What’s colder, where you shot “Antibirth” in Canada or Park City?
Natasha: Yeah, for sure Canada. It’s not that bad here.
Have you been able to have fun here at Sundance or is it back-to-back with the press?
Natasha: I guess since we’re so tight in real life it’s made it feel almost like a weird, intensive vacation. I was joking yesterday that it’s a weirdo version of a hiking trip. “Let’s all hike the Appalachian Trail together; get your gear on and be ready for the elements.” We’re in this together. We’re hanging out and running into people. It’s just that, simultaneously, it’s a lot of work to remember how to form words when you’re so exhausted and you’re doing it on a loop – and then to not feel like a phony while you’re doing it.
Chloë: It’s fun seeing all of the other actors. It would be nice if all the press could start in the afternoon… after 12 p.m. Everybody should have the morning off, right? [We] should just have half-days…
I like that.
Natasha: I do have to say, it really is fun for me to do it with Chloë. We’re such old pals and to see us in such a state of raw exhaustion roaming around the house. Chloe’s like, “I’m going to make stronger coffee for you.” She doesn’t even drink coffee. She’s like, “Let me just make this for you; you’re going to need it.”
Chloë: Crying in our bath towels…
Natasha: This morning she came into my bedroom in her towel and she just started crying and was like, “I didn’t sleep at all. I don’t think I can do it.” And I was like, “Chloë, we gotta do it. We can do it, we’ve got this. We’re going to get through it.”
I got the link to your movie screener at 12 a.m. so I was up at 1 a.m. eating Sour Patch Kids and woke up early. It’s nice to know everyone’s exhausted and in the same boat.
Natasha: That’s the other thing – the weird lack of food, except for potato chips and Sour Patch Kids. Periodically you get one finger food and you’re like, “Ah this is great.” Last night we had some cold steak.
How did you celebrate getting into Sundance?
Chloë: A lot of text messaging.
Natasha: Texting. There’s no better way to celebrate than text messaging. Everybody knows that.
Chloë: No, I think I called.
Natasha: We were pretty excited about it actually, because it’s a wild movie. That’s why it’s interesting to talk about, because it’s definitely not a traditional movie. I think we’ve both been in a fair amount of movies that are more straight-ahead, and we’re in other movies here that are more straight-ahead, but this one is so weird and more of an art film than anything else. Also, I guess because it’s in the midnight section people assume it’s horror. So I think it’s trying to explain that and say, “Hey listen, it’s sort of intentionally more of a cult film.”
Chloë: But your other film, “Yoga Hosers,” isn’t a horror at all either.
Natasha: Yeah, “Yoga Hosers” [directed by Kevin Smith] is another weirdo movie.
Natasha, did you feel more pressure because you were also a producer of “Antibirth?”
Natasha: As far as producing, I think it’s more about how much I care about [Director] Danny [Perez] and respect him as a filmmaker. I really believe whole-heartedly that this is what he should be doing for a living; it’s what he was born to do. I think both Chloë and I feel that way very strongly. That’s why we signed on and said, “Whatever you want to do, Danny.” He wrote the parts for us, so I think, for me as a producer, it was very much about getting Danny’s voice out there and getting his movie made. It was more about introducing him to people. So my stress level was more about how I really f-cking wanted it to happen for him… and for us too…
Chloë: It was so great to get into Sundance, because it is such a great platform. There’s so much attention on the movie. It really is about the independent movies and not the big studio pictures coming in and sweeping up all of the press. It’s nice to be here.
What was the biggest difference between the way that each of you prepared for your role?
Chloë: She had a lot more dialogue, so she had an assistant. That’s the biggest difference.
Natasha: I don’t usually have an assistant in my real life…
Chloë: But you were also a producer, so you needed an assistant.
Natasha: I guess because of that I had an assistant and because of my dog Root Beer who needs constant attendance. She’s a very entitled little creature, and you know she’s right to be that way. Anyway, I definitely think that we are really similar. We were doing that Woody Allen movie back in the day, and I remember coming over and running lines with you or you would come over to my house. I think we’re both very regimented about knowing every single line as written. It frees you up to play with it. That way if something spontaneous happens you have more freedom to be in the moment because you’re not searching and grasping for anything.
