Veteran soap fans recall Harley Jane Kozak for her roles on three daytime serials: wealthy geologist Brett Wheeler on Texas, sensitive teacher Annabelle Simms on Guiding Light, and tragic ex-nun Mary Duvall on Santa Barbara, who died after being hit on the head by a giant “C” that fell off the Capwell Hotel.
Harley Jane Kozak Talks New Film
Now, the actress/writer is appearing as Vivienne in More Beautiful For Having Been Broken, a heartwarming and inspiring film recently made available on numerous streaming and cable platforms.
The movie, written and directed by Nicole Conn, tells the story of three women whose lives intersect at a lakeside community. The trio shares a mutual love for Vivienne’s grandson, Freddie, played by Cale Ferrin, who, in real-life, was diagnosed with Fanconi Anemia, a rare genetic disease.
Vivienne, a mother of three, carries with her secrets of a complicated past. Soap Hub chatted with Kozak about her role in the film which can be seen on Google Play, Vudu, FandangoNow, iTunes, Amazon Instant, Vimeo, and Microsoft Xbox
Soap Hub: What attracted you to this film?
Harley Jane Kozak: When I was reading through the script, I got caught up in the emotion pretty quickly. I had to be a part of this. I was touched by this story. I think everyone will be.
What’s the main conflict for your character?
There are like seven different ones! I’m there with my daughters and there are levels of secrecy upon secrecy. I’m feeling more protective of one of my daughters, Samantha [Kayla Radomski], and my grandson, Freddie. I recognize MacKenzie [Zoe Ventoura], who comes to town. She’s a woman I had met in a bar 10 years earlier. We have a personal and a romantic connection that I guess never got beyond one lost weekend, drinking.
Now, I see her in a completely different context and it takes me a while to realize from where I know her. When I do, all hell breaks loose. Also, not all of my daughters know about each other because some of them are half-siblings. And I’m fighting through sobriety.
The screenwriter could be a soap opera head writer!
And you don’t even know the subplots that ended up on the cutting room floor! More than any other movie I’ve been in, this one required so much homework. While shooting, I’d ask, ‘Does this daughter know about this?’ and ‘Does that one know about this?’ I lost track of all the flashbacks. We’re dealing with so many [time periods] in this film.
What was it like acting with Cale?
He’s kind of extraordinary. He’s definitely talented. His “in the moment sincerity” is very compelling. Cale is from Nebraska, where I grew up. When you’re playing somebody’s grandmother, you have such a connection to the mother of the child actor, as well. Brittany [Cale’s mother] is particularly remarkable in that she has a daily life with this child who’s exposed to so much challenge.
The locales look beautiful.
We shot it in Kern County. They told me to go in the daylight, which of course, I didn’t. In the middle of nowhere, the GPS stops working. You’re dependent on sights and verbal instructions. It was a little harrowing, but once I got there it was beautiful.
In addition to the streaming platforms listed above, More Beautiful For Having Been Broken is also available from a variety of cable providers including Dish, DirecTV, Comcast, Spectrum, Charter, Cox, Verizon Fios, Frontier, Suddenlink, Mediacom, Century Link, and Google Fiber.
The film’s supporting cast includes Bruce Davison (Star Trek; X-Men), Kay Lenz (Rich Man, Poor Man), Wally Kurth (Ned, General Hospital; Justin, Days of our Lives) and Gabrielle Baba-Conn (Conn’s real-life daughter) who is also making her feature debut. Check out the trailer below.