Miramonte Grad in the Hunger Games
Miramonte alumi, Brooke Bundy gets her big Hollywood break in the upcoming film, The Hunger Games. Bundy plays Octavia, a stylist that assists the main characters in preparing for the competition.
Mirador: When did you graduate, and first get started in acting?
Brooke Bundy: I graduated from Miramonte in 2005 and went to NYU where I studied acting at Tish School of Arts. I probably started in elementary school in the school plays. I went to Sleepy Hollow and Wagner Ranch. And then I did community theater and stuff in the city. I did drama my freshman year at Miramonte, but then due to scheduling problems I just did other programs like a play at Cal Shakes. I was always doing plays throughout my childhood. I did a couple plays senior year and for my Wise project I wrote a show and directed it.
M: Tell us about it!
BB: It was about an hour and 20 minutes and it was a sketch comedy show, but it also had dance, and I made a music video for it. Kristen Plant was my advisor on that, so she would remember it. I have a DVD of it if you want a copy, but that’s probably not necessary.
M:From there did you know that’s what you wanted to do?
BB: In fifth grade I told my mom that I wanted to be an actor. I just kept doing theater programs and camps, and all that stuff. And then I did a summer high school program after junior year through NYU. I went to Dublin, Ireland for it, and that replicated a college acting program, so I really loved that and I knew that’s what I wanted to do.
M: What other stuff have you worked on before?
BB: I did a lot of plays, and I’ve done a couple of indie-shorts. I was in this movie called Without, which has been at 25 or 30 festivals worldwide this past year and it did really well. And I was in my friends’ movie called, Fresh Starts 4 Stale People, that’s getting into some festivals now, and it’s on IMDB. I also started doing stand-up comedy for a couple years.
M:What’s your favorite form of acting?
BB: It’s hard for me to choose one thing. I like to do a lot of different stuff. I love making films and being a part of them, but I’m kind of more interested right now in live performance, like I started doing my own show where I’m doing cabaret singing and a mix of stuff, I always want to keep that in my life. I’m working on a couple films with my friends right now, and I wrote a screenplay for us to do too. I’m really enjoying working on those projects because they’re so homegrown compared to the Hunger Games.
M: What was the process of auditioning for the Hunger Games like?
BB: I have some friends who live down in North Carolina, which is where the movie is being filmed. They mentioned that there was going to be casting happening out of there, I did a little research and I found out where to send a headshot and the casting directors’ names. And then they asked me to send a tape because I live in New York. Then they sent the tape to LA, and I got a call back and that was it.
M: Did you know what the Hunger Games were before you auditioned?
BB: Yeah, one of my friends who’s a writer told me to read the books because I hadn’t. She said, “They’re going to be huge! They’re young adult but they’re awesome, you need to read them,” and I said “okay I’d love to,” and then like a month later when I heard there’s a chance to audition I got in there.
M: Did you have to wear ridiculous makeup because you’re supposed to be from the capitol?
BB: Yes, the make-up was really fun. I’m sure you’ve seen from the trailer how crazy it is. It was awesome. I got to work with a really great makeup artist and she spent a lot of time on me. They put so much stuff caked on you and I got to wear ridiculous costumes.
M: So this is one of your first big roles in a movie?
BB: Yes definitely. Everything I’ve done until now has been really low profile. It’s very surreal all of a sudden, to come onto the radar. In some ways it was like being on any set. I’ve been on sets where there are just five people but instead there are 200. It’s on a way huger scale. But it’s comforting that there is the same kind of energy and everybody is working to get the movie done and there’s always a time crunch, it’s a very exciting environment to be on. It was really amazing to be a part of.