In an exclusive interview, Flickering Myth sat down with Naomi Rose Pfyl to talk about acting, life in Los Angeles and her role in Branwell…
Hi Naomi Rose, welcome to Flickering Myth! How have your family reacted to your career choice and your successes in the entertainment industry? Was it always your dream to be an actor?
No, it wasn’t at all. I grew up in a country where acting isn’t really considered as a profession. We don’t have drama clubs in schools. So, the realization that acting could be a job came just in my early twenties when I spend a lot of time in the Philippines, where the industry is completely different. My family has always been extremely supportive and encouraged me constantly. My father is a soccer coach and it’s his life passion. He always understood the love you can have for an art or sports. He has always been my biggest supporter.
I understand you were born in Zurich in Switzerland. What was it like growing up there?
I feel very lucky that I grew up in Switzerland. I had a safe childhood and a great education. I value nature a lot and always try to find time to get out of LA every now and then. Zurich is the most beautiful city to me, but it always felt a little too small. The opportunities I have here, and the lifestyle is so different, but I love it and try to remind myself every day that I am lucky to live here and have this experience.
What and who inspired you to become an actress?
As I mentioned this dream came late to me. But I think the moment I truly decided in my mind that I wanted to be an actress was when I saw a behind the scenes video of Benedict Cumberbatch playing Smaug, in Lord of the Rings. He was creating his own world, in his mind. I was memorized.
The courage to say out loud that I wanted to be an actress came a little later when I started working commercial modeling in Manila. It was then I decided I wanted to explore more of the human soul.
I understand you have trained at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles, and also with some notable acting instructors. How important is training for you as an actor?
I think it is the key element of all. Furthering your craft and to keep growing. I often compare our industry with the sports world. Athletes work out every single day to succeed and I think we, as actors, have the same hard industry as theirs. We need constantly to work on our craft to succeed. It’s hard to find the right class that fits for you in this big city, but I have met so many amazing people along the way.
You are one of the lead actors in the play ‘Branwell.’ Can you tell us about the role you played?
Yes, I portrayed Maria the oldest dead sister. I had less background on my character than many of my cast so I used whatever I could find. Maria was like the mother of her siblings, a role she had to take on from a very young age. She is led by love and also is so ahead of her age, extremely mature and wise. I focused on those key elements. She has such a calmness to her and that was something I adored about playing her.
How did you prepare yourself as an actor?
Like most actors, I researched. We had a lot of rehearsals and every time I discovered something new about her or about the relationship with her siblings. Before any show I warm up, vocally and physically. I do a relaxation exercise that I learned in one of the classes which is very much method acting.
Do you have a particular genre of film you prefer? If so, can you explain.
I absolutely love documentaries. That may seem weird to say as an actor, but this is my absolute favorite genre. From animal documentaries to murder cases to environmental documentaries, I enjoy them all. After that I would say movies based on real stories and after that the Marvel Universe!
Are there any actors or directors you would love to work with in the future? Any actor you’d like to play alongside?
Oh, where should I start! Florence Pugh, Charlize Theron, Helen Mirren, Scarlett Johansson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Colin Firth, Eddie Redmayne and forever Meryl Streep. Just to name a few.
Greta Gerwig I would love to work with, Noah Baumbach and Taika Waititi. All for different specific reasons but the creation of art is the same denominator.
Do you get to go to the cinema much? Any films you have enjoyed lately?
I do, my partner and I go regularly to the cinema at The Grove. That’s our favorite spot to watch movies. We just watched The Batman and I loved every second of it. Super excited for the new Fantastic Beasts movie! But I have to admit there is so much great content on the streaming services right now.
Finally, any advice you would give any actor who is trying to break into the entertainment industry?
Be patient, be kind and positive. If you are in for the right reasons everything will fall in place but keep working hard for it. It’s important to be able to make a self-check and be honest to yourself if you do enough for it. Don’t forget to have fun along the way!
How can people find and follow your journey?