All Posts By Emily Surpless

Richard Harmon Chats ‘The 100’ and His Favorite Roles

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If you’re invested in thrilling dramas, chances are you’ve seen actor Richard Harmon before. His impressive list of credits include the likes of Bates Hotel, Continuum, and The Killing, though he’s also acted in films like The Age of Adaline and If I Had Wings. Most recently, he’s gained attention for his role in the hit CW show The 100. The show follows a group of teenage prisoners as they set out on Earth, which had been abandoned for a space station called The Ark after a nuclear disaster. While they have been sent to test the planet’s habitability, they must also learn how to survive with not only each other, but with the Earth’s mysterious and dangerous inhabitants. Harmon plays John Murphy, a dark, brooding character with a violent streak. But as he spends more time on Earth, his rigid exterior seems to be softening, leaving viewers eager to learn more about his background and the reason he was imprisoned in the first place. We talked with Richard Harmon about his experience playing Murphy, as well as his future projects and the role of his dreams.

Optimized-_MG_9369RICHARD HARMONCliché: John Murphy’s come a long way. What can we expect from John this season?
Richard Harmon: You’re right. He’s come a very long way, both in distance and mentally. As far as this season is concerned, I believe we will continue to see that growth from him mentally and emotionally. I think you will notice his morals change slightly and [Murphy] starts to take others into that very tight circle he has. The characters on this show have no choice but to constantly evolve. There is too much going on around them for them to remain the same people they once were. Evolve or die.

Will we learn more about his background, like why he was arrested prior to season one?
Yes, we do get to learn a little bit about Murphy’s past, which I don’t think anyone was more excited to hear about than I was. I knew nothing about who he was or what the circumstances were that led him to getting arrested when we started the show, so I’m always excited to learn more about his past.

What has been your favorite scene to shoot of the series? What about your favorite storyline?
My favorite scene was easily the first scene of season three. It was a montage sequence where I am stuck in a bunker, and over the course of 80 days, you see my mental state crumble. What made it so much fun was that it’s very freeing to just let loose and go crazy and not have anyone tell you you’ve gone too far. ‘Too far’ was good, in this case. I owe a lot to our director Dean White for that scene; we both fought very hard for it, and I think it turned out great.
My favorite storyline, I think, was the “City of Light” storyline I had in season two, where Isaiah Washington and I were in the desert looking for this safe haven called The City of Light. Isaiah and I have great chemistry on set, and it was a pleasure going on and getting to battle him every day.

What do you enjoy about playing this character?
Honestly, what I love most is that we established him in the first season as a person who might do anything at any given time. So when I play him now, I feel complete freedom that no matter what choice I make, it probably remains true to the character.

Optimized-_MG_9435RICHARD HARMONOn television, you’ve played other “bad boys,” like Jasper Ames on The Killing. Is there something in these characters that you’re drawn to?
I think originally it was just my look that drew those characters to me, but over time, I’ve fallen in love with playing them.

Who has been your favorite character to play so far?
I have been so lucky in my career to already have so many fun characters under my belt. There is no way that I could choose a favorite. I’m very grateful to all the people who have hired me in all these different roles. My life would be very different without them.

Is there a specific kind of character that you’re dying to portray or a specific TV/film genre that you’d love to get involved in?
The character I would give anything to play would be Ebenezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol. There is also a movie I am trying to get into development right now, and if I ever get to shoot it, it would be a dream come true. But I can’t talk too much about it at this stage.

Besides The 100, are there any other projects of yours that we should keep an eye out for?
A fun little horror/comedy I did called Puppet Killer is in post-production right now. That movie should be fun to watch.

Read more Entertainment Interviews at Clichemag.com.

“Richard Harmon Chats ‘The 100’ and His Favorite Roles” was originally published as “Down To Earth” in Cliché Magazine’s April/May 2016 issue. Photographed by Kyla Hemmelgarn.

How ‘New Girl’ Survived Without Zooey Deschanel

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Most shows wouldn’t be able to survive without their main star. New Girl isn’t one of those shows. Zooey Deschanel took a break from filming for a few weeks after she gave birth to her and her husband’s daughter, Elsie Otter, but fans everywhere were concerned with how the show could possibly continue while she was away. The show runners decided to have her character Jessica Day be sequestered by a grand jury case and have to be isolated in a hotel room for weeks. But without Jess’s presence, the most important member of apartment 4D, how could the show succeed?

Guest Stars Add Interest

New Girl is no stranger to guest stars. From Jamie Lee Curtis to Jessica Biel to Taylor Swift, there have been plenty of celebrities and fan favorites that have made cameo appearances, and, so far, despite a missing Zooey, season 5 has been no exception. The arrival of new faces distracts viewers who are missing their favorite quirky girl and sets up new plot points for a hilarious show.

