I fell in love with movies at a young age. My grandmother managed a video store when I was a kid and when I was about 10 or 11 years old I spent a summer with my grandparents and got to go to work with her. That was it, I was hooked! I watched every blockbuster movies that came out, especially the action flicks. It’s a love that has lasted the test of time. Still to this day, watching movies is among my favorite things to do. I always wanted to be an actor, to do the things I saw in the moves…jump off buildings, drive cars at excessive speeds and all the other fun wild stuff you see in movies. A few years after graduating college I was working as a sales manager in a dying industry and I heard a radio advertisement for an “acting school” as I was about to have a pow-wow with a coworker. It was the real-life version of the lightbulb going on! I knew it was a sign that it was time to pursue what I saw myself doing as a child. I auditioned for the school, was accepted and I was off.
It’s been years since that first step, and I have taken many steps since then, from New York to Los Angeles and back again. While I lived in LA I heard the best piece of advise in all my time in the industry at a workshop focused on ‘finding your niche.’ An actor who explained he only chose to be an actor after taking an acting class as part of his pre-recs as a pre-med student. He stated he didn’t know what he wanted to do for a living, but knew he needed a challenge, so decided to become a doctor, but when he acted in the class, he enjoyed it and someone told him how good he was. So, he thought to himself, being an actor is just as challenging as becoming a doctor, if not more so, and just like that changed direction and started his journey into acting. He was asked the question, “what’s one piece of advise you can give to a young actor starting out?” The actor replied, “take Fountain,” (an inside joke for those familiar with driving around LA), but then he went on to say something that has stuck with me for 10+ years…he said, “if you can quit, quit!” The whole room went silent…everyone was looking around at each other puzzled…then the actor went on to explain, “if acting isn’t the only thing you want to do when you wake up in the morning, if you can entertain doing something else, quit now because one day you will, and you’ll save yourself a lot of time, heartache and a lot of money!”
Well its been 10+ years since I heard that advise…quitting sounds great, and he’s right, it would be so much easier to quit, if only it was an option, but the simple truth for me is, its not! After much self-exploration, no matter how hard it feels, how much time and energy it takes, (most of which no-one sees or even understands unless they too are going through it themselves), the heartache, the strain on relationships and sacrifice it takes to pursue the dream of making it as an actor…quitting just isn’t an option.
Uncertainty is the only certainty an actor can count on. So you can be certain of one thing…I am no quitter! So cheers, 🍻 🥂 to you seeing me on your TV and on the screen.