Pop-Culturalist Chats with the Stars & Director of Moss
Lead actors, Mitchell Slaggert and Christine Marzano, along with Director, Daniel Peddle, sat down with us to chat about their new film, Moss, ahead of its premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival. Moss, a modern-day coming-of-age tale, tells the story of an isolated young man who embarks on an unforgettable adventure for his 18th birthday. For Moss, the day represents freedom, particularly from his father, whom he believes resents him after losing his wife during childbirth. Along the journey, he meets Mary, a woman fleeing from her own heartache. Together, they escape and teach other lessons of life and loss.
P-C: What was the inspiration behind the film?
Daniel: I was inspired by our shooting location and nature. Mitchell and I share similar roots. We both grew up playing in the woods and absorbing the brutality and isolation of nature. We wanted to explore how this informs identity, relationships, love, and loss.
P-C: Mitchell, Daniel discovered you on campus. What was going through your mind after your initial conversation?
Mitchell: I didn’t know what to think of it. I was like ‘huh? acting? I never really thought of that.’ After our conversation, I went home and googled him and quickly saw he was the real deal.
P-C: Your character, Moss, is at the center of the story and there are a lot of interesting relationships in the film. Which was your favorite to explore and why?
Mitchell: Definitely the relationship between Moss and his father. I knew Billy before we began filming and I’ve actually always seen him as a father figure. I learn something from him every day, so it was great to get to work with him.
P-C: Being that it’s your debut feature film, what’s one memory that sticks out to you?
Mitchell: Wow, that’s a hard one. The entire experience was so new and exciting for me. I learned so much but if I had to choose one I would say how supportive the entire cast and crew was. It felt like a second family.
P-C: What was the biggest thing you learned from the experience?
Mitchell: I found my true passion in life by being a part of this film and I’m excited for everyone to see it.
P-C: Christine, your character, Mary, is dealing with her own struggles. Can you talk about that and how her relationship with Moss unfolds?
Christine: Mary was living in the city and she just needed a break from her day-to-day life and everything that was happening in her marriage. She decided that nature was the cure and where she thought she could find herself, be one with herself, and one with nature. Then, Moss came into the picture and I don’t necessarily think she was expecting it, but this relationship developed between the two of them where she learned a little from him and he learned a little from her.
P-C: What about the script resonated with you the most?
Christine: The idea of this woman finding herself through nature. It really appealed to me. I didn’t grow up in a place with a lot of nature, so it’s always been really interesting to me.
Daniel Peddle Photo Credit: Melodie Jeng