Interview with Vanessa Fox
Vanessa Fox is no ordinary model. She is a triple threat – a dancer, an actress and a model. Vanessa was born and raised in the Toronto area.
At age 5, she began her career as a performer studying ballet. She soon realized her love for the stage and took on many different forms of dance. She landed a modeling career when the president of Zebra Studios “discovered” her walking on the street. She has graced the pages of two of their calendars since then. She fell in love with modeling and began her career as a model. She has been in numerous music videos, magazines and has even shot with celebrity photographer Kevin Lynch.
In 2009, she was called in to be a background dancer for a television show where director Zalman King (director of the Red Shoe Diaries) saw her and offered her a part on the show. She returned for four more episodes. Her agent found her and signed her shortly after.
She was also the very first bitetv Bite Girl champion voted by fans in a head to head competition. She is currently working on her acting career in film, broadcasting and television. She has appeared in the television series Lingerie, Body Language, Urban Legends and the soon to be released thriller F.M. Andy.
Vanessa, It seems the camera loves you. Yours is a classic story of being “discovered”. How did you feel about it at the time?
Vanessa: I was really flattered and really surprised. It was almost surreal and for a minute I thought it was a joke. I’m really lucky to have had my first modeling gig as a calendar model. It was a really cool experience I had never done anything like that before. All I knew was, I wanted more.
You have an impressive portfolio. Any advice to girls who may want to become models themselves?
Vanessa: Hard work, dedication and don’t be afraid to try new things. It’s hard to let yourself go sometimes but when you do, that’s when the best photos are taken.
Not only do you model and dance, you are an actress as well. How did you make the jump to acting and did you find it difficult?
Vanessa: I’m finding it pretty challenging. I’ve only been acting for two years and I’ve done quite a bit in that time. It was much harder than I thought it would be. Certain roles were easier for me to play. I’m good at being the seductress but I like pushing my own limits and boundaries. My role in FM Andy was really new and different for me. I started acting by accident when Zalman King saw me on the set of Body Language as a background dancer. He asked me if I would like a speaking part on the show and I said yes. It’s like I started acting overnight. My acting has helped with my modeling as well. I feel it’s made me able to project myself much better than I used to.
Zalman King’s Red Show Diaries is very well known and well respected show. How was your experience working on that?
Vanessa: Working on body language with Zalman was a really great experience. I’d never been on a big set before and didn’t really know what to expect. He’s a great director and knows exactly what he wants. It was a bit intimidating because I was the least experienced of the group but everyone was really nice and professional. It was really amazing to see how things got made and how much work goes into it. Zalman is a really cool guy. When I met him, all I could think of was “wow this guy is SO L.A!”. He was just so sure of what he wanted to do with the show and what he needed from us as actors. He just knew exactly what he was doing, which was good because I didn’t.
You are acting now in the thriller, F.M, Andy. What is it about and what role do you play?
Vanessa: It’s a horror film about a man named Andy who talks to his radio. He’s a bit of a crazy guy. I play Cheryl, a really creepy girl that comes to him in a dream. I describe her as the joker meets Harley Quinn (from Batman) It was really great, something totally out of my element. I love horror films and it was really amazing getting to be a part of it. It was also my first feature film, so I was really excited to be in it.
How did being Asian affect your modeling or acting? Do you think you were treated differently in any way?
Vanessa: I don’t think I was treated differently. In this industry, you have to be pretty tough and deal with rejection well and know how to bounce back. If people are looking for a certain look and I don’t have it then there’s no reason to be upset about it. I think being Asian actually helps in a lot of cases. The modeling industry has become very diverse with what they’re looking for in models, so right now is a really great time for me to be in the industry. As for acting, I look at it as an advantage. It’s hard to find a tall Asian so maybe that’s working in my favor.
What do you see yourself doing in five years?
Vanessa: Acting for sure. Hopefully, travelling as well. I’d really like to do comedy, which is something I haven’t had a chance to do yet, so working on a comedy and maybe even helping with some of the writing, would be awesome!
Vanessa: I really like black and pink together, never fails to look good.
Vanessa: I have a lot of favorites. But my all time favorite is Labyrinth. I’ve been in love with it since I was little. I used to sing the songs from it all the time. And I also love David Bowie and Jennifer Connelly.
What takes up most of your time?
Vanessa: I don’t really have much free time. I usually work really hard when I’m in my hometown and then take a week off for a vacation somewhere hot to relax and decompress. Lately, when I can find the time I’ve been spending a lot of time looking at art and museums and different festivals around Toronto.
Vanessa: Food, I actually eat a lot when no one is watching.
Vanessa: A spa day. I’m a sucker for a great massage.
Vanessa: Intolerance. We’re all different and I’m not saying others need to accept it but it takes all kinds for the world to go around.
Your “go to” food?
Vanessa: Soup, it’s my comfort food for every situation.
Fun Fact about you?
Vanessa: I’m actually fairly good at video games. I used to get grounded all the time as a kid so to kill time, I started playing Nintendo with my brother and I still do sometimes. Although now he’s much better at it than I am.