SKSM: Could you start with telling me a little bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?
Vaden Thurgood: I’m an actor/singer based in NYC (technically Jersey City) I was born and raised in Syracuse, Utah. I currently sing for a group called The Jersey Tenors, while overseeing the start of my own group called Creedence Clearwater Remixed (a tribute to Creedence Clearwater Revival) and I act in as many tv and film projects as I can get my hands on!
SKSM: When did you know you wanted to become an actor?
Vaden Thurgood: I’ve known I wanted to perform ever since junior high, I didn’t realize I’d be happiest in film/tv until 2010 or so!
SKSM: How did you become involved in The Monkey Dollar Baby film?
Vaden Thurgood: Spencer put an audition notice out on Actor’s Access I believe? I originally auditioned for Pete (Mark’s part) but Spencer asked if I’d read for Hal as well.
SKSM: What do you think it is about the story that attracts people so much?
Vaden Thurgood: Stephen King is a big help, but other than that…a suspenseful thriller that we’re all vaguely aware of before sitting down to watch it is very enticing. We think we may already know where the story is going and we want to see how it ends!
SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?
Vaden Thurgood: I had to audition for the part, I auditioned for Pete originally. Spencer asked me later if I’d also audition for Hal, I said yes, and here we are!
SKSM: You worked with Spencer Sherry on this film, how was that?
Vaden Thurgood: Oh it was a dream, aside from being a really kind, goofy, and caring guy. He’s a great director who knows what he wants. He’s got a boatload of patience. VERY IMPORTANT: He let’s the actor do what they want with the character…if things need to be adjusted they get adjusted but he mostly let you play with your own intuition.
SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?
Vaden Thurgood: Haha, yes. The was a day at the lake, when we were supposed to be filming the storm scene and an actual torrential storm rolled in and we had to halt filming due to lighting and potential water damage to the equipment. In essence…WE COULDN’T FILM THE STORM…BECAUSE OF A STORM. We only got 10 seconds of footage that day.
SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?
Vaden Thurgood: Yah! Mostly Spencer, Courtney, Mark, and Lily.
SKSM: What are you working on nowadays?
Vaden Thurgood: I’m currently in rehearsals for my CCR tribute show: Creedence Clearwater Remixed. We start a 10-week contract at Florida Studio Theatre on Aug. 20th and I need to have two full casts ready to go. Also, I just had a final director’s callback for a tv show called “The Boston Tea Party” so hopefully I hear from those folks soon!
SKSM: Are you a fan of Stephen King’s work?
Vaden Thurgood: I really liked The Dark Tower and, of course, The Monkey. I’m sad to say I haven’t read much else of his. My next book will definitely be IT!
SKSM: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
Vaden Thurgood: I was an extremely devout Mormon for about a decade.
SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything you want to say to the fans that read this interview?
Vaden Thurgood: Thank you so much for following and taking interest in this project and it’s people! We’re all just trying our best out here to keep ourselves working and creating and if ANYBODY out there enjoys it and likes keeping up with us…that gives us so much hope and happiness!
SKSM: Do you like to add anything else?
Vaden Thurgood: You better believe if Spencer or any of his talented friends make anything else I’ll be on the front lines auditioning for it. Class acts…all of them.