Steve Aaron-Sipple is in the indie feature Card Dead. Previous roles include getting a bit bawdy in the last One Direction video, being in Cuckoo with Andie MacDowell and Greg Davies and as part of the award-winning web series Horizon. We chat about gambling, acting and joking
D&CFilm: Tell us about your role in Card Dead?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: I play a character called Billy Seage, professional gambler, loudmouth, arrogant, and thinks he is god’s gift to women. I’m looking forward to getting on set and bringing him to life!
D&CFilm: What is it about ‘Billy Seage’ that appealed to you?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: His confidence I think, his arrogance and quick wit, although sometimes a little crass. I wanted to bring that to life as its things that I don’t really see in myself. And I love the challenge of playing a character that isn’t anything like me, it makes it a lot of fun creating and finding the character, not to say that my family have enjoyed me creating Billy around the house lol
D&CFilm: What sort of preparation did you do for the character?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: I always enjoy doing the prep work for a character, creating a backstory, giving them objectives, stakes and obstacles, it makes learning the lines a lot easier because it gives meaning to everything they say. Also with Billy being a pro gambler I had a great excuse to sit up all night watching poker, I’ve also played poker with my friends a lot over the past few months (sometimes in character!) to make it feel more natural.
D&CFilm: This is an indie film in Devon – how did you find out about the role and how does it compare with some of the other work you do?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: I saw the casting online and contacted Tim Thorne (the director) straight away and he asked me to audition for the role. When he offered me ‘Billy’ we got on the phone to chat about the project and the visions we had for the character, it was such a refreshing phone call, Tim is so talented and so down to earth, so open to hear my interpretations of the character and how they fit into his story. As soon as I put the phone down I started working on the character straight away as I was so excited about the project.
In terms of comparisons with other work, I’ve been lucky enough to be part of some fantastic productions and they have been amazing, but I think with Card Dead we all can feel how much Tim has put into it and we have fed off that, so we all want to make it the best we possibly can.
D&CFilm: Tell us about One Way Glass.
Steve Aaron-Sipple: One Way Glass is a brilliant short film I was lucky enough to be a part of. It’s currently in post-production and hopefully with be finished in a couple of months. It follows the journey of a young Pakistani woman, and explores themes of religion, sexuality, temptation, tradition. It’s a very moving, eye opening short film that I think will be received well. I play a character called Tom in the film.
D&CFilm: What’s your favourite type of character to play and what would be your dream role?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: That’s a tough one, when starting out I always wanted to be the hero of every story, and sometimes it’s great, but you realise when you start acting that it’s actually a lot of fun to play the villain or the anti-hero, especially if it’s so far removed from who you are as a person, to delve into that mind space can be a real challenge, but really interesting as well. I mean as an actor you dream of landing a ‘Jon Snow’ or ‘Rick Grimes’ role, or to be part of the Marvel cinematic universe would also be amazing!
D&CFilm: We’ve heard you’d like to be part of the Marvel universe – because we’re pragmatic and running after radioactive spiders isn’t that easy – what IS the superpower that you have at the moment (don’t say tolerating ridiculous questions!)?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: Ha-ha I really do love Marvel… My superpower mmmmmmm I guess I would have to say thick skin, luckily, I’m not the sort of person that easily gets offended. I remember when I got my first taste of the savageness of the Twitter verse. The music video I had just done with One Direction had got released, I had to man-handle Zayn Malik and throw food and drink over him. The 1D fans went nuts on Twitter. Fair to say I was not popular amongst them, they said some nasty things about me, but a friend once told me that if you let people’s words upset, hurt you or make you angry then you are letting them live rent free inside your head.
D&CFilm: Tell us about yourself, your background and why you got into acting?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: I’ve always wanted to be an actor, as a kid I was the joker in my family, trying to make people laugh, doing plays and shows, singing (badly), and that has always stuck with me, but getting older you get lost in life, or what you get told life should be, 9 to 5, pay your bills, live for the weekends, so at 16 I chose the latter, got a ‘Proper’ job, joined the rat race, and absolutely hated it. At 24 I had enough and wanted to fill that creative void that I had been ignoring since leaving school. I started researching acting school, going back to acting classes, just doing it however I could. I luckily got accepted to a screen acting school in London, spent a year studying drama and screen acting and then entered to industry, and as great as drama school was, experience is the best teacher, hence me constantly trying to work and learn my craft.
D&CFilm: What’s the most difficult part of being an actor?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: Rejection, without a shadow of a doubt, hearing ‘No’ can be a hard pill to swallow. Like I said I’ve got thick skin so I handle it quite well, but it can be really tough, especially if you think you are perfect for a role. A lot of people don’t see all the hard work you put in as an actor, how difficult is just to get auditions let alone land the jobs, for me I just try to learn from every opportunity and keep moving forward.
D&CFilm: Is there still room for indie films, and why?
Steve Aaron-Sipple: Absolutely, there are so many brilliant stories to be told, and so many passionate filmmakers out there that don’t have the backing of huge studios to make their films. There is definitely a market for indie films because of that very reason, people want to tell stories and create brilliant content, and people want to watch it. I would like to think that when I’m making big multi-million-dollar blockbusters, I will still also be making indie movies that I’m passionate about.
D&CFilm: You’re keen on doing more comedy – that’s a hard thing to get right. What sort of comedy gets you snickering and tell us a joke.
Steve Aaron-Sipple: Ha-ha it’s very hard to get right, some people are just naturally funny, I really love dry, sarcastic humour, and also awkward humour, which is why I like Ricky Gervais and his shows, The Office, Afterlife and Extras were all brilliant. I love the fact in Extras all the stars were so happy to make fun of themselves!… Ahh man a joke… most of mine are not very PG….ok here goes but I warn you its not my best work…. ’A waiter goes up to a man in the restaurant and says “So Sir, How did you find your Steak” “Well” said the man “I pushed over a few peas and there it was!”… Again, I apologise lol
D&CFilm: Great stuff! Thanks for your time Steve, and looking forward to seeing Card Dead!
Steve Aaron-Sipple: Thanks guys, and I hope you enjoy the film once its released.