July 2019 | Click to go to published article
Hazel Young is a stage and screen actor whose latest film is soon to release. An impressive list of accomplishments with a host of skills and talents, she's one to keep and eye on. We had the chance to talk to her about her career and future. Here's what she had to say:
Hello Hazel. My name is David. Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions and letting our readers get to know you. I like to start interviews with a few fun questions, so here we go!
Give me three words to describe you right now (and why).
As a person, I’d like to think of myself as: Open, Honest and Kind.
I am nearing 30 now (scary!) but throughout my life so far, I have found that the more you let yourself open up to people and be yourself, then the stronger and more meaningful those encounters will be. I always try to be a kind person, everyone is going through something so if you start out with a smile and a warm heart then I honestly don’t think you can wrong in life.
If you were to take me to see any movie, which one would it be and why?
This one is really tough, but, I’d have to go with Hereditary.
It is a truly horrifying film and I have to say I didn’t actually enjoy the ‘experience’ of watching it (which I think was the point). Although in the same breathe, I thought it was amazing!! The cast gave a masterclass in acting that taught me so much and the plot was so original and unexpected that if you truly want to be surprised, then you NEED to see this film.
Let’s go deeper. If you could watch any movie with one of the actors in the cast, which movie would that be and who would be sitting beside you?
‘Split’ with James McAvoy without a doubt. He should have received an oscar for that role! James played at least 12 people! Not only that, but each character was fully developed and clearly differentiated from the others. It was so impressive to see and I would pick his brains about that whole process, as an actor, of approaching a role like that.
I think before we talk about your roles, I have to bring up your training for on screen combat. Tell me about what that is and a little of what you had to go through.
I am a 5’4’’ petite woman and for most of my life I’ve fought against the stereotypes that come with that. All the usual assumptions that ‘I can’t do that, I’m a girl’ or ‘I’m not strong enough’ have plagued me and my career. Well, I AM strong enough, and what better way to prove that than by training in firearms and fierce weaponry. It’s some of the most thrilling work I’ve been able to do and is definitely not easy. The greatest satisfaction I get, is running full pelt at 6 foot + warriors and holding my own. I feel badass!
But in all honesty I didn’t wake up one day and decide to do combat, I’ve always had a passion for pushing myself and seeing what I’m capable of, which has lead me in this direction.
I understand you’ve got some experience now with a number of weapons, including spears, swords, firearms, and more. Be honest now, which was your favorite and if you had to choose a genre to use it in, which would it be and why?
I’d have to say, the most fun I had was finishing my training at The British Action Academy, where I had to don a gas mask, Army rucksack, have a rifle and firearm and survive walking through a blacked out chamber alternating weapons as I shot the assailants. It was THRILLING. It challenges you mentally, physically and emotionally…and is SO much fun.
So with that in mind, Action/Sci-fi/Fantasy genres would lend themselves perfectly for that kind of expertise!
Being a strong women on screen is obviously important to you, and it’s great to learn of your enthusiasm. Who have been some of the more influential women in your life and decision to act?
I am one of four sisters and each one of them is a fiercely strong woman in their own right. We are there for each other through everything and have been through some difficult times. To see normal women on screen, like my sisters, like me, I think that is the ultimate goal. The normal woman, the single mum, the best friend…they’re all real and I think we need more of that not only in film and streaming, but the media as a whole.
You have a part in the upcoming horror anthology Nightmare on 34th Street. What character do you play and can you tell a little about the part?
I do indeed! Without giving too much away, I play a rather anxious daughter desperate to be there for her father. She runs into a spot of trouble shortly after discovering her pregnancy so it becomes quite tense.
Are you a fan of horror movies?
I love anything with a great narrative, regardless of genre. Although, I do love a horror flick!
I see that you have some artistic talents as well, including graphic design and illustration. Are these hobbies or are these serious pursuits?
Thank you! These were serious pursuits before I realised I could actually be what I really wanted to be, an actor. There was an element of doubt about whether I could really ‘make it’ before I committed myself 100%, which I’ve recently discovered is very common. Since I’ve made that decision, only good things have happened, so I highly recommend others to take the leap and trust themselves.
Our website (thatmomentin.com) dedicates a lot of content to great moments in movies. Have there been any impactful or memorable movie moments that have been influential in your life?
Oh so many!
One of the stand out movie moments for me has to be from LOTR. Gandalf’s voice echoes in Frodo’s mind and says: ‘All we have to decide, is what to do with the time that is given to us.’
I think that’s very poignant.
Thanks so much for talking with me, Hazel. It’s been a real pleasure. I wish you the best of luck and hope our paths cross again. (Feel free to leave some closing moments).
Thank you for listening! I hope to speak to you again soon this has been really fun.