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Gillian Amalia Zinser is an American actress, known for her appearances as Ivy Sullivan in 90210. A graduate of New York University, prior to 90210 she appeared in Southland, Cold Case and Cupid. She played a recurring role in 90210 during the second season from 2009 to 2010, as a young Californian surfer named Ivy Sullivan. In February 2010, she was signed as a regular cast member for the third season of the show. In 2011 Zinser starred in the MTV television film "The Truth Below". Additionally, she completed production on the independent thriller "Liars All". Off screen, Zinser spends much of her time and energy working with Artists for Peace and Justice, which included a recent trip to Haiti to aid in the building of a school in a refugee camp. Also she is involved with Hugh Jackman's Live Below the Line Campaign with the goal of ending extreme poverty.
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+ What's Gillian Working on
● Gillian as Beach Girl
● Director: Oliver Stone
● Status: Completed
Photos | Official
+Liars All (2012)
● Gillian as Missy
● Director: Brian Brightly
● Status: Completed
Photos | Official
+Manson Girls (2011)
● Gillian as Summer Sunshine
● Director: Susanna Lo
● Status: Filming
● Information |
Photos | Official
+The Truth Below (2011)
● Gillian as Jenna
● Director: Scott Glosserman
● Status: Post-production
● Information |
Photos | Official
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The Brian Brightly-directed thriller, Liars All, has been acquired by Phase 4 Films and it is making its way into theaters (via a limited theatrical run) and onto VOD June 21st. DVD release set for August 6.
Plot Summary: On New Year’s Eve in London, a group of friends play a provocative game that spins out of control and ends in murder. With a killer on the loose, survivors of this catastrophic evening will learn how far some will go to win a game.
Sara Paxton stars with Matt Lanter and Gillian Zinser.
Institute: Do you remember the first time you realised you wanted to become an actress? Gillian: My mum took me to see ‘The Fantastiks’ off broadway when I was a kid and the opening scene was a girl my age praying at the foot of her bed pleading “Please God, PLEASE! Please don’t let me be normal!” I was an awkward kid trying to figure out where I fit in, and watching that character in that moment was so comforting and inspiring at that age where I felt so much pressure to conform to the ‘norm’ but didn’t really want to or know how to. The relief and inspiration that that one simple scene gave me was probably the first time I realized how powerful, effective, and inspirational performance could be.
Institute: Could you single out an actor or performance that has had a profound impact on you in the last five years? Gillian: I dont know about five years, but some of the most influential performances in my lifetime have been…Kate Winslet in Eternal Sunshine of a spotless mind Audrey Tattou in Amèlie Diane Keaton in Annie Hall Annette Bennington in Running with Scissors Juliette Binoche in Lovers on a Bridge Ryan Gosling in Lars and The Real Girl
Institute: What can you reveal about Liars All? Gillian: Obsession. Ego. Lust. Revenge. Murder.
Institute: You play Missy, can you tell us about the character? Gillian: Missy was a hard character to understand let alone empathize with in order to play her. She’s a dark creature, a wilted flower suffering from manic depression.
Institute: Do you like to do a lot of research into your roles? Gillian: Yes. Although I’ve yet to work a role that requires the depth of research I’m eager to challenge myself with.
Institute: Do you ever become emotionally involved with your characters? Gillian: Inevitably.
Institute: What was the most valuable lesson you learnt from being on set? Gillian: Technicality, professionalism, and the importance of being a team player. I find there’s just absolutely no room for ego in this business.
Institute: What do you look for in a character or film? Gillian: Meat. Dimension. A la ck of comfort. Something I’ve yet to fully explore within myself.
Institute: What are your thoughts on fashion today? Gillian: I wouldn’t say I take fashion very seriously. I just look at it as another daily form of self expression to have fun with. I find inspiration in my moods and throw on what makes me feel good.
Institute: As an actress do you feel more aware of the way you dress? Gillian: Perhaps less so. I get so used to people dressing me for the characters i play that when its time to take the costumes off and slip back into my own skin, i’m only left with the energy to be as comfortably myself as possible.
Institute: Where do you think trends are created? Gillian: Through the infectious confidence of those unafraid to beat to their own drum.
Institute: Do you have a favourite fashion designer? Gillian: Balmain. Zac Posen. Chloe. Kimberly Ovitz. Rick Owens.
