The Bachelor star LaNease Adams is taking her talents to the big screen in Heaven’s Revenge.
Since appearing in the first ever season of The Bachelor, LaNease Adams has carved out her place in Hollywood not only as a reality TV star, but an actress. Now you can catch her in the thrilling feature film, Heaven’s Revenge, on Amazon Prime!
The film follows Heaven Bailey (LaNease Adams, The Bachelor), Jackson Davis (Marcus Nel-Jamal Hamm, The Black League of Super Heroes), and Detective Malves (Robert Peters, Ocean’s Eleven), in a love affair gone awry. Despite happy beginnings, Jackson abruptly ends their relationship, sending Heaven into a tailspin of anger and depression in this Fatal Attraction–meets–Misery story.
LaNease, who also directed, wrote and produced the film, chatted with AfterBuzz TV about all things behind-the-scenes, her career in Hollywood and of course, The Bachelor.
AFTERBUZZ: Oh my gosh, what a rollercoaster. It was so weird watching the movie because I was like, why am I rooting for Heaven to get away with this?
LANEASE: I think that women are going to really relate to her just because even now, if you look in the news where you’ve got, let’s say DaBaby and DaniLeigh, where women are like, ‘Oh my gosh, he shouldn’t have kicked her out of his home,’ you’ve got a lot of high profile relationships that we see where us women get taken advantage of, and this time we kind of get redemption.
AFTERBUZZ: You were very hands-on with different roles in the project: directing, writing, producing, casting, wardrobe. How did you first get involved with the film?
LANEASE: Last summer I wanted to do a short film just to showcase my range. As an actress, I wanted to be happy. I wanted to be sad. I wanted to be angry. And so that’s how the short film came about and I was going to be done with it. Well, a few friends saw the short film, a few investors, and they thought, you know what? This could actually be the beginning of a feature. So we took the idea to a writer, Miranda Bowden, and just gave her some pointers: I want her to have her heart broken, get redemption, but in the end–well, you know what happens in the end. So that’s how it came about. And I wore a lot of hats in this just because we were shooting independently. Our budget wasn’t a big feature film budget. We spent a pretty penny–we definitely could have bought some really nice things with the money–but instead, I feel like we have a movie that will live on. And so I was happy to take on a lot of the roles. It was exhausting and it took a lot longer than we expected. We expected the movie to be out last summer, but it took a lot longer in post-production to get everything just right.
AFTERBUZZ: What was it like working to develop the character of Heaven?
LANEASE: Interestingly enough, Heaven is not totally autobiographical, but there are a lot of similarities in the heartbreak. The pain was really easy for me to tap into because it reminded me of when I had my heart broken by someone that I thought would last forever, and you just feel so lost. Now the crazy side of Heaven, she was not that difficult to tap into either because it’s sort of a way to live out these things that in your mind you probably would want to do to an ex-boyfriend that did you wrong, but we don’t get to do. So I got to actually do these things and to be honest, it was a bit cathartic and very freeing to be able to express this through Heaven, because I don’t go around in my real life dumping people in showers and grabbing and all that kind of stuff. I’ve never done any of that. I’ve never even slapped a person in real life, but it was fun to do it.
AFTERBUZZ: It kind of reminded me of the movie Nine to Five: it’s basically about how these women get treated horribly in the workplace, and they trap him in his home and do all these crazy things to get back at him. I feel like this is like the relationship version of that.
LANEASE: That is exactly it. Actually with the short film, when we put that up last summer, a lot of women related to that. We really extend it now in the feature, but a lot of women were like, ‘Yes, girl. I totally feel you on that. I wish that I could have done that sort of thing to my boyfriend because he did this, or he was a liar. This is my story.’ A lot of people could relate and yes, this is the kind of thing that we want to do. Like Kanye West, he tends to in his lyrics sort of talk about things that are a little taboo that really we do think about. I mean, it’s not politically correct to say, ‘Oh, when I got my heart broken, I really would’ve liked to beat my boyfriend up.’ It’s not really politically correct to say that, but I can’t say we don’t think about it.
AFTERBUZZ: You worked on casting for the film as well. How did you go about finding the other people that were in the film?
LANEASE: Marcus Hamm who is my co-star, we actually had a TV show together 20 years ago, our first TV show. He was a professional wrestler in real life and I played his girlfriend on this show called UWA Urban Wrestling Alliance. We’ve been friends ever since, and we like to work together because we have an easy chemistry. I feel comfortable with him, and him being an ex-professional wrestler, he was really able to be physical with me. When I dumped him in the shower or when I smacked him, his wrestling background was really helpful, so I couldn’t really see anyone else being Jackson Davis. And then for the detective, my friend Robert Peters–who I was so happy accepted that role because I thought he was just perfect–I’ve known him for quite some time, and his look, his demeanor, he really, really embodied that character so I asked him if he would do it. That was how most of the casting took place. Most of the people were people that I knew that I could see in my mind playing it. A couple of the people some of the other producers suggested, and then we did a casting call for some other parts. But for the most part, it was people that I had known that were great actors.
