NEW YORK TIMES CRITIC'S PICK! "An Ingenious Black Comedy"

Katie OGrady (Meris Canfield)

Katie OGrady as Meris

Katie is known for working opposite Jennifer Aniston and Steve Zahn in MANAGEMENT, as Agent Amy Nevins on TNT’s hit show LEVERAGE, and recently as the uptight owner of a boutique opposite Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein in PORTLANDIA’S popular ‘Put a Bird on It’ episode.

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Katie’s favorite role to date, however, was playing the lead in RID OF ME.  “Meris has something that all of us can relate to; wanting to fit in somewhere and feel loved.”

Katie dyed her hair mouse brown and lost 15 of her favorite pounds to play the part.

Actress Katie O’Grady was nominated by the WOMEN’S FILM CRITICS CIRCLE for BEST COMEDIC ACTRESS along with Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, and Sara Jessica Parker.

John Keyser (Mitch Canfield)

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John Keyser, a native or Portland Oregon, seeded his acting roots in college. Though he voraciously watched films most of his life, it wasn’t until a friend brought over Julian Schnabel’s BASQUIAT did he become so inspired and passionate about the pursuit of this craft. John started his professional training in 1998.

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This included many years of experiential and mainstream theater and ultimately a move to Los Angeles, where he booked commercially and landed several independent films, as well as the NBC series NEXT ACTION STAR.  His travels eventually brought him back to Portland, where he has since been writing, painting, and collaborating in local artistic endeavors.   He was asked by Katie O’Grady to sit in a table read of Rid Of Me and was immediately cast as Mitch Canfield.

Theresa Russell (Mrs. Lockwood)

Theresa-Lockwood

Theresa Russell began her film career after being discovered by famous director, Elia Kazan. She saw the teenaged Russell in Lee Strasberg’s acting class and promptly cast her as Robert Mitchums’s daughter in The Last Tycoon. She starred opposite Bill Murray in the remake of The Razor’s Edge, and then starred in the hit film Black Widow.

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She received wide acclaim for her portrayal of the stylish serial killer Catherine. Today she works as a leading character actress in such films as Spider-Man 3 and can be seen singing at clubs around Los Angeles.

“I couldn't have had a better time doing Rid Of Me. The very tall Storm Large played my evil, bitchy daughter to perfection, complimenting my evil, bitchy mother perfectly. We laughed a lot. However, it was impossible for me to stay in evil, bitchy, diva character offset (the way I prefer to work) because of Katie O'Grady. Not only was she the star (and is brilliant by the way) she also, and I'm not kidding, was producer, production coordinator, assistant director, and driver... really this is a wonderful film and I'm very proud to be a part of it.”

Storm Large (Briann Lockwood)

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Storm was in rehearsal for a show she wrote called, “Crazy Enough”, a musical memoir about growing up with a mentally ill mother. The show is all songs and stories about the sex drugs and rock n roll she threw herself into while navigating the oppressively normal and beautiful world that she was convinced she did NOT belong in.

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An actor, rocker, she has also been a maid and a fetish model, but Storm is best known for her huge voice. Storm Large lives wherever she is at the moment.

Meanwhile I'm asked to play an ex-cheerleading, man stealing juicy whore monster, whose mother is played by the stunning Theresa Russell. Life is strange.”

Orianna Herrman (Trudy)

Orianna-Trudy

Orianna recently guest starred on the hit TNT series Leverage opposite Aldis Hodge and Beth Riesgraf. Soon after she was asked back for Electric Entertainment’s new pilot Brain Trust. Other recent films include Follow the Prophet and Cold Weather. In tandem with her burgeoning acting career Orianna has been pursuing the role as lead singer in her electro-pop trio, Oracle.

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No stranger to exploring the life of a character through music, Orianna jumped at the chance to employ these songwriting skills for the soundtrack of upcoming feature The Last Garden in which she will also be starring. Orianna has also spent a lot of time in the theatre and has been seen around the country in Under the Radar festival favorite, Disinformation, opposite comedian and singer Reggie Watts. Her latest pursuit has been trying her hand at screenwriting and has completed the script for her first short film slated to being production this summer.

I learned a lot from Trudy....about how rad it feels to wear men's socks....about sugar highs and how to avoid the lows....but mostly she taught me how important it is, to myself and everyone I love, to never forget what it feels like to be totally and completely free."

Ritah Parish (Dawn)

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Ritah Parrish has appeared in many indy films including “Film Geek”, and “The Auteur” directed and written by the fabulous James Westby. Parrish truly enjoyed playing the character Dawn. She had always known there was a slightly racist tight-ass buried deep inside her and thanks to James Westby, now the whole world knows it.

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She is a seasoned stage performer and has written and performed four one-woman shows including the critically acclaimed, “Thinking Outside My Box” in 2007. She is an improviser and a member of Brainwaves Improv Comedy, the longest running improv group in Portland.

Art Alexakis (Virgil)

Art-Virgil

As the singer/guitarist/songwriter of Everclear, Art Alexakis penned some of the most popular alt-radio hits of the late ’90s (“Santa Monica,” “Everything to Everyone,” “Father of Mine,” etc.). His music has also been featured on many popular soundtracks including: Romeo+Juliet, 40 Days and 40 Nights, and American Wedding.

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While pursuing a music career, Alexakis has also dabbled in acting. In 2000, he made brief appearances in the Heather Graham comedy Committed. Two years later, he made cameo appearances in two episodes of The Chris Isaak Show. He also had a lead role in the 2006 short film Room to Breathe.  When Alexakis was approached by Westby to play the role of Virgil they immediately bonded over a shared dark sense of humor.

The most fun and awkward scene in the film for me was the make-out session between Virgil and Meris. Having sloppy sex in front of the cast and crew was a new experience for me.”

John Breen (Bry-Guy)

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John Breen’s film and TV acting credits include Wendy and Lucy; Rid of Me and The Auteur, both directed by James Westby; Untraceable; Leverage; and several appearances on Late Night with Conan O’Brien.

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As a screenwriter and director his short films have screened at festivals in New York and Portland.  His experience as a stage director has mounted numerous performances in New York, Los Angeles and Portland including sold out sensations, Road House: The Play! and Sweat.

"In Rid Of Me I got to play a hardcore punk rock drunkard in his forties. Too bad I didn't get to use any of my acting skills.... Highlights: Shopping at Hot Topic for my wardrobe. Trashing a video store with Meris. Passing out against a bowling alley ball-return."

Morgan Hobart (Jeremy Bunquist)

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Morgan Hobart is a location sound man professionally, but has played a few cameos in several of the films he’s worked on, including “The Auteur,” “Selfless”(dead junkie scene deleted) and Matt McCormick’s “Some Days Are Better Than Others.”

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He acted Shakespeare works and many dramatic productions in college, and was a regular actor/contributor to the now defunct cable access series “Isn’t This Ridiculous,” as well as being a featured extra in Stephen Speildberg’s “Amistad.” On playing Jeremy Bunquist he says: It was a blast and I did a lot of method acting drawn from my days as a video store clerk, sort of like Quentin Tarantino’s back story, only a less annoying.” The shift to “awkward record store employee” was a fairly natural one, and borrowed loosely from his “Nervous guy in Audience” role in Westby’s previous film. Morgan is also a musician, and plays fiddle in the Ohioan song featured in Rid of Me’s soundtrack.