True to the promise I made to myself to scale back on working for FREE, I’ve been laying off theatre this year. It’s not an easy place for an actor to be – on the one hand, you always want to be working; On the other, nothing moves forward if all you’re doing is one play after the other in the Equity waiver world. Regardless, that’s where I am.
Nearly a decade after moving to Los Angeles to make a life for myself, I have a whole lot of theatre credits, but if I needed to prove to someone that I am a working actor, what can I point to? An old program? my good word?
The answer to that is IMDB. And sure enough, my credits on that site are slim at best. I exist there, which is step 1, but it’s not a place I direct people if they want to know about me as an actor. So, without theatre, and with some notion that my talents and training are worth money, I’ve had a pretty slow year. And, as it seems always happens, just when I’m reconciling the lack of a career in my mind, I get a call offering me a job.
Generally, these calls come from the same few people. One in particular surely has no idea just how much she means to me, since countless gigs in the past several years have been a direct result of her blind faith in my ability to get the job done, and done well. Such was the case in early August, when I received a call asking me if I could be in a short film.
1) Welcome to the Woods was the first legitimate SAG-AFTRA short that I have actually been cast in and paid for. Shocking considering how long I’ve been at this. I played Chris, the hipster in a band who convinces his girlfriend to bankroll the band’s new tour van. Much love goes out to the cast/crew but in particular, Amamda Weier (writer/director), Laetitia Leon (Star/Producer), and Jessica Noboa (Producer & my scene partner) for being stone cold pros.
Side Note: It’s fairly amazing how quickly actual, real SAG credits show up on IMDB when they’re legitimate. Unlike when one has to scratch and claw their way to adding a dubious credit, this short film showed up all by itself. Wow.
2) After the Fall was more of a workshop than a short but by all accounts, will look like the real deal when the editing is finished. Again, great to be a part of something I can honestly say I was lucky to be called for. In this one, I’m lost in post-apocalyptic ruins when I stumble upon the bunker occupied by the remaining few US Government officials. They take me in and more than falling through the rabbit hole, the truth of the situation is a mind bender.
More to follow in the coming weeks. I’m convinced it’s already been a successful year, just based on a couple weeks of working!!