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Kerry Knuppe - Interview

Kerry Knuppe Photo Front PageThe feature film Solver will be in theaters early in 2018, which means once again one of Riveting Riffs Magazine’s favorite actresses Kerry Knuppe will also be on the big screen. Knuppe is one of the most versatile and gifted actresses in film today with other film credits including a major role in Like A Country Song and Nicole Conn’s A Perfect Ending, where she played the daughter of Barbara Niven’s and the late John Heard’s characters.

Solver was a really fun project that we did and we filmed it in upstate New York.  It is a mystery adventure and it has Antonio Jaramillo who was in Shades of Blue and me. He played the bad guy and he was really fun to work with. The people that we worked with were so wonderful. It was so fun to be in a small town where they were appreciative of us being there. It was a different feeling.

It is a fun story and a “what’s going” on mystery kind of a thing. It was a really fun project,” says Knuppe.  

Solver directed by Xandy Smith and also starring John Ruby and Jesiree Dizon, also had some interesting moments before filming began.

Kerry Knuppe shares one of those moments, while laughing, “When I was cast they said you have a week to prepare and I said I would like to come out a couple of days before we start shooting and shadow a mechanic (her character is a mechanic), so they said  Read More

Actress Barbara Niven

Barbara Niven Photo for Front PageBarbara Niven is a lot of things, but if you were to ask her, she would probably tell you that what she is most proud of is being a mother and a grandmother. She waves that flag proudly and so she should. Barbara Niven, the actress has appeared in more than one hundred feature films and made for television movies. Her roles have been as diverse as currently starring as Megan O’Brien on the Hallmark Channel’s wildly popular Chesapeake Shores, where she is the prodigal mother who returns home to her five adult children and her ex Mick O’Brien or in her role as Delores Swensen, mother to amateur sleuth Hannah Swensen played by Alison Sweeney in the Murder, She Baked mystery movies, also Hallmark productions and the middle-aged Rebecca Westridge in Nicole Conn’s A Perfect Ending with the late John Heard and Jessica Clark,  a story in which her character is trapped in a loveless marriage and she falls in love with another woman.

While there is a part of every actor invested in every role that they play or at least there should be if that role is to be performed well, not every moviegoer or fan who sits in front of their television sets on a Saturday or Sunday night gets an opportunity to discover who the real person is behind the character. We invite you to spend a few minutes with us as we chat with an incredible woman, who seems to find the perfect balance between strength and kindness, while not being afraid to lend her voice to causes she truly is passionate about such as, animal rights, anti-bullying, human rights and helping others to realize their dreams. As Barbara Niven so often likes to say, “Don’t stop five minutes before the miracle happens.”  Read More

Rebecca Staab - Film & TV Actress

Rebecca Staab Photo for Front PageFilm and television actress Rebecca Staab recently talked to Riveting Riffs Magazine from her home in California. The former supermodel who was born in Kansas and who grew up in Grand Island and Omaha, Nebraska discussed a wide range of topics from one of her passions, rescuing dogs, to her partner in life William, to touching upon her love for home renovations, which she warned this writer would easily comprise an entirely different interview, to talking about how she enjoyed an illustrious modeling career and currently is one of the film and television industry’s most respected actresses, careers that this former straight A high school student never had her heart set on. In this the first part of a two-part interview with Rebecca Staab she talks about her childhood and later her modeling career. It is our hope that our readers will get a sense for this funny, determined, down to earth, brilliant and engaging woman who recently starred in the ABC television miniseries Somewhere Between, as Colleen DeKizer, was Elizabeth Barrington in the television show Port Charles, is currently shooting the pilot for the television series Manopause, appears as Camille Richfield in the 2017 film Coming Home for Christmas and who has appeared in a plethora of films and television shows, some of which are still in various stages of production. 

“I was born in Kansas, but we moved to Omaha when I was seven. I just have an older sister and a younger brother. My sister is one and one-half years older than me, but my brother is nine and one-half years younger. There were two childhoods in a way. There were a few years when there was just my sister and then my brother was born when I was in the fourth grade and that was like  Read More

Sally Stevens Interview

Sally Stevens Front Page PhotoWe would be here all day if we attempted to list every one of the musical accomplishments during Sally Stevens' career, but throughout the course of our recent conversation with Sally and in the account of that interview which you will read here, we will attempt to give the reader a glimpse into the career of one of America’s and the music industry’s most successful people, during this two-part interview.  

Sally Stevens has performed and recorded as a solo singer, a session singer, she has scored feature films and she has worked as a vocal contractor, auditioning and hiring the singers and choir members who appear on major films and her film work as relates to music now encompasses more than 600 films, including Academy Award winners and nominated movies. Here are just a few of the films that Sally Stevens has worked on, Tomorrowland, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Secret of NIMH, Dr. Zivahgo, The Sound of Music, Bridge of Spies and Jurassic World.

She toured and recorded with Burt Bacharach and she lent her voice to the records of, Frank Sinatra, Andy Williams, Country Joe and the Fish, Neil Diamond, Michael Bublé, Percy Faith and Sonny and Cher to name just a few of the iconic artists with whom she has Read More

Actress, Mary Jane Wells - Heroine

Mary Jane Wells Photo Front PageWhether she is talking to you on the phone or you are watching her act in a film or she is narrating a book the first thing you notice about Mary Jane Wells is the command that she garners with her voice. She possesses great vocal technique, Wells is articulate and the tonal quality of her voice is magical. Mary Jane Wells uses her voice in another way however, to draw attention to a very important issue sexual assault in the military. Her one woman play titled Heroine is a true story of a lesbian soldier named Danna Davis (a pseudonym that we will use throughout this interview) who served in the United States army.

