S8EP20 Conversation with actress Tammy Kaitz

I’m Tammy Kaitz and I am chatting with Chris Gordon of Hellblazerbiz Everyone i have the honor and the privilege of the company of actress Tammy Kaitz today hey Tammy, thank you for joining me thank you for having me no no you’re welcome i appreciate the fact that you know we can get together like this across from sitting in over in la and me over in wales it’s great amazing brilliant um so yeah i mean i could say we’re just going to go through a few questions and find out a bit more about yourself and what you’ve done and and you know see how it goes and going from there sounds good excellent first thing why acting what how did you first get into acting you know i’d never not um i i know it sounds cliche to say destined to do this but i have never not done this when i was three years old i was putting on plays in my backyard and before i was a teen i was i think 11 maybe 12 i saw i was looking through the local newspaper and saw auditions for peter pan and without telling my mom i jumped on my bike and i rode 10 miles to the theater and auditioned i it just has never occurred to me to do anything else and i started with peter pan doing local theater in Denver Colorado where i’m from i went to college uh university Colorado Boulder studying theater i went there because my boyfriend was there so i followed him there and then in between my sophomore and junior year i went to a professional acting school in London and then came back and finished my degree and then had to figure out whether it was New York or LA. I didn’t want to do i didn’t want to stay in Denver i really wanted to do this professionally yeah and i can’t sing and i can’t dance and uh i can dance but i’m really tone deaf so i haven’t i headed to l.a excellent next well yeah i suppose yeah you’ve got the choice of new york and broadway haven’t you all there really right right i mean i know you’ve done a lot off stage work as well and you know you look at you your resume you do stage big screen and small screen as well so uh which do you prefer do you prefer doing on stage or this is a difficult question because they’re so different but they’re so you know they really they really are i mean i love doing theater and i haven’t been on stage i haven’t done a play in about six seven years um and i would love to do some theater again there’s there’s nothing like it it’s like building a barn with these actors and the team and then you get to have a story from start to finish you know that you share with the audience and you tell a story and it’s uh when you’ve done theater it’s hard not to want to do it again um and then it’s a blast working in front of the camera i mean it’s you know so they’re so different it’s like apples and oranges and i like apples and i like oranges good answer because i did theater when i was younger in the school right up to the age of 18 and at university i did it as amateur you know just uh just do it as a as a free time hobby doing things like macbeth and pantomimes and things like that i absolutely do and you’re right there’s nothing like getting on the stage and just being i mean i was drake the butler and annie at school yeah and i always remember that just the adulation of coming on and it took something’s a lot thinner and obviously had better looks i think when i was younger so i came under and there’s little wolf whistles from my girlfriend and their friends at the time and i was you know i came on stage it was like oh listen to that and when i i i delivered him how was it a line is it daddy warbucks it’s the fbi and the way i delivered it people came and said you said that with such disdain and i was like i was like thank you they said no it’s really yeah i said what i was doing is copying fox mulder because i’ve just seen it on the x-files so yeah but yeah no it’s you’re right i mean this they are vastly different but yeah there’s some of that stage i think absolutely amazing and i mean you’ve worked on stage as well with likes of billy bob thornton and lisa kudrow so what was it like working with those two because it’s all hillybop thoughts oh you know well i was you know when i was young and we were all struggling actors you know billy bob was my friend and he hadn’t done anything yet so it was just we were just pals and we did a play in hollywood um and that was great it was before he did sling blade and then with lisa kudrow there was a theater in hollywood that was called the tiffany theater that was just

an amazing theater it’s really a shame that it closed down and it was before she did friends and you know we just were kind of young actors together and then fresh out of college actually um one summer i um worked with annette benning before she went to we did loves labor’s loss before she went on to new york and and really started her career uh winning a tony for um i think it’s called coastal disturbances so you know we’re all really young and really at an equal sort of level in life and it’s just great it was great fantastic fantastic i mean you know it’s it’s lovely to hear because i mean it’s nice you see so everyone sort of tries to get the fact of their hand in theater as well because i think it’s such it’s it’s great but i think i think a lot of the responses i usually get to theater is the fact that it’s such a long process whereas when you’re working in tv and film as well the fact that you can’t you have to dedicate you say to six to eight months even sometimes production