To be free, to be yourself, to be the sum of everything that you see, and that happens to you.
In other words, be a story to tell.
Thanks to acting, actress Fotinì Peluso manages not only to fully express her story but also that of the characters she plays, focusing on her emotions and desires. On the water of the Venice lagoon, during a last-days-of summer’s sunset, Fotinì told us about her approach to the roles she agrees to play, being true to herself and the future dreams she wants to remember and being able to tell, as if they were snapshots of a moment.
What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you think about acting?
Freedom. Freedom of expression, of breaking down every barrier. Art has the ability to knock down any kind of wall, it connects us to our emotional selves and makes us feel free. When you act, you can be anything you want, and this is true freedom.
How do you prepare to play your characters?
I think I’ve found the method that works for me. First, I try and consolidate the more technical and logical knowledge that has to do with memory and rationality: the reason why there are certain things written in the script rather than others, the sense of the sentences, of the words, their meaning. After that, I focus on emotions, I try and act out the lines in many different ways: at the beginning, to see what they sound like and understand what’s the best way, because there’s no such thing as a single way of saying the same thing, there are infinite ways. I really like to variate and try and play my characters as if they were the sum of many personalities put together.
“When you act, you can be anything you want, and this is true freedom.”
What does feeling comfortable in your own skin mean to you?
To me, it means feeling myself, which is probably the banalest, but less predictable thing. I need to feel like I’m saying what I’m thinking, what I really want, that I’m not changing what I am depending on the person I’m with, or on the place and situation I’m in. I’ll always do my best to be as true as possible to what I really feel. This also goes for the characters I play, who sort of become my second skin, so what changes, in that case, is the way of behaving and thinking, of expressing oneself, according to the character’s personality.
“I’ll always do my best to be as true as possible to what I really feel”.
“This also goes for the characters I play, who sort of become my second skin.”
A film to laugh, one to cry and one to hold your breath.
“Nothing Left to Do But Cry” by Roberto Benigni and Massimo Troisi, an extremely dramatic movie, whose story is told in a very light-hearted way, and this lightheartedness triggers very delicate humor. Also, “The Squid and the Whale” by Noah Baumbach is a very beautiful one.
If I think of a movie that would make me cry, what comes to my mind at this very moment is “Laurence Anyways” by Xavier Dolan. A movie that would make you hold your breath is “Fight Club” by David Fincher or “The Usual Suspects” by Bryan Singer, which is a very nice one to create suspense.
What’s the last thing you found out about yourself?
I found that I’m not perfect, that I’m not a machine. I found that, even though I did this for a very long time, I was wrong to keep going with blinders on, without focusing on what I really felt and trying to build walls between me and what I thought wasn’t right, but that was probably what I actually wanted. Now, I’ve realized that I’ve got as many certainties as insecurities and that the only way I have to solve this is to face them head-on and not to put them aside.
“Now, I’ve realized that I’ve got as many certainties as insecurities and that the only way I have to solve this is to face them head-on and not to put them aside.”
What’s your guilty pleasure movie?
I don’t think I have one, but there are movies that I keep watching over and over again, like when I’m into that romantically depressed mood and I’m feeling miserably lonely, I watch “Love and Other Drugs” on loop, or “Love Me If You Dare,” an amazing French movie by Yann Samuell. Rom-coms like “Nothing Hill” or “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” are guilty pleasures for me because I lock myself at home for hours and watch them again and again even though I know them by heart, and they help me get through my depression, that’s the only way you have to face it.
What’s your must-have on set?
My rings. I love rings and right now I have four I’ve become really attached to; I’ve had them for a very long time and they’re my talisman, in a way, but obviously, I take them off when I’m filming if they do not fit my character. But I need to go on set with my rings on. Ah, I almost forgot about earrings. I never leave home without them, it can never be a good day without earrings.
Have you ever had an epic fail on set?
Actually, I’ve had so many that I think I’ve lost track. I remember, though, that the first day on the set of “Romanzo Famigliare” the scripts fell off my hands and the people around were waiting for me to slam them three times. Suddenly, I had 10 people’s eyes on me, they had all turned and looked at me like, “Well, what are you waiting for, what are you doing?” I didn’t understand what was going on, but later they told me. It was really fun to learn about the customs onset from your own bloopers.
What’s the book on your nightstand?
“Arturo’s Island” by Elsa Morante, or “House of Liars.”
What’s your happy place?
I might be biased, but I’ll say Greece. My childhood memories of Greece, of my grandmother’s house, of the hours spent with my sister on desert beaches, and of the little goats are most certainly my happiest place, an inhibited one, far from everything I remember and know of.
What are the stories you dream to tell?
I dream of telling everything I see, everything that happens to me becomes a story to be told. Certain images that I see and that I like, I wish I could tell them straight away and contextualize them. Perhaps, I’m not able to create a story, but lots of snapshots that I’d like to remember and tell.
What can you tell us about your future projects?
There’s absolutely nothing I can tell, let’s say that we’re living a transition phase. I want to move to France in November and start studying at an academy of drama, I would also have an agent there. I’d love to explore France from a cinematographic point of view as well, but there are no actual projects yet. As of now, I’m living in the moment, I’m learning to find out what to do day by day.
“I’m learning to find out what to do day by day.”
Photos by Johnny Carrano.
Follow Fotinì Peluso.
Dress: RED Valentino.
Makeup Artist: Sandy Giuffrida per Armani Beauty.
Hairstylist: Faick Zekai per Cotril.
Thanks to ID Communication.