Interview with "Fear" star Jessie Rabideau

Fear Official Poster

 @Ventspleen2014 chats with Jessie Rabideau about her role in Steve Kahn’s short film “Fear” (have a look at his interview with Steve Kahn here)

Hi Jessie, Thanks for taking the time to discuss your starring role in the short film, “Fear”
Can I start by saying your performance was amazing. I shared the rising levels of discomfort and agitation your character was experiencing. What attracted you to the role?

Jessie Rabideau Oh, wow! Thank you, thank you. I’m glad to hear that. I had had very little acting experience when I took on this role, so it was such an invaluable learning opportunity. I think that’s why I wanted to do it – it seemed challenging, and acting had always been in the back of my mind.

Is it difficult being the sole performer in a film where everything focuses on you, on your reactions? There really is no escape from the camera. 

I think it would have been way more difficult if I had had to act with other people as I had never done that before and had no knowledge of technique or anything. It seemed like the perfect scenario for me to experiment and learn on my own without pressure and judgement from others. After having been in a real acting class for some time now, I think it’s so much easier to act with other people because you get to work off of them – Meisner, right? Ha! But, yeah, given my lack of experience, it was great to be able to put myself in Steve’s imaginary world and just feel those emotions. I’m sure I brought them up in myself in all kinds of (wrong) ways- haha- as far as technique goes, but I am learning so much!

And ! Ha! Escape from the camera! After being on America’s Next Top Model a few years ago, I kinda got used to a camera always being in my face. ;-p

Steve, really captures the contrast between the white of the bathroom and your bright blue eyes. Its a very striking image. I also didn’t feel uncomfortable at all with “watching you whilst you bathed” I feel sometimes this can be a difficult experience for viewers. How did you go achieve this? Clearly your nudity was not as “titulation”  but was incidental.

I think the bright blue eyes were mostly a product of editing – my eyes are green in real life! shhhhh! 😉

And, yes, nudity can be uncomfortable – for both actor and viewer. I think it was really Steve’s editing ability that made sure it didn’t go too far. Because, c’mon, the film isn’t about my private parts. Ha.

How long were you shooting “Fear” for? What are your impressions of the film having seen it?

I can’t remember how many nights we shot, but I think it was three or four. Considering it is one of the first films I’ve done, I was surprised at how some of my reactions and expressions came across – in a good way! Steve worked a lot with me – especially on the harder scenes – so I owe it to him for being patient with me and giving me time to get there.

What is your background prior to “Fear” I notice you have completed three short films previously (one which you wrote yourself)

Fear was my first real film. The beginning of this year was when I finally started making my own stuff. So, I wrote and directed my first one “found” (a silent film) and am in post-production on the second one, which I wrote and my friend Natalie Renee Shepherd directed. She and I are currently (at this very moment!) finishing up another short film we made as part of Playhouse West’s 72hr Film Festival. So be on the lookout for that! It’s pretty weird- haha !

Jessie under stress
Can you share your experiences with working with Steve Kahn? His vision for “Fear” is striking and hard hitting.

Like I said, he was super patient and really helped me – especially in those more demanding scenes. He has a background in acting, so he was able to help me tremendously. And if we weren’t getting it, we’d do it over and over again. Haha. I really think it’s helpful for directors, writers, anyone who works with actors to attend classes or something to see what it’s all about.

Nice shot with the duck!! I don’t think I could have done that no matter how hard I tried. How aware were you of the themes Steve has running behind “Fear”? Did this impact upon your performance and understanding of your character?

Quack! Quack! Ha! Before shooting, I really tried to study the script and understand it. I probably should have spent way more time on it, though. 😉 The good thing was he was always there to remind me what he was going for if I wasn’t doing it on my own.

What are your future plans? I’m sure that audiences viewing “Fear” would love to see more of your work.

Well, I should have those other two short films out on my Vimeo page by the end of the year ( and this fun series I am currently doing has a lot of potential to go somewhere. It’s called “Satan and Sarah,” and it’s about an actress who has made a deal with the devil (who is in puppet form) to launch her career. It’s pretty funny! Watch the trailer for the first episode here: be on the lookout for that. We will be starting a fundraising campaign to be able to finish shooting the season (which has already been written) so help us out if you are so inclined to do so. 🙂

Thanks very much for chatting with me. I do wish you all the best for future projects. 

Thanks so much! I had a lot of fun. Kinda loopy from being up for so long! Ha! Take care.

You can follow Jessie on Twitter at @Rabidizzle

Photos courtesy of

David Martin is on Twitter at @ventspleen2014

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