i love that i love the process of theater like i i absolutely love it and i actually think there’s a depth to what you can do as an actor with the characterization and the character you create and the life you’re able to give that character because you’ve lived with it longer than doing a shoot where you get cast and you’re shooting a couple days later yeah and again each night i guess it can be a different it can be a completely different performance because you’re going to get a different reaction every audience here right right brilliant yeah excellent so how do you with when it comes to like tv and obviously there’s lots of casting for i mean every time someone like yourself you you land yourself you book yourself a role there’s lots of self tapes and auditions that you’ve gone through i know i mean even from my show i know from every time i get someone great like you on the show there’s a hundred there’s a hundred people who’ve just not responded or just don’t go anywhere so i kind of get a little bit of that feeling in this industry that’s you know it’s that’s how it is so how do you prepare yourself for casting call their self tapes and things like that how do you prepare um well you know every every actor’s getting very good at self-taping during this pandemic so they started doing self-taping a couple years ago at home for a lot of the indie projects so i you know got myself the tripod and i had a ring light and you know and felt pretty comfortable doing that if it was important if it was like an important job potential i would go elsewhere where there was a studio and where there would be readers that weren’t my husband my husband is spectacular i actually married my childhood sweetheart however he’s got kind of a monotone voice so now that we’re home with the uh pandemic i have no choice but i think yesterday we self i self taped for for a feature film um and when uh my adorable husband whose name is steve when he reads me back the lines it’s a little monotone so i have to kind of tell him you have to take a beat here and you have to you have to uh i have to give him a little acting coaching but it’s not his thing he’s not in the entertainment industry so if it is important i would go elsewhere and have a different sort of result but i’m no different than all the other actors right now that are self-taping at home with loved ones or asking friends to you know read the lines on a speakerphone or something like that so we we do the best we can oh yeah especially this situation is quite difficult for everyone they say yeah and a lot of people are speaking they do have that exactly the same sort of you know their partners are reading a lot you know i know what are you gonna do exactly there’s nowhere else to do it so it’s just a good way to do it and once you once you’ve booked that job how do you then prepare yourself to be in that character what kind of things do you go through with our thought processes to go through well i assume this is pretty uh pandemics yeah um i actually was lucky because i shot two little indie films in february right before the shutdown i would say that’s a great question and i would say when i was younger there almost was a broader net of forming a character i think that as as we age we get really settled into the type into the type of human being we are in the way we the world sees us and so when i get hired it’s really because they want the essence of who i am and my and my type now now i say that so that so that it’s really um i bring my life into it and i make artistic choices but it’s in the framework of who i am so i say that but but um about five years ago i was

cast in the uh one of the leads in a in a horror film that’s called the bone the bone garden and the two leads are two middle-aged broads one is a mousey sort of uh doesn’t have a good marriage you know sort of character and the other one is her good time party cougar girlfriend who brings young boys home and has her way with them and then their heads end up in the trunk of her red hunk mobile convertible that she got her divorce settlement so certainly there was nothing when i was cast in that there was nothing that i of who i am but but it was written so well mike guthrie wrote it so well that the lines and the comedy i was kind of the comic relief and certainly you know as a as a woman we know how to flirt and have fun and they had cute young boys you know that i got to do scenes with and stuff like that so um i i think i’ve been doing it so long i just kind of start with who i am and then kind of build from there excellent because i did actually watch the reel to the bone garden i was chuckling i was trickling away to it so yeah i know about the red convertible because i saw it so did you see the scene where i opened it up and there were those heads those heads sitting on the track didn’t that of course i didn’t get that bit i didn’t go that far and i was just skimming through them but yeah so it’s got most of that one but yeah i’ll have to rewatch that one now listen modern uh you know filmmaking so they took a great big huge box like a moving box and cut out heads and the actors put their heads up through there they had already had their makeup on and they actually allowed the makeup artist team to place live worms on their face and it was shot very quickly but it it came out so great that was like my first day of shooting on set and i was like oh my god we’re doing that yes yeah and i mean you you mentioned that as