She played in Cameron Grimm‘s The Man Who Loved Flowers Dollar Baby film as Norma.
SKSM: Could you start with telling me a little bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?
Gabrielle Bousum: Well, my name is Gabrielle Bousum- it’s pronounced awesome with a B. You wouldn’t believe how many people think it’s pronounced like bosom. I’m a local, professional actor in Indianapolis, IN, that is passionate and determined. When I’m not on a set, I work as a Simulation Patient for IU Health during the day and bartend at Helium Comedy Club on the weekends. I’m pretty confident most people reading this won’t know what a Simulation Patient is, so I’ll answer that quickly. A Simulation Patient is a hired actor that acts out a case for med students, and they have to use their smarts to figure out what’s going on with them. Yes, like Kramer in Seinfeld. No, I haven’t had the fabulous opportunity to act out having an STD yet. I’ve done everything from a basic cough to an anti-vax mom that I made obsessed with Jenny McCarthy (that was my favorite). I feel fortunate to love both of my side jobs and my coworkers. When I’m not stashing money for those expensive headshots and classes, I love reading, painting, archery, listening to my record collection, and laughing with comics/friends and family.
SKSM: When did you know you wanted to become an actress?
Gabrielle Bousum: I knew I wanted to be an actor when I was a kid. I remember forcing my parents to watch plays that I would put on (thanks to them for sitting through that), and I would act out Disney movies. Halloween has always been my favorite holiday, not just because I love scary movies, spooky things, and candy, but I loved being different characters. Once I hit my awkward phase in middle school and started getting bullied, I realized even more how much I loved acting because I could escape and be someone else for a while. Sad but real.
SKSM: How did you become involved in The man who loved flowers Dollar Baby film?
Gabrielle Bousum: It’s been so long since we filmed The Man Who Loved Flowers, but I think I just saw a casting call on the Indiana Filmmaker’s Facebook page, and, as they say, the rest is history.
SKSM: What do you think it is about the story that attracts people so much?
Gabrielle Bousum: Stephen King is such an exciting and fun writer, so that automatically will attract people. It’s also terrifying that this guy just walks up to different women that look like his wife. He’s being all sweet and then bashes their head in out of nowhere with a hammer! I think the casting was on point, the shooting locations were fantastic, and the crew brought the story to life.
SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?
Gabrielle Bousum: I had to audition for it. I believe I had to twice, but my memory could be betraying me at the moment.
SKSM: You worked with Cameron Grimm on this film, how was that?
Gabrielle Bousum: Working with Cameron was excellent. He’s friendly, not egotistical, and listens to other’s ideas. He collaborates. He never made anyone feel invaluable whenever tensions arose, just from being tired or visions not lining up. It was great to be on that set.
SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?
Gabrielle Bousum: I can’t remember a particularly funny moment except for just random laughing with the crew and cast. There was a special moment when we saw how talented Chelsea Swinford was at the special effects. It’s not easy making someone look like their eye has been bashed in with a hammer. It didn’t feel great on your face either but, man, did it look amazing.
SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?
Gabrielle Bousum: I do! I have contact with a few of the crew, but unfortunately, I have the tendency to do a project, and then I’m on to the next because I am usually pretty consistently booked. Because of that, I haven’t had the chance to reunite with Cameron or 5 After 5 Productions. I’m very open to doing so! I did happen to fall in love with our sound and score guy, Josh Beck, while working on this film, and we are still together to this day!
SKSM: What are you working on nowadays?
Gabrielle Bousum: These days I just did a trailer for the superhero series Transmetropolitan. I play Vita Severn, an ambitious PR rep for a political candidate. We have a big-name executive producer, and crossing our fingers, it will land on Netflix, but I don’t want to jinx anything. I’m also working on a screenplay of my own. It’s about a nurse whose boyfriend comes into the ER in a coma while she’s working. She gets handed his items, including his phone, and then lots of crazy stuff unfolds. I’m pretty excited about it and have high hopes for it. I have a couple of other projects that are still on hold from the start of the pandemic, and I’m just doing every audition my agents send my way!
SKSM: Are you a fan of Stephen King’s work?
Gabrielle Bousum: I love Stephen King’s work! I remember reading his books when I was way too young to be doing so, but thankfully since I read above my grade level and my parents were cool, I got away with it. I recently read Pet Sematary for the first time, and I have to admit, as a full-grown adult, I had difficulty reading it by myself after dark. The book is way better than the movie (and I love that movie)!
SKSM: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
Gabrielle Bousum: Something that would surprise people is that even though I might laugh, joke around, and appear confident, I regularly struggle with depression and anxiety. On top of that, I feel like I’m not talented or interesting enough, not smart enough, or just inadequate in general. Most days, I have a decent hold on these feelings, but some days they can fight to win, and sometimes they do. Thankfully I have a great support system of family, friends, my agents and coach are amazing, and they help remind me that I am unique, interesting, and talented. They remind me that I do have something to offer and to keep going for it. I’m very fortunate.
SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything you want to say to the fans that read this interview?
Gabrielle Bousum: To the fans reading this interview- I honestly am not sure what to say. Thanks for your passion and support of filmmakers because without you, we wouldn’t have anyone to watch our creations! Keep loving spooky stories, my fellow weirdos.
SKSM: Do you like to add anything else?
Gabrielle Bousum: Thank you for reaching out, and I hope this wasn’t boring to read!