Mink Stole's mindblowing scenes in Joshua Grannell's All About Evil had already been shot by the time I arrived on the set so I didn't have the chance to speak with her during the production; but--ever generous in spirit--Mink recently phoned me to share her thoughts about working on Joshua's first film. [This conversation is not for the spoiler-wary!!]
Michael Guillén: Mink, it's wonderful to talk with you again. Thanks for taking the time to help me promote Joshua Grannell's All About Evil.
Mink Stole: Absolutely! I'm a huge fan and good friend of Joshua Grannell's and would do anything for him.
Guillén: When we first spoke back in 2007 when you were at Frameline with Out At the Wedding, you mentioned to me that Joshua had approached you with the role of Evelyn in All About Evil and--as we had been joking--it was yet another role where you get killed off in a wonderful way.
Stole: I do, don't I?!
Guillén: Tell me a little bit about your character Evelyn.
Stole: Evelyn is a nice person. She really cares about Deborah, Natasha Lyonne's character. She's worried about Deborah's obsession with this completely dilapidated movie theater that will possibly bankrupt her and she counsels Deborah with genuine affection and concern to get rid of the place. Deborah does not like that.
Guillén: You've had the honor of being the first live guest at Peaches Christ's Midnight Mass and have--in effect--grown up with Joshua's alter-ego Peaches and the midnight scene he's created here in San Francisco over the past decade. What was it like for you to graduate with Joshua to his first feature?
Stole: I have to tell you that everything I have ever done with Peaches has been done professionally; he's extremely professional. I've always been very well taken care of. In all of my dealings with him--from my first appearance at Midnight Mass and our various appearances together around the country (we've appeared together in Seattle and a few times in San Francisco; I've done Midnight Mass several times)--it's always been stress-free for me and a pleasure to do anything with him. So I knew that if Peaches was doing a movie, he would have it together.
Guillén: So for his first stint as director, you felt he did a good job?
Stole: Yes, he did an excellent job as a director but I also thought he did a very good job as a producer.
Guillén: In your scenes in All About Evil, you primarily interact with Natasha Lyonne, who you've worked with before?
Stole: Yes, we did But I'm A Cheerleader about 10 years ago.
Guillén: How was it getting back together again?
Stole: It was lovely. It was really nice because I hadn't seen her in that entire 10-year period so it was wonderful to see her healthy, well, working and happy.
Guillén: As you know, the world premiere of All About Evil is coming up in a few weeks and I understand that you're going to be here to help launch it off?
Stole: I will be there.
Guillén: And rumor has it that you and Peaches will be performing the theme song from Female Trouble.
Stole: That's correct.
Guillén: That delighted me because the last time we spoke you mentioned that someday you hoped to perform on the Castro stage.
Stole: One of these days I'd like to have my whole band there with me and do my whole one-woman show. That's something that I would love to do, but that's a fairly big undertaking.
Guillén: One of the most interesting aspects of the production of All About Evil is Joshua's plan to roll the film out across the country with a pre-show "spooktacular." Will you be helping him with that in a few cities?
Stole: I will do as many of them as I can because, first of all, they're fun; second of all, I love traveling to different cities to do shows; I enjoy that very much. And I love Joshua. We're friends. We get to spend time together when we're traveling and that's always pleasant so, yes, I will do as much of it as I can depending on my schedule and whether the venues want me.
Guillén: Without giving too much away, your particular shock gag in All About Evil was created by up-and-coming effects artist Aurora Bergere. Can you talk a little bit about interacting with her to achieve that shot?
Stole: She was great. The hard part of that shock gag for me was when I had to have a face cast made. They put this stuff on your face and then they wrap it in bandages so you can't see and it's a little bit claustrophobic. The traumatic difficult part of that was done here by somebody else whose name I can't remember and wouldn't tell you if I did because I didn't like him. [Laughs.] But anyway, what Aurora had to do was create the actual prosthetic that fit on my face and she did an excellent job. I've seen just a tiny clip of the sequence and it's very realistic.
Guillén: It's one of the most amazing shocks in the film.
Stole: And the nights that we filmed that scene were long and grueling night shoots, which are always hard. We were working against the sun and had to get everything done before the sun came up. We were also working in a library so we had to get out of there before the library opened. I was put in a position of perpetuating that shock gag for hours while scenes were being shot around it. It was hard for me, I have to admit.
Guillén: Did you get to work in the Victoria Theatre?
Stole: Yes, I did, though my only shots at the Victoria were outside the theater. There are scenes in the film where I'm allegedly in the attic of the Victoria; but, they were shot in a different location, at the Armory.
Guillén: Since the last time I talked to you when you were in San Francisco with Out At the Wedding, you've worked on several projects. I was pretty sure you had told me you were not in Adam Shankman's Hairspray, yet IMDb lists you as an uncredited cameo?
tole: IMDb is notoriously wrong. I was not in that movie and, also, John Waters' Fruitcake has never been made; it's not even in pre-production. There's a script but there is no film.
Guillén: As you know, I'm writing a feature for Fangoria magazine, which has long been one of Joshua's favorite magazines and a dream of his to be featured within its pages. Are you a fan of Fangoria?
Stole: I'm not a fan of horror movies. Fake blood scares me.
Guillén: Really? So is your role in All About Evil your first horror credit?
Stole: It's my biggest; but, I have done others. I just actually worked on a short in Los Angeles called Bug Baby where I am killed by a bug baby; a bug that was born to human parents and you get a nice shot of the pincers getting ready to take off my head.
Guillén: [Laughs.] Oh my God! You continue to have an absolutely fascinating and unique career!
Stole: That was such a fun gig. So I get to say, "Yes, I've been eaten by a bug."
Guillén: Have you gotten around yet to drafting your memoirs?
Guillén: You know I'm going to be on your case about that every single time I talk to you?
Stole: Good! Fine. Somebody needs to push me into it because it's something that I would like to do, but is torture for me: writing is very hard. And I'm not going to have someone else write it for me.
Guillén: Well, Mink, thank you so much for taking the time to give me a few quotes for the Fangoria article and I really look forward to visiting with you when you're in San Francisco for the world premiere of All About Evil.
Stole: Thank you. I'm looking forward to it as well. First of all, I love San Francisco; it's one of my favorite places. I love the Castro Theatre and the premiere should be a spectacular event.
Cross-published on The Evening Class.