Interview : TF1 'Sarah's Room'. Acting with Kitty Colquhoun and Shooting 5 Day Features
From an article written by Neil Rolland in 2014
Kitty Colquhoun only started acting two years ago. In Sarah’s Room she takes on the role of Emma, Joe’s wife and Sarah’s best friends, a woman stuck in the middle.
Please tell us a little about yourself and how you go involved inSarah’s Room?
I started acting about two years ago, so I came to it a bit later than usual. I was living in Seville a while after graduating from uni when I decided I wanted to give acting a go, so I came back to Scotland and got started. I’ve been quite lucky so far. I had seen Grant in action when we worked on another project a few months before Sarah’s Room and I thought the script was interesting so I didn’t think twice when he asked me to play Emma.
Please tell us a bit about your character?
I play Emma, Joe’s wife, who rents their spare room to Sarah while Joe is away. Emma tries her best to support Joe as he settles into home life again but their relationship has changed, largely due to her friendship with Sarah. It’s that awkward situation when your best friend and partner don’t get on – she loves them both and can’t understand why they don’t love each other too. Emma meets Sarah at a really difficult moment in her life, so Sarah quickly becomes the person she relies on to the point where she forgets about Joe. She definitely doesn’t notice his growing infatuation with Sarah. Grant also described her as “not the life and soul of the party, but the wheels that keep it going”, which stuck with me throughout the filming.
How did you prepare for this shoot? How did it differ from any other film you have worked on?
I met Grant to talk about the character and figure out how she was going to be, especially in relation to the other two characters. Emma is stuck in the middle of Joe and Sarah so it was important to develop a character that would fill that void. There wasn’t much time to prepare with the other actors, I rehearsed a little with Paddy the day before the shoot began and I met Hanna on the first day of filming, although it turns out we met before about 10 years ago, so that was funny. It was like a normal shoot but much more intense, like an intensive language course with a lot squeezed into a short period of time. All but one of my scenes were in the flat and I’d spent so much time there that it felt like home by the end, which surprised me.
How difficult was it to make a film in 5 days?
I didn’t find it difficult at all, I wanted to keep filming! I get bored quite easily and there wasn’t much time sitting around so I was happy. I’m sure it was much harder for the crew and Grant, who was like a one-man band. I worried about his back quite a bit holding the camera all the time. Paddy had the most amount of scenes so I have nothing to complain about.
What have you learned from your experience on Sarah’s Room?
I absolutely loved being part of creating the dialogue for the scenes we changed so I realised how much I wanted to write for film as well as act. I’ve nearly finished a script that Grant has agreed to read so we’ll see. This is in writing now so he can’t get out of it
What advice would you give to anyone considering taking part in a low-budget Scottish feature film?
If you think the cast, crew and script are up to scratch, definitely do it. Low budget doesn’t mean low quality, it forces you to find alternatives and think creatively. And if you decide to take part, make sure you have a laugh.
By Neil Rolland