The Last Word with Camille Sullivan

Camille Sullivan

Camille Sullivan studied acting at UBC and returned to town this fall for the Vancouver International Film Festival and the premiere of Sisters & Brothers, in which she co-stars alongside actors such as Glee star Cory Monteith and Canadian theatre icon Gabrielle Rose. She also made time to visit UBC and talk with current theatre students about her experiences as a working actor.

On TV, Camille was most recently seen as Detective Jo Rosati in season two of ABC/Global’s hit series Rookie Blue and as an army chaplain on the networks’ popular new series Combat Hospital. Previously she played the lead role of Detective Amy Lynch on the series Shattered for Global Television.

Camille was nominated for a Canadian television Gemini Award for her portrayal of Francine Reardon, the volatile cocaine- and alcohol-addicted ex-wife of a west coast crime boss in the critically acclaimed Intelligence. Other television credits include three seasons of Da Vinci’s Inquest, recurring roles on Hellcats, Reunion and Taken, and multiple others.

Camille’s past film projects include Carl Bessai’s award-winning dramatic feature film Normal. Her performance won her a Leo Award for Best Actress in a Feature Length Film. Other starring roles include those in Mount Pleasant, written and directed by Ross Weber; Mothers and Daughters, an improvised film directed by Carl Bessai – for which she earned another Leo Award nomination; and the Gary Burns film A Problem with Fear. For more information see www.camillesullivan.ca.

Who was your childhood hero?

I’m not sure. But I once wrote a letter to Pierre Trudeau when I was five or six. He replied and I was quite smitten, I think.

What was the last thing you read?

Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths go to Work by Paul Babiak, PhD, and UBC psychology prof Robert D. Hare. It’s a fascinating book about psychopaths in the workplace.

If a genie granted you one wish, what would it be?

To be a working actor all my life.

What’s the most important lesson you ever learned?

“Wherever you go, go with all your heart.” (Confucius)

Describe the place you most like to spend time.

It’s probably my apartment. Not sure if that’s good or bad.

What’s your idea of the perfect day?

Working on something great, with people I respect and love. That’s perfect.

What or who makes you laugh out loud?

Cursing. Not aggressive or mean-spirited cursing, but cursing for the fun of it. For some reason I love it!

What would be the title of your biography?

If I could steal this from the novel Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris, I would: “You might can f **k him up sometimes, but, bitch, nobody kills the motherf ***ing Rooster.” This is because everyone gets beaten down sometimes by life, but I would like to be someone who keeps getting back up with enthusiasm. (And because it’s fun to say.)

What item have you owned for the longest time?

A pair of Toronto Transit Commission coveralls. I bought them used when I was 16 and still wear them out much more frequently than I probably should.

What is your latest purchase?

Luggage. I seem to be on the road a lot lately.

If you could invent something, what would it be?

Teleporter

What are you afraid of?

Being a coward

Whom do you most admire (living or dead) and why?

I’m just gonna pick one, but I can’t commit to “most.” It’s L. Gen. Romeo Dallaire. Reading his book, Shake Hands With The Devil, I was really moved by his courage and compassion and generosity of spirit. True heroism.

What would you like your epitaph to say?

“she’ mad but she’ magic. there’ no lie in her fire.” (from “An Almost Made Up Poem” by Charles Bukowski)

In which era would you most like to have lived, and why?

Right now or the future. I already know how the past turns out.

Name the skill or talent you would most like to have.

I would have loved to be a dancer – really athletic modern dance, like La La La Human Steps.

Which three pieces of music would you take to that desert island?

Buena Vista Social Club, Tom Waits’ Beautiful Maladies, and The Hives’ Black and White Album

Which famous person (living or dead) do you think (or have you been told) you most resemble?

I have been told Jessica Lange. Lots of others too, but that one is my favourite.

What is your pet peeve?

Excessive decorum.

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