After Jess leaves for jury duty, the boys decide to turn their apartment into a sort of hotel to make some extra money. One of their guests include a weird writer of erotic fiction played by SNL alum Fred Armisen, who, by the end of the first episode, dresses up in Jess’s clothes and a long brown wig, pretending to be her. But the guest star hijinks don’t end after Armisen departs. In the episode “Bob & Carol & Nick & Schmidt,” Nick’s cousin, played by comedian Bill Burr, and his wife, played by Lennon Parham, come to town with a bizarre request: they want Nick’s sperm. And, of course, popular actress Megan Fox turns up soon as a bold pharmaceutical rep with tons of moxie to spare. She moves into Jess’s old room and becomes the show’s temporary New Girl.

The Gang Takes On Jess’s BFF Duties

Jess has many roles in the group, and her absence is felt by everyone. While some shows might shy away from distributing a single main character’s quirks to others, New Girl doesn’t miss the opportunity to show how crucial Jess is in all of her friends’ lives; it goes without saying that they struggle to fill the void she’s left behind. Schmidt has to stop a fight between Cece and Nick, as both gets increasingly on each other’s nerves. Cece tries to comfort Winston during a breakup, and tries to cheer him up with tea and a pep talk like Jess would. Winston goes wedding dress shopping with Cece, an activity she’d planned on taking Jess to. While they all ultimately fail to live up to the expectations set up by Jess, her friends’ attempts to each temporarily assume the backbone of the group show how close they’ve come since the series premiere.

Jess Still Appears—In One Way or Another

Even though Deschanel doesn’t technically appear in each episode, the show still manages to make Jess’s presence known. Not only by showing how much her friends have learned from her over the years—even if they fail to actually help each other as Jess would—but also by using clever ways to show that she’s still the heart of New Girl. After all, this is a show where the main character leaves behind a bowl with her face on it, containing notes of advice that her friends can read in times of need. And we hate to admit it, but from behind, Fred Armisen makes a convincing Jess, hair bow included.

While Jess has been sequestered, the gang has spent more time in her room than ever before—even, at one point, wearing her ski clothes to warm up. After Cece’s wedding dress disaster, the gang heads over to Jess’s hotel and stands outside on the sidewalk while Jess stands at her window, backlit and at a distance so all you can see is her silhouette. Even though her part was clearly not played by Deschanel, it’s’ a great way the show included her character, allowing her to communicate with everyone, even if via a notepad and marker.

In tonight’s episode—New Girl’s 100th—Jess is finally back from jury duty. In the promo, we see Jess and Reagan hugging and a very surprised Nick. Instead of being upset that the boys rented out her room, Jess seems as happy-go-lucky as ever, in true New Girl fashion, seemingly oblivious to the relationship between her former love Nick and her “replacement” Reagan. Who knows how she’ll react when she finds out what she’s missed.

Tune in to Fox tonight at 8/7c to find out.

Read more Entertainment articles on Clichemag.com.

How ‘New Girl’ Survived Without Zooey Deschanel: Images courtesy of Giphy & Entertainment Weekly

Tamala Jones Chats About the New Season of ‘Castle’

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Tamala Jones is no newcomer to the spotlight. She’s appeared in various television shows and films over the years, including The Tracy Morgan Show, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Up in the Air, and more. But she may be best known for her role as Lanie Parish, the sassy medical examiner for the NYPD, in ABC’s Castle. When Jones is not acting, she’s lending her talents to other projects: getting involved behind-the-scenes as a producer for an upcoming film and as a spokesperson for a cause that’s close to home. With her ambition and focus, we can’t wait to see what she’s up to next. 

Cliché: This is your eighth season playing Lanie on Castle. How do you see your character progressing?
Tamala Jones: Everything has been great this season! Lanie is Lanie and just as sassy as ever. She is full of all of the right information and best friends with the new captain, Kate Beckett. #CaptainKBecks. In season 8, Lanie gets to do some pretty fun things! I’m very excited to see how the fans will react.

Last we saw Lanie and Esposito, their future seemed uncertain. They broke up, but they’ve gotten back together before. Are they over for good or is there a chance “Esplanie” will rekindle their romance?
Esplanie is still on! It’s a game of cat and mouse at this point. They love each other, but are total commitment-phobes. I kind of like it that way… it’s a “what will they do next” kind of vibe.

Tamala-Jones-2What has been your favorite storyline to film? Any favorite episodes?
I loved the storyline when the XXX killer showed up again to wipe his history clean. He had a plastic surgeon on his team and was able to make doubles of Lanie and Esposito. My favorite episode was “The Blue Butterfly;” going back in time to the ‘40s was awesomesauce!

What can fans expect in the second half of season 8?
Fans can expect lots of surprises in storylines and in guest appearances, and a lot more mysterious happenings.

It’s been announced that you’ll be producing a biopic about iconic Motown singer Tammi Terrell. What made you want to pursue this project?
I’ve always loved Tammi and Marvin Gaye songs ever since I was a kid. Tammi’s sister, Ludie, reached out to me and wanted me to play Tammi. At first, I was so excited and beyond honored, but then, after speaking with my team, we agreed that I should be the instrument that gets this movie done the right way. I put my actor ego aside and decided to make a great movie using seasoned actors and ushering in some new, hot talent. I get to see Tammi made from a different point of view, and that is very exciting to me!

