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Rising Star: Exclusive Interview with The Expanse’s Sara Mitich

Photo Credit: Daniel Garcia Photography
Photo Credit: Daniel Garcia Photography

Originally from Hamilton, Ontario, rising young star Sara Mitich defines herself through her passion, her wide range, and her discipline. Prior to acting, Sara’s first love was ballet, and by the age of 9 she began at the National Ballet School of Canada, where she flourished for five years. Sidelined due to a sudden growth spurt and multiple injuries, Sara re-directed her focus towards acting, and graduated from the joint actor training program between University of Toronto and Sheridan College.

Sara currently has multiple projects in the works – the movies “Ashes” and “White Night” and is currently seen on SyFy’s new hit series “The Expanse” as Gia. Prior to this she had a recurring role in the CBC “Murdoch Mysteries” where her character, Lillian Moss, became a fan favorite. She has also appeared in several TV series, including “Heroes Reborn,” and “The Listener,” and has appeared in the films “Joy Ride 3” and “Mind Games.”

Sara is also an accomplished equestrian (western style), and in her spare time enjoys reading, skiing, kickboxing, Pilates and yoga. Sara gives back to the acting community as a teacher and coach for Armstrong Acting Studios. The lovely and willowy Sara is 5’10 with long brown hair and bright, expressive blue eyes. She currently lives in Toronto. Sara was gracious enough to take time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions for Talk Nerdy With Us:

Tell us a little more about Ashes and Abby?

Absolutely! ‘Ashes’ is a story about how to cope with losing the closest people to you. Liam loses his parents and we watch his journey with Abby and his friends as they set out to fulfill his parents’ wishes of scattering their ashes. Abby is his girlfriend. She’s right there beside him throughout this entire journey.

Through her we also get an insight into how difficult it is on the people who support Liam as well. It’s not an easy thing for anyone to go through. Most of the time we see how people who directly lose someone suffer and their difficulties, but the film also dives into what it’s like for the people around him too. Sometimes they get forgotten about and it can be just as difficult in different ways for them.

What drew you to the role of Abby?

I was immediately drawn to her caring and comforting nature but also the fact that she can be tough-as-nails when needed. Or maybe that’s what I brought to her and the script revisions? (laughs). I can’t really remember anymore. When someone is going through something so traumatic it’s instinctual to be supportive and loving, but when that person starts to shut you out, starts to build that wall of preservation, it takes balls to put them in their place and break it down. I love that about her.

Yes, she’s always there for Liam, but she’s not going to let him consistently take it out on her either. They are a team, and she holds him to that. Even when it breaks her heart – she’ll hold him to it because that’s how they’ve always been and always will be.

How did you meet Jake Raymond? Who else from the cast did you already know?

Jake and I actually met in acting class way back when! It was one of those instant friendship clicks that has yet to cease. He’s great. I am so honored he let me be a part of his movie – it’s really going to be something else. I pretty much knew the remainder of the cast through acting classes together or through the actor grape-vine or what not.

Ironically, the only person I had yet to meet was Tanya Bevan – who plays Abby’s best friend in the film. It was another instant click from the first read through. We immediately bonded over our past dancing stories. I think all dancers naturally bond with each other because it’s an industry that you can only really understand if you’ve been in it, you know?

The indiegogo campaign has ended obviously, so how can fans continue to support the project?

They can always keep in touch and support through following us on twitter @AshesMovie and help us spread the word! Feel free to use the hashtag #AshesMovie too. We are all quite twitter savvy and love making contact with fans, so we’re always down to chat with people about the project.

What was your favorite moment (off-set) while filming Ashes?

There are a few but the first one that stands out was while we were filming our first few days at the Windsor location.

First off, I should mention, I’m an early-to-bed, early-to-rise type of person. I woke up pretty early even though we wrapped a bit later (internal clock for the win!….not?) and I made my breakfast and coffee and Jake woke up early too and we just sat outside on the back deck in the early morning sunshine and had our breakfasts and coffees semi-chatting, but also in silence.

We had just wrapped our very first day the night before and it was full of big, emotional, beautiful scenes, and I think it was that moment when I realized what we were doing and how grand it was going to end up being. There was this energy in the air that was calm and yet buzzing with the thrill of a new project, and a new project starting off with such a bang. Ya, that’s definitely gotta be one of my favorite moments.

What can you tell us about the other project you’re working on, White Night?

White Night is another great feature film I wrapped recently. It follows 5 different stories throughout Nuit Blanche – an all night art festival that takes place every year in Toronto – and you get to see all these different characters and how they cross paths throughout their adventures and what not. I get to play this badass CBGB rocker type who kind of goes around disturbing shit – super awesome! (laughs).

Honestly, It was such an incredible shoot. I think I say that about everything I’ve done so far, but it’s all so true! I’ve been blessed that I have yet to have a bad set experience. I had never done full night shoots before White Night though – so there was a lot to learn in that sense. It was also October so it wasn’t all that warm. Plus it’s been a while since I’ve tried to pull an all nighter soooooo that was a learning curve (laughs). We were all doing what we love though, so we kept our energies up.

I always find it fascinating how the minute you hear “rolling..sound speed…ACTION” anything that may be ailing you in real life disappears while you’re shooting. It would only be when we stopped for periods of time that you really had to actively work to keep the energy going in those early morning hours. It was still awesome though.