AFTERBUZZ: Some of my favorite scenes in the film were the ones you had with Robert Peters. I loved seeing your work with him, and he has quite a few pretty big credits: Ocean’s Eleven, Stillwater, etc. What was it like working with him?
LANEASE: I had a lot of fun going back and forth with him acting-wise. It was actually sort of a dream come true for me in the sense of, you know, you study acting and you do these small roles, but when you get to really come and play with someone as talented as he is and feed off of him, I was really in heaven. I was just like, wow, this is really cool. And with Robert, we collaborated on his wardrobe and stuff like that prior to him taking the role, so we had a lot of fun with it. I picked out some of the stuff that he was wearing and he would approve of it, but we had a lot of fun creating that character. And along with Shawn McDonald who played Jackson’s best friend who’s the cool guy from New York, I had met Shawn and I was like, you know what? I think he would be the type of energy for this person who was like, ‘Hey, what’s going on here?’ So I was really happy with the casting.
AFTERBUZZ: What was your favorite memory from filming?
LANEASE: Oh gosh. I think my favorite memory might be the final scene that we shot at the gas station prior to the ending. I just really wanted to nail her pain and when we shot that scene in the gas station and we got to explore her pain, that was my favorite time. It was painful to express, but this is what an actor’s dream is for me. I love to be able to really express moods and feelings and cry or be angry, and not just the easy stuff but the real hard stuff, so that was my favorite scene.
AFTERBUZZ: Over the years, what has the process been like for you going from reality TV where you’re known for you and your personality, and then shifting to trying to be taken seriously for your work as an actor and how you’re able to portray someone else?
LANEASE: That was actually pretty difficult because prior to reality TV, I was booking. I had booked some comedy stuff. As I mentioned, I played Marcus’s girlfriend on the show. I was doing music videos. When you do reality TV, it’s a bit harder to be taken seriously, but it’s a double edged sword: you also get more popularity. So I feel like if I can really go in there and nail it, then the job will be for me. My goal is to really transition from having fun on a dating show to really doing what I want to do. I would love to do a soap opera. I actually had an audition for a soap opera. I would love to play a girl who just really gets to live out all of these things that we can’t really do in real life.
AFTERBUZZ: That being said, would you ever do reality TV again?
LANEASE: I would never say never. I always love to go back to do The Bachelor reunion shows. There’s a 20 year reunion coming up and I always love to kind of relive that and have fun with that. I love all of the people there. I still love Bachelor Nation and I hope that I would be able to sort of live in both worlds; to be a great actress that also had a lot of fun on a reality TV show. I hope that people can see that.
AFTERBUZZ: Why do you think Bachelor fans should watch your film?
LANEASE: I hope that Bachelor Nation supports me just because it’s like a big family. I think that we just all have something in common, which is the TV show. Last summer I came out with my story about the tough time that I had, and so I want people to just be supportive like, ‘Hey, we know her, we know her story. Let’s see what she is doing and let’s see if we enjoy it.’ That’s what I’m hoping for.
AFTERBUZZ: And I have to ask you, are you watching this season of The Bachelor?
LANEASE: I have not been watching this season. Sometimes I kind of catch up with it after. I did enjoy Katie Thurston. I watched The Bachelorette but so far I haven’t been keeping up. Have you been watching?
AFTERBUZZ: Yes, I have. I miss Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe hosting!
LANEASE: That was another thing. I came out in support of Chris Harrison and that sort of threw me through a loop. I do still support everybody over there and I know that they have to make certain decisions for certain reasons, but I loved Chris as a host and he made the show feel like home a bit, so I guess I’m still adjusting to that. But Tayshia, I love her. I was so sad to hear about her breakup. She’s so cool and nice and seems like she’s maybe having a tough time with that. But I do follow your stuff and there’s a guy, Justin, who does a podcast for The Bachelor who I like a lot and I watch his stuff. So I still listen in, but I’m so busy wearing all these hats on this movie for the last year, it has taken a lot of my time. Plus I try to exercise for my mental health and then I’m auditioning, so I’m pretty busy.
AFTERBUZZ: After the movie, do you have any plans for what’s coming up for you?
LANEASE: I’m super stoked about this movie release and what I’m hoping is that it leads to more work. I just started working with a new agent and we’ve been auditioning for some pretty cool stuff, and so what I hope will come from this is more roles and more fun stuff. I just want to be out there and have fun and interact with people and act, and really just try to take a hold of this time in my life. Because I took so much time off from entertainment, I’m happy to just be back and having fun with it.
AFTERBUZZ: Is there anything else that you wanted to add?
LANEASE: This movie is a fun escape. It talks about love, loss, pain, redemption. I think it’s a nice, fun roller coaster. Get with the girls, pour some wine and cheer on Heaven or Jackson!
You can stream Heaven’s Revenge on Amazon Prime now!