Rebecca Lamarche has a versatility not commonly seen in Hollywood. She’s been busy in front of the camera, appearing in multiple projects including the recent Hallmark TV-movie Fit for a Prince, but she’s also worked in casting and producing as well. Rebecca continues to pursue projects on both sides to this day, and dropped in to discuss that decision not to choose one lane or the other and the other unique points of her story which is still continuing to grow.
Brittany Frederick: You’ve worked consistently behind the camera and in front of it, which is uncommon for actors. Many branch out into other roles, but not to the consistent degree that you have. Why did you decide to keep your career active on both ends?
Rebecca Lamarche: You definitely hit the nail on the head there. Normally you specialize and just kind of stick in that lane, and I think that’s usually what’s really encouraged, especially when you’re growing in any of the facets. But for me, I started out with acting. I wasn’t acting a lot, but that is where I started.
I was also working in journalism and I quickly realized that journalism and acting did not balance or harmonize well together. I decided to kind of adapt the toolkit I had made for journalism, which really is storytelling, and adapted it to film production to see how I liked that. I found the balance was so much better. It actually harmonized and I just really focused on building in each specialty separately.
BF: Your recent credits include both a Lifetime TV-movie and a Hallmark TV-movie, which are on complete opposite ends of the spectrum creatively. What was that like for you to do both?
RL: It’s honestly what keeps it fun, right? When you’re doing a lot of the same, you can kind of get into a groove and maybe your characters end up being more similar, but as soon as you get to do a hard reset, you really get to explore and just kind of build someone different, so I love it when you can explore and play things differently. Really it’s a great way to put you in a creative mindset that has you approach your characters differently.
BF: How many projects do you have coming out or coming up at the moment?
RL: Fit for a Prince is the Hallmark movie that came out already, but the nice thing with Hallmark is they’re always replaying it. It’s been released on SVOD [streaming video on demand], so I was watching it off of Amazon Prime the other day. I have another rom-com called My Boss’ Wedding, and it is coming out on Super Channel’s Heart and Home network, which they will also have online. That was really fun. Then the thriller; I’m not sure when or where it’s coming just yet.
BF: Behind the camera, representation and diversity is something that’s very important to you. Can you explain why that’s relevant in entertainment and why it’s something you’ve chosen to focus on?
RL: For years now, as soon as I started getting involved with casting at the studio I work for—it’s called Brain Power Studio, and I work very closely with the owner [and] CEO of the company, Beth Stevenson—we both were looking around and there were so many actors in our community, people of color specifically, who we thought were just amazing. We were like, “Why aren’t these people working more? Why aren’t they booking leads? What’s going on?”
We recognized that there’s obviously a problem in our industry. Our genre that we make, which is a lot of these romance TV-movies, were very, very heavily white at the time, and so her and I privately just kind of made it our own mission to start making sure more of the actors in our community who are people of color were represented on screen in meaningful ways. We’ve had indigenous leads, bi-racial Chinese leads, Black leads, and they’re just cast for their amazing acting abilities.
The script doesn’t dictate it, and it’s just kind of a nice slice of life while being mindful that that the supporting characters who are people of color, aren’t just one-off, unimportant characters. We wanted to give a voice to the people in our community who we were really inspired by.
BF: What would you consider some of your favorite projects?
RL: I’ve been really lucky to work on a bunch of projects that I love, so I have a couple that are favorites for me. Fit for a Prince on Hallmark, which just came out, is actually a favorite for me because it was so much fun to make. I was away in Ottawa, filming during COVID, and it felt like just the most beautiful breath of fresh air with a really fun team of people to work with.
Another special one for me is one that I made with my home studio called Love, Alaska; I think it was 2018, and it’s on Amazon Prime now. I love how that film turned out. It was also very special to me because it’s one of the rare times I was able to combine all of my film specialties. I produced, cast, and acted in that film.
Last year, right before the pandemic changed everyone’s lives on this side of the world, I did a project for Shudder called Anything for Jackson, with some of my very close friends. The director, Justin G. Dyck, and I had collaborated on a bunch of rom-coms, and he really wanted to do this horror, so I consulted as a producer on that one and I got to do my first character in full prosthetics. I play the devil and am in full monster prosthetics. It was an amazing experience and tons of fun, plus very rewarding working with such great friends on a project they were so passionate about.
There’s The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair, which is definitely another one. It’s Patrick Dempsey’s mini-series and I received a direct offer from MGM, which really just doesn’t happen often. That was shot in Montreal, which is a city I love and have a lot of family in.
BF: Something else that’s awesome is you also have some experience with war reporting. Can you explain how that entered the picture?
RL: I was trained by the Canadian Forces and our Canadian government for embedded war reporting; like I said before, my background’s in journalism. The Cliff Notes of it is that our government and our military pick 12 up and coming journalists once a year out of the whole country, and you’re trained in different aspects of covering wars while you’re abroad in a war zone. That was how I trained. I then later did a thesis on military reporting when I was in university, so that’s my military-specific training and connection. Definitely an inspiration point for me; it’s very much the kind of films I eventually want to make. I find these genre films very inspiring.
Outside of the military, but in terms of military-actor-skillsets, my boyfriend Kyle and I have taken up competitive pistol shooting in the last year and a half or so. We have our Black Badges and we do IPSC, which is competitive pistol shooting. You’re tested and ranked on how quickly, accurately, powerfully and safely you can shoot stationary and moving targets while running through a course.
BF: Is there any one thing you want people to know about you?
RL: I find that when working, a lot of people– unintentionally –tend to kind of put me in this box where they only see me as one thing…As an actor, I hope there’s some action movies in the future, because I really want to use all my weapon-handling skills. I’d also love to get into some French projects because I grew up speaking French and English and my family’s all from Quebec, so I really hope I get to start working in some French cinema soon too.
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