Are there any other projects we should look out for?
Lots more to look out for! I’m just getting started.

Besides acting and producing, you also spend your time as the spokesperson for the Brain Aneurysm foundation. Were you approached for this position or were you looking for an opportunity to raise awareness?

I approached them looking for a way to raise awareness, and I felt a great importance to do so because I was so young when it happened to me.

You were diagnosed with a ruptured brain aneurysm at 23. Could you tell us about that experience?
It was horrible! I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. I had a headache for two weeks straight and thought it was another sinus infection. Then one morning, I woke up with no balance; I was walking on my toes. I felt like I had to urinate really badly, and when I tried, nothing came out. My head was hurting so badly, and when I looked in the mirror, I hit the floor. The whole right side of my body was numb! When I got to the hospital, the doctor told me I had hemorrhaged and had a brain aneurysm at the age of 23. Not a great experience almost dying!

Were there any warning signs? Are there any symptoms that people should look out for?
Splitting headaches, like your blood circulation is being tied off by a rubber band, dizziness, fainting, funny taste in your mouth, and in some cases, there have been no signs. I suggest that everyone get an MRA or MRI along with their yearly check up. The brain runs our whole bodily system, and it should be checked, too.

Read more Entertainment Interviews on ClicheMag.com

Tamala Jones Chats About the New Season of ‘Castle’: Photo courtesy of Catie Laffoon

Jasmin Savoy Brown Gives Us the Scoop on Season 2 of ‘The Leftovers’

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Fellow Hollywood newcomers must envy actress Jasmin Savoy Brown for her chance to work alongside big names like Justin Theroux, Regina King, and Liv Tyler. In its second season, HBO’s gripping drama The Leftovers welcomed Brown into its cast. In the show, which explores the disappearance of two percent of the world’s population—an event known as the Sudden Departure—and the aftermath of dealing with their unexplained absence, Brown plays Evie Murphy, a neighbor to main character Kevin Garvey (played by Theroux). Here, Brown discusses her character’s development and her involvement in the Guilty Remnant, a silent organization formed to remind others of the Sudden Departure.

Cliché: At the start of season 2 of The Leftovers, your character Evie goes missing, only for it to be revealed at the end that she staged the disappearance. Did you have any idea that this was planned?
Jasmin Savoy Brown: I had no idea! But I could not have been more excited. The first time I watched The Leftovers, I was sold as soon as Amy Brenneman came on the screen. I was so captivated that I literally said to myse“lf, “I would love to play on that show, as one of the Guilty Remnant. HA! That’ll never happen.” So later when I read the script for episode nine and it was revealed that Evie was joining the Guilty Remnant, I literally gasped, cursed, screamed, and then threw my script. In joy!

How do you feel about your character’s development this season?
I have loved Evie’s development. I honestly did not think that I could have gotten a better, juicier role at this point. In my first big job, I was able to reveal multiple sides of myself and play in a different territory, so I do not feel confined to one specific box, and that is such a gift. I think that Evie’s progression occurred through the viewer’s experience. Evie’s anger was always there. I knew it was there; I felt it. The audience just did not know yet because Damon [Lindelof] and the creators are very smart. But they left seemingly obvious clues that are fun to discover in a second viewing. I loved the honesty in her progression. The way that Evie was written, nothing was false or forced or seemed like an idea. The portrayal was an honest reflection of this girl’s experience—relatable, and true.

Do you have any theories as to why Evie joined the Guilty Remnant?
I have many theories as to why Evie joined the Guilty Remnant—the crux of it being her pain and anger. I think that Evie is someone who feels deeper than most. She can see things that other people can not. She sees the truth. She loves harder and feels pain more deeply, so the effects of the departure on her town and [on] her family took a more intense toll on her than most. She hid that pain for so long that most people thought that “something happened.” Well, the departure happened.

As an actress, what did you like most about playing Evie?
I loved exploring her anger and manipulation. Evie is deeply, deeply angry, and exceptional at hiding it. She was so cunning and loving in her deception that the entire town of Jarden, her family included, were completely blindsided by her decision to disappear. As heartbreaking as the content is, it is interesting and fun to explore as an actor. I have never played someone as angry as Evie. I feel like I have only brushed the surface of her anger, and I would love to continue to explore this.

Jasmin-Savoy-BrownWhat drew you to this role?
To be completely honest, having an audition drew me. When I booked this role, nothing had clicked yet. I had gone on about 650 auditions, and of those auditions, I had only booked a few small co-star roles, or one-liners in movies that even my family cannot remember. I was taking every audition that I could, even though I did not always want to, and starting to wonder if it was possible that I was doing something wrong in the callback room. Then I got the call that I had booked the role of Evie. I am extremely lucky to truly start my career with The Leftovers.

