Sometimes I am overwhelmed with inspiration. Not all of the time, but sometimes. And, these are my favorite times. So many of these times, I find what sparks any sort of inspiration in me, is creativity. Or better yet, the desire to create, or watching someone create or even talk about creating. Tonight, I watched an interview with Amy Adams on “Inside the Actor’s Studio.” Amy spoke with great difficulty about the tragic and unexpected death of fellow actor, Philip Seymour Hoffman. Now, unless you have been living under a rock, you are aware that Hoffman was found dead on February 2nd, in New York City, from an apparent heroin overdose. She also spoke of training with Warner Loughlin and of working with Mark Whalberg. She referenced her fiancé, Darren LeGallo and Bradley Cooper. I couldn’t help but feel some sort of strange six degrees of separation with her through this interview. Amy and I both studied at the same acting studio together, I have worked with Mark Whalberg and when Darren moved in with Amy, my ex-boyfriend moved into his bedroom left covered in many of Darren’s BEAUTIFUL paintings. Bradley Cooper..well he is just a guy from Philly who is making it happen..so that’s awesome!
It really is an unbelievable thing that happens when you stick with your dreams and you make the decision to never give up on them. At least in Hollywood, the circles become smaller. You begin to see the same faces over and over at auditions, you develop relationships with casting directors that actually have a say in this industry and more than that you start to make a name for yourself. More times than not, I can watch a movie and know many of the names listed in the credits. While I may not be on a first name basis with all of them, I have either worked with, auditioned for or trained with someone in most films out today. The closing of this circle, I believe in any industry, begins to happen when you really put your time in and when you really go full force in the direction of goals.
I have learned so much during my time in LA. I have learned about the business and craft of acting and through this I have learned about life and about myself. Since this blog focuses on acting, let’s talk about that for now. I have learned that every audition, good or bad, propels my career a bit further. Some further than others but it propels, nonetheless. I have learned that you are not walking into that office to land the role but to create a character and more importantly create a connection with the people in that office. That is your job as an actor. I have learned to prepare. Most of the nerves subside when I am fully prepared. When I have created as many details about a character’s life and story as I possibly can, I am able to walk into any room and whether I am reading for one person or twelve network executives, I am able to feel comfortable. Well, at least as comfortable as possible while baring my soul to a bunch of complete strangers.
Back to the interview. Amy spoke about her craft and how she created her diverse characters. It was kind of a surreal experience to watch this because here I am, a little girl from Frankford watching an Academy Award nominated actress speak about how she does what she does and I knew it, already. I knew it because I studied the same method, with the same coach, with her. With this multiple Oscar nominated actress. She spoke about working with hugely famous actors and I could relate because I had worked with the same actors! It made me laugh, in the best of ways, to think about it.
This entry is filled with personal thoughts and I don’t wish to share them as, “Oh look at me! Amy Adams and I have a few connections we share in Hollywood and so we should totally be best friends weird kind of vibe.” I share this entry because, I shared an acting studio with Amy Adams 10 years ago when no one knew her name and today she is one of the most well respected actresses of our generation. I share this because I grew up on a dead end street in Philadelphia where few people rarely venture out of the neighborhood, let alone across the country with a belief that they have something to offer. I share this because all of this fills me with the promises of possibility and sparks of inspiration. I hope that you reading this can be filled with the same sense of possibility towards whatever you would like to achieve in your life. It can be done. It is being done all over the place. Find your inspiration and follow it. Do not doubt yourself. Really and truly follow it and it will happen.
And, when it does..don’t waste the moment. Don’t waste your talent. Don’t end up in a bathtub with a needle in your arm, gone way before your time because you..because..
well, I don’t know because why…just don’t.
Philip Seymour Hoffman
July 23, 1967-February 2, 2014
Such a loss..rest well..