The Movie Waffler Waffling With Actress Deanna Russo | The Movie Waffler

Waffling With Actress Deanna Russo

deanna russo
Actress Deanna Russo chats about her favourite roles and her upcoming thriller The Ice Cream Truck.

deanna russo

Having spent so much time in the fantasy-supernatural genre, whether it be via Being Human or Powerless or The Wolfpack of Reseda, I imagine you must be a fan? Or has it simply worked out that most of the projects you’re offered have a supernatural or darker theme to them?

It’s honestly just worked out that way! I’m mostly obsessed with time travel stories, though. My top three favourite time travel films are Primer, Somewhere in Time, and Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

You’ve done so much. Is there a particular role that you’re most recognised for though? Which one do you get stopped in the street and recognised for?

“You’re the girl with the monkey heart!” is something I get a lot, and I’m not complaining. Working on Burning Love was the most fun I’ve had on any project!

Did Megan Freels Johnston see you in a particular film or series and decide to offer you the role of Mary in The Ice Cream Truck based on it? Or did you audition for her?

Megan is the best. We’ve been friends for almost 15 years! We met through mutual buds back when we all first moved to LA. Last fall, she emailed me the script to The Ice Cream Truck under the guise of ‘got any notes?’ Haha! She was sneakily offering me the role! But she let it be my idea to be in it. I loved the main character so much that I offered, “Hey, if you can’t find anyone more famous to attach to the film, please consider me.” I fell right into her trap!

Tell me about working with Megan - how collaborative was she? What do you believe she brings to The Ice Cream Truck?

Megan has a clear vision and a much different approach to directing than I’ve experienced. Mood is such a huge part of the tone, and in order to put the audience on edge, she had us count to three before speaking each line. It was so awkward at first! But allowed room for so much subtext and discomfort.

Was she open to suggestions? Open to your input when it came to the character?

Megan was very open to collaboration. The best idea wins. Though, she had most of the best ideas.

Speaking of, could you relate to Mary? Where does she end and Deanna Russo start?

Mary and I are both introverts! Like, “You wanna be friends with me? What’s wrong with you?” The main difference is that Mary feels more comfortable hanging out with teens than grown ups. I’m the opposite. Teens terrify me. They’ve never known a world without social media.

I imagine this would’ve been quite an emotionally-draining role. How hard is it to switch off at the end of the day after some of those heavy scenes?

A hot shower and a good cuddle with my family resets anything that happens in a day. A glass of wine doesn’t hurt, either.

What’s next for you?

I’ve been doing a ton of writing while waiting for the right role to show up. Megan is a huge inspiration to make my own stuff!

Writer-director Megan Freels Johnston’s suburban nightmare The Ice Cream Truck will hit US cinemas August 18th and be released day-and-date on VOD via Uncork’d Entertainment.