Many shows are straightforward in their reveals, but this show thrives on ambiguity. Was this a pull for you as an actress to take part in a show grounded in such mystery?
Yes, absolutely. Especially after I did some research on Damon [Lindelof] and started to understand the way that he works. To not know what was happening next, I knew that I would be forced to rely completely on instinct, which sounded exciting and challenging. With such ambiguous themes and answers rarely being revealed, I knew that I could openly explore every possibility and there would be no “wrong” answer. There really is no right or wrong on The Leftovers.

How does it feel working with such a talented cast?
I felt like I was being paid to attend a master class. It was an incredible experience. I learned so much from the entire cast. I am especially thankful to Kevin Carroll, who was and will forever be one my biggest teachers. He was the person I went to on set (or when I was taping auditions in my hotel room) whenever I faced a challenge or had a question, and he would always take the time to stop and give me his full attention. He would take the opportunity to teach me something and then I would watch him act that out or put it into practice myself. It was an absolute dream.

What can we can expect in the third season?
I wish I could tell you, but I honestly have no idea! Whatever happens, I know that it will beautiful, engaging, and honest.

Now you’re also going to have a guest role in the upcoming second season of ABC Family’s/Freeform’s Stitchers. Could you tell us a little about your character and what to expect?
On Stitchers, I play Nina, a 20-something comic book (and all-around) nerd who falls for one of the members of the Stitchers team. You can expect Doctor Who jokes, a cute pair of glasses, and a lot of flirty, nerdy banter.

Any other projects coming up?
I just wrapped photography on two independent features. I shot Newly Single starring Adam Christian Clark, Jennifer Prediger, and Jennifer Kim, as well as LANE 1974, starring Katherine Moennig and directed by S.J. Chiro. Both projects are expected to release in 2017. I am working on a few other things, but as of right now, my lips are sealed!

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Jasmin Savoy Brown Gives Us the Scoop on Season 2 of ‘The Leftovers’: Photo courtesy of Quavondo

Fifth Harmony’s Normani Kordei Talks Girl Power and Career Moves

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Every so often, an all-girl group comes along that blows up the music scene. From TLC to Destiny’s Child, these groups redefine girl power with their confidence, talent, and powerful performances. For the next generation, this source of influence and inspiration can be found in the ultra-popular girl group Fifth Harmony. Although the group formed four years ago during The X-Factor (U.S.), for Fifth Harmony member Normani Kordei, the success still hasn’t sunk in. “Knowing that my dream is no longer a dream, but my reality, constantly blows my mind,” she said.

While Kordei initially strived for a solo music career, like her fellow group members, the formation of the group has resulted in great success. After finishing third place on the X-Factor, Fifth Harmony has gone on to produce hit singles like “Miss Movin’ On,” “BO$$,” and “Worth It.” The group’s songs are earworms, full of catchy lyrics and thumping beats. Their dance moves are on point, perfectly timed and choreographed for the music’s rhythm.

Even after performing for America’s First Family, Kordei isn’t letting the group’s accomplishments go to her head. While Fifth Harmony has amassed plenty of awards, such as a 2014 MTV Video Award for Artist to Watch and a 2014 Teen Choice Award for Choice Female Music Group, Kordei still can’t believe her luck. “I will forever be humble and grateful for this gift,” she says, remarking on her launch into stardom. “I can never get used to the idea of being nominated.” With big dreams and a bright future in the music industry and beyond, we’re excited to see what Kordei will do next.

Normani Kordei054-GT

Dress: House of CB, Rings: Sucre, Earrings: Jennifer Fisher

Cliché: As you’ve demonstrated with Fifth Harmony, you’re both an incredible singer and dancer. Which was your first passion? How’d you get into each?
Normani Kordei: I have been singing and dancing for as long as I can remember. I would sit on my parents’ bedroom floor, looking up at the television watching 106 & Park and seeing Mariah Carey’s “We Belong Together,” Alicia Key’s “You Don’t Know My Name,” and Destiny’s Child’s “Survivor” music videos. I could never keep still, not even for one minute. I couldn’t help but prance around the house. The kitchen was my own personal stage because it was easiest to do pirouettes in and gave me the space I needed to be creative.

        I asked my family to enroll me in dance classes at the age of 3. My pre-school had an after school program that specialized in dance, so my mom, dad, and grandmother immediately enrolled me. I remember going to school and being excited for the day to end. All I could think about was changing into my ballet slippers, tap shoes, and most importantly, my pink tutu.  My first love was dance, and through dance I learned to appreciate different genres of music. My love for music, along with a little push from my parents, led me to singing.

I think it would surprise a lot of people to realize that, while you’ve received multiple gold and platinum records, you’re only 19! Did you ever envision yourself where you are now? Where did you think you’d have been at your age?
I wake up every morning thinking about how drastically my lifestyle has changed and all that I have accomplished thus far. I am 19 years of age, and I never thought that I would have ever lived through as much as I have, being so young. I have been introduced to many different opportunities and situations that people much older [than me] typically handle. I can say that I’m a lot more prepared for my adult life now than I would have been if I never had this opportunity.

