A Letter to My Dog, Half Pint

This last year may have been the worst one of my life, but at least I've got the world's two greatest dogs by my side to help me stagger into 2018. Today's post features a letter to Half Pint. Benjamin will be getting a letter later this week--he'd never let me hear the end of it, otherwise. Also, this posts features a lot of short video clips of Half Pint being silly. Since I apparently can't do anything right these days, they are exclusively shot in vertical mode. Please accept my apologies (and cut me some friggin' slack).

Internet Celebrity of the Month: Rebecca Marshall

Sometimes when I get frustrated with a lack of good movie material to watch, I begin desperately searching for a project to restore my faith in the creative film making process (along with something to occupy my notoriously fickle/short attention span).

Unfortunately, most film projects that you run across on Kickstarter look like someone asking to get paid a few thousand dollars for a pimped out food cart while a few friends mess around with their new video camera. But a couple weeks ago, I stumbled upon something that looked like it might actually good: A fan film based off of Nintendo's Metroid franchise called Metroid: Enemies Within.

The film looked like it was in very capable hands with Christian Cardona, who in addition to having a great track record with limited budget special effects also really seemed to love the Metroid universe with every fiber of his being.

But at 1:34, my entire world froze when Rebecca Marshall came on screen to introduce herself as the film's lead actress and a producer.

I mean sure, she's (INSANELY) beautiful. But so are a lot of actresses in Hollywood. What struck me, however, was the aura of badassness that she exuded while discussing her reasons for wanting to take on the role of Samus.

There were probably more than a few basement dwellers that began to scream "NERD PANDERING" when she described her affinity for the Metroid franchise (because some people don't like pretty girls developing passionate hobbies, apparently), but I never felt even a twinge of "fake geek" paranoia while she spoke. Instead, I began to look up more of her work...and discovered all types of awesome.

Rebecca had previously starred in a short film (which was also directed by Christian Cardona) called 'Y: The Last Rising'. Despite being based on a comic book series that I love, it had somehow slipped my radar (probably due to my rage over writer Brian K. Vaughn's cop out "we said the plague result would be revealed, just not when you saw it" ending).

Rebecca played the role of Hero, Yorick's sister...and left me desperately wanting to see her carry on the character's messed up story arc well past the film's ending.

Rebecca's range of roles during her short career go from being a horrifically executed victim (Warning: NSFW/Graphic) in the final Saw film to making me able to sit through more than 30 seconds of Two and a Half Men without wanting to slam my head against a wall.

Unfortunately, the Metroid: Enemies Within Kickstarter was shutdown by Nintendo, who filed a DMCA notice complaining about a free (and awesomely produced) commercial for a flagging franchise that they seemingly have no interest in ever turning into a film franchise themselves.

But despite Nintendo's asinine decision, there was a silver lining to all this: I had discovered Rebecca Marshall...who I later asked if she would be willing to do an interview with RamblingBeachCat.com.

Because she's one of the coolest people in the universe, she agreed.

RBC: Before we get into Metroid/Samus and the whole Kickstarter debacle, let's find out more about you. When did you decide to start acting and what inspired you to do it?

Rebecca: I started acting at a young age. I was always mesmerized by film since I was a young girl. I lived in my imagination 24/7. But I actually started becoming a working actress in my late teens after studying theater in Toronto.

RBC: Do you still plan on doing any modeling in the future, or are you focused solely on acting right now?

Rebecca: Now a days I feel like it's all meshed together anyways. Actors have become spokespeople for beauty products, perfumes, clothing lines and technology. So really, I don't see much of a separation (besides runway models of course). So yes, the answer is 'yes' I will still model.

...something for which we can all give thanks.

RBC: I read that you used to perform in musicals. Do you still sing at all?

Rebecca: Oh boy...I LOVE musicals! That's how I started off when I was little. I would write all these awful musicals and make my family sit through them as I danced and sang around my living room.  

I would love to do a musical at some point in my career. I don't sing as much as I use to, but I still have a big love for it.

RBC: You're an outspoken animal lover (I have 3 dogs and a leopard gecko, so I'm right there with you). What pets do you currently have?

Rebecca: A leopard gecko?!! That's amazing!  

Right now I have my sidekick, Sophie. She is a mix between a lab, border collie, and German shepherd. She's very smart...a little too smart. I have to constantly challenge her physically and mentally.

