Lana Read began as an Extra in films many years ago. She recalls being on set and was fascinated by all the movement going on behind the camera. She was inquisitive and asked herself, Why are they shooting from that angle? Why are they filming that direction? Taking a mental note, she knew in her heart she would do it completely differently. She began as an Actress, but her curiosity for what is seen behind the camera only grew stronger. She began writing her own shorts and directing them. Her first big milestone was gaining international distribution for her low-budget western feature, “Western World.” She admits it is her best film to date, but not for the content. “The content is ok, but much I would have done differently,” says, Read. “The obstacles we faced to complete the project were phenomenal. It was truly a team effort like no other, a super low-budget and shot in 8 long days.
Read never went to film school, but she did study acting with Silvana Gallardo. Her instruction and friendship were vital to helping construct the Director that Read is today. “She taught me how to stand up for myself, ignore haters, and to be a woman of great importance to myself,” says, Read. “No one will spend more time with you, than you. Love yourself first.”
Her hard work, dedication, and lots of tears along with truckloads of self-doubt have led Read in the driver’s seat. As a Director with conviction, “The realization that you can’t be bullheaded or have a power trip over people,” says, Read. “You have to realize that a film is a well-oiled machine with so many moving parts. It truly takes a village of talented individuals to make it happen. Treat it as such. Respect your team. Appreciate them. But always, always, be true to the characters and the story.”
Read has a strong conviction for women in Hollywood. “I think women are looked over constantly for the simple fact that they are female.” “I buck against that nonsense. If you are qualified, your gender should be irrelevant.” Read shares with us a couple of examples, For instance, ” A gender flip of characters that were originally written as men for the film flipped to female and it made the character so much stronger in the film or a constant creation of a female character with strength and substance not true to the time period.”
Her passion for being a Director is hands down, working intensely with the Actors. “I love watching and helping actors bring the characters to life. There’s something mystical about the process of losing yourself and emerging as another being and playing pretend.”