Wow, a new year has officially begun and looking back over 2013 I'd say I had a pretty good year acting wise. Despite a few slow periods, I was for the most part busy. I even booked me a few paying gigs.
I'm not even really sure where to start. Obviously I can't mention every single thing I worked in or that would make for a pretty boring article. I'll just mention a couple of the bigger/more special things I did and talk about some new things I started doing this past year.
I will start with film.
I finished filming Jim Terriaca's Apex Rising in which I play a half-breed zombie human. It's a film about society, human nature, corruption, and the will to survive. I'm so looking forward to the premiere in 2014.
I began working in Joe Ciminera's latest supernatural horror film, Venial. I'm so excited to be taking on the lead role in this one. It's my fifth project with Joe and the first time I'll be doing an English accent in a role!
I was blessed to work in several short films this past year. I'll just mention a few. "Sarah's Silence," in which I play a concerned social worker who makes a startling discovery in the home of a little girl, marked my first booking in a SAG indie. "Dark Romance," in which I play a sweet but deeply twisted receptionist, was filmed as part of the NYC 48Hr Film Contest. I've mentioned before how badly I've always wanted to work in one of those. I play a kindergarten teacher who makes a horrible mistake in the groundbreaking film "The Shattered Mind," which follows a deaf, African-American teenage girl on her journey of self-discovery. One more I want to mention is "The Awakening of Deena Harris." In this film, I play a pregnant woman who is fighting badly with her husband while being observed by the main character. Every role I get to play is special, but there were a lot of girls at that audition. And I'm sure they were all extremely talented. So it meant so much to me to get chosen for this part. At the audition, we had the choice to do our own monologue or read from one provided by the director. I followed my instincts and performed my own (from a film I worked in last year actually) and it payed off. Each of these films have been or are currently being submitted to film festivals. "Sarah's Silence" won the Audience Choice Award in the Once a Week On-line Film Festival earlier in the year.
Just one more important short film before I move on; Redemption, written and directed by Ryan Callaway. We still have a couple scenes left to shoot and this has been one of my favorite and most challenging roles yet; playing top defense attorney to the gangsters, Leslie Walsh. I've never really played a character like her before, and I feel so honored that Ryan had faith in me to take her on. It has definitely given me more confidence in submitting to similar roles.
I worked in this awesome web-series called "Tales from the Dark," another Joe Ciminera production. I had a guest-starring role in one episode of this Twilight Zone-ish show which has received hundreds of thousands views on-line. I heard recently that the show actually aired on television throughout Texas. Although I couldn't find any evidence of that fact, it's pretty cool knowing it could be true.
I had super fun playing a hipster in a pilot by Ryan Darden called "The Supernatural Survival Guide," about a zombie apocalypse. I recently found out from researching that the pilot was an official selection in the Independent TV Film Festival that took place in Vermont this year. Can't wait for bigger things to come for this production.
Another pilot I booked hasn't made it into production yet but I want to mention it because I put so much prep work into the character before the audition, that when I booked the role I was thrilled. It is a comedy called "Office Madness," and you can pretty much guess from the title what it is about. My character was a cooky receptionist named Lisa who tries to be the office psychiatrist. Again, this was another completely new character role for me and I'm still holding on to hope that it will be produced.
So not only did I get to work in several great projects, the quality of the projects I am working in is going up. I am now at the level where most of the things I am doing are seriously being submitted into film festivals. Next thing you know, those films will become official selections and then possibly get nominated for awards or receive attention. (Hopefully that begins to happen anyways. I've learned to focus on the work and the process, not any potential outcome.) One of my films, The Watchers, also by Ryan Callaway, recently found distribution which may mean Netflix and further DVD sales. (Congrats to Ryan btw!!!) So to me, that is progress. And even though I may not have booked anything major (as in the general public knows about it), I am still moving up.
This past year was also a great year for networking for me. I am getting comfortable with exchanging business cards and connecting more with other actors on social media. I had more events to attend than usual and enjoyed every second of it. They included a movie premiere, a few film festivals, and a film fundraising party. And if all goes well, I should have even more to attend in 2014.
So that's it! And I already have a few projects lined up for 2014. I am happy to say that I realized especially in 2013 how much I love the entire process of becoming an actor. I love the hustle, the searching for castings, the networking, the auditioning, and every other part of it. Which is good because that is what will sustain me in the journey. I may have said this in an earlier post, but Happy 2014 everyone!!! Keep following your dreams! Will be posting my goals and plans for this year shortly.