This Member Spotlight interview was conducted by Rosemary Owens. Rosemary Owen is a non-profit administrative professional with a passion for film and the visual arts. Along with five years of experience in fundraising, event planning, and cultivating community relationships, Rosemary has recently received a graduate degree in Arts Administration from Boston University. She is looking to bring her expertise to nonprofit arts and culture organizations needing assistance in development and communications.
Rosie Pacheco is an actor, producer, and storyteller who has spent time in many aspects of production across the US. Learn more about Rosie on her website, check out her credits on IMDB, and connect with her on Instagram @roe.pacheco, Facebook, or Twitter @RosiePacheco11.
Meet WIFVNE Member Rosie Pacheco!
How did you get started?
I started many years ago in Chicago. I was attending college there, for design -- and I began modeling for some extra cash. I started with a small agency and did some "bread and butter" modeling, as they call it, for retail stores. I went on a background call for a film that was being done in Chicago, called Vice Versa with Judge Rheinhold. When we got to the set, I was singled out by the director with another friend to dance on the tall podiums at the rock concert scene. You can see me if you don't blink...lol. However, that gave me a taste for the set, and I really have not looked back. I got engaged in Chicago and then married (here in Rhode Island, but lived in Chicago still). I ended up taking time away from the business to raise my daughter. I moved back to Rhode Island in 1990, and was a single mom for a bit, and it was difficult to follow that career path -- so I pursued freelance and later staff positions in jewelry and product design. I did go on calls and auditions, but now it's a whole new ballgame.
What do you love about the work that you do?
I am a storyteller and I love fleshing out the characters, from my vantage point. I am kinda fearless, so I will do things perhaps that another actor may not want to. I'm always after the truth, always. Also, the process of acting, for me, is emotionally liberating because I can experience something and be in it, as myself. I am not afraid to dig deep. I am not afraid to look unattractive on film. I guess you could say that that is my truth, again. Conversely, I can be a glamour girl and feel that part of myself. I do enjoy, though, uncovering the weird, quirky parts of myself.
What can you tell us about "Wallie's Gals"?
Wallie's Gals is a fun project created by (WIFVNE Member) Mary Ferrara that I am happy to be a part of. It is the story of four women who reunite after they worked together in a retail establishment. Things are said and done that are somewhat surprising to the group. It's an array of emotions that pay homage to the older gal, and what we live through. It's about change, and maturity, accepting yourself for who you are. It's about forgiveness, too -- for the things we did as a younger self, and knowing that these were our limitations, at that time in our lives. It's a dramedy that will make you feel a bit warm in the heart, with some raucous belly laughs thrown in.
What has your experience as a woman in the industry been like?
My experience has been good -- and getting better -- although I'd like to see more open-mindedness with older women in New England. It's getting there. We have so much to offer. It is a small market, and it is competitive, so you'll find that some of us don't even have agents in New England, yet we audition in NY and have agents in the Southeast, or elsewhere. My experience on set has been really positive. I've been involved with projects in and outside of New England, and I am thankful for every single one of them. I learned at every turn and am still learning, something that will never cease.
What has been your experience working as an actor in New England?
It is a small market as stated, and there's not a lot of part for the older "gal" -- again I think that is changing. The people I have worked with (most of them) were super professional and produced some good projects. I can go either way, the older gal with the grey streaks who is a judge/ business executive or a loud mouth blue collar cop. I know my brand, and I am now in the process of revamping everything I have out there, everything. The business of acting is a business first, no matter how much talent you may have, you must think like a business that you run, and your product must fly off the shelves.
Do you have a mentor?
I am in a coaching arena right now -- a small group of about 9 people, with a person who runs a group called the AGR in NY. I resisted at first, thinking it was expensive and time-consuming, but working with Jen Rudolph of the AGR has already helped me tremendously. The confusion on where I come into the market, or what I should be "selling" is now clear. I know I can play all sorts characters, but where I enter the market, how my materials should look, and what I concentrate on in order to get into the good rooms is of utmost importance. That has now been clarified for me.
Were you told or did you learn a piece of wisdom or advice you now tell others in the beginning of their career?
Yes absolutely! Back in 2012, I joined a group called HEA Hollywood East Actors Group, and from that group I founded a spin-off called the New England Kids Actors Group. It now has over 1300 members. We tell parents in this group, newbies and veterans alike, about legitimate casting calls, money practices in the industry, child laws and guidelines for set, post new calls, give advice from industry professionals to the parents, and answer questions about the industry for children under 18. I do not run the day to day group anymore, I am just a member now. The admins have done a fantastic job, and have created a new page as well for the kid's accomplishments. I've seen some of them grow so much over the years since 2012. I have worked with several of them too, and it's always fun and super professional. We have singers and models in the group. It really is a safe place for the parents of child actors/entertainers.