Institute: Top five fashion essentials? Gillian: Chuck Taylors. Leather biker jacket. Red lipstick. Old Levis . White Hanes t-shirts from Target.
Production has already kicked off over in Los Angeles on Susanna Lo’s ‘Manson Girls’ and now even the public can get involved in this great project based on the notorious Manson family and more importantly murderer and conspirator Charles Manson. Manson will be played by actor Bill Moseley (‘The Devil’s Rejects’) and he’ll be joined by a slew of lovelies to appear as the ‘Manson Girls’. But hold the phone, because with a simple and generous eBay bid you could find yourself with your very own walk-on role in the movie! That’s right, Slomotion Studios are offering a lucky and successful bidder the opportunity to win a walk-on role, autographs from the cast and tickets for the Helter Skelter official tour in LA. So head over to eBay at the link below (where the bid is currently at US $1,525.00) and see if you can get yourself on set. It has to be worth it just for the potential opportunity of brushing shoulders with a range of hotties that include Monica Keena (‘Night of the Demons’), Laura Harring (‘One Missed Call’), Heather Matarazzo (‘Scream 3′), Stella Maeve (‘My Super Psycho Sweet 16: Part 2′), Brit Morgan (‘True Blood’), Tania Raymonde (‘Lost’), Gillian Zinser (’90210′), Taryn Manning -below (‘Hawaii Five-0′) and Estella Warren (‘Planet of the Apes’).
‘Manson Girls’ follows a young girl from a wealthy Malibu family who fell under Manson’s spell. She was not one the “Family” members involved in the clan’s infamous murder spree but was later imprisoned after she became involved with the Aryan Brotherhood and was convicted of being an accessory (after the fact) to murder.
GILLIAN ZINSER, actress/artist/philanthropist and 90210 cast member tells i-D about the hills.
Chatting with Gillian Zinser, actress/artist/philanthropist and 90210 cast member, we were pleased to discover the exhaustingly talented 26- year-old is every bit as awesome as we had imagined.
Articulate, warm, switched on and straight-forward, the precocious performer is graduating from West Beverly Hills High to the big screen this year with high-profile parts in upcoming features Manson Girls and Oliver Stone’s Savages. A former student of NYU, Gillian continues to explore her studies off campus, which include the inter-disciplines of art, film and philanthropy. Creating self-reflexive portraits and volunteering with projects such as ‘Artists For Peace and Justice’ in Haiti, Gillian has built up a well-balanced CV and loyal following. Returning to UK screens this week as surfing tomboy Ivy Sullivan in Season 4 of 90210, Gillian Zinser speaks to i-D online about the revamped TV teen classic and her own adolescence, talks performance art and shares her top 10 artistic influences.
What was the all-American high school experience like for you? I had an odd experience in high school – remember that movie Mean Girls? Tina Fey adapted that from a book about my school written by someone that went to it… I wasn’t exactly the most popular and I didn’t have the best experience. I was itching to get out.
Did you watch 90210 back in the day? Yeah, of course. I wasn’t allowed to though – I used to sneak off to watch it.
Are you a Kelly or a Brenda? I can’t really tap into my bad girl very easily, I’m going to leave the Brendas to the AnnaLynne McCords of this world. Ivy’s not like Kelly either, she’s more of an Emily Valentine, that’s the direction I would have liked to take her in but they took me on a really different path.
What attracted you to the part of Ivy? She’s not your typical teen drama character. I think just that. I’m not one to watch soaps and, as I explained, my high school experience was very trying and tumultuous and often not a fun one. I guess, in short, I was attracted to Ivy as a character because she was more of a black sheep than anything else and even though she’s your average teenage girl who is riddled with insecurities, she’s found a way to be comfortable enough in her own skin not to conform. That’s a really fun and important thing to bring to television and our audiences in particular because we’re speaking to a large group of teenagers who for the most part are going through such a formative period of development.
What’s working with Tristan Wilds like? Had you seen The Wire before joining the cast? Tristan is the classiest cat around. He’s an extraordinary artist whose talents are far underutilised on the show.