         I honestly thought that in this moment in life, I would be in college, not that far away from home, of course. I thought I would still be dreaming of what has now become my reality. I just can’t say it enough: I’m so blessed.

Normani Kordei012-GT

Bodysuit: GCDS, Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell 

Many of Fifth Harmony’s songs like “BO$$” and “Worth It” boast a confident attitude and encourage women to know their value. Is this a belief you’ve always held, or was it one that developed as you got older?
I definitely think that it’s been something I had to grow into. I saw confidence in others but lacked it in myself. I have always been my worst critic, and I’ve overanalyzed everything. I was afraid of trying things, knowing that there was a possibility of me failing. Being fully confident and comfortable with showing others who I truly am is something that I have always wanted. I have grown so much in the past few years and have become fearless, confident, lionhearted, valiant, and powerful in my own right. In this business, you’re constantly under a microscope and always being judged by people who don’t really know you. I’ve learned to disregard what others think and say and simply carry on with being me. I know my heart, and I’m my own best friend. I am surrounded by people who show me that love has no end.

        I think that it is very important to know that you’re important and to trust yourself. Women should be empowered and wholeheartedly know their worth. We have such a significant role in this story being written.

In a time when it’s so easy to compare yourself to others on social media, how do you stay confident? What advice could you give our readers?
I definitely feel that it’s unrealistic to not compare yourself, especially with social media existing in this day and age. Since this tool was created, it has been both positive and negative. I feel like a lot of people forget that we live in a real world, not just a social media world. I absolutely know because my occupation requires me to keep up with my socials on a daily basis. I see the way people talk to each other, some with love and others with such disrespect. It seems to be a competition of who has the most followers or who can become a social media celebrity. The whole thing is actually insane, but I don’t feel like the majority of our generation use it in a positive light. Yes, it’s a way to express yourself, but you also have to remember that when you do, it’s completely valid for others to do the same. Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and Snapchat were all created to help you build a space that you feel represents you so [that] others can get to know you. It is also super helpful in keeping up with the current events that are actually going on in the world that we live in. I think that it’s all about being smart in the way we use these outlets. I go on social media every day, and at times, I enjoy it, and other times, I wish it never existed. It’s either full of love or it’s full of violence and hatred.

        I find it easy to compare yourself to others. I believe that when this happens, it’s a priority to step back and remember that everyone is human just like you are. You can feel so unappreciated, unworthy, and insecure because of someone else while that same person is feeling that way about themselves. This has been an ongoing cycle. There’s something my mother would always remind me of: there will be some who will love and adore you to no end, and then there will be some who will dislike you with a passion; but never forget that God has blessed you with the gift of life, and in this life, you have a purpose. Never allow anyone to deter you from fulfilling that purpose.

Aliza Vellani Discusses Her Role on ‘The X-Files’

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At 14 years old, actress Aliza Vellani began her acting career as a series regular on Little Mosque on the Prairie, where she played Layla Siddiqui for six seasons. Now four years after she starred on the Canadian TV sitcom, Vellani is taking on an entirely new TV genre: sci-fi. To the envy of many, she stars in the much-anticipated revival of The X-Files. Vellani discusses her experience working on the iconic TV show and acting alongside Gillian Anderson.

Cliché: How does it feel to be a part of The X-Files revival?
Aliza Vellani: It feels so surreal. I am so incredibly grateful to be given the opportunity to work on such a legendary series that’s not only become a part of Vancouver’s film and TV history, but a part of all of Film and Television history.

Aliza2Did you watch the show before you filmed?
I managed to binge-watch a few episodes before my audition to get a feel for the style of the series. And it was worth it! Hopefully I get some free time to binge-watch the entire series from the beginning. I was 1 [year old] when the series first started, so there’s a lot of catching up to do.

Were you a fan?
I’m a big sci-fi fan. My dad and I have always watched sci-fi movies and TV series together. I was a little young when the series first started, but later on I definitely became a fan of The X-Files.

In the new X-Files show, you play Sandeep. Can you tell us about your character?
Sandeep is a nurse at the hospital. She works closely with Dr. Scully and is based mostly in Dr. Scully’s world throughout the series.

For your role, you worked closely with Gillian Anderson. How was working with her, especially as she resumed her most famous character?
It was an absolute honor to work with Gillian Anderson. I was inspired by how she was able to flawlessly jump back into a character she had been playing on and off for over 20 years. If there is anything I have learned from Gillian, it’s what commitment to a character really looks like.

aliza3What has been your experience filming The X-Files?
It was fun! Of course there were long hours and a lot to do each day, but you could tell this series meant a lot to everyone working on the show. And honestly, filming on this series felt like I was walking into one giant X-Files family. It was wonderful, and I’m so grateful to have been a part of it.

