Podtalk: Filmmaker/Actor Ashton Swinford Talks Magic in Her New Short Film, ‘Basic Witches’

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CHICAGO – When we last checked in with actor and filmmaker Ashton Swinford, she had just completed her hilarious web series ”Miss Information”. She is back with a new short film, equally funny, in the white privilege satire “Basic Witches.”

“Witches” is a snapshot featuring Swinford and Sarah Aló as twentysomething city dwellers expounding on the source of their magic luck. When a fellow traveler (Vik Pandya) points out that their “magic” is a result of their social status, an incident is sure to follow. Shot in the pre-pandemic world, Ashton Swinford hesitated releasing it, realizing that the world had changed a bit, but the message remains clear.

Actor/Director Ashton Swinford (left) and Sarah Aló in ‘Basic Witches’
Photo credit: Ashton Swinford

In “Miss Information,” Swinford is a former beauty pageant queen attempting to cling to relevancy in a pandemic-era world. She is joined by Reginald Wilkins (Whitman Johnson), a golden retriever in human form, who serves as her reporter in the field. Guest appearances are also frequent, ranging from the notorious Q of QAnon to extraterrestrial hand puppets.

Ms. Swinford is a veteran actor, writer, production coordinator, director and producer. A graduate of the Stellar Adler Studio in New York City, she is SAG-AFTRA certified in both Los Angeles and Chicago. She has acted in “Chicago P.D.,” FOX-TV’s “New Girl” and indie films like “The Grandma” (available on Amazon Prime). Her debut short film was “Red Flag,” which premiered at the Midwest Film Festival.

Currently she has contributed voice talent to the animated “Ultra City Smiths” on AMC+, recently wrapped “Super Host” as actor (a horror film hitting the festival circuit this fall) and is raising funds for “Wizdom,” a sci-fi project featuring Swinford in the lead role, written by Swinford and Zack Sievers, in addition to be directed by Layne Marie Williams.

In a Podtalk with Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com, Ashton Swinford talks about the tentative release of “Basic Witches,” and more adventures in the acting and filmmaking trade …

The full short film “Basic Witches” …

Episode One of “Miss Information” …

”Basic Witches” is on Vimeo. Featuring Ashton Swinford, Sarah Aló, Vik Pandya. Written by Ashton Swinford and Sarah Aló. Directed by Ashton Swinford. Not Rated. For more information on “Miss Information,” click ”Miss Information”. Featuring Ashton Swinford and Whitman Johnson. Created by Ashton Swinford. Directed by Nick Moore.

HollywoodChicago.com senior staff writer Patrick McDonald

Editor and Film Writer

© 2021 Patrick McDonald, HollywoodChicago.com

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