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Canaan John

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Name: Canaan John

Hometown: East Orange, NJ

Current Location: Los Angeles, CA

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
John: Before fully realizing my ambitions, it was my mother’s idea for me to pursue acting. One summer morning a friend called our house and asked for me, I had been up for a while but when I answered the phone I acted as if I was just waking up and used that as an excuse to not hang out. My mother overheard this and, immediately after I hung up the phone, she came into my bedroom and jokingly said, “Quit school and go to Hollywood.” I didn’t quit school, but I did excel in the arts while attending Whitney E. Houston Academy of Performing Arts in my hometown. I’ve always dreamed of being an actor and never thought it was possible until I got cast in my first Off-Off Broadway show in New York City. After that I was hooked.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
John: I’ve always admired the careers of Will Smith and Leonardo DiCaprio. Watching Will Smith break barriers as a top film star has been inspiring especially since we share the same ethnicity. My favorite movie is “The Pursuit of Happyness.” When I watch this movie, I always get emotional. Not only was the acting superb, but the story was a story anyone could relate to that has ambition. As far as DiCaprio, I’ve always admired the range of characters he portrays. There are many other actors I admire like Julianne Moore, Jeffrey Wright, Idris Elba, Mahershala Ali and Meryl Streep, to name a few. I like to pull inspiration from many, many actors of today and yesterday, but these are actors I find myself drawn to most.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
John: My main plan is to work as much as possible when I’m offered work; with discretion of course. I have a commercial agent, but I self-submit everyday. I’m on all of the major casting notice services with most accounts having an annual subscription to keep monthly expenses down. I try to be strategic with the roles I submit for. I mostly submit myself to roles that would play up my strengths but are also kind of challenging. I’ve been cast in a variety of characters using my ‘formula’. I just stick to the mindset of, ‘just keep moving forward’.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
John: I started acting in New York City at around 22 years old. My first acting experience was in the 5th grade for a school play, and numerous church plays while growing up. I took a break from acting from age 25 to 32 while I focused on my personal life and life after college. Acting in Los Angeles actually happened by haphazard. I was on a Warner Bros. Studio Tour with my partner and the guide mentioned how actors get onto the studio lot by doing background work and instantly all the years of acting on stage and in film flooded back to my mind.

I had forgotten about my love for acting because I was so wrapped up in Life. At age 32, I signed up with Central Casting in Burbank and did a few months of background work and even got featured on two episodes of a show in a scene with an Emmy winner. After that experience, doing background work wasn’t satisfying anymore. I wanted to act. I stopped doing background work as often and focused on auditioning for speaking roles. Within one year I have filmed speaking roles in four short films, a commercial, a Web skit with a big following, and a few other confidential projects coming soon.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
John: The move was a very easy transition for me since I’m lucky enough to have an amazing and supportive partner. It is a challenge finding work out here while maintaining a flexible schedule to audition, but I try to take it one day at a time and enjoy the journey of becoming a full-time actor. I was able to make great friends out here as well. I honestly feel that I took a big risk in moving from the East Coast to the West Coast, but with proper planning, things have happened in my favor. There are trying days that test my desire for this career, but I work to maintain a positive outlook by surrounding myself with happy & motivated friends. I still have to pinch myself daily that I live in Los Angeles. The opportunity to live here and pursue my dreams has exceeded all possibilities I thought for myself just five years ago.

