GLASSHOUSE: KILL OR BE KILLED Interview With Actress Anja Taljaard On Reading Two Separate Roles (Exclusive)

The recently released Glasshouse is an apocalyptic thriller with an outrageous twist - the pandemic takes your memory. We sat down with actress Anja Taljaard and she told us about reading for two roles!

When it comes to horror, the pandemic/apocalyptic subgenre is one that has been beloved for years. More recently, however, zombie pandemic shows such as The Walking Dead and all of its spinoffs have made films in that vein rather easy to overlook.

A recent movie called Glasshouse: Kill or Be Killed is a sci-fi horror thriller that veers away from the stale storylines by switching from the norm. In this film the pandemic causes memory loss. The central point in the narrative is a family in quarantine, and through the events surrounding them it's revealed that enough time breathing in contaminated air causes you to forget who you are as a person.

We were lucky enough to speak with both the director and one of the main actresses in order to get a better perspective after witnessing the film's twists and turns. In this transcript, actress Anja Taljaard spoke about how she read for two separate roles for the part of EV.

Check out the audio and video interviews below.

Literary Joe: So first I want to know, how was this presented to you? Did you reach out or did somebody come to you? Just give me a little bit of that before we dig into EV and the actual context of the film.

Anja Taljaard: Okay, so I've got an agent that represents me in South Africa. So all my auditions that I go for will come through them. And yeah, my agent just contacted me the one day. It was very rushed. It was made known that there were deadlines. So I think it was like the Wednesday my agent sent me the size and everything and said it's urgent. They are pressing you to cast the leads and they may need to make the final decisions and they're struggling.

And I think by the end, like the next day they wanted the tapes and it was like a bunch of scenes. And it's quite intense characterization that you've got to sit and do and research in formulating that character. And they wanted me to not only audition for Evie, but for B as well. Although I think they'd had an idea of casting Jessica Alexander as B. But I think there was a method to the madness. They wanted to see me attempt to do both characters, although I do think they had in their mindset that they had wanted to see me for EV.

(Above: Audio Interview with Glasshouse: Kill or Be Killed Director Kelsey Egan)

So I think it was so quick. By the end of the Thursday, I submitted my tape for EV and by the end of the Friday, I had submitted, my tapes for B. And then it was just kind of a waiting game. And I can't remember exactly how long it was, but Kelsey and Emma got in contact with me and basically just said they absolutely loved it and had a chat. And by that time, everything still had to go through for approval, but essentially they were just telling me how happy they were with my tapes and the character that I've already proposed.

And obviously there's more work to be done. But I think, what really maybe got them, and I don't know, but in my opinion, what maybe got them convinced to cast me is I think I just gave a really strong first character proposal. And I think I really resonated with that character of EV. And, in this industry, you might do a hundred auditions and you might only learn one job. So I think it was a combination of good timing and the right person. And, yeah, I think it just all happened forhappened in the best way possible.

Literary Joe: So obviously it seems like they were trying to get a little bit of range from you with the roles that you were trying out. Was there ever a time where you were hoping that you might be able to play B?

Anja Taljaard: I think... no, I wanted EV. I resonated a lot with things about both characters, but I think EV in general. As actors, all our food, if I can put it like that, what we strive and live for is a challenging character to play. That's where we learn. That's where we struggle, but we learn so much from that struggle. So that's what we, at the end of the day, what we want. And I knew EV would be a challenge. I resonated a lot with her, but I knew bringing all of that across on camera would be a massive challenge.

I think for me, for B, I've played a lot of characters like B in the past. And I don't in that sense, I might not have done it justice just because I think it was almost just too happy and that I love playing deep dark characters with a lot of issues, not to say that B doesn't have, but I think EV just enticed me, like really, really enticed me. So I was definitely hoping for EV.

Literary Joe: I'm not going to go into any spoilers. We'll have a section later on where we can touch on that. But after you had tried out, when they gave you the full script, did they include the twists in the ending and everything that happened in the third act of the film?

Anja Taljaard: So we did receive the entire script. Obviously once we will casted, we did receive everything. So we were able to know what was going to happen and I still had a lot of questions. It's one of those things that even when you read the script, you're like, wait... So it was almost like, as we were shooting, we were also just figuring things out as we were going. I had so many moments where I was like, oh my God, this makes so much sense now. So I think even after reading it, it's so complex and there's so many layers to it.

And the characterization, it's not a movie driven by one character. You've got your main character and then you've got all the side characters. It's so driven by everyone. Everyone's got such an intricate storyline and so much going on. So when you read it for the first time, it's impossible to pick up on everything. So yeah, we did receive it and it was quite interesting. You like had a lot of like (gasp) moments, but we were just figuring everything out one hundred percent.

(Above: Full video interview with the director of the film, Kelsey Egan.)

What do you guys think of these comments? We've included the full video below, and be sure to keep an eye out for more content coming your way.

Are you interested in checking out Glasshouse: Kill or be Killed or have you already seen it? Be sure to share your take in the comment section!

This episode features actress Anja Taljaard in support of her newest film, Glasshouse: Kill or Be Killed. After chatting with director Kelsey Egan about the movie, I was very excited to get Anja's take on what can be quite a confusing horror thriller.

We talked about how Anja initially became a part of the project and what her take on the original script was. Learning that she was asked to read for two separate roles during the audition was more than interesting, so we clearly embellished on that a bit.

Touching on the fun bits, in the beginning, we eventually move into spoiler territory for the movie so be sure to listen for that warning if you haven't yet checked out the movie.

We were able to dig into the real goods and bones of the film once we were off the leash, so it's worth listening to the whole episode at your own risk of plot reveal. Be sure to check out Glasshouse: Kill or Be Killed, on digital now from Voyage Media!

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