Tuesday, January 24, 2012

What would you do..for FREE?

Ill always thank Aunt Gloria Jean for the clarity she gave me in her final moments. I still had not arrived at a final direction at this point. I was a complete free agent and "funemployed" with enough saved to last me for a little bit. What was I gonna do? Where was I gonna go? Scary but exciting questions. Fortunately a dear friend (Hi Kat) was getting married...in the hills of Tuscany. I had been to Europe but not Italy before so off I went to support her and get away from what life was to find what life could be. Everything aside, the wedding was BEAUTIFUL! I'm honored that I was able to be there to witness it. Plus the grooms family had wine made just for the event. Bellissimo Italy!

When I was considering what to do I thought about what got me into my previous job situation..Money. I was a broke college student. When I was interviewing for jobs the only thing I thought about was "I didn't want to be broke anymore". My how small one thinks when one is younger. Anyway, I went with the best offer and as I worked in the world of finance the money got better and better, frankly. So I reversed my logic...what would I do for free? What would I put all my energy into for zero dollars? Not deferred money, not even thinking what will make me money in the future. Whats FUN? In the back of my mind the answer..ACTING.

Acting was always fun. No matter what it was always such a good fun time in high school and college. Playing characters who live a totally different life than your own. Its all encompassing and requires every bit of you to do it. You are engaged when you are acting. That same voice in the back of my head told me that acting was NOT a profession or career for me. It was just a fun thing I did to balance out school and athletics. Could I really do this? I thought back to my former life and clients and the confidence that I took from those conversations. At this point in my life I TRULY believed that I can do anything. Anything at all! (More on this in later posts) So why the heck not acting?? I started taking a few classes and even got some headshots while I was still in San Francisco. The final step to doing this was a conversation I had with my parents about it. Naturally they were concerned about what I was going to do with my life. When I told them "I'm moving to Los Angeles and I'm going to be the biggest movie star in town" they didn't freak out and call me crazy like I thought they would. My dad looked at me and smiled and said "Son, when you eat your whole family is fed. If you really want to do this better to do it right now instead of wonder when your are 50. I know you can do anything son so shoot your best shot"

With that, I packed up and moved to Studio City with my good buddy Dudley. Here's where the story starts to get interesting :) More importantly, you guys now know about me and how I arrived in this crazy awesome city pursuing my moviestardom. All my chips are in the center of the table..I'M ALL IN. So lets see how it all plays out although I already know where I will eventually end up :)

See you soon and here's our inspiration of the day...

"The only place where your dreams become impossible is in your own thinking"

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Clarity from my Aunt Gloria

First of all, thanks for reading my first blog post. Its awesome to share my story with you.

So here I am pondering what I really want to do with my life. Of all cities to do this in, San Francisco was as good a place as any to do it. Oddly enough my job was a great place to do it as well. In my previous life, I spent my days working with clients from all over the world. Some were young, old, famous or anonymous. The one thing they all had in common is that they were very wealthy. Its all relative of course but my clients on average had an eight figure net worth (tens of millions in other words). The ways they made their fortunes were just as different as they were. There were insiders and founders of major technology companies right along side folks who had been born into tremendous wealth passed down from generations past. When I started to re-examine my purpose in life, its INCREDIBLY VALUABLE to be able to have personal and candid conversations with people who have reached a point in their lives where they are completely financially independent and could realistically do whatever they wanted to do as opposed to what they had to do. I do not love money but I do love the freedom it provides in our society. There were some common themes that these millionaires shared with me and most of them had zero to do with dollars:

*Work for yourself, because no boss will care about you like you
*Do something that you love to do if you can because then it isn't work
*Don't ever be greedy because that's when things go horribly wrong
*Set goals every year (more about this later)
*Concentrate your efforts in one direction in the beginning or you wont get anywhere

Although they didn't give me the answer to my final question they definitely set me on the right track without even knowing it.

