Montreal belle Cindy Busby has one image stuck with her after shooting The Big Year with a vintage crop of Hollywood stars: Steve Martin playing the banjo.
“It was kind of surreal,” she said. “I remember just staring at him and being like, ‘I cannot believe this is happening right now’. I took a picture in my mind of that particular moment and won’t forget it.”
Playing the SNL alumnus’ daughter-in-law in the upcoming film, featuring Owen Wilson, Jack Black and Rosamund Pike, was an exciting experience.
“I’d be kind of lying if I didn’t say I was intimidated but it was also really gratifying and really wonderful to be in the presence of these people,” she said. “You have a certain calibre and you don’t want to be the one lagging behind all
these legendary people.”
What was more daunting was spending an hour up in the ski lift with just her and the silver-haired gent. Busby said Martin was a pro.
“He’s a down-to-earth human being,” she said. “He kind of comes from a different generation of Hollywood when all this media exposure didn’t exist as much.”
When she’s not wrangling lines with comedic geniuses, she’s on horseback in CBC’s hit series Heartland, which has been picked up for a fifth season here in Canada.
For the first time however, the show will air its premiere season south of the border. It’s great news, albeit with an uncanny twist.
“It’s kind of weird that it’s airing in the States and they’re starting off with the first season which aired four years ago,” she said. “It’s really great to get that kind of exposure.”
Ideal exposure also came in the post as a French host during the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games for Busby. With her Quebecois roots, the chance to be a part of Canada’s big event was not passed on.
“I speak perfect French and I don’t get to exercise it much while I live out here because all my friends and my boyfriend speak English,” she said. “So when I had this opportunity I said, ‘Oh my gosh this is perfect’. Not very many people can say they’ve worked for the Olympics actually within their own country.”
Still, Busby’s most memorable experience was when she teamed up with the creator of her favourite show, Dawson’s Creek, Kevin Williamson, on the set of The Vampire Diaries.
“I remember he came up to me and he told me that – I had to scream a lot in my scenes – he was like, ‘Oh you remind me of a young Jamie Lee Curtis’,” she said, exuberance present in her voice. “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, that is a compliment
I will never forget’.”