Chloë: Plus, we’ve also been in it long enough that we know how frustrating it is when your co-star doesn’t know their lines, so we always want to at least be punctual and know our lines. That’s the most respectful thing you can do for your co-stars.
Natasha: Yeah, it really speeds things up. With a low-budget movie you have so little time and so few takes. You know the idea of wasting them because you’re trying to grasp for words just becomes heartbreaking and then people start getting frustrated with themselves so they start getting mean or blaming it on something else like, “This wasn’t meant to be here…”
Chloë: Or, “She didn’t feed me the line fast enough…”
Natasha: Yeah, when you really know what you’re supposed to say you can just play around.
Can you take me back to living in New York, before your big breaks? What do you remember most about that time?
Natasha: I owned this tiny studio apartment on 16th and 3rd and Chloë actually subleased it from me. When I lived there it was just a little studio; when she lived there it was like a gorgeous hotel room that you’d want to move in to.
Chloë: We both had success pretty early on. My first film that hit was “Kids” and it made quite a splash when I was 19, but there were a lot of years of struggling and living check-to-check before I started working in television. When you’re young in the city it poses challenges, but it’s also fun and exciting. You’re just more carefree.
What’s the most ridiculous thing you remember doing in order to save a few bucks?
Chloë: I lived off of boys a lot. I don’t know if that’s ridiculous, but I actually lived with an actor in New York, Mike Rapaport. He let me live in his apartment for free and [Natasha] lived in his apartment in L.A.
Natasha: Yeah but I had to pay.
Chloë: You did? I thought you were just kind of casual roomies.
Natasha: This is the problem with being a Jew. Everybody always assumes that you want to talk about money. They’re not wrong, you know.
Chloë: He didn’t make me pay.
Natasha: Yeah, cause, you know. You’re this gorgeous creature from Connecticut.
Did you date people who were also creatives?
Chloë: Always. I mean, I still do.
Natasha: Yeah, for the most part. I mean, I definitely tried hooking up with some businessmen, bankers, what have you. I’ve definitely checked out the scene, but I usually end up sticking with more creative types. We just communicate so much in that language. I’m an NYU dropout. Did you go to school?
Chloë: No, I started working right out of high school and then I had to support my family.
Natasha: I think our language ended up being the language of the arts, in a way. Our education was more at the film forum or the museum. So I think that generally we tend to mix it up with boys that are into that kind of a thing too.
How would you describe the energy here at Sundance?
Natasha: I would say it’s way less shenanigan-based than it was back when. I don’t know if I’m doing something wrong. Maybe I’m too mature or too straight and everybody’s just hiding it from me, but it used to be antics bananas.
Chloë: It feels like everyone is just doing their job. All day everyone is doing their job, and then even at a party or at night everyone is still doing their job. It doesn’t seem like there’s enough downtime. Plus, I think it has a lot to do with cameras and phones being everywhere.
Natasha: Yeah, nobody wants to get in trouble doing something. I’m convinced there’s a sort of black box hotel room lurking somewhere in the mountains and people are just going in there and just going f-cking nuts and coming back out and being like, “Oh hey, it’s so great to meet you!”
What do you think are the best and worst parts about working in Hollywood?
Natasha: The best part is that you get to make stuff, as long as you keep your eye on the prize. That’s why you want to keep the pals that inspire you close, because they remind you that that’s really what it’s about. They also keep you sane for the worst part, which is really thinking about your outsides. A lot of it is about aesthetics, so it’s an organic thing to think about how things look, but the downside of it is getting caught up in that. Even just thinking about what you said and regretting it or essentially beating yourself up is the trickiest part. I think any actor worth their beans at all will tell you that it’s a very painful struggle. They’ll go to set, they’ll do the scene, and immediately they’ll get home and realize what they should have done, how they screwed it up. I was walking my dog once and literally found myself talking out loud to myself saying, “F-ck, that was it! What was I thinking?” It’s a very self-flagellating business by nature. So, I think maintaining sanity around that is the hard part, and maintaining integrity and purpose of vision to be creative is the best part.
Chloë: I couldn’t have said it better.
What do you do when you’re feeling uninspired? Anything specific?
Chloë: Trying to force inspiration is often difficult. I feel like engaging or checking out can both inspire.
