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guitarist Tracy (played by Emmy winner Drea De Matteo of The
Sopranos) nearly blows their chances at a long-awaited record-
As Gershon struggles to keep the band on track for a last
shot at fame, things go from bad to worse and each band
member becomes "prey" for rock and roll.
Lovedog tells me all the events in the film happened, in
some shape or form, which is a little scary considering the plot's
brutal turn of events. The film has a raw, low-budget feel that
rings true, but must've proved intimidating for your average
Hollywood actress. How did a star like Gershon get involved?
"Well, I'm a big fan of Gina's -- Bound -- hello, and I
thought she could probably do it. But whoever played the
role of Jackie had to really be able to sing and play guitar. We
did not want to have to shoot around people who were
faking it. When I met Gina and we were talking about it I just
got this feeling that she really wanted to do this role and she
wanted to do it right. And she was willing to do the work
because she is not from that scene."
Gershon's Jackie is convincing. She plays her own guitar,
she sings the songs as though she wrote them, especially
"Every Six Minutes", a feminist-punk anthem on rape.
And she has the world-weary air of a seasoned rock chick.
It's definitely her best performance since Bound, and eclipses
the twenty-something films she has made since then.
"She's absolutely amazing in it. She'll just do anything.
I think that makes an actress really good. She's not afraid, like oh
my God, everybody's going to think I'm a lesbian. She could
care less. She's not a lesbian. She doesn't care what people think.
She had a really great time with it."
So if everything in the film is based on real life, how about
that sex scene?
"The girlfriend I was with at the time saw the scene and
went, yeah, yeah -- that's what you did. The sex scene wasn't a
touchy-feely thing, it was like sex, man. Not love, just sex."
And the vibrator?
"Yeah, you know it's funny. I requested a Hitachi Magic
Wand and the prop guy came to me and said, I have no idea
what you're talking about. So I drew a picture and I told him to
go to the Pleasure Chest ..."
The similarities between Lovedog and Jackie don't end
there. The twenty songs in the film are written by Lovedog and
taken from the playlist of her own band. The huge tattoo on
Jackie's back of Lady Justice is a copy of Lovedog's who admits
the only unmarked parts of her body are one leg and her face.
It's been a surprising journey from tattoo artist to
scriptwriter. Prey ... had its first incarnation as an off-Off
Broadway play in which Drea De Matteo was slated to star
before her Sopranos success. Then a financier saw the potential
for a Hollywood movie and before long Lovedog was writing a
screenplay and casting actors.
De Matteo was still keen to appear in the film. With
conditions. "She said, I'll only do the role if I can do my own
hair and wardrobe. I'm like, that's fine. She's not a big old mess
like Tracy but she's very much rock and roll and has a good
time." Lovedog also enthuses over supporting actresses Lori
Petty (Tank Girl) and Shelly Cole, who play lovers in the film.
"Lori auditioned for the role and I saw her do the reading
with Gina and I'm like, Oh my god she is the character Faith. I
saw Shelly reading and she just nailed it. Her character has the
hugest emotional journey."
Not to mention painful. Lovedog was so grateful for her
performance she sent flowers to her trailer. "I thought, look
what she did for me, to tell my story."
Lovedog thinks the film will be controversial, especially its
non-PC portrayal of femininity. Is there an overall message?
"Society's definition of success, which is money and fame,
really has nothing to do with being a good musician or a good
band. At the end of the day if you like doing something, just do
it. But it's hard, because there's no forty year old women out
there suddenly with a record and on TV. You kind of get
intimidated by that. But that's not real."
Prey For Rock And Roll opens nationally on November 4.
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MAIN PIC GERSHON AND DREA DE MATTEO; ABOVE GINA GERSHON AND LORI PETTY. INSET CHERI LOVEDOG
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