Life, Love, And Creativity With Lydia Hearst

Lydia Hearst’s latest film, “Psycho Sister-in-Law,” is set to air on Lifetime on August 16. Hearst plays Zara, the estranged, half-sister to Nick [Brando Eaton] who reappears after their father’s death. “Initially, I was set to play another, smaller role in this film. I was going to play someone in the opening scene to help set the tone of the film, but two days before we went into production, I received a call from the director, Jake Helgren, and was offered the role,” Hearst tells INLOVE Magazine.

“Admittedly, there was not much time to prepare, but I love a good challenge! And I am very passionate about my work and the whole process of acting,” she continued. “Plus, Lifetime movies have always been a guilty pleasure of mine, so I jumped at the opportunity to play a larger role in this film, and I truly loved every moment of working on it.”

Sari: What do you think audiences are going to enjoy most about this movie?

Lydia Hearst: For anyone whose viewing preferences skew toward over-the-top, psychological dramas with tons of twists and turns, then Lifetime movies are for you – and more specifically, this movie is for you!

Sari: What do you think the future of horror films would look like with more women at the helm?

LH: Horror is still a genre that is wildly dominated by male directors, but there are plenty of talented women who are making films that should be supported and recognized. It’s unfortunate that there was a time female filmmakers were regarded as less worthy of discussion by the media than their male peers, but I love that now women are stepping up and having the opportunity to showcase their talents. There is so much more that women embody in horror than just screaming; some of the most notable horror films of the last few years have been made by women directors. There is a wonderful book I highly recommend for any female filmmaker and horror lover called: 1000 Women in Horror, 1895-2018. It’s about the silent and often-invisible women who have made the genre what it is today. It’s a great read!

Sari: How do you think we, as females, can continue to inspire each other at this time?

LH: Womxn need to continue to uphold one another and support one another today and every day. I feel extremely fortunate to be surrounded by strong, kind, and inspiring womxn who are all unapologetically themselves. We all deserve to be successful, happy, loved, safe, and healthy. My hope for now, and for the future, is all of us to join together, promising to care for one another and create an environment that fosters love and growth for today’s womxn and for future generations.

Sari: The world looks a bit different from the last time we talked, how are you and Chris keeping yourselves entertained while you stay at home during this time?

LH: These times are strange and uncertain, but we have enjoyed having the opportunity to slow down and spend quality time together. We also got a puppy! He is an Otterhound. It’s the rarest and easily one of the oldest breeds of dog. Sadly though, this breed becomes rarer every year and is considered the most at-risk dog of being ‘forgotten’ and disappearing completely. We love him so much! Hopefully, one day we will be able to breed him and help to preserve this giant – he’ll be about 130 pounds when he reaches full-size – boisterous, beautiful, loving, and loyal breed of dog.

Sari: With everything on hold now, how are you staying creative at this time?

LH: I’m extremely tactile and have always believed that if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. Hence why I recently have gotten into landscaping – yes, actual landscaping with wielding a mini buzz saw and machete and shovel and doing the gritty, dirty work – and designing my gardens. I love nature. I love the outdoors. I believe that you can tell a lot about a person by their garden. Gardening is one of the purest acts of love. To properly tend to the plants and the soil, one must possess a unique blend of patience, vision, creativity, wisdom, and kindness. I find a lot of joy in working outside, getting my hands dirty – probably why I never have a nice manicure – and spending hours caring for my flowers and citrus trees, and listening to the soil – yes, listening to the soil. Every plant and all the soil has a unique story if you’re dedicated and patient enough to hear it.
I also love to cook and have been sending a lot of time experimenting and creating my own recipes. I don’t base my diet on what’s trendy or fashionable; I eat what I like, and I try to eat healthy. During this quarantine, I have started to slowly piece together a cookbook. Perhaps I will share it with the world one day, or maybe I’ll just keep it for my family to hold onto and pass down.
I also have gotten into candle making. I plan to launch a line of candles by the end of this year. I’ve only just completed my first one with my custom label and scent. It’s been a really fun and unique process, and a great way to stay creative.

Sari: What shows have you been binge-watching since this all started? Anything you would recommend?

LH: “Curon” on Netflix tells an intriguing story. It’s a remarkable Italian supernatural thriller that is creepy and eerie in an old-style-way. I cannot recommend it enough!

“Always a Witch” on Netflix is a wonderfully fun show which centers around love and loss with an exciting twist of magic and time travel. For both of these shows, please, watch in their native language with subtitles. I will never suggest or recommend watching anything that’s been dubbed.

“Maine Cabin Masters” on DIY is a home renovation show that’s charming and down to earth, and each episode is self-contained. They do remarkable camp restorations using a lot of recycled materials and pay close attention to all of the personal requests and nuances of the cabin owners. Thankfully there are five seasons, so there’s plenty to watch. I truly cannot get enough of this show!

Hearst herself just wrapped production on a film called “Root Letter.” It’s an American film adaptation based on the widely successful Japanese video game of the same name, developed by Kadakowa Games. Hearst plays the role of Karen, a volatile and unstable mother who is emotionally tortured and desperately addicted to heroin.

She’s also in pre-production on a film called “With Teeth,” where she not only stars but serves as co-executive producer. The film is a unique and modern reimagining of the classic vampire lore. “Hopefully, once we get a better idea of how productions will be able to safely resume, I can elaborate more on this film as we are currently in pre-production with the hopes of shooting sometime this fall,” Hearst adds.

“I have also done a bit of voice-over work recently. I Just completed two characters on a short, animated series called “Shugirl,” which follows a young girl who falls down a rabbit hole and lands in an alternate reality world where she embarks on a wild adventure. [It’s] created by Roberto Mitrotti.”

She’s also voicing two characters for “The Shana Chronicles: Sympathy For The Devil,” which is a new scripted podcast series that is a mash-up of revisionist music folklore, ‘70s era conspiracy thriller, and classic graphic novel mystery. It’s created by K. Asher Levin & Zack Imbrogno.

“During these tough times, we must remember to not only accept love, but also to give love,” Hearst went on to explain. “Despite the current state of uncertainty, there is always hope. In our home, we try to invest in the uplifting. Meaning we surround ourselves with anything that encourages a more optimistic and joyful mindset. For example, movies, puzzles, books, ‘comfort food,’ anything that reflects happiness and positivity that can influence your mood and outlook.
I am fortunate to have a husband and partner like Chris, not just during these times, but always. We deeply value doing things for the greater good of humanity, and it’s important to recognize that small efforts add up and can make a tremendous impact on a community. Sometimes all you need is a reminder that we are all in this together – we stand – we create – we love – and we will all come out the other side of this.”

Sari Cohen.

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