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
John: I would say my biggest break was landing a spot in a commercial for a casting company out here in Los Angeles. It has been such a confidence boost that’s providing me great momentum. Another big break is my first speaking role in a film called, “Chirp, Buzz & Other Sensations,” directed by Miley Durbin. So much went into the production and marketing of the film that I felt as if I was a part of a major studio production. Every part I land is a big break because I get to act.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
John: I have this fantasy of playing character on a great journey. Another favorite movie of mine is “Diarios de Motocicleta” (“The Motorcycle Diaries”). This movie is great because it follows the journey of a man who has a goal, but finds himself on the way through trials and tribulations. I feel everyone is on a journey and it’s epic adventures like “The Motorcycle Diaries” that remind me that no matter what, I have to stay focused on my goals and dreams. I’ve been most attracted to epic films, whether drama, sci-fi, dark comedy or action. I love films that are of another place and time that allows the audience to escape with high quality cinematography, art direction, costumes, direction and acting. I love all the work that goes into creating these worlds for us actors to act in. Truthfully though, I’d feel most at home in epic dramas.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
John: The greatest strength in knowing yourself. It’s easy to get lost in trying to figure out why I didn’t get cast in something or why agents and managers aren’t banging down my door. That coupled with the endless flow of rejection could make me go crazy, but I decided to enjoy the process. My first acting coach John Pallotta told me to enjoy the journey of acting and not the destination and that has totally changed how I view my pursuit of acting. I love what I do, so no matter what happens, I’m moving forward.

The desire to act coupled with my hobbies and a support system keep me going. I enjoy travel photography, creating apps, weekend getaways as well as working out. I try to immerse myself in culture by attending various events, museums, etc. Trying new things and experiences will strengthen a character and it’s helped me a lot with expanding my world. Being open to new experiences has shaped me as a man and as an actor.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
John: My ultimate dream is to be a full-time actor acting in independent, major studio films and prestige television shows. I’d love to be that actor who travels to far off places to create characters and has a filmography of great movies. My ultimate dream role would be to portray 1970s disco star Sylvester in a gritty independent feature length biopic, or Oprah Winfrey plays my mother.

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
John: Plan. Having a plan is better than no plan. There are performers who come here with $200 and a dream and that’s great, but I could also imagine very stressful. Doing research on areas, possible ‘pay-the-bills’ jobs, it helps make the transition a little smoother. A car (even if cheap) will make it so much easier to hop from auditions, to sets, to work, to home. And if you can, have some money stashed away. Lastly, dream big and build momentum; no one has overnight success.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
John: The easiest way for people and casting directors to reach me is via http://www.imdb.me/CanaanJohn and/or www.canaanjohn.com!

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Next Up

Dayna Lee Brand

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Name: Dayna Lee Brand

Hometown: Detroit, MI

Current Location: Los Angeles, CA

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Brand: I would say I always knew I wanted to, but believing I could came much later. It wasn’t just one moment in time, it was many moments strung together that, looking back, were pivotal for me to start believing I could make acting a career. One of those moments was reading an interview from Laverne Cox. She said something along the lines of, “You’ve got to want it more than anything else, you’ve got to want even if it means being broke and living in Kansas.” That statement resonated with me. I began asking myself what was really worth giving up every other luxury for. At one point, I made a list of everything I wanted in life. I then asked myself one by one if I wanted each thing on that list more than I wanted to be an actress. The answer was no every single time. That was when I knew I was going to begin pursuing this career.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Brand: My family used to see a lot of musicals when we were younger, Cinderella was my favorite. There’s something special about being in the theater. And of course, this was before cell phones, so the audience was fully immersed in the play. In films, I remember being mezmorized by Angelina Jolie in “Girl, Interrupted” and Julia Roberts in “Pretty Woman.” They were real, tortured, and yet, playful. I admired their dynamic performances.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Brand: Plan…? I had a very specific plan before I got to LA, how things would happen and in what order. Needless to say, that plan changed a million and one times. My biggest piece of advice is to do your research and then do some more research. There is so much information out there and thousands of people willing to take advantage of those with this dream. It will never hurt in your acting or your life to be well-informed.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Brand: Actually, I was 23, living in Connecticut/NYC at the time, and working at a hedge fund. I know, BIG change. Right after college I told my mom I was moving to NYC with no job, no place to live, and going to find a job at a hedge fund. She told me that I was crazy and I shouldn’t do it. She laughed at the thought of me working at a hedge fund. A little over a year later I told my mom I was moving to LA with no job, no place to live, and to pursue acting. I had expected the same speech as before moving to NYC, but instead she just said, “Okay, honey.”

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Brand: I was a bit of a gypsy the last few years of my life, so the transition was very easy. My sister lives in LA also, so I felt right at home almost immediately. I had this overwhelming sense that I was finally on the right path from the moment I packed up my car in Westport, CT and started the drive to LA. I think if something is right, you’ll sense instantly and that’s how it was for me as soon as I got here.

