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article imageActress Laura Cayouette talks new John Schneider projects Special

By Adrian Peel     Feb 26, 2016 in Entertainment
Like an increasing number of established screen actors, the 51 year old from Maryland has recently worked with writer, director and actor John Schneider. She relayed the experience to Digital Journal.
In a successful career that began 20 years ago, Laura Cayouette has appeared in some very high-profile movies and TV shows, including Django Unchained, Enemy of the State, Kill Bill: Volume 2 and Friends. She also has a starring role in two upcoming films: Like Son and Hate Crime.
"It's a dark look at apples and trees," says the actress, referring to Like Son. "I play Joe Chrest's fairly demanding and disappointed wife. I had just played the wife of John Schneider, who wrote and directed Like Son, in Hate Crime - directed by Steven Esteb - so I guess that served as an audition of sorts. Though they're very different and their situations are very different, both women are striving to move forward with their lives."
Discussing Hate Crime, the powerful story of two families coming to terms with murder, Laura states, "It took years for the film to finally get made. I don't know the details, but I did notice things started to lock into place after the addition of Alicia Allain as producer. She’s like a Porsche engine, humming quietly while moving everything forward at a pace."
Laura Cayouette and Joe Chrest in a scene from  Like Son
Laura Cayouette and Joe Chrest in a scene from 'Like Son'
John Schneider Studios
"It is indeed a powerful story," she continues. "I'll be seeing the film for the first time next week and have heard it's terrific. The shoot was like so many labour of love indie projects where everyone ends up wearing a lot of hats to get it all done. Alicia even cooked for us several times...
"There's that sense of 'We're all in this together.' Personally, the part of Marie was difficult for me, as this is certainly one of the darker moments in her life. I spent a lot of time crying and plenty of time feeling hurt, scared and angry.
"We all have luggage we carry, but actors - and writers - have to unpack their luggage and examine it all the time. It also gives me a chance to walk a mile in so many shoes and find deep compassion for all kinds of people."
Laura Cayouette and John Schneider in a scene from  Hate Crime.
Laura Cayouette and John Schneider in a scene from 'Hate Crime.'
Maven Entertainment
What does Laura enjoy most about collaborating with John and Alicia? "Honestly, I'd love working with them until we're all in rocking chairs," she replies. "John and Alicia would probably figure out a way to film that too...
"We've actually already done another project together. I had a small part as a librarian in the thriller Inadmissible. The story's unique and compelling and John has a real way with dialogue and character. What I most enjoy about working with them is the exuberance of it all. They just want to make movies and they’re not interested in the obstacles.
John and Alicia are all-in, don't-say-no, full steam ahead optimists who have created a community of actors, crew, neighbours and local businesses and schools who are coming together to just make movies."
When looking at Ms. Cayouette's long list of credits, one job that inevitably stands out is Django Unchained, in which she played Lara Lee Candie-Fitzwilly, the sister of Leonardo DiCaprio's character Calvin Candie.
"That’s the question everyone wants to know," she laughs, when asked what it was like working with director Quentin Tarantino. "That and what it was like to work with Leo... Quentin and I have done four projects together, including Hell Ride, a biker movie we produced.
"We were actually friends first, so of course it's great to be able to work with people who know what you're capable of and want to share that with the world. The biggest thing that sets Quentin apart from the rest is his deep and absolute love for movies.
"His enthusiasm is infectious, even when you're working gruelling hours in a corset. He notices everything and cares about the ride the audience will be taking when they see the finished product. Maybe that's an even bigger difference - he doesn't just love movies, he loves moviegoers.
"All sets are fairly magical, but Quentin's are notoriously different. When we're not shooting, there's always music playing. The sound booth doubles as a DJ booth. Every single birthday was celebrated with song and personalised cake.
"When you work on a Tarantino film, you know you're probably making something great, something memorable - maybe even something important. That’s really rare...
"It's a lot of pressure, but at the same time it's this unique opportunity to rise to the occasion and be part of something amazing. My goal as an actor is always to be unforgettable. When you work with Quentin, you're getting a real leg up on that - a huge head start."
To learn more about Laura Cayouette, visit her official website.
For more on Hate Crime, visit the film's official Facebook page.
For more on Like Son, go to this Facebook page.
The official website of John Schneider Studios is here.
The official Facebook page is here.
More about Laura Cayouette, like son, Hate crime, John Schneider, john schneider studios
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