Mary Jane Wells talks about first becoming aware of Danna Davis, “A friend of Danna Davis and who knew her when she was in basic training approached me while I was on the set for (the film) A Perfect Ending. She gave me a script that she had written with Danna Davis and then she told me that they had written a part for me. I read it and I was very flattered. I thought, this sounds like a true story and it has a ring of authenticity about it. It was thinly veiled in artistic license.  I spoke to her and that script really didn’t go anywhere or not yet anyway. I gradually got to know the person behind it, the survivor and whose story it really was. We became friends over the course of several years. I also said to her now that nothing has happened with it being a screenplay would you mind if I tried my hand at it as a stage play? Read More

Hallmark Movies - An Editorial

Hallmark front page photoNow that Christmas is over I thought I would take a few moments to talk about Hallmark Christmas movies and more generally the programming that exists on the Hallmark Channel and on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Channel.

Even though the Christmas movies follow a certain pattern, you can predict what is going to happen and you know there is a happy ending, for a lot of people that is important. Not everybody has a nice neat Christmas or someone to share it with and we live in a world where too often both in love and other matters there are not happy endings. While we realize that Hallmark movies may not be everybody’s cup of tea, for some people they do offer hope, they bring comfort and they remind us that home is where our hearts are and love is with whom our hearts belong.

The themes of romance, family, reconciliation, finding or restoring the good in people and the absence of violence are consistent throughout Hallmark / Crown Media (the parent company) programming whether it is the series When Calls The Heart, now in its fifth season or the Good Witch another Hallmark production, Chesapeake Shores or movie sequels such as the Gourmet Detective or Murder She Baked. Yes some might also say that there is an underlying theme of Christian values in the programming, not overt, not pushy, but it is there, however this piece is not about religion today, it is about why the Hallmark brand continues to grow in market share. Read More

Jean Harlow - A Book Review

Jean Harlow front pageBombshell The Life and Death of Jean Harlow, a biography by David Stenn and published by Doubleday in 1993 is a must read for any true fan or history buff when it comes to the early days of the film industry. Stenn who is also the author of the book Clara Bow: Runnin’ Wild crafted a masterpiece that is well balanced, insightful and portrays Jean Harlow in a humane way.

David Stenn whose writing credits include Hill Street Blues, 21 Jump Street and Beverly Hills, 90210, conducted interviews with many of the people who knew Jean Harlow personally, including one of her closest friends Barbara Brown, a member of what Jean Harlow referred to as “my gang.” Others included Irene Mayer Selznick, the wife of film producer David O Selznick (Gone With The Wind) and daughter of Louis B. Mayer the MGM movie mogul, countless interviews were conducted with the children and other family members of those close to Jean Harlow, including the family of her ex-husband Paul Bern whose death remains a mystery. The author also spent a copious amount of time exploring legal and medical documents to which he was given unrestricted access.

The prologue sets the scene at Jean Harlow’s deathbed and immediately raises a number of serious questions about how a beautiful 26 year old woman, adored by fans and viewed as sex siren and goddess and loved by friends and co-workers  Read More

Dina Morrone - The Italian In Me

Dina Morrone Front Page AActress Dina Morrone has appeared in feature films both on screen and off as a voice artist and she has also appeared in a whole host of commercials.  The Canadian / Italian actress who has called Los Angeles home for many years now is likely the voice that you heard at numerous high profile awards shows, as she introduced the celebrities walking out on stage.

With all those options exercised in Canada, Italy and America, Dina Morrone says, “My love and my passion would be for me to only write plays and to be a solo performer, whether it be through the acting of my work or the reading of my pieces on stage.”

Despite the fact that there was a period in Morrone’s life when she was in denial of being the daughter of an Italian immigrant family, it was her embracing of her Italian heritage, in addition to the coaxing of a few friends and acquaintances that resulted in one of her most successful theatrical achievements, her self-produced play The Italian In Me.

Her one woman play prompted renowned Canadian film director Norman Jewison to say, “Not since Moonstruck have I seen such Italian wit, humor and charm.”

American actor and producer Maray Ayres describes Dina Morrone’s performance in The Italian In Me this way, “"Every now and then talent and beauty walk hand in hand.”  Read More

Interview with Michael Maron

Michael Maron Photo front pageMichael Maron’s has enjoyed an illustrious career as a makeup artist, critically acclaimed photographer and beauty consultant. He has authored books such as Child Inside Me and Makeover Magic, which took a look at corrective cosmetics and cosmetic surgery and his book Michael Maron’s Instant Makeover Magic was a New York Times best seller. Maron has been sought out by some of the beauty industry’s top models, as well as some of the entertainment world’s biggest stars and yet he also delights in being of service to clients whose names are only known to their families and neighbors. Michael Maron has been a radio and television personality and worked on the production side of television as well. He was thrust firmly into the spotlight when an entire hour of Oprah’s television show was dedicated to Maron doing a makeover of Oprah in front of the cameras. His work with charities and with burn victims has earned him a special place in the hearts of those who have worked with him, in the hearts of his friends and with those who have been the recipients of his generosity. Riveting Riffs Magazine was honored when Michael Maron accepted our invitation to be interviewed by this publication.

Michael Maron was born in New York City and as a child moved with his family of four to Los Angeles. 

“(One of) my mother’s many sisters lived in  Read More