At the same time that I am going through this in my little world, my extended family was going through a much bigger issue. My dear Aunt Gloria was diagnosed with cancer. She was given six months to live by doctors. Through the grace of god, she was given more time than that. I have a ton of fond childhood memories as she was the official family hostess and chef of Thanksgiving! She held out as long as she could living at home but eventually as she neared the end she moved into a hospital full time. There was a weekend that my best guys and had planned to go to San Diego to visit our Alma mater, UC San Diego. I had planned to go and surprise my Aunt Gloria in the hospital. It was a true surprise as I didn't tell anybody, I just showed up in her hospital room with a smile and a big bouquet of flowers. My uncle, who was essentially living at the hospital as well, was in the bathroom when I first arrived so he couldn't believe his eyes when he came back. We got to laugh and cry together. She and I talked about everything we could think of. It was during a pause where she told me the something that changed my life, forever. She looked at me and told me that there is one thing she really wants me to understand.."You only live once, and when its over its over no matter what you think about it. So you better do something with your life that you are really happy about and worth spending your precious time on". She went on to tell me how proud she has always been of me and that she thinks I can do ANYTHING I want in this world. I was floored..in a good way. I always believed you only live once but she helped me understand the reality and the gravity of something that is often dismissed as a nice cliche. I will always thank Aunt Gloria for using some of her final moments to share some wisdom with me.

That was on Sunday. On Monday morning my cousin called me and told me that Aunt Gloria passed away. On Tuesday morning, I walked into the office and told my bosses that this has been fun and a great experience, but its time for me to do something else with my life. I was close to what that something else was, but not quite yet. I had to take some time off...

Check back next week for how I finally end up in LA pursuing my movie stardom. As for my inspiration...

"There is no telling how many miles you will have to run while chasing your dream"

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Welcome to the Moviestar Chronicles

Happy New Year!!

Thank you for stopping by and reading my blog aka the "Moviestar Chronicles". My journey as a professional actor has been interesting, rewarding, addicting and difficult at various times. A few months ago I was talking with my old roommate and just telling him stories about the journey and he made a great suggestion. He told me "Dude, why don't you blog about this. It will be a great way for folks to follow an actor from unknown to household name." Wow, I guess I never thought about it that way. That's really what my journey is about. I'm not ashamed to say that I want to be the biggest Moviestar on earth one day. It has taken a lot of work to get to where I am and there is a TON of work that I have to do in order to be a full fledged Moviestar. I am inviting you all to join me on this journey and see what I go through while pursuing my stardom in the biggest and most competitive market for film and TV acting..Los Angeles, CA

So a little bit about how I got "here". I'm a Southern California kid born in Riverside. I did a little bit of acting in middle and high school. I never thought about it as a career then but I always remember how absolutely FUN plays were in high school. (shot out to Mrs. Hawkins, my first drama teacher) I went on to college and was a theatre minor (poli sci major) again thinking only of keeping the fun in my life. Graduation came and I took a job in the investment industry that took me to San Francisco. For the next few years acting was completely out of my life. I didn't miss it much at the time because I was in Wall Street mode which means the almighty dollar is your number 1 priority. Don't get me wrong this is fact, not a judgement of Wall St. If you are to succeed in that industry its the only way. I was doing alright financially for a young single guy. I remember sitting in my fancy loft apartment surrounded by nice tailored suits and boxes of really expensive shoes (among other trappings of "success" for a young guy) in front of my huge flat screen television when I asked myself one of the two most important questions of my life..."Is this really it..is this really what my life is about?" I asked myself that question and variations for long time searching for what I really wanted or needed to do with my life. Its really scary in the beginning to look in the mirror at who you are inside and who you have become and see where those images don't coincide. It had to be done for me to rediscover that thing that was missing in my life. Every day this question was on my mind with no clear answer in my mind. What I didn't know at the time is that it would take a future family tragedy to free my mind and set me on the right path..

Thanks for reading. I promise to you all to always be honest and to update it at least once a week. Oh yeah, I like to end with a little inspiration

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us"

Happy 2012!