well the comedic roles what kind of role do you prefer because i mean i’ve looked at sort of going through some of your reels and there are this does seem to be a punch-on for comedy roles which should go yeah i wasn’t really good at it to be fair i was watching thank you it’s funny chris because i don’t think i’m funny at all i’m actually kind of a really serious grounded person i think i was born old i have had um not a particularly easy path in life and i think that i um i just was born kind of with a certain sort of maturity however if it is uh written well i just innately know what to do with it and my husband keeps saying you should not negate how good you are at comedy but you know i really love the dramas i i do i do but if it’s written well there’s nothing like saying the lines of the writer the gifts the comic nuance nuances and being able to create laughter with it fantastic excellent that’s how i just have looked at the real song i’ll be picking up some of these films to actually watch properly as well i will do that because they do look good especially just from the clips i’ve seen as well man camp as well that looked quite well so that’s my current that’s my crosstalk the current one isn’t it yeah which i’m i’m like so excited about so it’s streaming on amazon right now and i actually have a couple movies on amazon but but man camp is the current one that i’m just so thrilled with and um for them to write a character of a middle-aged woman to give me comedy drama and some romance in there was just spectacular and i when i uh when i went to that audition and they sent me the sides they gave me a comedy scene and a drama scene to do like i was determined to get this part i i wanted this part so badly so i i have the female lead and pete gardner from crazy ex-girlfriend people may know him from that place my boyfriend and it’s a wacky comedy and i think the world needs some uh lapse now and so you know get a bowl of popcorn and pop open a beer and sit back and watch man camp streaming on amazon and it’s just fun it’s just fun it did look it especially when the when you you this all your on-screen sons walked in on you that was exactly exactly i mean you have got a really good um you know resume written film and tv as well and

and one of them i once screamed at me was knott’s landing so what was it like being on that because that’s obviously knots landings quite you know it’s one of these stalwart one shows which are there well you know that that was a big deal for me when i was younger so there was one season i think it might have been like it was definitely after the show was very popular and had been running for a number of seasons and they did one season where they did flashbacks to show how the relationships evolved so for instance um uh nicolette sheridan played the young michelle phillips and uh josh devane played the young william devane and i played the young michelle lee look alike so that was just i don’t know the time we realized how special it was you know um but it was i mean it was really terrific and then you know to work for a big studio it was shot at sony and to have that studio experience at a at a fairly young age in my uh you know my career was was terrific excellent excellent now as a woman in film um because women involved something i push for as well a lot because there’s still i think there’s a lot of in inequality in in film industry have you found that’s got any better um in recent years and than previous to try and get roles or try and but how have you have you experienced that because it’s i’m just i’m interested to hear because obviously i know you always we always hear and we see that obviously especially with pay and you know i think as you get it’s so interesting as you as you you know live through life and you mature and you age it’s so interesting because there are so many unbelievably wonderful roles that i see my male peers playing and i think people forget that a woman can do more than just saying in a script kids clean up your bedroom you know and dinner’s on the table and so i think it takes a little bit more creativity for a writer to realize that we come with such a plethora of stories from it’s not just the 20 year olds that have great stories but as we age there are like unbelievable stories to be told for all age ranges not just the young and so it’s interesting because i do think my male colleagues um there’s more meteor stuff for them to do and so what i do is you know if somebody wants me to you know offers me something and and i look at the script and the part isn’t interesting emma and the mom role or the female role of my age or whatever she is the boss or whatever is not interesting i’m just not gonna i don’t want to do it it doesn’t feed my soul i don’t need to do it um so i look for things that let me dig in a little bit excellent sounds really good and i got into trouble once because they were talking about james bond and obviously having a female bond and i was like no not a female bond it’s not a sexist thing because obviously bond is in the book if you go to the books what i said was and because everyone jumped on me on social media but they didn’t read what i said what i’d actually said was don’t have a female bond what you need to do is there’s so many writers out there rather than have a female james bond why don’t you create a new character same sort of thing and then specifically make it a female-led role and then you can have a new series with a female-led