno why 5. 50's Dominatrix, for research, 6. Heavens Gate cult, my next 100 internet searches are cult related.
Riley - 1. Best food processor reviews, 2. The menu to a vegan restaurant next to my house, 3. Monica Lewinsky, 4. How long flights are from New York to Toronto, 5. Ry Cooder, and then I was also looking at houses in Byron Bay and Sydney shortly before that. Mine are lame.
Gina - I KNOW you left "Riley Keough" out of your top six.