Can you tell me more about your childhood growing up? I grew up in Washington, which I shy away from talking about because I feel so detached from the city because it was so devoid of artistic culture and I grew up in a family of artists. My father’s an architect and my mother’s a painter – we didn’t come from a family of politicians, and I often found that I couldn’t really relate to or associate with the city I grew up in. My Dad’s from New York and my Mom’s from Berlin so I spent a lot of time in between the city (NY) and DC, taking the $10 Chinese Fung Wah bus up every weekend just to hang out with people and seek out forms of inspiration that I could actually understand. The minute I could leave DC I did – I moved to New York for college and never looked back.
Did you study art or acting at New York? My parents didn’t allow me to go to Tisch so I went to Gallatin, which is a tiny school within NYU. They let you choose your own major so I decided to study the relationship between fine art, the entertainment industry and philanthropy and see where we can build bridges between them.
How did that lead into acting? All my life I’ve just wanted to be a storyteller, to share my take on the human experience and explore the consequences of what we do and why. I’ve been infatuated with the potency of film as a platform to tell stories and I guess at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if you’re talking through a script or the camera, I feel like I’m just here to share my perspective on things.
Are you still making art? Yeah, I’m always itching to make and create something. We have a million moments in between takes and scenes at work so I always have a pencil, a notebook or a camera on me – I’m addicted to the process of creation.
Have you ever done any performance art? I thought that might be a good medium for you… combining the two. A lot of people ask me that but no, I haven’t really had the desire to do that. For the moment I’m sticking to portraiture. I’m inspired by artists like Cindy Sherman… I’m on a show that takes up most of my year and I don’t get to play a lot of characters that I’d love to. Using my downtime to dress up for two seconds of a snap shot to play a character lets me sneak into the skin of someone I would one day like to be able to play but don’t have a chance to. So I guess that is a form of performance art.
What was the last exhibition you went to? I just got back from New York where I saw the Tim Burton exhibit. And did you go to the Tracey Emin show in London? At the White Cube Gallery? She’s so dirty, I love her!
Gillian’s Top 10 Artistic Influences
1. I’m currently obsessed with Marcel Dzama – he’s a Canadian contemporary artist.
2. Kati Heck is an artist I found in Berlin while I was travelling over there and I’ve been infatuated with her work ever since.
3. Goran Djurović – he’s a Serbian artist who I just discovered out at this gallery Obsolete, here in Los Angeles.
4. Mark Whelan is a good buddy of mine I met in Australia and he does something that looks like dipping dots mixed with S&M!
5. There’s a filmmaker, a guy named Cam Archer who just blows my mind… he made a film over here called Shit Year with Ellen Barkin and Luke Grimes and that’s definitely my favourite film of the year.
6. Also have you heard of a guy called Robbie Basho? He’s like one of THE uncelebrated 60s acoustic guitarists.
7. Also, a guy named Moondog – you have to look him up, he’s phenomenal. He dresses up like a Viking!
8. Then a band called Wiseblood who just put out their first EP this year.
9. My friend Malcolm Ford, he’ll be releasing a record later this year produced by Queens of the Stone Age.
10. Lastly a writer, a Kenyan author whose first novel/memoir is called ‘One Day I Will Write About This Place’. His name is Binyavanga Wainaina – he writes about the kind of Africa that’s long been forgotten. It provides a better perspective than that of the Western world, looking in on what we imagine Africa to be.
The latest in a series of intimate moments with beautiful women — in their own homes, in their own clothes (most of them, anyway), and at their invitation. Come on in.
For someone who is on 90210 — there’s a new one, and that’s perfectly fine that you didn’t know that — 26-year-old Gillian Zinser is a lot more like the “normal” women you see regularly on MeInMyPlace.com. She has one of those Tumblrs and she looks like she came out of the DVD extras of Dazed and Confused and she travels a lot for no apparent reason and she talks about things like “the responsibility of artists.” And yet: “I’ve never considered myself hip or in the know or cool by any means.” Well you should know her soon, not as your teenage cousin’s favorite hip surfer girl so much as one of those hippies in the new Oliver Stone movie about pot and guns and NAVY Seals. And because she invited us over. —The Editors
I found myself running in a lot of circles. I was willing to pick up anything from pencils to cameras to scripts to paintbrushes and make anything with them. But as soon as I graduated, I went to Kenya to photograph these slums of Kibera. And I met someone who convinced me to move to L.A. the minute I got back. So I went from the slums of Kibera to 90210. That wasn’t exactly the path I imagined. I didn’t come out here to be a part of a soap opera. I’m very, very appreciative of this job, but I think it was more of a learning platform. And from here I’d like to get back to the reason I wanted to be a part of storytelling to begin with.