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Brand: I just got my first role on an independent film called, “Time to Turn the Paige.” Hopefully, I am not speaking too soon because we haven’t started filming yet and people in LA tend to be on the flakier side, but to me it’s my first break because I finally get to be a part of something, doing what I love.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Brand: I would love to play someone completely opposite of me or someone really evil or tortured. I think that’s the fun in acting, that you get to be all of these different kinds of people.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Brand: Sacrifice. Be honest with yourself, would you want this if it meant sacrificing time with friends because you need to study lines, or even a bed because between acting classes and rent, not one dollar can go to anything else? You need to be not only comfortable, but infatuated, with the uncomfortable.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Brand: To be a part of a great project. It sounds cheesy, but to be a part of a film or TV show that can make an audience laugh, cry, fall in love, feel something, anything, is the ultimate goal. To share raw, human emotion with them.

An Oscar wouldn’t hurt either, though. (Laughter)

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Brand: If you know this is what you want, not because of fame or money or attention, because it’s what you truly love, then do it and do it now. Be kind to everyone. Never complain and be grateful for every opportunity no matter how small. Let life happen to you. Every experience, every pain, every happiness will fuel you.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
IMDb here.
Instagram here.

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Next Up

Cole J. Williams

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Name: Cole J. Williams

Hometown: Sabine Pass, Texas

Current Location: Glendale, CA (Los Angeles)

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Williams: By the time I was a sophomore in high school I knew that acting would always be a fundamental aspect of my life; it was like this new diamond that I discovered along a seashore. Like anything worthwhile, age and time will only make such a thing more valuable, meaningful, and intoxicating over the years. By the time I graduated high school, I knew that it would haunt me ‘til the day that I died if I did not pursue a career as an actor going forward with my life, perhaps, in the afterlife too as far as I could tell at the time.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Williams: Oh, certainly! Firstly, there are so many great and inspiring performances — and actors who’ve paved the way — to pick from; it’s difficult to pinpoint anything or anyone above another. I’m just going to stick to the first one that stuck out to me before I knew how to articulate how I felt about acting — although, there was always this deep intuition and sense of oddity that lured me into wanting to be more than myself; or, as Bob Dylan would say, “All I can do is be me, whoever that is.” I still remember watching “Gangs of New York,” as a kid. Honestly, I thought that Daniel Day-Lewis was “Bill the Butcher” for years; of course, until I got older and realized that he was nothing like that in his interviews, which made me all the more impressed and amazed by what acting can be instead of what I thought it was at that point in my life.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Williams: You know, I did have a game plan, and I still do, but it’s constantly evolving and becoming unrecognizable to any formulation I could’ve dreamed up some time ago in the past. I still have miles to go before I can begin to feel comfortable with my career, but I’m enjoying the ride, thus far, and the edge I think only brings out the best that I have to offer as an actor. Ironically enough, it reminds me of reading a script, building and finding character in those pages, fleshing it out, and finally bringing that character to life whether it be on a stage or the screen. Ultimately, I think you just have to accept the unpredictable and learn to live with the uncertainty that comes with the nature of the industry. Perhaps, a delicate balance of talent, madness, luck, hard work, and rationality is the right recipe for some success at the end of the day.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Williams: Well, I was going to move away when I was 18 years old to live in New York City, I saved up enough money for five months of rent, and I was going to be studying acting at a reputable school there in New York while I looked for work. However, other things happened — as they tend to do in life — and I didn’t leave at that moment in time. As a point of fact, I moved away from my usual stomping grounds in May of 2017, so recently. I visited Los Angeles last November and talked to a few actors, at a movie premiere, about my passion for acting and how much I wanted to do what they were doing, as I figured, the claws of the mere possibility of being a part of this whole thing hooked into my mind, and my mind was made-up over that trip, “I was going to come out here and give this thing everything I had to give.”

