Bailey Noble stars in film The Archer, about a teenager with Olympic dreams in archery. She gets into trouble with the law, and is sent to a juvenile detention camp of sorts. “I play Lauren Pierce and she gets into some trouble defending her best friend, who she also happens to be in love with,” Noble told uInterview exclusively.

The film is based on a true story. “A judge in Pennsylvania was getting over a million dollars worth of kickbacks for putting kids in this juvenile detention center, for basically stupid things like flipping off their math teacher,” the actress, 27, explained. “These kids did not belong there. It’s based off of a documentary on Netflix called Kids for Cash, so we’re loosely based off of that. And it’s just crazy, it’s heartbreaking to see the lives that these kids live after this, and how it just totally destroys their life and their future.”

Noble herself has been aware of the situation for quite some time, and even lived very close to one of the camps as a child. “I didn’t get to meet anybody involved, but ironically I grew up like 45 minutes from where it all happened in Pennsylvania, and that was a big thing that we took into account when we were filming. We wanted to shed a light on that incident,” she said.

Because her character is supposed to be a talented archer, Noble had to train for months to get up to speed with the sport. “That was part of the fun challenge in taking on this role,” she said excitedly. “I got to train with Matt Berling, who coached at Pasadena Roving Archers, and he’s an Olympic Level 3 coach. I worked with him twice a week for a couple months leading up to the film, and that was so fun.”

Despite the challenges of the role, Noble loved her time on the project. “Overall it was just an incredible experience. What I loved so much about working on this film was really getting to stretch out my muscles of physicality and emotionality and bringing them together, because it was a challenge,” she said. “And having the stamina to run through the woods for 15 days in a row, and to emotionally torture yourself like that, it was a good challenge. That’s what I loved so much about it, and getting to work with Jeanine [Mason] and Michael [Grant Terry] and Valerie [Weiss], our fearless leader. She was awesome.”

Full interview transcript below:

Q: What is the storyline of your character?

A:Well I play Lauren Pierce and she is basically an olympic bound archer and she’s in high school and she gets into some trouble defending her best friend who she also happens to be in love with, and because of her actions she gets sent to a juvenile detention camp.

Q: What is the story behind the judge situation in Pennsylvania?

A: The judge in Pennsylvania was getting kickbacks, I think over like a million dollars worth of kickbacks for putting kids in this juvenile detention center, for basically like, stupid things like flicking off their math teacher and these kids did not belong there. There’s a documentary on Netflix called Kids For Cash so we’re loosely based off of that, and yeah it’s crazy and it’s just heartbreaking to see the lives that these kids live after this and how it just like totally destroys their life and their future.

Q: Were you aware of the situation and did you meet any of the victims?

A: I was aware of the situation, I didn’t get to meet anyone involved. But, actually, ironically I grew up like 45 minutes away from where it happened in Pennsylvania and that was a big thing we took into account. When we were filming, we wanted to shed a light on that incident.

Q: Did you know any archery before you started?

A: No no I didn’t! But that was the fun challenge in taking on this role. I got to train with Matt Berling who coached at Pasadena Roving Archers, and he’s an Olympic level 3 coach. I worked with him twice a week for a couple months leading up to the film, and that was so fun.

Q: What was it like filming?

A: Oh my gosh, overall it was just an incredible experience. What I loved so much about working on this film was really getting to stretch out my muscles of physicality and emotionality and bringing them together because it was a challenge. And having the stamina to run through the woods for 15 days in a row, and to emotionally torture yourself like that, it was a good challenge. That’s what I loved so much about it, and getting to work with Jeanine and Michael and Valerie, our fearless leader. She was awesome.

Q: What is your favorite memory from ‘True Blood’?

A: First of all, the cast and the crew were so incredible, I felt really really welcomed immediately. I mean i started with them in season 6 and I got 2 great seasons with them, but they had been together, they had been a family for six years before I joined them. But I immediately felt like part of the family and we would have giggle fits at 3:00 o’clock in the morning because we’re like shivering our butts off in the middle of the Santa Monica mountains, like just in shorts and t-shirts, just delirious.

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