Jamie Bernadette is a talented writer, producer, and actress who is making big waves in the indie film community. She’s versatile, bold, and clearly doing what she loves the most. Recently, Jamie took the time to talk to HorrorGeekLife about what inspired her film career, her role as Catwoman in the amazing short fan film Injustice for All, her lead role in the most iconic revenge series, I Spit on Your Grave: Deja Vu and other projects!
HorrorGeekLife – What inspired you to want to be apart of the film industry?
Jamie Bernadette – Well, I’ve been into acting since I was a child. It was always a part of me, there was nothing in particular that inspired me. I would watch movies and act them out, especially A Nightmare on Elm Street. I probably watched that 40 or 50 times as a child. I was like 9 years old and they were coming on TV, well the censored version, and I would always act out the scenes. So, yes, I think it was always a part of me.
HorrorGeekLife – A Nightmare on Elm Street is actually my favorite franchise. So, you act, write, and produce. Which one is your biggest passion?
Jamie Bernadette – It’s hard to say. I’ve been writing since I was 6 years old, so they both have been in my life for a long time. Right now, I spend most of my time working on my acting career, so maybe that speaks for itself.
HorrorGeekLife – What was your very first role as an actress?
Jamie Bernadette – My first film role was a feature called Son of Sam in LA by the cult director that’s famous for The Boogey Man (1980), Ulli Lommel. My friend, Yogi Joshi, referred me for this role, and he’s the lead in the film.
HorrorGeekLife – I’ve noticed you’ve worked with Ulli Lommel a few times, he’s definitely a great director. And we loved one of your recent short films, Injustice for All, where you play Catwoman. How did you get involved in that project and what was it like to play that character?
Jamie Bernadette – Well, I’ve worked with Donavan Darius before on a movie called Elder Island in Michigan. He was acting in the film, but he’s the producer for Injustice for All. He asked me on set if I could play any superhero who would it be and I said Catwoman. He was like, “hmm.” Later on, he asked me to do the role Injustice for All.
I’ve always wanted to play Catwoman, it was phenomenal to be able to do that. I’ve watched Halle Berry do it, and Anne Hathaway, and I love what they did, but I wanted to do my own thing. I saw Catwoman as a darker character. Donavan gave me a huge backstory and this character was darker and more depressed and I wanted to bring that level into the role.
HorrorGeekLife – Seems like it was the perfect role for you. You’ve also dabbled in a few different horror movies, one of your upcoming films is I Spit on your Grave: Deja Vu. What was it like to be involved with such an iconic and controversial revenge series?
Jamie Bernadette – It was really surreal. I remember the second day on set when Maria Olsen had her first day, her first day was my second day, and we knew each other before this set since we worked together in two other films. She just stood next to me and is like, “is this really happening?” And I was like, “I’ve been asking myself the same thing for the last two days.”
When something like that happens, when you’re working with someone you’ve admired or a film that you loved like I Spit on Your Grave, it’s unreal. I saw the original 1978 one and loved it long before I ever got the audition. So, from the moment I got the audition, it was like wow, is this really happening and it continued to feel like that even 4 weeks into the production. (Laughs)
Even now, it’s just surreal to be a part of a franchise like that when I’ve wanted to be a part of horror franchise since I was a child. I wanted to be in A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise and that’s one of the roles I always acted out and wanted to be a part of. Now, I’m a lead in a franchise, something I’ve always wanted to do and it feels quite unreal to this day.
HorrorGeekLife – I can only imagine how surreal and unbelievable it is. Can you tell us more about your character in it, Christy Hills?
Jamie Bernadette – Christy is the daughter of Jennifer Hills, played by Camille Keaton in the 70’s film, as well as the new film. Christy is a model, she’s down about her life and wants something more real and not so materialistic. She feels like a walking mannequin and she wants out and a family. She’s not plastic, we tend to stereotypical models at plastic, and of course they’re not all that way, but she is not at all that way. She is deep, thoughtful, caring, and strong. She has a really strong relationship with her mom, they’re more like friends.
HorrorGeekLife – What was it like to work with Camille Keaton?
Jamie Bernadette – Camile is one of the kindest people I’ve ever met and she’s really funny! We connected right away on set together and have been close friends ever since.
HorrorGeekLife – I’ve always heard Camille is a sweetheart. Beyond this film, do you have any other upcoming projects that’d you like to talk about?
Jamie Bernadette – Well, The 6th Friend, that I wrote, co-wrote, produced, and star in is getting really close to a distribution deal. Every time I think it’s going to happen, it doesn’t. (Laughs). But the film is phenomenal, I think one of the things we’re running into now is there is a lot of horror out right now like the market is maybe a little saturated. We’ve been told that “we love the film but we’re afraid that it may get buried behind the 30 or so we’re releasing.” Ya know, trying to keep some humility here, I can look back on some of my films and go yeah that’s not so good, but I know when a movie is a good, and the response from audiences has been overwhelming good and the film is really great. Hopefully, we can get it out this year. The sooner the better.
HorrorGeeLife – Well, I can’t wait to watch it and will be keeping an eye out for it! As a writer, actor, and producer, do you have a favorite genre?
Jamie Bernadette – Well, I have a favorite sub-genre type – survival films. I’ll get on a Netflix kick and watch shark ones like Open Water, crocodile ones, or even war ones where someone is left in a field in a far away country and have to survive. A film like that is one that I really want to do. I had a film like that come up where I literally spent 4 audition tapes on it, I wanted it so bad, but haven’t heard anything yet. I just love those type of films, like when it’s the end of the world and two people have to survive or a solo survival type of thing. I guess Hunger Games is a lot like that too.
HorrorGeekLife – Those ones are always fun and incredibly tense. We cover a range of material at HorrorGeekLife, what is your ultimate favorite movie?
Jamie Bernadette – Out of everything, every genre ever… it’s between The Graduate, Black Swan, and The Descent. I’ve always loved Graduate, I saw it when I was around 14 and immediately rewound it and watched it again.
HorrorGeekLife – I love all of those, my first time watching The Graduate was in a film history class in college. Is there anything else you would like to tell us or any other projects you want to discuss before we go?
Jamie Bernadette – All Girls Weekend has just been picked up for distribution in the UK and the State of Desolation. We’re producing and wrapping up, which is a post-apocalyptic film with horror elements and very much a drama between two people. Not a romantic one, though, more like a father-daughter relationship. Craig Starks stars in it as well. Hopefully, we should get that one out this year too.
HorrorGeekLife – Thank you again, Jamie, for taking the time to talk with HorrorGeekLife. We look forward to all your upcoming projects and future passions.