SPOTLIGHT: Jillian Clare’s “Pretty Broken”

Jillian Clare was Abigail “Abby” Deveraux in NBC’s Days of Our Lives, and even today, continues to write, act and produce prolifically in the indie world. Her latest, Pretty Broken opens today.

INDULGE: Tell us about your latest movie, Pretty Broken?

CLARE: Pretty Broken is a glimpse into the life of Lindsey Lou, a soon-to-be divorced, college dropout whose father goes missing in Everest and is presumed dead. The film follows Lindsey and her family as they adjust to life without her father. There’s also a car lot and a goat! It gets crazy.

Jillian Clare and Adam Chambers in “Pretty Broken.”

INDULGE: What was it like shooting in Portland versus California?

CLARE: Eichenberger (director), Remensnyder (writer), and Michael Ferry (DP) actually live in Portland, so it was definitely the easier route. It’s funny though, Susan Bernhardt (producer & my mom), Preston Bailey (“Monty”), Peter Holden (“Montgomery”), and myself are all from Portland as well. We filmed mostly on the outskirts of Portland (Beaverton/Hillsboro), with some stuff shot in the city. The suburbs of Portland really have that “every town America” feel that this film needed. I definitely think shooting outside of California has some advantages. For example, people are actually excited you’re filming something and not jaded by it. If you get asked what you’re filming though, always say a mayonnaise commercial. If you know, you know…

Monty and Lindsey
Preston Bailey and Jill Claire in “Pretty Broken.”

INDULGE: You’ve been an actress since a very young age when you were on the daytime drama Days of Our Lives.  What motivated you towards producing?

CLARE: I’ve been acting since I was seven. I hit this moment in my career when I was a teenager and they were only hiring twenty-somethings to play teenagers. I was getting really frustrated so my mom created and wrote a web series called Miss Behave. This was before Netflix, Hulu, Amazon. There were only a few of us trying to make web series at this point. I distinctly remember being in a small room of people with Felicia Day and Bernie Sue and discussing the possibilities of the digital platform. We produced three seasons of the show and were regarded as the “top teen web series” while it was on. After that, I just kept producing. In this day and age, I believe you have to keep making your own content if you want to be successful. If you’re not ahead, you’re falling behind.

INDULGE: What were the challenges of working on an independent film?

CLARE: Whenever you work on an indie film, I think time and budget are the two biggest obstacles you face. However, I believe when something is supposed to happen, it will happen. Pieces fell into place with this film!

INDULGE: You are known for your work on internet series like Ladies of the Lake, Miss Behave and Acting Dead.  Tell us a little about the more recent culture of internet series and how you feel about this medium of storytelling?

CLARE: The internet culture has certainly changed from when I started producing and acting in digital series nearly ten years ago. I think the explosion of Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon has certainly hindered the independent digital series from gaining an audience. The digital world is incredibly saturated these day. Unless you have a built in audience, it’s very hard to become successful with a digital series. I think nowadays, if you’re going to produce something on your own, it’s better to make an ultra-low budget film rather than a series.

— G. Dhalla

PRETTY BROKEN will be available on March 1st on VOD (iTunes, Amazon) and will be screened at the Laemmle NoHo 7 from March 1st-7th with a post-screening Q&A with the cast and crew. Follow Clare: Instagram and Twitter and facebook.