Was the atmosphere on set for this show different in any way from your other acting jobs, being that it was a show revival?
I think the biggest difference was walking onto set, you could tell this wasn’t a brand spanking new series where everyone was still figuring out the show and its rhythm. This was a story that had been told for 20 years, and walking onto set was like walking into a well-oiled machine. Everyone knew what was happening and what needed to be done in order to give this series what it needed.

The X-Files premieres Sunday, January 24 on FOX.

Read more Entertainment Interviews at Clichemag.com.

Aliza Vellani Discusses Her Role on ‘The X-Files’: Photographed by Liz Rosa

Aislinn Paul Interview

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For nine seasons, actress Aislinn Paul played Clare Edwards on the iconic Canadian TV show Degrassi: The Next Generation. Once only seen as “the younger sister,” Clare entered Degrassi High as a gifted student with a strong religious background and conservative beliefs, but soon transformed into a more mature young adult, experiencing love and heartbreak, a cancer diagnosis, and a teen pregnancy. Now, Paul is taking on a new role in the NBC series Heroes: Reborn. No longer portraying a high school academic, Paul plays Phoebe Frady, an Evo—an evolved human who possesses a supernatural ability. Without a mentor to guide her, Frady explores her unique power of manipulating light and shadow amidst a society that fears the evolved. From high schooler to superhero, Paul proves she can tackle any role.

Cliché: You played Clare Edwards on Degrassi: The Next Generation for nine years. What was it like leaving that character behind?
Aislinn Paul: I was very sad to say goodbye to Clare. You get to know a character almost as well as yourself after playing them for so many years, but it also felt like it was time to let her go, let her live her own life. Perhaps that’s too sentimental, but it’s hard not to be that way after almost a decade.

Were you surprised at Degrassi’s cancellation or were there any indicators?
I was going to be graduating at the end of the season regardless, so right from the start of the shoot, everything gave me a sense of finality. But I think when a show has been on for 14 seasons, you’re always looking for the other shoe to drop. It just seems too good to be true to be on the air that long, especially for a Canadian teen drama. We had a good run, and I think we all feel very lucky.

Did you like how the series ended?
It was a great gift to be able to take time to say goodbye to all those characters and get a sense of where they’re headed in the future. It was a great send-off.

Where do you see Clare in the future?
I think she’ll end up at Columbia eventually, whether for her undergrad or a later degree. I think New York is a great city for her, and she will really thrive there.

Netflix has picked up Degrassi for a new incarnation of the show, Degrassi: Next Class. Any chance Clare will make an appearance?
I don’t think a Clare appearance is in the cards for now. I think it’s important to let this new group of kids find their voices on the show and let these characters grow. As much as the audience may miss the old characters, the rotation of faces is what makes Degrassi special.

Tell us a little about your character, Phoebe Frady, on Heroes Reborn: Dark Matters. What drew you to her?
Phoebe is such a wonderful and fragile character. Her sense of self is really delicate at this point in her life and she really only has her brother and her roommate to lean on. And in contrast, her power is so strong. It’s easy to see how she could be overwhelmed by it. The web series was a great way for the audience and for me to get to know Phoebe’s backstory and hopefully lend a little compassion her way when you see her on the show.

Were you a fan of the original series?
I was a huge fan of the original series. I never missed an episode, and I have the first two seasons on DVD. It was just so original at the time, and I loved that.

What’s it like playing Phoebe?
The Phoebe you see in Dark Matters was pretty easy to find because she’s very relatable, but the Phoebe you meet in Heroes Reborn was way more of a challenge. The hair/makeup really helps me get into character.

I love the strong relationship she has with her brother, Quentin. Will we get to see more of their relationship on Heroes Reborn?
I love that relationship, too. We didn’t realize until we were shooting Dark Matters just how strong a connection Quentin and Phoebe have. You do see some interaction with them in Heroes Reborn, but it’ll never be quite the same.

Your character has the power to manipulate light and shadow. If you could have any one power in real life, what would you want it to be?
Time travel, definitely. I really enjoy history and would love to travel back to some of the biggest moments in history. I’m also chronically late so time-travel would help with that.

Read more Entertainment Interviews on ClicheMag.com.

“Aislinn Paul Interview” originally appeared as “Out of the Shadows” in Cliché Magazine’s Dec 2015/Jan 2016 issue. Photo credit: Lane Dorsey

The Perfect Gifts For Faraway Friends

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Holidays can be stressful enough without worrying about presents, but what do you do when your BFF lives states away? Sure, you can mail them a gift, but shopping around for goodies can be exhausting; not only do you have to find something they’d love, but it has to be under a certain weight and size so you don’t get hit with high shipping costs. Not to mention, it may have to be heavy-duty bubble-wrapped so it doesn’t break. Forget that. Make the holiday season easier with these gift-delivery services.