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Williams: The first few days felt slightly worse than a nightmare, but due to the remarkable character of a few friends and family members who helped me out in that period, I adjusted to the pressure rather quickly, and I started doing what I set out to do without hesitation. Still, a lot to be done, no question, but I’m feeling more and more comfortable and concentrated with time, not the opposite.

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Williams: Hopefully, in due time, I can use the term “big break” in a different context, but for the time being it has simply been the small things that have made all of the difference for me. Thousands of actors move to Los Angeles and find no work, whatsoever, for prolonged and enduring periods of time. Thankfully, I’ve been afforded the opportunity to work on several sets, land a few auditions, and gain experience in the process. Finding the right representation will be my biggest break going forward and I’m trying to make all the necessary adjustments in the meantime to accomplish that goal.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Williams: Interesting question! In the meantime, I’m comfortable working as a background actor only because I enjoy the work so much, but it’s not my idea of myself as an actor. I see myself as more of theatrical talent who wants to take on roles that I should and do fear; I enjoy that process. I think of Sean Penn in “Mystic River,” Christian Bale in “The Fighter,” Daniel Day-Lewis in “My Left Foot;” it’s those types of roles – and many others — that intrigue me the most as an actor, so it’s in that universe (however hyperbolic that sounds) that I want to live within eventually.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Williams: A good philosophy when it comes to life, don’t forget to love it and cherish every moment of it. Embrace the good with the ugly, and never let the bad define you as an individual because you will need, at times, to believe in yourself when no one else will. We laugh, or we cry, right? Also, a good work ethic never hurts; it’s a necessity for everything in life done well. I’ve worked on rigs, on crew boats, in restaurants, and I’ve taken on other occupations… all of which have benefited me as an actor and as an individual, to be completely honest. However, there is no one-shoe-fits-all when it comes to finding meaning and comfort in life, so stick to what works for you if it’s working.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Williams: Man, it’s hard not to sound pretentious when answering this question. (Laughter) Honestly, if I can make solid money doing what I love most in life, it would be a dream come true. With that said, I do thoroughly believe in this quote by my favorite living actor, “Everybody has to know for themselves what they’re capable of.” Honestly, I know I’m capable of quite a lot as an actor, and I would love nothing more than the mere opportunity to show that to the world, to my peers, and to myself. If a window of that magnitude presented itself, I wouldn’t let it shut, and I wouldn’t fail once I got through! I think it’s impactive to have such a mentality to achieve that which others deem impossible, especially when you think it’s true!

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Williams: If it’s in your core to do it, do so, and be prepared to take a hard road along the way. In other words, do it because you love the thing itself, not the idea of what it could be; it’s the climb and the work that makes all of the difference at the end of the day. Love what you do and do what you love, but also be willing to work for what you want in life.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Williams: Email: colejwilliamsact1@gmail.com Website: talentfound.biz (It’s a site that I and my manager created, it’s still the early developmental stages of what it will eventually be). My stage name is “Cole J. Williams.” You can look me up on IMDb, but all of my work is not posted there (student films, theatre, some background jobs), but my contact information is available there for those parties chiefly interested and concerned. I’m working on my demo reel in the meantime and I just updated my headshots, which are soon to come. I’m looking to sign with an agent that I’ve been speaking to over the last month or so, but I’m also looking for as much exposure that I can get, so interviews like this are fantastic and I thoroughly appreciate you guys reaching out to me so that I can express myself and answer your questions!

