When your writer interviewed actress Robyn Paris in 2008 about appearing in filmmaker Tommy Wiseau’s film The Room she was happy to talk about the so-bad-it’s-awesome cult movie but also gave the impression that she regarded the project as very much in her rear view mirror. So, how did she come to write, direct, produce, and star in a web series mockumentary inspired by the 2003 film called The Room Actors: Where Are They Now?
“I thought it was going blow over, basically,” says Paris of the cult which surrounds Wiseau’s movie. “Every time I thought it was going to go away, it just kept coming back at me. I went to film school at UCLA, and I graduated in ’08, and I started to get a ton of emails from people saying, ‘I saw you in this.’ It just didn’t stop. It just kept going. I mean, if you Google me, that’s the first thing that pops up, is my name and ‘The Room.’ I can’t escape it. For me, writing this, was getting a chance to take back a little control, and have a little agency.”
In addition to Paris — who played the character of Michelle in Wiseau’s film — The Room Actors: Where Are They Now? features a number of other actual cast members, including Carolyn Minnott (Claudette), Philip Haldiman, (Denny) and Juliette Danielle, who portrayed the movie’s lead female character, Lisa. “Craig Cackowski (Drunk History, Veep) plays our documentarian,” says Paris. “He introduces the fake documentary, and says he’s an avid Room fan. Then, he goes and tracks down Juliette Danielle, who’s drunk and high, in a dive bar in Hollywood, and she’s wearing a sexy red dress of course, and she doesn’t want anything to do with him, and she ends up marrying her stalker.” Paris
also makes fun of herself on the show. “[In the mockumentary] I’ve got eight kids from five marriages and my life’s basically gone to s–t, as well,” she explains. “You’re just getting a slice of everybody’s life. There’s lots of Easter eggs planted throughout, for the Room fans. There’s obvious jokes and then there’s lots of subtle Room jokes that I try to layer in.”
Paris has written ten episodes of The Room Actors: Where Are They Now? and filmed three, which she recently premiered at London’s Raindance Festival. “It was great,” she says of the London screening. “People were laughing the places I wanted them to laugh. I felt really good about it.”
Which is fantastic news, considering the ongoing popularity of the film Paris once hoped everyone would just forget about.
“Both Juliette and I, we don’t want the only thing in our obituaries to be just, ‘appeared in the worst movie ever made,'” says Paris. “We wanted to just reclaim a little bit and say, ‘Hey we can have fun with this, we can point and laugh at ourselves.’ We just don’t want to be tied up in it with no control whatsoever.”
The Room Actors: Where Are They Now? is playing at ITVFest on Saturday at 11 a.m. ET in Dover, Vermont.
You can see a teaser trailer for The Room Actors: Where Are They Now?, below.