Oliver Stone asked me to do a role in his film, Savages, and I have a tiny debut, but it was fun to be a part of his world for it. And I look back on all these experiences that I’ve had that maybe didn’t make so much sense at the time, and now I understand them as everything that I needed to give me the tools and experience to be able to now tell the stories that I want to be a part of.
I spent the winter down in Costa Rica learning how to surf. I’m partial to warm water — to not having to wear a wet suit — and I ride a long board, so it’s a very different sport than what you see my character do on the show.
No, I’m a water temperature snob. And the water here is insanely cold. It’s far colder than you would imagine. It’s a succulent collection back there. I mostly just like cactus because I don’t know how to care for plants — or water them, really. I’m a bad gardener.
T-shirts. Old t-shirts. And my mom’s old sundresses from the 60s, definitely.
I think everyone’s home is a pretty good reflection of what goes on inside their heads.
Gallery Links:x10 | Photoshoots: 014 x144 | BTS: Me in My Place with Gillian Zinser
Production has officially kicked off on Susanna Lo’s ‘Manson Girls’. The story which revolves around the girls who followed murderer and conspirator Charles Manson. Bill Moseley (‘The Devil’s Rejects’) will star as Manson which seems like perfect casting to us and a whole host of stunning actresses will be joining him. Monica Keena (‘Night of the Demons’), Laura Harring (‘One Missed Call’), Heather Matarazzo (‘Scream 3′), Stella Maeve (‘My Super Psycho Sweet 16: Part 2′), Brit Morgan (‘True Blood’), Tania Raymonde (‘Lost’), Gillian Zinser (’90210′), Taryn Manning (‘Hawaii Five-0′) and the gorgeous Estella Warren (‘Planet of the Apes’) are all playing their parts in the story and no doubt looking damn fine as they do so. Keena (below) will be making her nude debut in the movie during a sex scene which won’t be gratuitous but important to the story. Eric Balfour (‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’), Chad Faust, Jennifer Landon Patti D’Arbanville and Michael Monks also star.
“‘Manson Girls’ follows a young girl from a wealthy Malibu family who fell under Manson’s spell. She was not one the “Family” members involved in the clan’s infamous murder spree but was later imprisoned after she became involved with the Aryan Brotherhood and was convicted of being an accessory (after the fact) to murder.”
I have added new-old scan from Star magazine. It was one issue from June and they chat with Gillian about her movie “The Truth Below”. Check out the scan and article below!
How well do you really know your friends? In the new made-for-MTV movie The Truth Below, college freshmen Jenna (Gillian Zinser), Ethan (Reid Ewing), Dante (Nick Thurston) and Liam (Ricky Mabe) set out for a spring break snowboarding trip but wind up in a fight for survival – from the elements and each other!
“Their car gets buried under an avalanche on the ride home,” Gillian, whom you might know as Ivy on 90210, tells Star. “As they wait to be rescued they begin to reveal secrets from their pasts – sex, violence, betrayal, lies. It gets ugly!”
Faced with the fear of not making it out alive, the crew begins unburdening themselves of the guilt they’ve held on to for years. But what start out as innocent confessions – Jenna was once expelled from school; Dante stole money from his little brother – soon turn into confessions of lurid affairs, secret crushes and murderous thoughts. Soon it’s obvious: Some of the people trapped here are pretty shady, and not everyone is getting out alive.
“This project reminded me of the importance of being honest in the moment and not looking back and regretting the things we never got to do,” says Gillian, 25. That may seem heavy for an MTV movie, but at least she walked away with some avalanche survival tips, right? ‘No!” says Gillian. “I can’t say we did anything right when it came to figuring out how to escape that vehicle!”
In MTV’s first psychological thriller, The Truth Below, four college pals get buried alive – and that’s when the fun really starts!
“She wears all sorts of masks,” says Gillian of her character, Jenna. “She’s toughened herself up to stand the pain from the past.”