character doesn’t have to be one because then otherwise everyone’s going to compare you to you know compare the low female to the bonds it’s like not why don’t you just create a brand new character in a brand new that’s what i was trying to say it wasn’t you know difficult but everyone jumped on are you sexy it’s not sexist i’m trying to say it in a better way you know i do want to see that kind of thing and we we need more of those kind of like we do and that but actually the last couple years i mean we are seeing this emergency of female filmmakers and female writers and but you know so much more diversity in front of the camera and you know behind the camera as well as in front of the camera and so you know the female filmmakers many of them are indie filmmakers but they are the future of the film industry where you know uh hopefully um it won’t be dominated by one particular sex or race but it will be a umbrella of many things yeah definitely definitely i mean a great example of that big big hollywood film was a avenger in the game at the end of avengers end game because you know yeah i did love that scene because he had all the men it was all you know all chatted and it was like no let’s stand aside now let’s just get it sorted it was really really good but yeah you’re right i mean to have that diversity and to have that you say diversity is it that should be the new that should

be the normal and i do i do oh absolutely no absolutely absolutely excellent so what’s been your most memorable moment filming of course what’s the most memorable thing that you’ve done uh you know with every single project i think there’s a moment that is just just so wonderful and that’s the moment i carry with me i i think um and and even silly things in the in the bone garden i was actually they fired the actress 48 hours before principal photography and hired me and sent me a plane ticket and i was flying to baltimore memorizing uh three quarters of the script freaking out because um that’s kind of a scary thing at least for it was for me and the whole team everybody just wanted to see me do well and and we’re so appreciative that i jumped in and just like and we just had a blast i i would say on um man camping it sounds silly but um i was cast and it was uh two months later i was in new york with my husband when i got a phone call uh from the producer saying they had hired pete gardner and i was such a fan and i was like just blown away that i was going to get an opportunity to make this movie and have him as my romantic counterpoint um i remember when i shot um i had this uh a wonderful part in a film called duke it’s a h in the indie film that like won billions of awards all around the world and i was going to go to the set for shooting and i play a therapist that teaches an autistic boy how to communicate through the computer it’s actually based on a true story and got just it was just like a quick aside that there was going to be rabbits on the set and i’m like definitely it’s like a peanut allergy definitely allergic to rabbits and so they had to scramble and make sure there were no rabbits on the set and ended up bringing in a fish aquarium for my scene you know there’s always like something whether it’s whether it’s while you’re filming or in the process of filming that uh creates a moment that you’re gonna remember associated with that project excellent that sounds great i do actually have another question thinking of then i’ve just completely forgotten it i mean it’s kind of like childbirth you know there’s always something about childbirth that you’re going to remember or raising your kids there’s those moments that like are more memorable than others you know oh yeah maybe the good the bad and the ugly but they’re the ones you’re gonna remember i know it’s a nice fascinating answer to here because you’re like it’s is it’s difficult to actually pinpoint one as i say because every single thing you gotta make you take him out and you learn from it so who if you could have a director who which director would you love if you could name one one i know there’s probably plenty of them out there but if you could name just one who would you love to be able to work with um i think it’d be fascinating to work with you know i can’t actually name names but i think it’d be fascinating to work with some female directors at this time well sofia coppola i’d love to work with but um i think it would just be a different kind of energy you know would be i would love to have that experience on a bigger project on some indie projects and some shorts i’ve certainly worked with some women um but it’d be great to do a full feature film and have that kind of energy um i i wish i could come up with some names but um there’s just so many emerging uh filmmakers at this moment uh oh yeah definitely bigelow is it catherine bigelow oh yeah yeah yes amazing yeah like you’re like it’s just great there’s so there’s just so many people with really good visions out there so it’ll be nice yeah good to see i’m sure you get that chance as well yeah projects that hopefully move people and make them laugh and cry and um you know that’s really the goal of of uh an actor that feels like their acting is is is craft like like like an artist who just wants to paint and wants to show people and move people with their art

