By: Monteque Pope-Le Beau
Edited By: Colleen Page
Mr. Blake Robbins is an actor’s actor who believes in respecting the moment. The very element that brings the performance to life turning an average movie from being just a film into a art piece. The film “The Sublime and Beautiful” is directed and written by Mr. Blake Edwards which he also stars in. It is a masterfully told tale about action and consequences. It is an reflection on how one deals with loss, grief and anger, but most importantly forgiveness. The Art Of Monteque had a chance to speak with Mr Robbins about his film.
Hello Mr. Robbins
Mr. Blake Robbins: Hi
On behalf The Art Of Monteque, thank you for this interview.
BR: Sure thing, it’s my l pleasure.
First of all I would like to say just what a wonderful film the Sublime and beautiful is, secondly I would like to know how hard was it for you direct yourself , because has often been state that is very hard?
BR: Thank you….. It just came naturally to me. I mean I don’t want to disprove the the myth, but I found that as long as I made time to act and time to direct it was doable. It also helped that I was surrounded by an amazing cast and crew. It was pretty easy as long as long as I was in a good environment surrounded by good people.
The story is both sad and uplifting is it pulled from real life and if so how did you use it in telling the story?
BR: When I was much younger my aunt, my dad’s sister was struck by a drunk driver which a large impact on me and also I learned my co-star Laura also had dealt with tragedy in her life. We talked a lot about it and how would pertain to the story. It was my purpose to make it real. We have all dealt with tragedy, grief and death sometime in our life. I wanted the audience to be able to relate to the story. I literally want to bring the audience into the film. So, yes a lot of real life plays out in the film.
The film has such a real and raw feeling to it, was this you’re doing for the look of the film?
BR: Yeah, it was very important to us that the film have that kind of feel. When you’re independent working with a small budget in a small town in Kansas the realness of the film becomes very important.
This is truly a story about actions and consequences what made you want to tell such a compelling story?
BR: I am a really big fan of adult drama movies that can entertain and enlighten. Really good storytelling for me can show the emotional meaning behind the feelings of grief and death; in such a way that the audience can relate to what is going on in the film.
How did your early days of being an actor help you in creating this film?
BR: I didn’t start really acting until I understood the importance of the Moment.The Moment vs the Ideas which are in your head of how something should go. As a storyteller it is very important for me to respect an actor’s moment.
That is a lot different than the Method way of doing things.
BR: As an acting coach I have worked with many different actors at many different stages of acting and for me it was very important not to browbeat the actor into submission. It is important to make sure the actor has exactly what they needed; not for me to tell them what they needed to do.
The Art Of Monteque champions Independent Film and Independent Filmmakers. There is a true art to storytelling where the character and story comes first. Your film is such an reflection of that.
BR: Oh, thank you it means the world to me.
BR: It does!
Covering film festivals it is something that we have come to know very well and a lot about from Sundance to AFI.
I would like to ask you about the cast because the cast has a average Joe to them was this by design?
BR: Absolutely we were making such a small film so we weren’t going to be working with celebrities. There were a lot of working actors in the group, but I love interesting faces and I love great actors. I worked with a combination of five or six people I had known throughout the years that I had met on my acting journey. The rest was populated from Lawrence, Kansas area. We just had an open call over one weekend and 200 people showed up. I plugged in a lot of those people and meaningful roles. The woman who played my mother had never had been in a film before. She was a local theatre actress, but she was phenomenal. I just use the locally talent that was there and the five or six of us that do this for a living. I do hope that when people watch the film they can’t tell one from the other.
It was certainly wonderfully illustrated in a way that it was seamless.
BR: That’s awesome!
When did you know and what inspired you to want to become an artist and storyteller?
BR: Oh, goodness that’s a good one. I have to think about this. I think it was a gradual, I don’t know if there was a turning point. I think it was a gradual thing I came from. Both my parents worked in local theaters when I was growing up so I spent spent much of my youth going and seeing them act and rehearse in plays. It was never my thing. Then I went away to college and I met a girl who brought me into the theater department and I fell in love with acting there. I remember when I was 22 or 23 my parents for my birthday bought me to a performance of Les Miz. It had such a powerful impact on me. I definitely remember thinking if I could have anything close to this impact on people, through sharing my acting and my stories as this did than I could be happy with this for lifetime. I think in the early twenties at that approach of Les Miz is when I thought this is a powerful medium. This is something that can transform people and shape their lives and I want to be a part of it.
We thank you for giving us your time and we wish you all the best with your wonderful film.
BR: Thank you so very much it means the world to me. Something like this doesn’t exist without the championship and I appreciate it and what your doing.
Again thank You.
BR: Your most welcome. [TAOMR]
The Sublime and Beautiful 93 min
Director: Blake Edwards