LAURA VANDER VOORT
What’s your story? Who is Laura in a nutshell.
Gosh, well that's a question!! My story...hmm. Born and raised in Toronto, Canada. I was always a tomboy growing up. I always did well in school, worked hard. I have my second degree black belt in Karate. I started acting at the age of 13 in Canada. I come from a loving family (An older sister and parents).
We always had animals running around the house. My parents have always been very supportive of myself and my career. In a nutshell you could say I'm an introvert with extrovert tendencies on occasion- rare occasion. I'm an over-analyzer. I’m a bit of a worrier. I’m an animal lover. I am an Aunt to my niece and nephew. I am a Mother to my dog Frankie. I'm a writer, producer, actor and friend. I am Passionate about what I do, and to my friends and family.
When and how did acting start for you?
At a young age, my aunt gave me a copy of the movie 'My Girl.' It was the first movie I had seen that truly affected me. Perhaps that was because the young girl/star of the movie was around my age. I went up to my parents afterwards and asked if I could try this 'acting thing.' I was quite serious growing up and shy. In a way, I think it was an outlet for me with my emotions.
I started out as a background performer on Canadian shows. I took classes and went out for auditions. After a few commercials, I booked my first speaking role on a kid’s series called 'Goosebumps.' After that, I continued to learn, grow and work. I do believe that being so focused and competitive as a child helped in this crazy business.
Do you remember your first audition? How was it?
No, that was over 20 years ago (laughs). I definitely don't remember my first audition. I do remember going in for (what they call) 'cattle calls' as a kid for commercials where the casting agents bring in everyone (and I mean EVERYONE).
I recall how it was so disheartening when I wouldn’t book jobs. I always took it so personally. It takes thick skin to be in this business. I'm still working on it. It's not necessarily a 'normal' feeling to be rejected as much as you do in this business, especially (at the time) for a young girl.
Did you initially intend to be an actress?
I didn't. I had always wanted to be a writer. I would write short stories and poems.
Walk us through your process as an actress. Tell us a little bit about what you do to prepare yourself for the job.
The process varies depending on the role. I read the script several times. My OCD then kicks in and post-its are my best friend (laughs). I'm a visual learner. I need to tag every scene, highlight it and write my notes down the side of every page.
Scenes I wish to put more time into are tagged at the top of the script. I usually find myself throughout each day going over and over the character in my head (Who she is, why she responds the way she does to her surroundings, etc)
Making a playlist has always been helpful. Music that either I feel my character can relate to, or music that actually helps me get inside of her head.
What inspires you?
Humanity. People. Love. Art.
You were quoted via IMDb saying: “Hollywood is something imagined... acting is something crafted.” Can you elaborate on this?
It really just means that actors create. They create a form of art. They express themselves. They give a piece of themselves. That's where the real joy is. Hollywood to many people is a glamorous mystical place. It was for me growing up.
I'd hear about it, see it on TV or in the movies. It seemed so ideal. I loved Frank Sinatra, The Rat Pack. Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn, Betty Davis, Joan Crawford. In reality, the idea of 'Hollywood' isn't real.
What’s your favorite part of playing such an iconic role as Kara/Supergirl on Smallville?
The fact that it she is an iconic superhero! Supergirl gives women all over the world a strong female superhero to believe in.
How was it playing “Indigo” in Supergirl after playing Supergirl herself in “Smallville?”
Indigo was a layered, dangerous and vulnerable villain. I'll just say this...it's fun being bad.
Let’s chat a little bit about your role as Anna in the film Jigsaw.
The audience will first meet Anna in one of Kramer’s traps. Fans of the franchise will know anyone in one of Kramer’s traps deserves to be there. Anna is a character (I hope) the audience will root for throughout the film. She believes she doesn't deserve to be there. That she's done nothing wrong. She's smart and methodical.
You are very open about your love for the Horror and Sci-fi genres. What is it about these genres that excite you the most?
I'm not entirely sure. I’ve just always been a fan. Perhaps it's the escape from reality? I grew up loving Tim Burton films, Hitchcock, The Shining, The Exorcist, Poltergeist...the list goes on.
Out of all the characters that you have ever played, is there a specific favorite and why?
It would be hard to determine my favorite. They've all taught me something, challenged me in different ways at different points in my life.
Is there a different genre / a character that you want to try and why?
There are still so many things I would like to do. One in particular would be comedy.
What If Joss Whedon finally writes you back and ask you to do a Buffy-esque project with him. What would you say?
What are your favorite Alfred Hitchcock and Tim Burton films?
Hitchcock: Psycho, Vertigo, Rear Window, The Birds, To Catch A Thief.
Tim Burton: Corpse Bride, Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Sleepy Hollow.
Are there any specific types of animals/creatures that are very very dear to your heart that you wanna help save and protect?
ALL OF THEM :)
How would you describe your style?
Casual most of the time. Other times, I suppose dressy casual? Haha. It always varies depending on where I'm heading, what mood I'm in. I really don't have a specific style.
What keeps you busy aside from acting?
I’ve been trying to develop some of my own material. Over the past few years I have been working on one in particular. However, most recently I'm working on developing a Canadian film. Things that I'm passionate about keep me busy.
Whether it is within my industry or not I keep busy working out, spending time with family, friends and spending time with my dog. I’m very passionate about animals as well as an ambassador for World Vision Canada. Last year I designed a limited edition jewelry line benefiting World Vision Canada. The pieces were inspired by the number 11:11. Happy to say that the line was a success!
Name any actor that you want to work with (dead or alive) and why.
I would have loved to work with Bette Davis, Frank Sinatra, Joan Crawford, Grace Kelly, Orson Welles, Cary Grant, Hitchcock, Audrey Hepburn. They have all impacted me in their own way through their work.
Any advice you can give to young and aspiring actors out there?
Don't give up. Really. I know it sounds like a cliché, but it's true. This is a tough business in many ways. I’ve wanted to quit many times when things get tough. You really need to know it's a rollercoaster but if you love it, it is worth the ride.
Catch Laura in Jigsaw in theaters, October 27th, 2017.