yeah definitely definitely and during i think that’s come to light a lot during this pandemic current affairs and the pandemic though i won’t do the politics side of it but the politician otherwise i will be here all right i get in trouble so will i um so yeah the the pandemic side of things and and the british side of the politic bit is the fact that they seem to denounce the arts a lot and i know that’s the same a little more in the states as well but that’s the only politics side of there is that you know they’ve defunded them and they’ve just done an advert campaign here for example saying i can’t remember it’s fatima she was a picture of a ballet dancer and it was like fatima could be working cyber she just doesn’t know it yet and retrain and stuff and it caused a huge fuel or oprah because it was like you know you’re completely putting the arts down so i i was i’ve been involved in campaigns as well online pushing people because i think in this pandemic the art and artists and actors um or everything like that because they’ve come to the fore because everyone has been locked down for seven months if we didn’t have talent like yourself to be able to give us these shows and these films and stuff like this where we i think there’ll be a lot more trouble in the world to be honest because what we’ve done is sit and binge watch tv we’ve been watched films we’ve you know we’ve listened to music we’ve read books all of these things are only there because of artists like yourself producing that i think that’s highlighted to so many people and you know it’s not just you know chris it’s not it’s not just the people in front of the cameras the camera and it’s everyone but and maybe it’s because um my kids aren’t in the my field and maybe it’s because my husband’s not in my field but i have a son who’s a future restaurant owner and you know we we’re foodies i love there’s nothing more special than sharing a meal with someone and talking for hours and hours and having that culinary experience and sharing that together and look at the you know the people that are creating that are artists that are creating food to share with people in their kitchens you know at some point i i’m the eternal optimist and at some point i think that we will this will all be behind us and it may take us a long time to recover but at some point i think the arts and the economy and all the industries you know will will recover and and be strong again um even in the sports like you look at the guys who sell hot dogs and toss peanuts at baseball games you know they write and so um the truth is we just need to take care of one another you know we need to care about one another and if we all put positive energy into it and do the right things and wear our masks and take care of one another maybe we will get back to life sooner than later if we misbehave it’s going to be later but if we all behave maybe it will be sooner yeah yeah sadly we’re about to go into lockdown again here in the uk i know it’s crazy it’s absolutely crazy they’ve closed wales off that’s on safe policy i’ve got a friend who’s on facebook before and she lives somewhere in middle of england somewhere and for the past week wales has been closed anyway because they said no they don’t you can’t come in because you know they want to close keep it secure and she this my friend she’s got caravan in wales and she’s in a caravan in wales already saying i’m making the most of spending money in local shops before this you know the welsh prime minister kicks us out and i was like but you shouldn’t be here already i said you’re not supposed i was stirring i was just stirring the pot because i like doing that to my friends sometimes yeah it’s true yeah it’s scary and it’s sad and it’s we were we just i had a phone call to wish one of our best friends happy birthday right before um i joined you on this car call and we were talking about paris because we were uh in paris together a couple years ago and they’ve gone to paris they’re fluent french speakers they live in new orleans and um so we were just talking about the paris is having to step back too and you know yeah yeah it’s like a you know it is we are in an upside down flip side of life right now you know that’s been going on for months right yeah it has it has i mean i’ve you know i actually lost a friend of mine from uni um a couple of weeks ago not throughout he passed away his complications we couldn’t go to his funeral because it was you know and it was just it’s it’s that’s that’s another thing i think is pandemic i’m not that i said

i wouldn’t talk about it but you know you know that’s just but it’s just such an effect on people and i think what your message was absolutely perfect is we’ll take care of each other and and that’s what we should do as a human race is look after each other and you just yeah and hopefully so we can heal like we can’t you know so that we can heal i mean there’s a just unfortunately there’s a lot of knuckleheads out there and maybe if everybody had six months ago behave themselves maybe we wouldn’t be in the situation on month seven you exactly know yeah that’s what we should be doing now is focus like you say focus to healing and focus on each other so we can heal and get through absolutely take care of one another yeah so what else do you like to do to relax in your down time um oh well i actually love to cook and i love to garden and i love to have people over where we sit for five hours enjoying enjoying lots of food that’s home cooked we have two um adult sons that um were raised in l.a but live in colorado they spent their lives um visiting you know grandma and