What are some things you wish could change/would help if more women were in the industry?
I would like to see more stories for the older woman. I have just started to see this now, and I do know that it will continue. I would like to see a shift in the mindsets of some of the younger producers: seek out and write and/or put these stories out there because they are interesting! Most of our film work here is indie work, so I'd like to see a shift here in New England -- to utilize all the talents we have here.
Where would you like to go in your work?
I know exactly where I am going. I wrote a screenplay about a woman whose life is chronicled over the 19 years she spent as a single mom, and " finding the one." The story has been picked up by HBO, and I am the creator, and have a role in it. A story that is not afraid to show things about myself and those around me, that may not be the most pleasant thing to watch. People need to know, especially now, that they are not or have not been the only one experiencing some unpleasant things in life. But on the flipside, those joyful moments would be expressed as well. Some of my inspirational folks are Phoebe Waller Bridge, Michaela Coel, Sharon Horgan, Sam Levinson, DuPlasse Brothers -- they create fearless shows. And they do it well. I want to work with them and be in those shows.
What can you share about what you are working on now?
Well, as you can probably guess, that screenplay I mentioned above. It's hard. To know which thing will translate well to the screen and what is the most important things you want to depict. I did executive produce a short film called Dark Light of Day (Amazon) that premiered at the Rhode Island International Film Festival -- not an easy feat. The film was a good concept, but NOT done the way I would ever do it today. It premiered in 2017. I did not know a thing about film production, nothing. Out of ignorance, I left a lot of it up to others. It costs a lot of money and time and effort and a will to not give up. You have to be crazy honestly to produce a film -- it's a life-changing thing. It takes over. But it's exhilarating too. The film is ok; it's a horror short about a mother and daughter, and how a walk through her mom's art studio causes a transformation in the daughter. We did the whole thing on $2,000. I had friends who stepped in and did some great work for nothing. It did not turn out how I wanted it to, but I am proud of the fact that it got finished and that it premiered in a rather prestigious film festival. (A piece of advice here: know what your role is in the production, and your power, if you're producing. And for Heaven's sake, raise the money to make it. You've got to feed the cast and crew for days -- that alone takes up a huge amount of dollars). As you can see, I have learned quite a bit on that one film. Glad I went through the experience!
I am a writer for Motif Magazine also, and used to be a film writer for them -- I hosted a film review show talk show also, under MoTiv, in Rhode Island. I am also working on a short film as a production designer called For Lily from On Edge Productions. I run a floral/DIY company called Daniel Rose Silk Effects, a 5 star vendor on Google. We are masters at upcycling, and I was asked to be a designer on the short; it's delayed til next Spring, but I am looking forward to it. I m also working on a series of photographs with female actors from the New England area, with an array of elaborate floral headdresses and interesting makeup. I have expert training in makeup from the old master, Mr. Way Bandy, who was a famous makeup artist in NY in the 80's. At that time, he was the highest-paid artist in NY doing all the Cosmo covers, and was makeup artist to Cher, Farrah, Joan Rivers, and more. His book, Designing Your Face, is the bible for ALL skin colors and types and it is a Godsend. I have also been called back for a film on the Cape about older women, and recently met the director in person in June of 2020. Escape 2120 premiered recently in Ohio and I had a supporting role in it as a lady of science. It was picked up by Bridgestone Media Group and can be seen now on Amazon. A film I acted in called Blood PI will be released soon, so I am looking forward to that. Working some other things, but for now, I'll wait til they actually materialize.
How do you think WIFVNE can support filmmakers in New England?
I'm not sure if this has been done, because I am a new member, but I'd like to see a spotlight in general on women filmmakers of the olden days -- women that were pioneers and got somewhat written out of history, mainly by men -- or were not credited with the great works they did. In particular Alice Ida Antoinette Guy-Blaché (née Guy; July 1, 1873 – March 24, 1968) was a French pioneer filmmaker, active from the late 19th century, and one of the very first to make a narrative fiction film. She was the first woman to direct a film. From 1896 to 1906, she was probably the only female filmmaker in the world.
Why are you a member of WIFVNE?
I like to read about people, and to go to some of the educational events they have. I have not been able to do that now due to Covid, but will certainly when we resume normal conditions. I am checking out their online activities too, at this time. They inform the film industry folks about the latest news, workshops, feature profiles and the members. They spotlight women in ALL aspects of film and television and that makes me HAPPY. I have met people just because I read about them or gained knowledge about programs that exist that I did not know about at all. I am looking forward to more networking with people here in New England, and seeing what these ladies are up to! I have a special place in my heart for women documentary filmmakers, and want to learn more about them here.