Exclusive: Marilyn Ghigliotti Talks ‘Clerks 3’ at Tidewater Comicon
Marilyn Ghigliotti talks ‘Clerks’ from past and future and her next project feature that would make Danny Trejo proud.
Amidst the droves of adoring fans at the 2016 Tidewater Comicon, Film Fad found the time to sit down with “Clerks” actress Marilyn Ghigliotti for an exclusive chat about the third installment of the Kevin Smith helmed cult franchise and much much more.
We flashed back to the mid ’90s to talk coming up in Hollywood with Kevin Smith and company and to find out what she learned from Nathan Fillion at one convention.
Being part of the generation that experienced our childhood in the ’80s and ’90s, we began the conversation by reminiscing about the cult hit “Clerks.” We asked Marilyn whether or not she expected the cult fame of this fan-adored film and what it was like working with Kevin Smith back when he was just a newbie in Hollywood.
“Well…what I say is that we were all in the same boat together. None of us had any experience as far as doing a film. Brian [O’Halloran] and I, we’d done community theater together before that. But none of us had made a film, none of us knew what to expect, so we were in that same boat. Paddling along and hoping for something great and…I think it surpassed what we ever expected.”
Being that “Clerks” was set and filmed in the ’90s, and is so heavily based upon a retail experience that has since evolved, we were curious to hear how Marilyn intends to adapt her character Veronica to be relevant for today’s audience.
“Well, the thing is…I’ve not seen the script. I’ve not seen the script so I don’t know what it actually entails in any way. And even though [Clerks] was filmed in the 90s, I think ‘Clerks’ is timeless because anybody who works in a service job will get the same thing throughout eternity (laughs). I mean it’s going to be those same things that are going to happen at any given service job. I don’t know that it needs to be updated because the way Kevin [Smith] has been writing it has been his experiences from that moment when he’s actually writing it. So I think it will automatically just kind of fit.”
While Marilyn has gone on to do several other projects both in film and onstage in theatrical productions, we wanted to know whether she considered “Clerks” or her prior theatre experience to be the catalyst for launching her acting career.
“Oh no it was definitely ‘Clerks’ (laughs). But who would have [thought]? And we didn’t even realize. I always say you can’t know what’s going to happen with a film. Even with your studio produced films…unless you’re making a superhero movie. They can expect and they might think that they’re going to be a blockbuster, but that doesn’t always happen. So I think that ‘Clerks’, once it hit Sundance and we’re being recognized on the streets…that’s when you’re kind of like, ‘Wow…okay’. And then once Miramax picked it up, it’s like, ‘Oh wow, maybe something will really happen here, but still…you don’t know how to take it because we didn’t expect what did happen…but once that happened we were kind of hoping for something else. I mean I’m still pursuing acting. I don’t make a living as an actor. I still work a day job, trying to make ends meet every month. So I’m not where I want to be, but I’m a lot further than a lot of other people who haven’t done anything or are just getting started or that have been in it a very long time and don’t have the notoriety that I have.”
“Clerks” remains one of the biggest cult films of the ’90s and helped set Kevin Smith on the path to becoming a household name, but what if the film never made it big? What if “Clerks” was never even made? We ask Marilyn if she would have pursued acting without the success of “Clerks” and what she might be doing today.
“Gosh…wow…I don’t know. I’m sure I still would have pursued the theater. Would have I have pursued it to Broadway or something like that? I don’t know. I’m not a singer. I can sing, but I’m not a singer. I can dance, but I’m not a dancer. So I don’t know, that’s a really hard question to answer. It’s hard to answer any question that…unless it’s actually happening, you just don’t know.”
Given that we were at a convention about comic books and comic book related pop culture, we had to ask Marilyn something related. We proceeded to ask her as an actor, what superhero films she would be interested in being involved with.
“I guess it would have to be the Marvel ones.”
Going off of the topic of conventions, we were curious to know how long she had been doing conventions. What type of influence have these conventions had on her career?
“I don’t remember the first year but I do remember somebody contacting me and telling me about this and I’m like, ‘Wait, you’re telling me that people will actually pay to get my autograph’? I’m like, ‘Get outta here’! I even checked them out, they were saying that they knew certain people and I’m like, ‘Good, I know some of those people, I’m going to find out’. And they’re like, ‘Oh yeah, no, this is a real thing’. But my first one was in Florida and I don’t remember the year but I can tell you that it was when the iPhone came out. The first iPhone. Because the last day of the convention, I was in the back and waiting to get my ride to the airport. Nathan Fillion is in the back and he’s on his little phone and I’m like, ‘Ooooh, is that the new iPhone’? And he’s like, ‘Yeah! Check this out’! So I have my little Nathan Fillion moment. But that’s kind of how I know when I did my first convention.”
So Nathan Fillion introduced you to the iPhone?
“Yes, yes he did!”
Marilyn was very gracious and very fun to talk to. She had a lot of energy and she has a lot of personality. She was very happy to be at Tidewater Comicon and thanked us for the interview as well. In addition to “Clerks 3,” you can find more information on Marilyn’s other upcoming projects at IMDB.