grandpa and all their aunts and uncles and cousins in denver and they fell in love with the seasons and the rockies so you know i miss being able to um effortlessly see them i did go see them a couple months ago very carefully i had a test before i went there and i had a test when i came back and i was very careful and um thank god for you know face timing and that sort of thing so you can actually like you and i are doing you know you can see people and it’s a whole different experience than just talking on the phone but um i just love being with people and i love hiking and in california we have excuse me we have the fires and some of my favorite long distance hiking i like to do like 10 mile hikes and and some of my favorite areas were burnt up they don’t exist anymore which means that you can’t go to them for years because if it’s during the summer and it’s you know 80 90 degrees outside there aren’t trees to shade and um yeah so um and travel and i and i love traveling and can’t wait till we can do that again too safely yeah love to come visit your part of the world again i was we were very young when we were in wales but i’d love to visit visit wales again oh it’s lovely it’s beautiful up here and thankfully i can now actually no i can’t because we’re not allowed to leave the county so i’m eventually we can go so far we can go about five miles and then that’s all we that’s all we can go so snow mount snowed and everything so i’m pointing in that direction as if you really know where it is we’ve got mount snowdon just over that side which you know we can’t go there at the moment because it’s locked and our favorite beaches are just you know i live 400 meters from the beach but so we’ve got that we’ve you know we’re blessed in the fact that we’ve got all that right at our doorstep literally so our world has become very very small and we just have to try to stay positive oh yeah and you know maybe uh do things like um i was shopping for a while for my neighbors my senior neighbors you know try to look for little things to help one another out and just uh just hold on to the fact that at some point uh this will be behind us yeah definitely yeah good advice yeah yeah okay i’ll as i’ll bring you to my signature question as i draw this to an end now so you might be glad to find that now now oh no i’m so enjoying time this is going to be the highlight of my day oh that’s lovely thank you um if you this is the reason the history behind this question is purely i had a guest on my show a few years back who’s worked with jim henson as a muppeteer or a puppeteer for 30 odd years um and he’s in star wars and stuff so someone sent this question to him and i thought it was a really good personality question so i’ve asked pretty much everybody so if you could have a muppet created after you your own personality your own self or if there’s one existing out there what muppet would you be and why i think i’d be the cookie monster because i have a sweet tooth and who doesn’t like cookies no i think i would be from sesame street i think i would be something like a female version of the cookie monster maybe that really liked reese’s peanut butter cups and could eat them like non-stop and not worry about the calories instead of cookies it means reese’s yeah oh don’t get me started that’s where i started the show years ago do my precious like

because when 900 years old you reached look as good you will not chris that’s really good thank you try no do or do not there is no time wow that’s crazy see now because i’m tone deaf i can hear things in my head but i cannot um it’s actually pretty funny for me to try to um duplicate the sounds or even like accents i’ve never been good at accents because i can hear it in my brain but i can’t yeah it doesn’t process but that’s very very good you’re your future career thank you i did actually do my kermit to to this guy because he was a bumpity he was a and he just i’ll do a little bit now but he was just he looked at me afterwards he was like okay and i thought i was so disheartened just like thanks he’s like why are there so many songs about rainbows that’s my little is there anything tammy you would like to say to people now who are watching or listening well i i guess um i just love to tell um other young actors and people wanting to break into the field that you know you have to train and you have to learn the business but you have to be a real human being and you need to fall in love and you need to have relationships and you need to be responsible about your um about how you how you pay your bills and you need to live life you need to volunteer and you need to socialize and you need to enjoy nature you need to read and you have to you can’t bring to acting if you don’t know about living life and i think that that probably goes for many many careers so you know people to know me is to know that that really is who i am we have i’m so proud that um we have raised thousands and thousands of thousands for kid cancer that’s kind of our pet charity and um i have done lots of volunteer work and i really i i really try to be a full rounded human being because i went into acting knowing that i would be doing it forever and by doing it forever means that you have to live life and you have to come to the world as a full human being so i guess i would just you know tell people to hang in there and look outside of yourself to see during this difficult time what you can do to maybe bring a smile to somebody’s face you