Nicky Whelan as Jessie Quilan in the thriller ‘Maneater.’ Photo Courtesy of Saban Films
Australian actress and model Nicky Whelan (“Neighbours”) chatted about starring in the new thriller “Maneater.”
It was written and directed by Justin Lee. It will be released in theaters and on Demand and Digital on August 26, 2022, via Saban Films. “‘Maneater’ was as crazy as it looks,” she said with a sweet laugh. “It was so fun, wild, and challenging.”
“Justin Lee is fabulous,” she said. “He wanted to take some risks and he was old-school about the process and I love the way he does things. Despite how crazy this movie was to make, he kept a chill vibe and I appreciate his energy.”
The synopsis of “Maneater” is as follows: After an accident during their vacations on a paradisiac island, a group of friends is stalked by a large shark. What better place to drown your sorrows than an idyllic island paradise?
That was the idea when Jessie Quilan’s friends convinced her to not let a broken engagement stand in the way of enjoying her prepaid honeymoon. Their sorrows weren’t the only thing going to drown on their trip, especially with a man-eating shark swimming just below the surface.
“This movie was made in 18 days with a mechanical shark but we did go a little old-school with it,” she said. “In the meantime, I hope the fans get really scared,” she added with a chuckle.
She was drawn to playing Jessie for several reasons. “It is always fun to be the survivor, especially to play a broken woman with a major comeback and who has the balls to jump into the water and take on a shark. You get to do cool things like that,” she said.
Aside from Whelan, it also stars Trace Adkins, Jeff Fahey of “Lost,” and Shane West of “A Walk to Remember.” “I’ve known Shane for years, he is a great actor,” she said.
“I loved her journey, and I felt badass. Having Trace Adkins next to me was awesome because he is a real-life badass, it was a cool dynamic,” she added.
On being an actress in the digital age, Whelan said, “It is pretty crazy, isn’t it? This is how it is now, embrace it and lean into it. Get in the mix with it. This is the way that the world is going so we might as well get onboard.”
She reflected on “Neighbours” with the fondest memories. “I am incredibly grateful for my time on the show,” she admitted. “It is so sad that the show is over. It was such a strong-going show that had an impact on so many people’s careers and lives. I will forever be grateful for ‘Neighbours’.”
“Soap opera actors are such hard workers. I learned so much being on there and it really set me up for my career in America,” she added.
For young and aspiring actors, she acknowledged that it is a bit difficult these days, and even in Los Angeles it’s tough. “Everyone’s journey here is different, I don’t know what the secret is. Get into a great acting school, create your own content with friends, and go out and meet people. Now, we have platforms to promote ourselves too,” she said.
“It’s a long journey and hopefully, it will last you a lifetime,” she added.
If she were to have any superpower, she shared that she would love to be “invisible.” “I’m such a snoop, I would love some invisibility,” she said with a sweet laugh.
On the title of the current chapter of her life, she said, “I don’t know where I’m going from here, but I promise it won’t be boring.” “This David Bowie quote would be the title of my chapter,” she said.
Regarding her definition of the word success, Whelan simply said, “Consistency.”
Whelan listed Daniel Day-Lewis as her dream acting partner in the entertainment business.