The Expanse has been renewed for a second season – were you surprised at the show’s rapid success? Will we be seeing more of Gia?

Honestly I’m not surprised at all! It’s such an incredible show and I’m so thrilled to hear about the official renewal. The group of people working on this show – on and off camera – are amazing. We are like one big family, and everyone’s got each other’s back. Every day on set or in rehearsals or in fittings, you could just feel the buzz about how great this was all going to be. So I’m super happy with the following it’s attracted and the outcome, though it doesn’t surprise me too much.

As for Gia – I never know what I can or can’t say these days, but all I’ll say is for now you can catch her in the first 5 episodes of season one!

Do you still fit any type of ballet workout into your busy work schedule?

Actually ya I do! I try to grab a few ballet classes a week if I can. It’s one of those things that still feeds my soul, if you know what I mean? And I realized a bit ago that it’s important I still incorporate it when I can. Plus it’s a great workout so it knocks that off my to-do list too! I still get that excitement to this day of putting on my ballet shoes and stepping up to a barre. It’s wonderful. I think it’ll always be a part of my life.

Also as an equestrienne – do you still ride? Compete? Do you have your own horse?

I do still ride, on a weekly basis usually. I’ve never competed no – it’s always been more of a hobby and something fun to do. I love horses. There is something about them that just resonates with me. Everyone laughs because I’m a Sagittarius – maybe that’s part of the connection, who knows!

And no, unfortunately I don’t own a horse. I’ve thought about it a lot, and eventually I will (I plan on retiring on my own ranch one day), but I don’t think it’s fair to have one now with my schedule as it is. It would either get neglected or I would stop working because I’d want to be with it all the time (laughs)! We can’t have either of those right now, so I have to wait a little longer. But one day for sure. In the meantime I do have a regular horse I ride at this ranch, and I love him, so that tides me over.

You are an avid reader! How do you manage to find time to read? What are some of your favorite books/genres?

I am! I always have a book on me. I try to make sure I have a little bit of down time every day, whether it’s getting up earlier in the morning or keeping all the electronics off at night and cozying up with a book for 15 minutes. If I don’t let myself have those human moments, I’ll go bonkers. It’s just part of who I am.

And honestly I love all genres! I know that sounds so generic but I really do. Everything from Mists of Avalon to John Grisham thrillers to The Expanse books, to Nora Roberts novels and so on. I think that might be why I love diving into different genres as an actress too – my mind just likes to play ‘make belief’ as much and as differently as possible.

You’ve done a few horror movies – do you enjoy being a “Scream Queen”?

Ha! Ummm ya, I guess I do. I honestly love it all. I will say though that a day of screaming definitely results in the following day chugging back honey-ginger-lemon concoctions to recover, but yeah I love it. The thing about it is I get to dive into characters and circumstances that I won’t ever (hopefully!) have to experience. And that’s always such a thrill. The more dramatic, the funner! Funner.. is that a word? Lets use it for now.

You are such a versatile young lady! What have been your favorite roles thus far

Gosh, there are so many! Gia and Abby are definitely up there on the list, just because they are soooooo different (I mean Alien Prostitute on one hand and then supportive girlfriend on the other). I also had an awesome time doing Violet in White Night. I had never really gotten to dive into the true CBGB rocker type so the research and everything that went into it was super cool and eye-opening. And then there is my character Lillian Moss on Murdoch Mysteries. I miss her – she was lots of fun too. Nothing like playing a 1902 shit disturber, right?

What type of projects would you like to do more of in the future?

My immediate answer is keep them all coming – I love stretching my range as an actor – it’s the best part of my job. But I truly thrive off of taking characters and personalities that people deem “lowly” (i.e. the addict, the prostitute, etc.) and finding their humanity. That may sound extreme but that’s where my passion lies, and that humanity is something I strive to find in every character I do.

Most people write these “lowly” people off and judge them, but they all have such incredible stories beneath them. Everyone always asks me what my dream role is and the answer to that hasn’t changed in years, it’s Charlize Theron in “Monster.” THAT’S the kind of stuff I want to do. The real, the raw, the ugly. I get goosebumps just talking about it.

Our website is called Talk Nerdy With Us, so what brings out your inner nerd? What do you “nerd out” about?

Apart from preferring books to human beings sometimes… Honestly? A little secret? I LOVE preparing for tax time. Only a few people know this, but organizing all the receipts and doing the calculations and building the spreadsheets… Ahhhhh it’s so fun. It’s January 7 and I’m already done with everything I can to be done for 2015. I know.. I know.. (I started Dec 26 haha). I love numbers. Calculus and physics were my strongest subjects for a while. There is just something about numbers… I can’t explain it. Numbers and horses. And Playing make-believe for a living. Yup… that pretty much sums me up!

 

Written by Arlene Allen

Hello, my name is Arlene Allen, and I love all things nerd: genre tv and movies, books, loud rock and roll music, kittens, conventions, books, graphic novels and superheroes, RPG and tabletop games, and did I say books? Oh, yes. I spent 25 years as a librarian (nerd) mainly working with youth (creating nerds), a number of years as a teacher (more nerd indoctrination). I have my own spawn, leveled up to 22 and my partner in nerdiness. As a nerdy writer, I have found a home at Talk Nerdy With Us.

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