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The holiday season is a time of celebration. Why not encapsulate that feeling with your gift? Send your friend a party in a box with Packed Party! Each Packed Party package includes four to five handpicked items relevant to the theme of the box. Exact items change every few months so this company is a keeper for future holidays! Packed Party also offers Liddle Bit of Party, a package similar to the Packed Party boxes, but with fewer items and a lower price tag.

Top Contender: You Pampered Thing, You, $52, packedparty.com

Give your friend a spa day! This Packed Party package includes items like a silk sleep mask, a soy candle, soothing hand cream, a bar of lavender soap, and lip oil.

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Sometimes the best way to a friend’s heart is through their sweet tooth. Gift Tree offers a huge selection of tasty goodies—cookies, chocolates, candy, and more. Find your friend’s favorite, and you’re all set! If that’s not for you, Gift Tree also offers a variety of other themed gift goods like wine, beer, fruit, flowers, and spa products!

Top Contender: Classic Holiday Gift Tower, $29.95, Gifttree.com
Delicious delivery! This gift tower features six stacked boxes of snacks such as Lindt and Ghirardelli chocolates and truffles, gourmet popcorn, old-fashioned candies, snack mix, milk chocolate malt balls, toffee peanuts, and chocolate and yogurt covered pretzels. This package even includes a complimentary pair of scissors so your friend won’t have to wait a moment to receive sweet satisfaction!

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Craving a more personal touch to your gift? Put together a package without the hassle of store-hopping or shipping! BOXFOX allows you to choose from their list of available products to curate a box tailored to your friend’s interests. Products include sweets, chocolates, workout accessories, literature, stationery, and even relaxing bath goods. There’s something for everybody. Still like the option of a premade box? BOXFOX has ready-to-go packages as well.

Top Contender: Jet Set, $60, shopboxfox.com
If your bestie has big dreams of adventure and travel, this is the box for them. This BOXFOX package includes a luxurious pashmina, a Kate Spade canvas travel bag, Static Solution from The Laundress, Rifle Paper Co. Pocket Notebooks, and 3 Herban Essentials hand wipes.

Read more Holiday articles at Clichemag.com.

“The Perfect Gifts For Faraway Friends” originally appeared as “You’ve Got Mail” in Cliché Magazine’s Dec 2015/Jan 2016 issue. Photos courtesy of Packed Party, Gift Tree, and BOXFOX

Torrey DeVitto Interview

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Known for her characters on beloved teen dramas One Tree Hill, Pretty Little Liars, and The Vampire Diaries, actress Torrey DeVitto has now taken on a more “adult role.” In the primetime drama Chicago Med, DeVitto portrays Dr. Natalie Manning, an emergency pediatric medicine specialist. While her character is saving lives in the ER, she’s also preparing to bring a new life into the world; at the start of the series, Manning is in her third trimester of pregnancy. But while her character and the new NBC show, which joins the Chicago “heroes” trilogy, are intriguing on their own, it’s DeVitto herself who makes Chicago Med sound so exciting.

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Coat: Celine, T-shirt: Acne Studios, Trousers: Derek Lam 10 Crosby, Shoes: Balenciaga

Talking with her, it’s clear that she’s not only proud of her new role, but excited about being a part of this show in particular. Throughout our interview, DeVitto’s thoughts race. She often interrupts herself to interject some new detail about her character or her new show, but she’s careful with the information she reveals. After all, she wants fans to love the show as much as she does, and that means certain details need to be kept under wraps. She laughs as she tells me, “There’s so much I want to say.”

Though she’s no stranger to keeping secrets about the shows she’s been on (looking at you, Pretty Little Liars), DeVitto admits it’s nerve-wracking. “You never want to be that actor that slips something,” she says. “I’ve heard horror stories about that, and I’m terrified.” But DeVitto’s passion for all of her projects is a strong deterrent from any potential spoiler leaks; her unabated enthusiasm makes listeners want to find out the story on their own, no help wanted.

Cliché: On Chicago Med, you play Dr. Natalie Manning. What can you tell us about your role?
Torrey DeVitto: She specializes in pediatrics, but she can also work on adult patients since she’s in the ER. That opens up her range more, and she gets to interact a lot with other doctors. She starts off pregnant—very pregnant. She’s a really fun character to play because she’s got so many different layers. She’s strong and compassionate. She sees the gray in life; she isn’t very black and white. She’s just an awesome character. I love playing her.

What drew you to this character?
I’ve wanted to play a character like her for a really long time. She’s so multidimensional, so adult. I haven’t been able to step into a character my age and really delve into that world yet. I did a little bit in Army Wives, but it was so short-lived. I also love the character, her level of compassion mixed in with her level of strength. There’s already so much. We’re filming episode three, and there’s been so much that gets revealed about her life and her history. You just see what a strong woman she is. There are so many levels for so many different women to relate to her, which is another thing that I really loved.

Vancouver Fashion Week

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Alisa Tovmanyan

New York Fashion Week may be over, but fashion week has only just begun in Vancouver. The 26th Vancouver Fashion Week premiered on Monday at the Chinese Cultural Centre of Greater Vancouver with over 100 designer collections–the event’s largest number of designers ever! While VFW features designers from around the globe, there were a handful of designers from the US, all with beautiful SS16 collections.

