Interview Done By Mike Wilkerson
Mike: How would the readers of Blastzone Online know you
Vanessa: I’m guessing because of my small recurring role as Anna on The Walking Dead!
Mike: How did you get the job to play Anna a Alexandria Safe Zone resident on The Walking Dead?
Vanessa: I received an audition request from my agent. The audition process for TWD is pretty rigorous. Some actors have auditioned at least 10 times. I think I auditioned for 3 different parts before landing the role of Anna.
Mike: When you got the job did you know it was for The Walking Dead?
Vanessa: I did know that the audition was for the show, but we do not receive the character’s real name, or with whom the scene is with, until after we get the job.
Mike: Had you read The Walking Dead comics or saw the show?
Vanessa: I had watched a few episodes of the first season, and I follow the WikiDead pages so I can keep up with the storyline.
Mike: How was it doing the scenes in Father Gabrials Church in the Alexandria Safe Zone Community on The Walking Dead?
Vanessa: It was hot! Haha! We shot in the summer,or fall, but fall in Georgia feels like summer. I love that the show pays some attention to detail. They really make each location/set nurture the scene,w which gives the actor so much to work with in setting up their time and place.
Mike: Take the readers through doing the church scene?
Vanessa: It was the first time I met Baby Judith, or both actually, since they are twins. Like I said, it was pretty hot outside,and we can’t run the AC while shooting. Both Father Gabriel and I were trying to keep the babies happy in between shoots. I imagine they must have been confused being passed around to complete strangers! I love that there is such a sense of community in Alexandria, that the actors AND characters come together, regardless of how little some of us know each other. When Father Gabriel got up to go out and fight, the tension was high. I remember feeling fearful, but encouraged to be a stronger person despite that fear.
Mike: Who of the main cast has been the best to work with and why?
Vanessa: Honestly, as you probably know, most of my scenes are not with any of the main cast. I can say that Andrew Lincoln is one of the nicest guys that I’ve met in the industry. From Day 1, he was welcoming, and any time he saw me, even a year later, he recognized me and extended an enthusiastic welcome back. He really is the glue on that show, and there is not an arrogant bone in him.
Mike: Give the readers a story from the set of The Walking Dead?
Vanessa: We are shuttled to and from set in vans. On my first day, which was in June 2014, it was at least 95 degrees out, and there were so many fans lining the streets to try and get a picture of one of the stars. They were there almost the entire day. It just blew me away to see such immense dedication from a fanbase!
Mike: Will we get to see anymore of you in the next part of the season
Vanessa: I REALLY don’t know! I think I have to watch the rest of the season to find out!
Mike: What else do you have going on?
Vanessa: It has been a pretty slow year for me. I worked on Logan for a day. We’ll see if I make the cut! I’m living back home in Los Angeles now and the transition is a little difficult. I went from knowing so many people in the southeast industry (and them knowing me), to pretty much starting over in CA. It takes time for a casting director to call you into their office, and there are hundreds of actors out in Los Angeles that have long-standing relationships with casting directors. I just have to do the time, so to speak. I recently started a Photo Booth business just to keep myself busy. I also work with foreign exchange students during their west coast tours. I’ve kind of stepped back from my involvement in the film industry just to recharge myself. I used to be very involved; I taped auditions for actors, ran a demo reel business which created content for actors that needed footage, produced a couple web series and a short film. The short film made it into a couple of film festivals. What I would LOVE to do is land a gritty, meaty role in an indie film, or a series regular role on an amazing TV show!
Mike: How can fans reachout to you?
Vanessa: They are welcome to send messages to the Facebook Vanessa Cloke Pages account, or they can send mail to my agency; The People Store in ATL, attention Vanessa Cloke.
Mike: What would you like to say in closing?
Vanessa: Thank you so much for including me! Actors are constantly battling life; waiting for that next job while trying tor remember our abilities, and that we HAVE abilities. It really is so comforting to know that someone is interested in me and my career. Each time I receive fan mail, a huge smile is on my face for days.