She Who Dares takes a look at female Warriors who we think are incredibly inspiring. There has been an undeniable trend in the screen action world recently, and this is the rise of the female warrior. We’ve written a past blog about the growth of women in the action industry, and the presence of female skilled supporting artists, featured action stars, stunt performers and stunt coordinators only continues to rise.
We’ve recently hosted a Warrior Masterclass Phase I course where over half the participants were female, and we thought it would be an excellent idea to talk to our female students, to discover what they think of this growth, and what has inspired them to pursue a career in screen action.
In our first She Who Dares interview, we will be talking with Frances Katz, who has rapidly moved through the first three stages in as little as 4 months. A student whose journey, we have found incredibly inspiring.
Hi Frances, you’ve recently just completed the Phase III titan course, how did you find it?
Yeah, I did prepare a lot for it. Lots of training with other British Action Academy Students, and even with people who had already completed Phase IV. You know, just trying to get well prepared. I just think, that on the day my performance wasn’t that great, and I actually didn’t do that well.
I understand though, the level was really high. I had a great time and it was a really good experience. I was disappointed about my result, but I think that’s all part of the game, that’s part of the industry, you’re going to get knocked down, and if you really want it you’ve just got to keep on working hard!
What ignited the interest in screen combat to start with?
I trained as a professional dancer and actress, mainly musical theatre. For years though, I always felt a bit lost, and even though I loved the performing, I always thought it was never my thing. People kept on saying “Oh, you’ve got so much power, you’re a bit too strong” and that really got me down. This is how I am, and this is the way I move!
It was about two years ago that I started to notice more attention on actresses who were taking leads in strong roles, I got really hooked into the whole Wonder Woman thing and I knew they were making the film. I had a few friends who did the film, who were dancers, and they had to train really hard to become these warriors. One of them actually had a really big role, she was one of the queens, and I was very inspired them.
I wished I had that opportunity but obviously, things happen for a reason and I just thought that the best way to get into this was to find out if could take any stunt skills or combat fighting courses, so I could work more in that industry. I had always wanted to work in film, but I just never knew where to start.