Interview - Kyla Shinkewski

The Children of Samhain Exclusive:

The Pinup Dolls on Ice Interviews - Part Four with Kyla Shinkewski (Caylin)

If you haven't heard me raving about Geoff Klein and Melissa Mira's sexy homage to the slasher genre, Pinup Dolls on Ice, then you've been living under a rock. And if you haven't been following my nine part series of interviews with the directors, cast and writer, then you've been missing out. After I gave the film a stellar review (that you can read here) in which I describe the film as 'A cross between a traditional slasher movie and a drunken night at Jumbo's Clown Room… that works like a charm.' I jumped at the chance to speak with the people behind making such a brutal old school slasher. I would like to personally thank each and everyone who took the time to answer my questions. First we featured writer Michael Penning in Part One. Then we featured Karine Kerr in Part Two. Last week featured Jordan Mae Antoinette in Part Three. And here is The Children of Samhain's Pinup Dolls On Ice Interviews: Part Four with Kyla Shinkewski (Caylin). Enjoy!

Leo Francis: Hi, Kyla. Thanks for taking the time to do this. You have a BFA in Acting, though most of your work thus far has been on the stage. Do you prefer the immediacy of performing live for an audience to the more intimate work that comes with performing for the camera?

Kyla Shinkewski: Hi Leo! I am so thrilled that you’ve enjoyed the film. Thank you very much for taking and interest. I will always love theatre. It is my home. It is where I grew up as an artist.  It is an amazing outlet to explore, create and grow in. Theatre, as I see it, is fueled by ones need to create art and tell stories. You will find very few people in theatre for the money. Film, on the other hand,  well… is bombarded by those looking for their 15 minutes, or to make a quick buck. Film casting rooms are filled with guys and gals praying, not necessarily to become a better actor, but to get their “big break”. That, to me, is the fundamental difference between theatre and film and why I believe it is so important for aspiring actors to be involved in theatre.  In theatre an actor has more opportunity to figure out if he/she actually enjoys the craft, and not just the idea of fame. Theatre is also the best way for an actor to learn fundamentals. But, go and do film! The camera puts each actor under a microscope. It challenges authenticity.  And even in the early stages of your career, you will find gems , like Geoff and Melissa, who are extremely talented, dedicated, and artistic. 

LF: I couldn't agree more, but then again I have a BA in Theater, so maybe I am biased. Many moons ago I lived with a burlesque type performer, so I have seen my share of burlesque over the years, and all of it looked absolutely amazing and completely authentic. Whose influence is that? Do you have a background as a burlesque performer, or did you have to train for the role? 

KS: The thought of burlesque dancing scares the crap out of me! I do have dance experience, but have never attempted burlesque. I was actually quite relieved when I found out that I would not be involved in the dance. I probably would’ve broken out into awkward laughter or tripped over my heels at some point. Jordan didn’t need any backup anyways! She rocked that dance.

LF: She sure did. What drew you to doing the film, did you have a previous connection with Geoff and Melissa?

KS: I didn’t know Geoff or Melissa prior to Pinup. I actually found the casting call over the web. I was fresh out of theatre school and just itching to mix it up, try something new and get out of town for a bit. I sent them a few video auditions and a couple of weeks later got a call that I had landed the part. I still remember that moment. I was at work, working as a waitress (ha ha), and ran out of the office screaming like a mad woman.  I was beyond excited. My tables thought that I was insane.

LF: Were you always a fan of the horror genre? If so what was the film that got you hooked? 

KS: I have always been a huge horror fan. From a young age I was drawn to things that are unexplainable, or rather, the possibilities that lie beyond what we see. I still have nightmares about Are You Afraid of the Dark, specifically about a clown doll that murders children. And I refuse to watch reruns of The X-Files alone.  The theme song still creeps me out.

LF: The female roles all seemed to be pretty physically demanding, having to run in heels and perform in elaborate fight scenes with Moe, not to mention most of the cast end up literally 'on ice' and wearing very little clothing at some point in the film. Was it difficult physically shooting those scenes? Did any of you perform your own stunts or were there stunt performers? Did anyone sustain any 'battle scars' while filming?

KS: The role was very physically demanding.  All of the running, screaming, falling, dragging, bashing, that was all us. We didn’t have any fill ins. I still have a scar or two  on my back from filming in the forest. I also (accidentally) smashed a real glass window with a baseball bat. And yes that take did make it into the film. Can’t beat authenticity!

LF: What scares you? We're all scared of war and disease and things like that. But when it comes to horror films, what genuinely scares you?

KS: Your friends are missing. You are completely alone. Someone is after you. You must try to exit the house you’re in. The person who has taken your friends is in the house. Waiting. That is my fear. I would probably crumple into a ball and accept my defeat.

LF: Name a film you walked out of at the theater.

KS: I don’t really walk out of movies. The last one would have had  to have been one a about The Titanic. I thought it was a scripted drama. It was a documentary. Also, I was 14. So you can understand my disappointment. But, honestly, if I’ve got popcorn, I’m all good.

LF: If you could punch one person in the face, who would it be? 

KS: I don’t have a desire to punch anyone in the face.  I do have a long list of hugs I’d like to give out though.

LF: Has anyone ever made you feel 'star-struck'?

KS: I once saw Britney Spears at West Edmonton Mall when I was 11. I also had front row tickets to a Beyonce concert and I swear she looked me right in the eye.  I felt pretty cool during both of those moments.

LF: What's your favorite horror film of all time and / or the scariest movie you've ever seen?

KS: I’ve always been into the psychological thrillers. The movies where you go, “WHAT, Bruce Willis was a ghost this whole time?!”

LF: Thanks again, Kyla. Cheers. 


- Leo Francis