by Aida Toro
Chills of excitement ran up my spine just knowing that I received the opportunity to chat with Tatsumi Romano who starred in Ladyworld as Amanda. Directed by Amanda Kramer, Ladyworld is a 2018 American thriller and an all-female take on the 1954 novel Lord of the Flies.
“Amanda represents the pain inside of a tough veneer, and is mysterious in the sense that she’s hard to guess at,” said Romano about her character. “Although she can be punishing in certain situations, I believe there is also an inherent strength to her because of what she’s had to go through.”
Prior to Ladyworld, Tatsumi worked on a Snapchat Original series last summer where she played a character, Missy, who was strong, inquisitive, and independent, but not afraid to show vulnerability and her flaws.
“She was passionate about science, curious, caring, and a loyal friend,” said Romano about
Missy. “Throughout the 12 episodes, you could see Missy develop and explore some of her vulnerabilities and hardships. It’s wonderful to play characters that inspire you and push you to grow into a more positive person, even after you’ve wrapped.”
Romano said her character in Ladyworld and the Snapchat Original series are ones she can empathize with, especially since she admires Amanda’s sense of independence and fearlessness in Ladyworld. Being independent and fearless are two things Romano is, since she moved around a lot as a kid due to her mother not being in the picture.
“I was raised by my dad and we moved at least once a year for all of my teenage years,” she said. “Some of the transitions were harder than others, but I mostly tried to see each place as a new sort of ‘cool adventure’.”
Whenever she and her dad would move somewhere new, they’d settle in and would bond with one another by looking for an ice cream parlor serving good ice cream, which would then become their late-night go-to spot. Not to mention, that Romano even had a social worker by her side who she claims has shaped her to be the woman she is today. This social worker even inspired her to pursue Psychology in college.
“For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by the human experience and how our thoughts, feelings, and interactions with others influence our own behavior,” said Tatsumi. “I’ve also always wanted to pursue a career in a ‘helping profession’ and believe that anyone is capable of making a difference in the lives of others.”
Being a psychology student also assisted Romano with playing Amanda in Ladyworld along with other characters for other projects. She feels psychology has helped her gain a better understanding of so many circumstances, which she’s found very helpful in her acting career.
“I feel like acting and psychology go hand in hand because both explore human processes and relations in such an intimate way,” she said.
Tatsumi will be graduating as a 21-year-old since she started college at 17. I had asked her what it felt like to be a 21-year-old actress and student. She said nothing has changed in her agenda.
“In terms of balancing my career, going to college, and being in my early 20’s, I find that planning and balance are really key,” she said. “I’m in my final year of undergraduate school, so schoolwork takes up a good portion of my time.”
At other times, she’ll be preparing for auditions or meetings. When Romano does have some extra time, she’ll designate half of the time to just spend on herself and the other half to meet up with friends.
“I really enjoy doing things on my own, so I’ll often take myself out to lunch, go to the park and journal, or just check out a new neighborhood in LA,” she said. “My friends and I still enjoy going out to dinner, seeing a movie, or doing day trips to the beach and it’s also fun to check out thrift stores together or just go for a long drive and chat.”
In my eyes, Romano is indeed an independent woman who is enjoying her 20’s as much as she can. She is hoping she can work on something entirely different in terms of acting. Something that would allow her to connect everyday experiences and emotions with events from the past.
“I love history, so I think that a role in a period piece would be the dream,” she said. “It would be fun to do a narrative that takes place in a significant moment in history and see how that influences each character and the overall story.”