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Gilles Marini Actor Interview

Sex and the City actor Gilles Marini on mental health, COVID, and his role in (Im)pure (2022)

In this interview actor Gilles Marini discusses many in-depth topics with presenter Aiysha Jebali, including the effect of the global pandemic on the entertainment industry and the mental health crisis.

Gilles explains why he felt compelled to star in (Im)pure (2022), a short film about Pure “O” OCD (more on that further below). He talks about the responsibility he feels as a creative to provide a vital means of escapism from the world, in the form of films and storytelling.Jack JuddMarini also offers acting tips and advice, following his many years of experience in film and television, in what turns out to be a series of very carefully considered answers.

More on actor Gilles Marini

Gilles Marini exploded onto the scene as “Dante”, the Casanova living in the beach house next door to Kim Cattrall’s “Samantha” on the Sex and the City (2008) movie, a role which has earned him international recognition.

Gilles has been seen on TV hit series like Dare Devil (2016), Teen Wolf (2016), Ugly Betty (2006) and Criminal Minds (2005), and in several soap operas, including The Bold and the Beautiful (1987) and Days Of Our Lives (2018 – 2019).

He has also made appearances in a number of feature films including Burning at Both Ends (2021) with Cary Elwes, Judd Hirsch and Greer Grammer.

Isabella Rae Thomas Actor Impure 2022
Isabella Rae Thomas, actor, in (Im)pure (2022)

(Im)pure (2022)

Cast: Gilles Marini, Isabella Rae Thomas
Writer/Director: Marjorie A. Thomas

Synopsis

A girl on the edge of hiding. Her experiences with “Pure O” OCD have taken her to deepening and darkening places, where her thoughts make her a monster. Where she is unable to distinguish anymore, the reality of who she is and who her obsessions tell her she is. Tearing away from the rituals she depends on to diffuse her anxiety is not something Sola’s exactly ready for – she just has no choice anymore but to fight to win back the peace of her own mind.

Marjorie A. Thomas: what is “Pure O” OCD?

Pure O is a largely unrecognized subtype of OCD, where commonly thought of physical compulsions, like hand-washing, counting, and other repetitive rituals are not present.

With the “purely obsessional,” rituals are instead, mainly mental. For example, one might have the thought of hurting someone they love, or hurting themselves. It is the “standing at the edge of a train platform,” what-if question.

To someone with Pure O, these thoughts bring an unimaginable anxiety. Especially when circling around dark and common themes, such as: violence, sexuality, paedophilia, relationships and religion.

This film is about revealing what the “monster” really is at the heart of Pure O.

Gilles Marini, Actor Impure 2022
Gilles Marini, actor, in (Im)pure (2022)

I want to be clear though: with Pure O, disturbing thoughts do not equal a desire for the thoughts to play out in real life. The difference between OCD and your run-of-the-mill intrusive thoughts, would be the paralyzing anxiety that becomes attached to the thought. So frightening at times, that one’s life is consumed by the mental rituals they hope will fend-off their anxiety.

It becomes an illness which makes life feel much more a burden than a blessing. I will also be open with you, in that this project is a blend between personal experience and fiction.

I cannot explain another’s OCD experiences as they have felt them, and every individual goes through their own journey with this.

My main goal in the making of (im)pure, is to show something different. Unfamiliar. To talk about a subject that doesn’t get a whole lot of representation.

To date (October 2021) there are literally zero film representations which speak on the realities of living with Pure O, and only one television series (‘Pure’ on HBO Max) which addresses the topic head-on. If anything, the most important thing to me is that anyone struggling with Pure O, or who knows someone else struggling, might watch this and feel a lot less isolated in what they’re going through.

Credits

VFX/Titles/Intro & Artwork, Headline, Copywriting: Richard Williams
Stills and/or footage courtesy of: Marjorie A. Thomas, Gilles Marini and as credited

Presenter

Scottish Tunisian actress. Yes, that's a thing. BAME. POC.

Creator & Editor-in-Chief

I own this thing. Being creative makes me tick. Film lover. Coffee hater. Website manager, headline and copywriter, video editor, graphic/motion designer, editor, presenter...

Jack Judd Film Forums
Jack Judd
Video Editor

An award-winning filmmaker, award-winning animator, musician, and drinker of tea.