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  • Writer's pictureJim Peakman

Interview With Ashlea Winfield who plays Sarah

Next up on our series of cast interviews is Ashlea Winfield who plays Sarah.

Q: Who is Sarah? What can you tell us about her character? A: Sarah is the fiancé of Tony and future step mother to Emma. She is someone who believes in spirituality and likes to bring positive energy with her in her day to day activities.

Q: How did you get involved with the project? A: The listing for the character Sarah was posted on StarNow which is an online casting site and I decided to apply…but I wasn’t successful. A few months later I saw the listing again as the original actress pulled out, and knowing it was a role I really wanted to play, I thought determination is everything in this game so I applied again. James (the director) requested a self tape audition which during and after Covid became a more functional and practical way to audition so I sent one in, and after a chat on a zoom call I got the role.

Q: How did you approach playing Sarah? Was there any aspects of her character that were challenging? A: Sarah was a challenging character for me to play as we are so different from one another. She isn’t a fan of horror or ghost stories, scared of thunder and lightening, but loves spirituality and being zen etc whereas I will happily sit and watch horror films and listen to ghost stories and I quite like thunder storms, but I don’t sit and meditate or collect crystals.

The most challenge part of playing Sarah would have to be the parental aspect. With Sophie being only a few years younger than me, it was difficult to remember she is Emma and I am one of the parental figures. Looking back at the footage I feel like I can relate more to Emma as a person than Sarah, but I definitely loved playing Sarah and wouldn’t change it.

Getting into character at times was challenging but overall there were some similar traits between us so I just let my inner Sarah come out. I also believe that the rehearsals we did between our scenes really helped us all build our characters that little bit more so when we came to filming it felt more natural.

Q: What was the experience of working on “The Shimian” like? A: It was great and I’d love to work with Bader Media Entertainment again in the future. There were a lot of laughs, a few cold nights, long days and nights but I would happily do it all again. Met some great people and had a lot of fun and was very professional. All the cast and crew were amazing and I can’t wait to see them all again at the premiere!

Q: Any favourite memories from the set? A: That would be a spoiler so you’ll have to wait to see it to find out that part!

Come and see Ashlea's performance of Sarah on the giant screen at the premiere of "The Shimian" on the 29th September at Millennium Point Birmingham 18:30. Get tickets HERE

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