One of my favorite horror movies this year is a special indie film called Close Calls (read my review here). It was a breath of fresh air mixed in with nostalgic horror from the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s. I had the honor of interviewing the leading star of the film, Jordan Phipps. Jordan is new to the film industry but you would never know by her incredible talent and the way she shines in every scene. We talked about her inspirations, how she got involved in Close Calls, her character, and more!
PopHorror – Thanks for talking with us, Jordan! How long have you wanted to be an actress? Any inspirations?
Jordan Phipps – I’ve had the performer in me since I was 3… I loved the classics: Judy Garland, Shirley Temple, Audrey Hepburn. I wanted to be them. It wasn’t until my early teens that I really knew I wanted to pursue it, but every time I tried to make myself do something else, I was so unhappy.
PopHorror – All amazing actresses, just like you. I heard you use to work in theater. What was that like and do you still do it?
Jordan Phipps – I am still a 100% musical theater nerd. Half my road trips are me re-enacting soundtracks. The theater is a different beast entirely, just about as much blood, sweat, and tears as a horror film! I have not done a show in about a year now since I’ve been focusing on film, but now that I am in Atlanta, I plan on doing both.
PopHorror – I would love to see you in a theatre project! How did you come about getting the role for Close Calls?
Jordan Phipps – It was so funny – I was really interested in auditioning but I misread the audition date and missed it. I was so upset because I knew I fit the description of the character and thought I could really bring something to the role. I went out camping with some friends, and in the middle of nowhere, I get a message asking that I come read for Morgan, even though I missed the date. I was thrilled!
PopHorror – I guess you weren’t the only one who thought you would make a good fit as Morgan! Although I’m a big fan of the film, can you tell the readers what Close Calls is about?
Jordan Phipps – In a nutshell… This film will make you question who is good versus evil. Reality becomes unclear as Morgan goes on throughout her bizarre night. It’s a very open-ended film, so everyone can kind of decide for themselves the truth, so to speak. I can’t wait to hear other people’s interpretations!
PopHorror – (laughs) This is very true! What’s your character Morgan like?
Jordan Phipps – Morgan is a little like you and me… Except she probably dabbles in more drugs, has a crazy grandmother upstairs, a loser boyfriend, and a crazy stalker… Not to mention nobody listens to this poor girl. She has that Rich Bitch front she puts on, but she’s really a kind soul. Just a bit misunderstood.
PopHorror – (laughs) Indeed! Can you relate to her at all?
Jordan Phipps – Totally. Teenage rebellion, feeling trapped, being misunderstood… it’s all there. I put a lot of myself into my characters, and in a way, I feel like they’re all extensions of my own self, just with different pasts.
PopHorror – What a fantastic way of looking at it! Do you have any favorite scenes in the movie?
Jordan Phipps – Oh man… I can’t say too much without giving a lot away, but let’s just say doing all my own stunts left me with battle scars and a lot of pride for a certain few scenes! I also loved when Morgan is telling her boyfriend, Robbie, to leave. They have that total high school relationship fight and I found it so refreshing and normal in a film that is anything but.
PopHorror – You did your own stunts?! That’s amazing! Did you find any part of the film a challenge more so than the others?
Jordan Phipps – Oh, yeah! Dealing with the stress of set life made things difficult at times, and some scenes would take hours to get just right. It would be hard to keep myself in a certain mindset to get to where I needed to be for the scene.
PopHorror – I can’t imagine how rough that is. What was it like to work with director Richard Stringham?
Jordan Phipps – Crazy. It was crazy. I don’t think any first time film maker has ever had to go through all the setbacks he had to. I admire his crazy determination and for dealing with everyone he had to! I loved that he gave me artistic room with Morgan. I would occasionally ask for revisions or different things, and he would almost always oblige. I also was so inspired by his enthusiasm. This film was his baby, and it was refreshing to work with such a genuine director.
PopHorror – He truly is, you definitely worked with a great cast and crew. Do you have any fond memories or funny moments that you can you think to tell us?
Jordan Phipps – So many fond memories with this one! Of course, my favorite thing off set was my developing relationship with our gaffer, Santiago. I guess I must have found his lighting very impressive, because I’m marrying him next summer! This cast and crew were probably the most fun, dysfunctional family ever. I had to get comfortable with them really fast, but I think that made the film better. I made some amazing friends, and we still continue to support each other. Those four months were full of pranks, drama, laughs, cussing, passion, and some of the most inspiring people in the industry that I know. Skanks on Set Forever!!
PopHorror – You’re getting married next summer? Congratulations! Who are some people you would love to work with if you got the chance?
Jordan Phipps – I would love to work with Sarah Paulson, Amy Adams, Evan Peters, and Michael Berryman. Plus a ton more!
PopHorror – Love all those people, especially Evan Peters. What are your three favorite movies of all time?
Jordan Phipps – I switch my three favorites so often, but right now I’d have to go with American Psycho, Once, and The Shining. They change almost every day, so don’t take my word for it!
PopHorror – Understandable, got to switch it up sometimes! Do you have any other upcoming projects?
Jordan Phipps – Yes! I’ve booked some things for Georgia’s tourism campaign, as well as my first comedy AND web-series! It’s called Double Bogey, directed by Michael Hamm, and it’s hilarious. I also make a cameo in Nick Hunt’s Safe Place, which is already getting a lot of social media buzz! I have a few more things in the works, as well. I am excited to share them with everyone soon!