The Maroon

“Django Unchained” actress visits Loyola

Actress Laura Cayouette on the set of “Django Unchained” with Leonardo Dicaprio. Cayouette played Dicaprio’s sister Lara Lee in the film about a slave who becomes a bounty hunter.

PHOTO COURTESY OF POP MEDIA GROUP

Actress Laura Cayouette on the set of “Django Unchained” with Leonardo Dicaprio. Cayouette played Dicaprio’s sister Lara Lee in the film about a slave who becomes a bounty hunter.

MELANIE POTTER

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With a career that has such a high rejection rate, actress Laura Cayouette has found the secret to holding onto that small percent of success. On Thursday, March 14, the Film Buffs brought this “Django Unchained” star to Loyola for a Q&A and screening of Quentin Tarantino’s “Hell Ride,” which she co-produced. Assistant Editor of Life and Times Melanie Potter spoke with Cayouette about why she treasures her life as an actress here in the “Hollywood South.”

Melanie Potter: So how did you get your start as an actress?         Laura Cayouette: I caught the acting bug randomly in my twenties and never looked back. I moved to Los Angeles in ’92 and like most actors, got my start in commercials.

MP: What has been your favorite acting experience?

LC: That’s an interesting question. I usually have an idea about which questions I’ll be asked, but this is a new one. I’d say it was my first big break in “The Evening Star.” It was the first time I understood that acting isn’t about how much time you have on screen, but what you do with those minutes that counts.

MP: Is this the idea behind your book “Know Small Parts?”                 LC: Yes, this book is a culmination of what I’ve learned from set to set. Acting is all about personal power. You must give yourself permission to own your part, no matter the size. In my opinion, acting is 99 percent rejection, 1 percent success. I try to think of each audition as a positive experience. You learn from every mistake.

MP: What do you think is the best part of your job?

LC: I love the feeling of affecting other people through acting; whether they’re laughing, crying or screaming. My job is to walk a mile in other peoples’ shoes, who else can say that’s what they do for a living?

MP: Could you tell me a little about your experience in “Django Unchained?”                                                                             LC: Being a part of “Django” was such a thrill. It became a wave bigger than all of us. What I’ve learned about Tarantino films, like “Django Unchained” and “Kill Bill,” is that you always know you’re making something good. There’s never even a question.

MP: What scenes were actually shot here in Louisiana?

LC: We filmed all of the Candie Land exterior shots at the Evergreen Plantation in Wallace, La. The interior was filmed in Second Line Studios, in New Orleans. It’s funny, the scene where Django and Doctor King Schultz are at the saloon and it’s snowing outside was actually shot in an alley right behind the studio.

MP: With many theatre students here at Loyola and your twenty-five years of experience, what advice would you give to young actors starting out?

LC: It’s all about marketing yourself. I spent half of my career without an agent by putting myself out there. Being your own agent truly separates the men from the boys.

Melanie Potter can be reached at [email protected]

 

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“Django Unchained” actress visits Loyola