I’ve always admired directors. They told us in theater school that theater was an actor’s medium, but film–that’s a directors domain. As actors, we’re there to serve a purpose to the story, to the director–to do a job. Screened recently at the Tribeca Film Festival, and set for a June 20th limited USA release, I’m really eager to see this film. Starring Liam Neeson, Mila Kunis, James Franco, Olivia Wilde, Kim Basinger, Adrien Brody, and Maria Bello with Crash cast member Moran Atias, this ensemble cast intrigues me. Known for this screenwriting Oscar wins for Crash and Million Dollar Baby, I’ve admired Haggis as a writer/director. He does solid work.
Haggis’ new film, Third Person, tells the story of three couples in three different cities, all interlocking. It seems simple enough, but viewing the trailer, it also seems complex, but in the best sense of the word. The trailer itself has a film festival feel to it. I don’t know why, but I’ve always loved trailers; they are an art form in themselves. What’s even more interesting to me is the fact that Mila Kunis and James Franco can count this collaboration as their fourth film together–and they frequently play a couple. Also interesting is the fact that I haven’t really Kim Basinger in a while. I think the last was The Door in the Floor and 8 Mile.
Judging from the trailer, the film looks like it’s going to be reminiscent of Crash, but that’s not always a bad thing. I’m interested in seeing how the film is structured and plays out.
What do I have in common with Steve Martin, Tina Fey, James Franco, and Andrew McCarthy? We’re actors who are also writers. You read that correctly, Andrew McCarthy is, in fact, a writer. He’s an award-winning travel writer. Check out some of his stuff on National Geographic Traveler. Now, I’m not talking about actors who all of the sudden want to “write” their memoirs, and get a ghost writer to do it for them. I’m talking about people with actual skills, who do their own writing. As a matter of fact, Tina Fey and Steve Martin actually STARTED OUT as WRITERS. I’m guessing they did it while they were pursuing acting as well, due to the fact that they are in both realms of the industry. Granted, there are those actors who have also written screenplays or stage plays, and blogs, but that’s a different type of article all together.
I started acting when I was around the age of 8, maybe 9. But I started making up stories as soon as I could talk. I even had an imaginary friend when I was 5 who I would tell my stories to. Her name was Jinglelyn, and again, I was 5. When I actually learned to read and write, writing took a back seat to performing onstage. I had found my passion for storytelling on stage. And I loved it. It’s my first love. Telling stories, no matter what shape or form, is what I love.
What I find funny now, is the fact that my parents kept giving me journals on my birthdays or Christmas, and I never really used them. I wasn’t really a “dear diary” type of girl anyways. It seemed sort of silly to recount my day on paper. I started writing short stories and plays, and when I got to high school, I helped start up the creative writing club at my all-girls, Catholic high school. I wrote stories, parts of novels I was working on, and seriously wanted to become a writer and an actor when I grew up. I was involved in anything creative. I sang in choirs, acted in the school plays and wrote stories. My English teacher even gave me a writing award my junior year of high school. When I got to college, I majored in English because I love the element of story-telling, plot and characters. I thought it would help in the acting realm because I was able to learn about the different things that make up a good story. It was sort of like four years of script-analysis. I acted throughout college, even directed. My senior year of college, I got my first headshots and auditioned at my first major theater convention, which led to moving to NYC to study at Circle in the Square Theater School.
Within these past six years, I have been acting and putting writing on the back burner. I got my union cards and even pursued stand-up. The closest I came to writing, before starting this blog, was stand-up comedy, which I still love because you can create your own material. I started this blog because I wanted to get back into writing, and I wanted to write something from the perspective of an actor who was going through the ups and downs in their career. Not someone who is washed-up and giving advice. I’m still in the trenches and being in a career “lull,” I have been writing about what I love. Movies I love, movies I loathe, anything and everything that has to do with the industry, with a unique perspective. It seems like I’m in good company of those who came before me. If you use all of your talents, it can lead to something. What that is, I don’t know. But I am pursuing my writing and my acting. So I guess I can add a back-slash to my job description. I’m a writer/actor. And I’m so glad you are reading my blog. Thanks.