Friday, August 6, 2010

Catching Up With Rachael Hip-Flores, Part One

Rachael Hip-Flores has broken new ground in the world of Indie Soaps by winning Best Actress in We Love Soaps First Annual Indie Soap Awards as well as a slew of nominations and awards for her work as Vivian in ANYONE BUT ME.  Now she is shattering new barriers in on New York's theater stages.  Is television next? Find out in this new and revealing interview. (Press here to watch the video of this interview). 

We Love Soaps: I am so fortunate today to being sitting with the First Annual Indie Soap Winner Rachael Hip-Flores, star on the hit series ANYONE BUT ME, and many more things we are going to discuss.  How are you?
Rachael Hip-Flores: I’m great, I’m happy to be here again.

We Love Soaps: It’s been such an amazing year for you and ANYONE BUT ME. 
Rachael Hip-Flores: It’s been a wild ride.  We have had over 5 million views now.  We have gotten such great recognition from you guys.

We Love Soaps: And not just from us.  ANYONE BUT ME is breaking ground on so many levels on the web.  And that is being acknowledged not just by We Love Soaps, but from the amount of awards you have been nominated for and won since our last talk. 
Rachael Hip-Flores: Yeah, that’s been alright.  I did win a Streamy, that was very nice.  We also were nominated for Best writing and best directing.  We were the up for audience choice award as well, we were the only drama up for that. 

We Love Soaps: Why do you think all these diverse audiences on the web are recognizing ANYONE BUT ME as such a creative and inspiring force?
Rachael Hip-Flores: I think it is about the diversity of the show.  We are not a bunch of middle class kids all living in the same suburb of on the Upper East Side like some prime time shows.  We have gay and straight characters, of all different ethnicities and all socioeconomic classes.  I think it speaks to a lot of people in a non-stereotypical way.  We have real people on the show. 

We Love Soaps: Season Two is now completely available at  When people watch it they are going to see quite an explosive season that ends with a huge cliffhanger.  You are left saying, “How can they end that there?” Your character Vivian has gone through a lot of changes in Season Two.
Rachael Hip-Flores: She’s a little more out now.  She has told her best friend, and she’s more out than she was in season one.  Also the scope of the show has expanded so it’s not just Vivian’s story.  You’re getting more of Astor, of Sophie, and the boys as well.  I think it’s the sort of grand widening of the scheme of things that makes season two explode. 

We Love Soaps: You know I’m a therapist, and a huge GILMORE GIRLS fanatic, so of course I was thrilled about Liza Weil [who plays a therapist].
Rachael Hip-Flores: Liza is so much fun! She is so down-the-earth, so present.  There is no ego about her.  She’s just a wonderful human being to talk to on and off screen.  She had a baby, she was actually pregnant during the show.  The actress was actually pregnant, and she just had a wonderful baby. 

We Love Soaps: The cast of ANYONE BUT ME just presented a web-a-thon last week.  Tell us what that was, and what is still happening with that. 
Rachael Hip-Flores: We just did this three day event over the internet, it’s available for free. It is to help fund season three.  We don’t want to start charging subscription for it because we want it to be available to as many people as possible.  So, in lieu of that, we put together a lot more content, things to bid on Ebay, a walking tour, random piece of information that you would never begin to know about us that were presented with Lisa Bernhard.  She really was hysterical.  She is another wonderful, upbeat, open presence to be around, and just wonderful to talk to.  So there’s all that for you to watch.  And on the web page there is a “donate” button so you can help to fund season three to bring us back. You can fund as much or as little as you want, every little bit helps.  Five bucks, three bucks, whatever you daily latte costs, we would love to turn that into something wonderful for you.

We Love Soaps: Every day I hear from viewers of We Love Soaps TV, or read comments on, Facebook, or Twitter, about  how unhappy people are with the whitewashing of network television, and how frustrated people with the lack of diversity.  People are also really upset about how many soaps have gone off the air in recent year and are potentially facing cancellation now.  It seems to me this is such an important time to step up and support the art and entertainment that we want to see.  ANYONE BUT ME is a series that touches me personally.  I have learned from this past year that if I want something to continue then I have to do something to step up and support it.  I can’t just sit back and hope for the best anymore. 
Rachael Hip-Flores: More than that, I don’t think people get the opportunity with network shows to show their support. You watch it and it’s not like you can be directly involved with bringing it to others.  Whereas with this you make a donation and you are actually helping in a very tangible way.  This is the opportunity to be directly involved. 

We Love Soaps: Part of this hilarious web-a-thon has to do with some serious charades.  You have proven yourself as a bit of a charade savant. 
Rachael Hip-Flores: I get really into it!  I’m not a sports person, I don’t have that outlet of competition.  I’m a fairly easy-going person.  But you come down to board games, and charades, and it’s a different thing.  If you don’t take it seriously, you don’t want to be in the same room with me. 

We Love Soaps: Many of the answers in the charades are lines from the show.  You seem to remember the lines from every episode!
Rachael Hip-Flores: Honestly, because I’m competitive and I’m kind of a nerd, I went back the night before and I studied for charades.  I didn’t want to be out there and not know what to do so I prepared (laughs).  I was learning the titles of all the episodes, the ones I didn’t even know existed before, I went back and I studied for that. 

EDITOR'S NOTE: Come back tomorrow for Part Two in which Rachael discusses playing a boy in Shakespeare's Two Gentlemen Of Verona, her take on the LOST finale, as well as becoming a crucial part of the new independent television community.  Until then enjoy ANYONE BUT ME and donate!

Damon L. Jacobs is a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist seeing individuals and couples in New York City at Mental Health Counseling & Marriage And Family Therapy Of New York. He is also the author of "Absolutely Should-less: The Secret to Living the Stress-Free Life You Deserve."

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