Many entertainment reviewers and critics believe that after its initial years with Chevy Chase, John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Dan Akroyd, Bill Murray and the rest of the ensemble cast of NBC’s benchmark sketch-comedy show – Saturday Night Live – the ‘prime’ talent years to follow would be 1986 to the mid-90s.
SNL’s lineup in those years, and as always, was in flux. From Dennis Miller, Kevin Nealon, Dana Carvey, Jon Lovitz Jan Hooks and Mike Myers, to the late Phil Hartman, Tim Meadows, Chris Rock, the late Chris Farley, Julia Sweeney and many others.
But for six years, 1986 to ’92, there was one constant, hilarious female comedic presence on SNL that audiences and critics alike adored.
With her distinctive laugh and quirkiness – actress, comedienne (20 appearances on Johnny Carson with her stand-up act), singer and author, Victoria Jackson, was a fan-favorite.
Ms. Jackson, along with up-and-coming Nashville singer/actress, Taylor DuPuis, joins the ensemble cast of the upcoming dramedy ‘Lost Heart,’ the next Collective Development Incorporated (Lansing, Mich.) feature film that rolls cameras in West Michigan this month.
‘Lost Heart’ (starring Melissa Anschutz as ‘Hannah Sweet’ and Don Most as ‘Milo’) tells the story of a fading Nashville music star whose fame and fortune cannot bring peace to her heart. She returns to her hometown in Michigan after a 30-year absence to attend the funeral of her estranged father.
In an interesting casting twist of ‘life imitating art,’ Ms. DuPuis, a Michigan native, has been in Nashville for six years in pursuit of her music career.
But unlike ‘Hannah Sweet,’ Ms. DuPuis is at the start of her dream, fronting her popular band, ‘Roanoke,’ who in 2018 was named by ‘Paste’ magazine as creating a ‘Top 10 EP’ for ‘Where I Roam.’ With a Folk/Americana style of music that uses rich harmonies, heartfelt lyrics and roots melodies to create a captivating and unique sound, ‘Roanoke’ was described by The Huffington Post as “a band brimming with optimism, youthful exuberance, and creative energy.”
Between touring, writing, and recording, Ms. DuPuis has also landed several acting roles. And one project took her to the Nashville Film Festival.
A Columbia College (Chicago) alum, where she studied vocal performance, Ms. DuPuis plays ‘Elsie, in ‘Lost Heart.’ Her character, also a performer and Hannah’s cousin, “wants to be famous, just like you!”
Ms. DuPuis and ‘Roanoke’ will also be prominent in the film’s soundtrack.
Ms. Jackson, known for many spot-on imitations, including ‘Roseanne Barr,’ her portrayal of a ‘sexually-deprived’ ‘Mrs. (Santa) Claus’ on SNL’s Weekend Update and a ukulele duet with ‘Tiny Tim,’ has been called by TV critics as being “memorable and highly underrated. A talent right up there with SNL’s best cast members.”
Playing ‘Alma Mae Howard,’ Hannah’s mother and a ‘Hippie counter-culture’ throwback who has been institutionalized in the past, is a role that will give Ms. Jackson a platform for sharing her performance versatility with audiences.
A cancer-survivor, Ms. Jackson, who coincidentally is also now a Nashville resident to be close to her daughters and grandchildren, authored a comedy/devotional book, ‘Lavender Hair: 21 Devotions for Women with Breast Cancer’ in 2017.
Ms. Jackson wrote the book following a Stage 3 breast cancer diagnosis and thru chemotherapy, radiation treatments, baldness and as she says, “wigs, wigs, and more wigs,” as well as double- mastectomy.
She writes, “If you are one-in-eight women who have been diagnosed with cancer, or if you know someone who has been, this devotional is full of humor, insight, and comfort as you walk with God through this dark valley.”
Ms. Jackson still performs her stand-up routine to standing ovations.
“My writing often tends to deal with very serious topics that are offset with a healthy dose of humor. The cast that we’ve brought together will be able to make you laugh, cry, and relate. Letting go of a painful past can be difficult but also is a required thing in life for happiness.”
– DJ Perry, screenwriter
‘Lost Heart,’ directed by Jesse Low, will be a 2020 release thru Bridgestone Multimedia Group. CDI also has its 1800’s mid=Western “WILD FAITH” arriving on DVD nationwide on July 2nd, 2019 and this Summer “MBF: MAN’S BEST FRIEND” about wounded military vets and adoption dogs will release to theaters with myCinema booking.
Collective Development Inc. website
Collective Development Inc.