Sophie seems very satisfied with Rebecca's efforts.

I rescued her at a place called SPOT in Los Angeles when she was 7 weeks old. They are great place that really has done a lot to help animals in the Los Angeles area and find them proper homes. I am a big supporter of them.

RBC: What was the most challenging part of your role as Suzanne in 'Saw 3D'?

Rebecca: I would have to say being in that trap! They were long days, I was really strapped down, and it was hot. The pipes were so close to my eyes and it was a very emotional scene, so I was pretty drained.  


The director, Kevin Greutert, was so great though, and the team we had was very trustworthy. I knew I was in good hands.  

RBC: In the trailer for one of your upcoming/current movies, 'Raze' (embedded below), both you the film and you look pretty crazy. I think my favorite part was where you screamed "I WANT SABRINA!" and proceeded to completely lose it.

What was it like to cut loose like that? 

Rebecca: Yes! It is a very crazy movie! Let's just say it's an uber-violent popcorn movie with lots of action. I guess that's the only way to explain it. 

I play a character named Phoebe. She's a sociopath street rat and is surrounded by a group of women that (like her) have been kidnapped and forced to fight till the death.

I think this was my toughest role to date. I trained very hard to get in shape for this role and did all my own stunts. It was very physically demanding, but even more emotionally.  

Playing a sociopath is like nothing I have ever done before. At the beginning it was all about not judging her or hating her, but understanding where she is coming from. But by the end, I actually found myself feeling sorry for her. 

Pure evil can still be kind of adorable

A lot of research took place for this role to get into the mind of someone who is a sociopath. I had so much fun playing this character; it opened my eyes to playing as many unexpected roles as I can. I want people to love to hate her and hate that they love her. Hopefully I pulled that off.

RBC: You've mentioned before that doing a lot of the fight work/choreography on Raze helped inspire you to want to take on an action role like the one in Metroid: Enemies Within. What was the daily routine/grind like for while you were filming?

Rebecca: Well, we started about a month before shooting to get the girls comfortable with the fight choreography. I would do an hour of strength and conditioning with my trainer, Jason Walsh, then boxing for an hour in the afternoon, and then about 2 to 3 hours of fight choreography with or great fight choreographer, James Young

I did that about 4 - 5 days a week and tried to keep it up when we were shooting, but it was such long days on set that it was hard. I also lost about 13 pounds for the role.  

All of the woman in this movie brought their 'A' game. Everyone trained and worked so hard for this film.  

This photo helps to remind me that they 
really didn't want to violently kill each other

RBC: What do you have to do to stay in such great shape (and if you say it's just genetics, I will throw my computer out the window).

Rebecca: It's funny because I read how some actresses say it's just genetics and I am like "Wow, good for her." I wish! 


I work very hard to stay in shape. I eat very healthy, but do allow myself to have cheat days. 

But mostly, I am up and training in the morning 4 to 5 days a week and taking good care of myself. It's not easy, but it's part of my job. If I had to gain 15 pounds for a role, than I would commit to that as well.  

I am also very active thanks to my dog. We hike, run at the beach, and I love to surf. Sophie, however, does not like to surf at all...

...or be taken seriously.

RBC: You've done some movies with a lot of great veteran actors during your relatively short time in the business (Carey Elwes, Peter Dinklage, Kevin Spacey, etc). Who was your favorite one to work with?

Rebecca: Ah! That's a tough question! I have had amazing experiences with all of them. Peter Dinklage was the first TV show I ever did in L.A, so I was super nervous and we had to be half naked in bed together for one scene.  

He was very sweet and so professional. He kept cracking jokes to make light of the situation.  

Pretty sure Tyrion Lannister didn't find this particular task to be that difficult.

RBC: You also mentioned that there aren't many starring action roles for women, which is one reason you were really excited to take this one. What are some of your favorite iconic female ass-kicking roles that have made it to the big or small screen?

Rebecca: Hmmm...there are a lot. Some of my favorites would have to be Uma Thurman in Kill Bill, Angelina Jolie in WANTED, and Anne Parillaud in La Femme Nikita.

RBC: For the Metroid film, how much of it were you going to spend in the armor and what type of challenge were you anticipating with having to portray a character when your face is completely covered? 


