Carlotta Montanari is an actress who appears in the film Being American; here is a link to her IMDB page:
Q: What made you interested in acting?
A: It started as a game for me. It was my favorite game as a child, I would record me and my best friend with a VHS camera while doing recitals, poetry, and creating acting contests to show our families. However in the city where I’m from, Riccione, there are not that many theaters or acting schools. But it just so happened that a local friend who was acting in Rome at that time, saw me while I was filming a commercial by the beach and told me that a great teacher from Rome was having a acting seminar in Tuscany and everything started there. It was an incredible connection and I took to it immediately. My journey started there, with her, Beatrice Bracco who will always have my gratitude for giving me my first wings.
Q: What kind of training have you had?
A: I see actors like athletes. Training is important to keep your your skill set sharp. I’ve trained with many teachers both in Italy and here in Los Angeles. They all gave me so much, not just in acting, but real life lessons that I will take with me forever. Stanislavsky, Meisner, Strasberg are my base and inspiration as actor and an “aware” human being.
Q: What is the main difference between the film industry in America and the film industry in Italy?
A: I think in Italy we have so much history in the art of making movies and I am deeply in love and have huge admiration for the art and craft of the old Italian movies and the filmmakers. I think today the difference is on two levels, production process and the quality of the performances. My work ethic is closer to the American way and I see Italy as America’s closest competition in making quality TV shows. Besides TV was my first home as TV host and writer.
Q: What is Being American about?
A: Being American is about an American family that has to do an emergency airplane landing and by mistake lands in Iraq, the enemy territory during the war. The find themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time and they are facing the cruelty and the sad reality of the real human conflict. It’s a story written and directed by Fatmir Doga that speaks about humanity.
Q: What role do you play?
A: I play the role of Karen, Tom’s girlfriend who was played by Lorenzo Lamas.
Q: What makes Karen an interesting character?
A: Karen was a simple character with not much pretense and she is very understanding. I guess her simplicity and honest love for Tom is the best way to describe her.
Q: What was the most challenging audition you ever went on?
A: The most challenging audition? Believe it or not the more challenging ones are the ones where the character is extremely similar to myself. I am not sure why. Maybe because I can be very shy at times and those are the moments where I feel more vulnerable. And when I have a complex character to work on I find myself better able to relate and get into the head of that character.
Q: What kinds of day jobs have you had and how have they influenced your acting?
A: I have been working since I was in high school. I’m from a tourist area by the sea so that’s what most students do during the summer break: they go to work! So I did different odd jobs growing up such as bartender, waiter, lifeguard, swim and fitness instructor and horseback riding teacher for kids. On the side I was modeling, graduated and worked as graphic designer too.
I loved every job and each gave me something and a real sense of being practical and the reality of life. How did this influence acting? I believe acting is richer when you have experienced many different things including adversity as it brings a great complexity to the performance.
Q: What do you miss most about Italy?
A: I miss my Family, my friends, and I would say I also miss also the change of seasons. I love the California sunshine but I love winters too..they make me feel cozy and inspire me. I miss the Italian gelato, food also, I cook a lot and I cook principally Italian..but still I do miss it!!
Q: What famous film role could you have nailed and why?
A: The films that inspire me are written very well and are masterpieces! And when a film is so great, any artist will wish they could have played a role in that film!-
So, yes, in my heart I was an Erin Brockovich, and Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and Mia Wallace in Pulp Fiction, and Alice Harford in Eyes Wide Shut. Strong roles, complex personalities and the characters are very driven. Plus I am a dreamer and that’s what movies are about!
Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)