Actress Danielle Montezinos showcases her ‘oddball’ abilities in the crime-drama “Rob the Mob,” from director Raymond De Felitta and set to select hit theaters March 21st.
Based on a true story, the film stars Michael Pitt (Boardwalk Empire) and Nina Arianda (Midnight in Paris) as a couple who, while brazenly stealing from mob-run social clubs in New York City, stumble upon something that puts them in grave danger and makes them the target of both the mob and the FBI. Danielle gets caught up in the action at as a offbeat office worker and rival of Nina. The film also stars Griffin Dunne, Ray Romano, Andy Garcia, Samira Wiley and Michael Rispoli.
This isn’t Danielle’s first time as the kooky character. Audiences will recognize her from her long-running stint Off-Broadway in the ever-popular “Tony and Tina’s Wedding.” She also appeared at several festivals in the staged rock musical adaptation of the comedy web series “Mother Eve’s Secret Garden of Sensual Sisterhood”; and she co-created and co-starred in the comedy web series, “Asshole Approved.”
We recently caught up with Danielle Montezinos to find out more about “Rob the Mob” and her ‘oddball’ talents.
Tell us about your role in the new upcoming film “Rob the Mob”.
DANIELLE: I play Jumela. In the actual script I only had one line (it's ends up being a lot more then that!) and was thinking -- okay, just some random office lady. Cool. Then, I went in for my fitting and had 7 costume changes. SEVEN! I was like, whaaa? I soon learned that my character is basically Rosie’s (Nina Arianda) nemesis at work. Jumela's an ex-con and dresses in the worst, ugliest outfits that are her Mother’s clothes. Rosie loves to pick on me. Raymond (De Felitta) came up with this whole back story about her stealing her sister's baby, becoming a druggie and after getting out of prison getting this job while living with my mother. Really funny stuff. But basically, I work with Nina and Michael’s (Pitt) characters. I am one of many strange office workers. I'm the Office Manager.
Do you usually play the “oddball”; and would you say it’s “type-casting” or is this totally opposite of who your real-life personality?
DANIELLE: Yes, I do play the "oddball" often. But the difference in the situation is the costumes and hair. It's not my cutest looking role ever, if you know what I mean. I usually play a cuter quirky girl or obnoxious character. I have to say, I loved being all homely and ugly. It was really liberating and fun. Not having to care about what you look like. Though, I was in hair and makeup for over an hour each day. They really took they time to make my looks as odd as possible. I loved it!
As a character actor, you get the freedom to play those odd parts. I don't know if I'm typecast yet. I certainly think there is an oddness about me in "real life" but not that extreme. I'm also very grounded.
How was working with some of Hollywood’s rising stars like Michael Pitt and Nina Arianda, but also a comedy veteran like Griffin Dunne?
DANIELLE: I loved working with them. I came on the last week of shooting and everyone was so welcoming. Nina was so giving. She really helped create a lot of what Jumela was. The first thing she said to me was -- "you're Newman to my Seinfeld." I was like, f@#$% cool! Nina and I improvised a lot. She's really giving as an actor. Michael is very intense and commits 100%, also very giving. I was pretty star struck when I met Griffin. He was super kind and fun to work with. Watching him was like a free acting lesson. He's a real pro. They all are. I got to improvise with all of them and it was a dream come true! I really had to hold my own with these powerhouses! I think it did :) I hope so anyway!
Any fun stories from set you can share with us?
DANIELLE: Fun story -- it was raining really badly the last day and we were shooting in Coney Island. It was the very last day of production and it had to happen. The rain was really bad -- they said it was from a tropical storm that just passed up from the Carolina's. I think it certainly added to the comedy of the scene but we were all soaked and just went for it. You pretty much stop caring at that moment. I remember walking through these puddles the size of lakes and improvising with Michael Pitt. At that point the camera was just going and we all were just making stuff up. I think we did it all in one or two really long, wet takes! I'm curious to see what they did with it in editing.
So, I have to ask…do you prefer comedy or drama?
DANIELLE: I love them both but I tend to gravitate towards comedy. I really enjoy making people laugh. It's my jam :) I feels very natural to me.
And lastly, how can your fans keep up with your career?
DANIELLE: People can check out my web site for updates: www.daniellemontezinos.com
Follow me on Twitter @kyttiegirl
Or become my fan on Face Book- Danielle Montezinos Fan page
Thank you so much for this opportunity!
Thank you, Danielle!