Casey Labow Exclusive
Author: Lindsey Hawkins | Photographer: Krisztian Lonyai
From the Broadway lights of New York City to the mountains of Idaho to the tangled streets of Los Angeles, another young, beautiful and talented star has been cultivated. Casey LaBow is about to be catapulted into the Hollywood sky, overnight, as one of the new vampires in the final two installments of the pop culture film phenomenon The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, in theaters November 18.
Unless you have been floating aimlessly off the shores of South Carolina trying to catch a record breaking sea monster for the last six years, you may have heard of a little book series called Twilight that has sold over 120 million copies internationally and been translated into at least 38 different languages. Adapted into a film franchise by Summit Entertainment over the last four years, the first film installment has grossed roughly $400 million dollars internationally to date.
Who knew blood sucking vampires, feared and suspected since the 18th century, could be so romantically idolized and so lucrative in the new millennium? Well eager and determined star on the rise Casey LaBow heard about the audition of a lifetime to be a part of the cult film series and fought for five months to seal the deal.
The series chronicles the life of a typical teenage introvert, Bella Swan, played by Kristen Stewart, who falls in love with a 104-year-old vegetarian vampire, Edward Cullen, played by Robert Pattinson, in a world where vampires who don’t stick to the stereotype of feeding on humans aren’t the most popular of their kind—especially when they choose to fall in love with a human that is as sought after as a rare truffle by a gourmet chef. As the series progresses, so does natural love and procreation between vampire and human, a violation of vampire code, leading to the ultimate fight for love and creating an insanely popular story for today’s teen.
LaBow plays Kate who, like Edward, is also a vegetarian vampire with a bonus super power, and her loyalty lies with the Cullen family in their ultimate fight for Bella’s life. So who is this Casey LaBow? Well, CH2 got one of the first opportunities to sit down and talk to the gorgeous new addition to the show.
“Being on set was so amazing and insane,” LaBow said. “Nothing could have prepared me for that experience. It wasn’t just like I was going to shoot any movie; I mean I was on the set of Twilight and becoming part of pop culture history.”
LaBow, who grew up in New York, said it all started with her love for the Broadway musical Annie. When she was little, her dad would take her to shows such as Les Miserables, Miss Saigon and Cats.
“I always had a weird innate attraction to performing. It wasn’t like I decided or knew I was going to be an actress when I was very young. It was almost like I didn’t have a choice in the matter; I was just born to do it.” LaBow said.
She moved to L.A. with her mom and sister at the age of sweet 16, and by age 18, she auditioned and was accepted into the American Academy of Dramatic Arts West to pursue her dream.
LaBow who auditioned five different times for the role of Kate in The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, recalled the extensive five-month audition process with exhaustion and excitement in her voice.
“I hadn’t worked in a while before I booked Breaking Dawn. I had auditioned for a lot of roles right out of school and would get really close to getting parts and then I wouldn’t get them. So, I guess I was in a bit of a rut and had started to think, ‘What am I doing? Is this right for me or is this wrong?’ And then I randomly saw online that the casting process for Breaking Dawn was coming up, called my agent and manager and basically said, ‘I am going to get this movie, so let’s just start making it happen.’ It had been actually four or five months auditioning and I was a basket case and felt like my sanity was starting to disintegrate,” she said. “The day they found out I got it, I had called my agent and basically said, ‘I can’t handle it, I am giving myself an ulcer and I don’t think I’m built for this kind of stress.’ He responded with, ‘Well, okay but you got the part.’”
LaBow shot on location in Baton Rouge, Louisiana for part of the film where she got to show another side of herself. This budding movie star also happens to flex her philanthropic muscles when she gets the opportunity, and she joined co-star Kellan Lutz and The Bernard Project in New Orleans to help rebuild homes for Hurricane Katrina Victims.
“We actually got to visit with the woman whose house we were working on, and she shared her story with us,” LaBow said. “I don’t really know how people go on after such a tragedy, and it was kind of a testament of the human spirit for me.”
Humanitarian LaBow also considers herself to be a foodie and loves to spend time in the kitchen in between auditions. She worked under a chef for several years before she caught her big break and has a true desire to keep on giving back with some ideas of her own: to possibly allow her cooking past to guide her philanthropic future.
LaBow also has another movie coming up soon, A Year in Mooring, opposite Josh Lucas, known for his role opposite Reese Witherspoon in the 2002 film Sweet Home Alabama. A Year in Mooring, premiered at SXSW earlier this year and won an award for best cinematography.
Still a working actress, LaBow is about to start filming again and dreams of working with renowned actresses like Kate Winslet, Marisa Tomei and Jennifer Connelly.
“I have a fantasy of living out the end of my life in Paris,” LaBow said, “But I feel so lucky in my life right now, and it’s hard to believe even today that I woke up and had three interviews, not to mention I am a part of two massive films coming out and I’m still getting work and auditions. This was my dream, and now it’s happening and I can’t believe it.”