Maria, My Love/ Judy Marte

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2011 Tribeca Film Festival: Maria, My Love
An Interview with Judy Marte

by Wilson Morales

April 28, 2011

Currently playing at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival is the independent film, ‘Maria, My Love,’ which is writer/director Jasmine McGlade Chazelle‘s film debut and stars Judy Marte, Karen Black, Brian Rieger, and Lauren Fales.

The story concerns a young woman (played by Marte) who has to figure what’s next in her life after the death of her mother. Refusing the support from her family, including her half-sister, Ana finds guidance in another way. Befriending an elderly woman (played by Black), who has also walked away from her family, together, the two women work at healing their own emotional wounds.

For Marte, who first gained recognition for her role in 2002 indie film, ‘Raising Victor Vargas,’ the film gave her the chance to bring in her own personal experience to the character.

The New York City native, whose other film credits include ‘On the Outs’ and ‘A Kiss of Chaos,’ recently completed the pilot episode for the TV series, ‘Rookies,’ opposite Leelee Sobieski, Tom Reed and Stark Sands.

In speaking with Blackfilm.com, Marte talked about her role in ‘Maria’ and her journey as an actress thus far.

How would you describe your character?

Judy Marte: It’s basically about a woman struggling with her mother’s death and she wants to do better for herself so she decides she wants to help this elder lady that doesn’t want to be helped. Throughout time, they end up helping each other out and they change.

What was the appealing aspect to taking on the role?

JM: Everyone has a mother and that’s always a real sensitive subject. I’m very close to my mom. I didn’t even think about it. I was in.

Was more did you do to get into character?

JM: I just really went with how I felt. It was really an emotional piece because of my mom to a point that I didn’t want to act, and it’s very weird, but I see a bit of myself in this character.

How much did you learn from (director) Jasmine Chazelle?

JM: What I got from her was freedom. She gave the cast a lot of freedom and the communication was so good. One doesn’t always get that on a set and she worked with us with the roles she created and let us expand based on our personal experiences.

How was working with Karen (Black)?

JM: I felt great working with her. I felt that this was a challenged character to play and I get to go and have fun with it, and she was able to feed some stuff to me that helped me add some layers to the role. We had really good chemistry and she’s amazing and so talented. Such a wise woman and I really happy to work with her.

How’s it going as an actress and finding roles?

JM: I still have to knock down on some doors. It’s tough. It’s tough for everyone. You just have to work hard. It’s going to happen if you stay consistent and persistent. I try to stay positive. I used to be picky in the past, thinking I would be doing certain things, but the roles I’m being offered or going for are better. I’m still going out and auditioning and still don’t get roles. Some producers are looking for known names and so it’s a struggle at times, but I try to keep my head up and hope for the best.

You have the TV series ‘Rookies’ coming up. What’s your role in that?

JM: We still have to see if it gets picked up. It’s about six rookie cops and I play one of them. I’m the Latin girl and that was fun to shoot. It was fun working with James Mangold and Jane Rosenthal. Robert De Niro came by the set one time but I didn’t get to meet him, but it was a good group of people to work with.


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