This Face =A terrible crime to cover up

Rebecca: I would have spent a good amount of time in the armor suit as well as the zero suit. I think with my face covered, it would have been slightly difficult to work with, but I wasn't too concerned.  

We had a great team to building my armor and helmet; it would have given me ventilation while doing high-action scenes, as well.

RBC: The storyboards for the film looked pretty wild and you were planning on doing most of your own stunts. Were you worried about being able to move around quickly in that suit?  

Rebecca: I was pretty excited to get in the suit and start kicking butt! But I am sure there would have been some challenges along the way. 

The way these suits are designed is incredible. They look so heavy and stiff, but they are actually pretty light and flexible. But I also would have been doing many fittings throughout the design process to make sure it was wearable to my body.

RBC: Sylux (who was confirmed as the movie's antagonist) REALLY hates Samus. Was the story going to delve into why he (it?) wants to kill him so badly?  

Rebecca: We had definitely planned to give you more insight on who he is, why he hates Samus, but more importantly, why he hates the Galactic Federation.

RBC: What was you and your team's reaction to Nintendo's request that the Kickstarter campaign be taken down?

Rebecca: Um...well, it was a little bit of a surprise. We felt that if we were going to get shut down, it was going to be sooner rather than later. So the fact that two weeks went by...we thought we had a chance.

RBC: Did anyone from their corporate office or legal department contact you to discuss things, or was it all just documents and implied middle fingers?

Rebecca: We just received an email from Kickstarter which stated that Nintendo of America filed a DMCA against us. Kickstarter gives you an opportunity to dispute the matter, but we are going to do nothing of the sort. If they did not want us to do it, than we happily respect those wishes.

RBC: Why do you think Nintendo did this? 

Rebecca: Well, ultimately we will never know. But I think they just followed their standard practices and procedures. On their website they do say that they will decline any use of copywritten material.

RBC: What has the fan reaction been like to the Kickstarter campaign being forced to shut down?

Rebecca: Mixed. We had about half the fans be really upset at Nintendo, while the other half were happy we were shut down. 

But I do believe those people who rejected the idea of a Metroid film didn't feel that way because they didn't want to see it. I think they had more of a problem with us asking for money to do it and doing it without Nintendo's permission...which is fair. 

But if Nintendo has no plans to do a film, than we may never see it. That made it worth the risk for us.

Good job, Nintendo. Shut down a 9:00 commercial for your product that 
you don't have to pay for while making another  crappy game exploring Samus' daddy issues

RBC: Is there anything cool you can reveal to us about the project now that we would have gotten to see? 

Rebecca: Well, besides a major battle between Sylux and Samus on the ship, I was planning on shooting a new intro. It would have shown the final moments of when the Gorea was destroyed at the end of Metroid Hunters. This would have been the intro of the film and it would have been used as a dream/flashback before she wakes up.

RBC: You guys mentioned that you were going to try to create some original content instead. Can you give any hints or ideas as to what it will be?  

Rebecca: We already have original content that we had been developing for quite some time now, but a new story developed that was inspired by the Metroid universe. It was an original concept about a female assassin and over the course of the last two years, it evolved into Metroid: Enemies Within. 

But rather then forcing the story into the Metroid universe, we will expand upon the original concept that had it's own universe and mythology. We will return to its origin so to speak...and we're very excited about it.

RBC: I'll be looking forward to it (as I'm sure many others who wanted to see this film get made will be, as well). 

Let's get back to you and your current projects (before I develop even more hatred for Nintendo's current handling of the Metroid franchise than I already have). Are action films a direction that you would like your career to go in?

Rebecca: Yes, absolutely! I love doing action movies. There is something so exciting about the rush you get when shooting action scenes.

Especially when you can still look this good doing it.

RBC: Do you have any upcoming projects that you can tell us about?

Rebecca Marshall: I have RAZE which will be in theaters in the first quarter of 2014.  

I also have a movie called LIFE TRACKER which will be available on DVD, On Demand, and iTunes this October 2013. It's a film about a company that through your DNA can tell you when you are going to die (trailer embedded below).

RBC: Anything you would like to say to your fans?

Rebecca Marshall: I love them! I also appreciate all the support I get from you guys on social media and watching my work whether it be TV and/or film. Thank you :)

Be sure to follow Rebecca Marshall on Twitter, Instragram, and Facebook

You can also follow me on Twitter or Facebook, although I'm not nearly as interesting or attractive.

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