We talked a bit with the young actress Emily Marie Palmer, and we cannot fail to emphasize what a great impression she made on us. A young woman full of talent and ambition, yes, but for good causes and with a lot to tell. She is best known for her roles in American Horror Story: Coven, as Betsy in the Netflix series Cobra Kai, or as the daughter of Sam Worthington in the new film The Last Son. Graduated at the age of fifteen, a hard worker and socially committed to Amnesty International for the defense of human rights. She has already created her own projects on very interesting topics which you can read about below.
The movie “The Last Son” has just been released, in which you play the protagonist’s daughter Megan. An intricate story in which, among others, also Machine Gun Kelly has a part. Can you give us some sneak peeks?
Yes, I’d love to! As many viewers and critics before me have observed, The Last Son has echoes of the Greek myth of the god Cronos, who so deeply fears being overthrown by his children that he devours them. Believing that he is cursed to be killed by “his own seed,” Isaac Lemay (played by Sam Worthington) sets out on a quest to track down and kill his children.
As dark and violent as the premise is, however, the film has very soft and beautiful moments, too — and in this way it reminds me of an old folk ballad. So many of my favorite old folk songs tell extremely dark and bloody stories, but they are woven into soft, lyrical, and beautiful melodies. It’s a strange juxtaposition that has always fascinated me.
I think The Last Son — with its breathtaking landscapes and enchanting score by Phil Mossman — captures some of the magic of those old ballads.
You have starred in major productions such as American Horror Story: Coven, the Netflix hit series Cobrai Kai, the Mercy Street TV series produced by Ridley Scott and the film Grand Isle, starring Nicolas Cage and Kelsey Grammar. Each role has certainly taught you a lot and you surely have unforgettable memories. Do you want to share some with us?
Cobra Kai was such a magical experience for me in so many ways. I got the role during a pretty challenging time in my life, and I actually ended up losing the “day job” I had at the time (at a coffee shop) because of filming delays that caused me to have to call out when I was scheduled to work at the coffee shop. I pride myself on being really responsible and hardworking and I’ve never lost a job in my life, so at the time it was a real bummer, and I was ridiculously sad about it. But everything worked out in the end and looking back now losing my job feels like a small price to pay to be able to play this role I love so much, and to be forever part of the Karate Kid universe. 🙂
The first few weeks after season 3 was released on Netflix earlier this year, were such a fun time for me. The Young Kreese/Betsy flashbacks were so well-received by the fans, and it was just such a joy to bring Betsy to life in the series. I’m so excited for Season 4 to be released soon!!
You have many hobbies including some special ones like ice skating or juggling! What do you do about juggling in particular?
I do, indeed! I was a really passionate figure skater when I was younger, and still dream of playing a figure skater in a film or series someday, that would allow me to get back on the ice and pour my heart into training again. That would be so wonderful! As for juggling, once upon a time, my brother and I had dreams of running away and joining the circus or forming our own traveling act. Those dreams never materialized, but we both taught ourselves to be quite capable jugglers. 🙂
You also like playing and singing, your single “Holy Magic” came out just under a year ago. What do you tell us about this part of your life? Do you hope it will grow like acting?
I absolutely love writing and playing music. It’s something I’ve always done and will always do, and I’m not really concerned with whether or not it grows, or whether I have any outward “success” with it. In the film and television industry, one has to spend a great deal of time waiting for — or “earning” — permission to create. Just to even get a chance to audition, you need an agent to be interested in you.
Then you need to convince a casting director that you’re capable of the work, and then comes the task of winning over the producers, the director, the writer… it never seems to end. Writing music is such an electrifying and empowering experience for me because I am able to create something — from beginning to end — without the approval of any gatekeepers. It’s really good for my soul.
We saw that you recently got married, congratulations! Do you want to share a part of your love story with our readers?
Aww, that’s kind — thank you so much! My husband Joey and I were brought together by our art, actually. He’s a film director and a brilliant photographer and we love collaborating and creating projects together. We have several projects in development, so hopefully there will be much more of that to come.
Very important for today’s young people to understand: you don’t have to sit idle and try to reach your goals without waiting for them to fall on you. You have written and produced your own content, including a short film about WWII, LES CONFINÉS (2019). Do you want to tell us about this very interesting project?
Thank you for the kind words! The idea for Les Confinés first came to me while reading A Noble Treason, by Richard Hanser, about The White Rose — a Nazi resistance movement founded by a small group of German students at the University of Munich. Although I’ve been very interested in the history of the Holocaust and WWII for many years, I really had no idea how deeply misogynistic Nazi ideology was before reading this book. German women were fundamentally viewed as little more than breeders who had a duty to bear male children and to raise them up to be strong warriors. Childless women, therefore, were seen as useless burdens to society.
Obviously, it should go without saying that the oppression experienced by German women during this time absolutely pales in comparison to the exploitation and genocide experienced by Jews, LGBTQ+ and disabled individuals, and others, but I wanted to explore a chance encounter between the film’s protagonist, a Jewish refugee named Esther, and Gisela — an abused and childless German housewife. I was interested in the tiny threads of commonality that might exist between these two women, the coexistence of prejudice and empathy, and the power of female solidarity.
Are you also interested in production, besides acting? Watching your deep content, it seems to us that you have a lot to say and “pull out”.
Thank you! Yes, very much so. I’ve written and produced Les Confinés, as well as a short documentary project to raise awareness about the genocide of the Uyghur people that is being carried out by the Chinese Communist Party. I’ve also written one feature-length screenplay, and I’m currently working on my second, which I hope to make in 2022!
We are pleased to see that you are a great supporter of Amnesty International and human rights. Do you think social media can help spread (for once) the right concepts?
I do. However, I think that inflammatory information — like hate speech and misinformation — is always going to spread faster online than anything else due to the engagement-based models that all the major social media platforms use. There’s a helpful phrase to remember: “If you’re not paying for the product, you are the product.” I try to keep this in mind every time I log in to Instagram, or Twitter. These companies are profiting off the amount of time I stay engaged, and so they have a vested interest in bombarding me with information that will frustrate, distract, or outrage me. That said, a lot of good can (and does!) happen on social media too. I think it’s all about the users having informed consent about how the algorithms work, and mindfully choosing what they engage with, and what they share.