Natasha: Probably what Chloë means by “checking out” is that you need time to recover and recalibrate. Take yourself out of the whole dance for a second and just be quiet in a cave to get back in touch with your basic nature without all the elements stimulating you and your insecurities. You need to just get quiet and remember who you are. We have a really core group of pals and even just taking it easy with friends…
Chloë: We also live in New York so I think it gives us a healthy perspective. We have a lot of friends that are in a lot of different industries so we’re not always wrapped up in the movie industry. When we’re going back-to-back on films and shows and then doing press, we can get run-down really easily. It’s nice to be able to go out into our friends’ worlds and get inspired by them.
Chloë: We love the subway. I’m obsessed with the subway.
Natasha: I think in your showbiz life, you’re always Ubering and I think it’s grounding to just walk down the steps of the train, zone out and remember that you’re just such a tiny piece of a massive city that has so many other swirling elements. You know that people are living equally high-octane lives and showbiz is only one of the imaginary high-stake industries in this world. You also remember what real people look like and it’s our job to tell those stories, not to be phony. No one’s calling me to tell Cindy Crawford’s life story or anything. I’m more of a character actor. The object under observation really changes and I think that’s probably the biggest difference between L.A. and New York. It can feel like somebody’s always watching you in L.A., but the subway in New York is a real place, and it’s jam-packed with people that aren’t looking at you, so it’s a very safe space. I think it’s helpful to remember how real people sit who aren’t thinking about being observed.
If you could have a drink with anyone, who would it be?
Chloë: I always feel that I go the sentimental route where I’d like to have had met or had a drink with my grandmother, my mother’s mother whom I never met. She died before I was born, and she was a really eccentric lady. She had a black cat named Lucifer, chain smoked and wore big bracelets. She was a real bohemian, which is weird because my mom was so square.
Where would you want that drink to take place?
Chloë: I think probably in her living room where I used to go when it was just my grandfather and aunt living there. She had this beautiful round table and this chandelier that I now have in my apartment in New York, and they had a gas stove. Now whenever I smell a gas stove, I always remember that house. It was above the butcher shop where my grandpa was a butcher. It’s just this weird memory I have of being young in Philadelphia in this beautiful old building with a staircase. To go back there and meet with her would probably be my dream.
Natasha: Ah, I don’t know. Immediately my brain goes to various idols I would obsess over as a teenager. Guys like [John] Cassavetes, Lenny Bruce, Aleister Crowley or people that really shaped me as a teenager. But I think, in part, I would probably want to have a drink with someone I was going to sleep with, and I don’t know if I want to necessarily sleep with one of those people, maybe Cassavetes.
Chloë: What about Thunders?
Natasha: Oh yeah, Johnny Thunders. But that’d be almost too wild.
Chloë: You think?
Natasha: Kind of. I don’t know. Who would I want to have a drink with? I don’t know I’m just really struggling with that.
Chloë: [Marlon] Brando? You could seduce him back in the day…
Natasha: Yeah, maybe like a late-in-life Brando and just eat a bunch of food with him. I did meet Brando towards the end of his life. I worked with him, when he was on the oxygen tank and everything. So, at that point, he wasn’t even really about sandwiches anymore. Plus, he regularly slept with everyone. I mean it would just not be that special of an event. He was notorious for climbing out of windows – one woman was coming out and another one was coming in. Really got around.
What’s the best drink that you’ve had in your entire life?
Natasha: You know who’s a great person to have a drink with? Kevin Corrigan. I remember back in the day when I lived in Beverly Hills we used to do a lot of drinking together, but he would have great answers for you about who to have a drink with.
Chloë: I recently had a drink – a martini, the most delicious martini I’ve ever had in my life – at Claridge’s in London, which is very glamorous. They somehow don’t shake or stir the martini and it was the most beautiful thing. I was with my boyfriend who I was falling in love with at the time, and it was one of the nicest drinks I’ve had in a really long time.
Natasha: You know who I’d have my drink with? Belushi.
There we go!
Natasha: I mean I feel like that actually would be a good time. You know, that’s somebody who’s definitely dead who would be a blast to have a drink with to just check out that scene. I mean, he had great taste in music, the whole thing.
Chloë: There you go, and then you could laugh.
Natasha: F-cking Belushi.
KIRSTEN MICCOLI PHOTOGRAPHY / A DRINK WITH in the Acura Studio
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