Interviewed by: Danielle Aufiero, CSA
1) Has there been a Casting Director that has encouraged and/or supported you in your career?
There have been many Casting Directors that have changed my life. First and foremost, I have to acknowledge Danielle Aufiero and Amber Horn. I don’t know if they remember, but 13 years ago, they gave me my first ever union job called Established Coffee. And then a year after that, they gave me my first big role on MTV's Awkward. It would be an understatement to say I am eternally grateful for all their help. Additionally, Casting Director Kellie Roy has been one of my biggest supporters. She gave me my first lead in a feature film called Mope. She introduced me to my amazing and extremely hard-working managers and Kellie continues to inspire me to become the best actor I know I can be. This is absolutely not an exhaustive list, as I’ve been fortunate enough to meet a ton of Casting Directors that have supported me throughout. But Danielle and Kellie come to mind when I think of people who not only have made a massive impact on my life and career, but who I’m also fortunate enough to call my friends.
2) What work are you most proud of?
I have two projects that I am most proud of at this point in my career. The first is my feature film “Mope” (Casting by Kellie Roy) which premiered at Sundance in 2019. I remember feeling extremely anxious and uneasy after filming the movie. I did not feel I gave my best performance and I beat myself up for months over it. Of course, after seeing the final cut and receiving the news it got accepted into Sundance, my whole perspective changed. I love that movie and I hope everyone gets to see it. The second project I am most proud of is a guest starring role I recently did on NCIS. Simply put, this was the first time in my entire career where from start to finish, I felt like a professional actor. I was proud of how I approached the process every step of the way. I felt I reached a new level as an artist.
3) What or who inspired you to pursue acting as a career?
In high school, I used to want to be a director. I’ve always been excited about the idea of being involved in movies somehow, but it was never a realistic option. In college, I tried an acting class off-campus to scratch that itch. It was not affiliated with the University and it turned out to be a scam; I’m still salty about that. Nevertheless, that scam class made me realize acting is actually what I want to do for the rest of my life. At that point, I made a career and mental commitment to forever pursue my passion.
4) What was your first IMDBPro credit and how did you feel when you saw it?
My first IMDbPro credit was for a short film called Boba and Melon Gum. I remember months leading up to the premiere of the short, I would check on IMDbPro daily to see if my name was on the credit. One day, after many refreshes, it was there and I literally jumped out of my chair to celebrate in my room, by myself.
5) How has IMDBPro helped you market yourself to filmmakers?
I think IMDbPro is a fantastic tool for filmmakers to learn about actors. If anyone needs to see my credits, I direct them to IMDb. It allows me to share all of my work with my peers as well as keep me connected with all of the artists around me.
6) Any funny casting room stories?
How about a horror casting story that I now find funny? I had a producer session once with about 5-6 people in the room. I had about five pages of dialogue the night before and definitely did not feel at the top of my game. After walking into the room and greeting everyone, I started my scene only to realize I did not know my lines well at all. Normally I would just look down and grab the line. In this particular instance, however, I looked down and also dropped the entire sides on the floor. I guess my hands were trembling. I had to bend down and pick it up as the producers laughed; so, I guess it was funny on their side at the time. I still cringe when I think back at the moment, but I also can’t help but laugh. By the way, I didn’t get it.
7) Tell us a fun fact about you outside of acting:
I self-published a children’s book called Mini and Mo: To The Theatre We Go. I’m hoping to write the second book of the series at one point. I also love playing basketball and I’m always looking for new groups to join. If anyone needs an extra player, please let me know.View on IMDbPro More Actors of the Month