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MAIV

Los Angeles native Alisa Tovmanyan debuted her latest collection, “Spring Time in Armenia.” Her pieces feature a combination of artist Tsolak Shahinyan’s prints, a modern silhouette shape, and a variety of textures. Highlighting her passion for fashion, Toymanyan states, “Everyday, we put on more than just a garment, we put on an identity.”

Learning detailed embroidery at a young age, Mai Vang channeled her creative passion into attending The Art Institute in San Francisco for Fashion Design. After graduating in 2008, Vang began the pursuit of her dream: to create a fashion house. Inspired by her Hmong culture and its bright, colorful clothing, Mai Vang’s MAIV spring line designs spin a modern take on simplistic styles. Many of the clothes are loose-fitting for optimal comfort.

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Molly O’Brien

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MXN

Interested in eco-friendly fashion? MXN has got you covered. Originally formed as Nune Hov Couture LLC, the fashion brand features collections created entirely from repurposed materials. MXN also gets its materials from local communities and tribes as a volunteer effort to empower people of areas that need funding.

Another US designer is 16-year-old Molly O’Brien from Omaha, NE. Already a veteran of Omaha and Kansas City fashion weeks, this young designer is ready to debut her SS16 collection at Vancouver Fashion Week and present her work to an international audience.

For more information on Vancouver Fashion Week, visit vanfashionweek.com.

Read more Fashion articles at ClicheMag.com.

Vancouver Fashion Week: Photos courtesy of Charmed PR

Things Are Looking Grim Giveaway

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Are you a fan of the Charley Davidson series by Darynda Jones? In honor of the release of the newest book in the series, Eighth Grave After Dark, we are teaming up with St. Martin’s Press for a giveaway you won’t want to miss!

One (1) lucky grand prize winners will receive:
– Shimmer eye shadow for a Grim-like Glow
– Custom Charley Davidson Grim Reaper nail decals
– A branded coffee mug
– The complete Charley Davidson series!

How to Enter:
-Fill out the form below for entry to the giveaway
-Earn extra entries by doing things like following us on Pinterest and tweeting about the giveaway**

**You may tweet once daily to earn extra entries

Selection:
The winner will be chosen at random using Rafflecopter.com and will be contacted within 48 hours after the giveaway has ended. The winner will be given 72 hours to claim his or her prize before he or she must forfeit it to another winner.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the new book:

CompleteSeriesFirst Grave on the Right is the smashing, award-winning debut novel that introduces Charley Davidson: part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper..

Charley sees dead people. That’s right, she sees dead people. And it’s her job to convince them to “go into the light.” But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (i.e., murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice. Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she’s been having about an Entity who has been following her all her life… and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely.

About the Author
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author DARYNDA JONES won a RITA Award for best first novel for First Grave On The Right. As a born storyteller, she grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, annoying man and beast alike. Jones lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her husband and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.

Connect with Darynda Jones
Follow Darynda on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest
Friend Darynda on Goodreads
Learn more at DaryndaJones.com

Enter more Contests on Clichemag.com.

Things are Looking Grim Giveaway: Images, synopsis, and prizes courtesy of St. Martin’s Press

Create Your Own Jewelry with Braganzia

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We’ve all been there. After styling a perfect outfit­, you realize that none of your accessories work with your clothes. That necklace is too long, that bracelet doesn’t match the style of your earrings. It might not seem like a heavy issue to some, but to you, it means something. Your entire morning just dampened.

Instead of changing your entire outfit, adjusting your wardrobe to match your accessories, you could do something about it. Enter Braganzia fine jewelry. With Braganzia, you’re back in control. Inspired by the 17th century Parure designs of Portugal–three or more matching items like earrings, necklace, and bracelet–Braganzia allows consumers to mix and match pieces to form customizable jewelry.

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With their earring collection, you can match bows, clusters, and studs to drops and pendants.

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By adding a pendant clip, necklace pendants can be swapped to adjust to your outfit. With all their current pieces, Braganzia boasts up to 135 possible jewelry combinations.

And it’s not just the flexibility in design that will elevate your outfits. Braganzia designs use sterling silver and feature Swarovski crystals and semi precious gemstones, including rock crystal, obsidian, amethyst, and cultured grade-A pearls. You’re almost guaranteed to feel elegant.

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Two of my favorites are the Nicole drop earrings–a pairing of Luna studs and Clara pendants–and the Paola drop earrings–a combination of Marie studs and Violette pendants–which features a removable precious amethyst pendant. Both are handcrafted with 925 sterling silver and encrusted Swarovski crystals.

Jewelry with exquisite detail and customizable design? Sounds like the accessory marriage we’ve been waiting for.

Create Your Own Jewelry with Braganzia: Images courtesy of Braganzia Jewelry