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Next Up

Támar Davis

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Name: Támar Davis

Hometown: Houston, Texas

Current Location: Traveling

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Davis: I never realized acting could be a profitable thing until 2004 when I was on the road singing background for Tamia on the Verizon First Ladies Tour. After seeing the production and the crew and all of the logistics as to what makes a live show, I was hooked. And of course getting a weekly check that was greater than $900 blew my mind. Up until that tour, I was doing a lot of musical theater for my church and for local up-and-coming writers. But I was never paid for them. I apparently was sewing my time and gifts.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Davis: Honestly, when I was little I never was in awe of one particular artist. I had a huge imagination. I wanted to be a teacher or a ballerina. I do remember mimicking very poised and elegant women. I always admired a woman who looked beautiful in her clothing and her makeup. So that’s what inspired me… beautiful, strong women.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Davis: I never had a formula. I just remembered making myself available to learn and grow. Especially in times when someone booked a part and then backed out at the last minute. Somehow, I would get versed in their role and learn. And for some reason, I was always put on the spot to fill the vacancy. I feel being prepared is underrated. You have to be willing to be a servant to the craft and never feel too big for an opportunity. Most of my parts came from referrals. So honestly, I never had an approach. I just was willing to be a vessel, no matter how big or small the role was.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Davis: I never moved from Houston for a career. I actually moved to LA in 1998 to attend University of Southern California. I was 17 years old. I pursued acting in my church’s acting department. From there, I sang in a Christmas production and my name began floating around LA. One thing led to another. But I want people to understand, just as I was sewing my time and talents in the beginning of my career for no compensation, per se, that really has not changed now. Pursuing a career in acting has changed drastically. To this day, I am still pursuing.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Davis: The transition was really hard. I remember crying the first week of school and calling my parents all the time. My phone bill in college was sky high because it was so hard. But a family friend introduced me to her family and they took me in as if I was their child. My whole life changed while in LA because of this introduction. I literally felt I had my family in LA for my entire college days. I eventually joined a church and got involved and, on campus, I began to volunteer and join community organizations. So the transition eventually became smooth.

TrunkSpace: What has been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Davis: This is a difficult question because honestly, I feel they all have been breaks for me. But to date, I would say being on “The Voice” was huge for me. I was blessed to grow supporters from across the world, but I believe that platform sparked so much encouragement in myself as well as to other aspiring talent. The show humbled me. I learned about the power of perseverance. To this day I am still in shock that I didn’t remain on the show as long as I expected to be, but I feel that mega platform was a setup for something greater. At first I felt shamed to have not made Top 12, but at the same time, I learned how much I desire to create platforms as an African-American woman. I felt like all my life I was pursuing the stage only to find out, there’s not a lot of women with my skill and knowledge that are behind the scenes in this industry. My outlook and vision has expanded and now I honor the new assignments at hand.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Davis: I would love to play a heroine or a college student in a film or TV show. Sounds funny, I know. Any role that would allow me to act and sing would be ideal. I would love to be on any of the NBC holiday specials or a part of “House of Cards” or “Homeland.” I’m currently creating my own content, but of course that has its challenges as well.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Davis: The greatest strength one should have is the ability to teach. I have learned in all my travels, people want to understand and know the truth. You must be strong in self and therefore, be able to convey that power into someone else. I never thought in a million years that I would be passionate about encouraging others to pursue their passion. No matter your upbringing or not having enough money or resources. I feel God’s light in me has been more than for me. I almost get teary-eyed when I hear others say what they can’t do because of x, y, and z. I desire to continue to teach that wherever there is a will, there is a way.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Davis: I actually don’t have an ultimate dream per se. I would love to have consistent work so that I can continue to monetarily invest in my career and my other initiatives. I would like to see my Syren Arts Academy get an underwriter to take the initiative global. The arts is the most important creative skill that has been removed from educational systems and yet, creatively the outlets are small. I desire to grow the awareness of Edu-Tainment and really put my degree to use. I don’t want to be another employee or another hopeful actress, I want to have the tools to empower the hopefuls and almost become an artistic startup for new talent.

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Davis: First, have the understanding of your end goal. Are you trying to be famous? Be discovered? Is it your calling? Or is it a passion? 2.) Define what success means for you. 3.) Maybe think about opportunities off stage first. 4.) Grow a network of people, learn the craft, and then attack. If you are an actor, maybe learn singing. Or dancing. 5.) Stop feeling you can’t do or be because you don’t have an agent or a manager. Trust me, God will lead you. People often scratch their heads when I tell them my story. It’s not traditional by any sense. You must be open to exploring a trade or a passion that you have allowed to remain dormant. You have to be willing to continue to seek opportunities and not just rely on a manager or an agent to do all the work. Finally, you must be willing to accept that you are auditioning and desiring roles that others are seeking to book as well. Therefore, you must own your craft and be strong and confident with what you bring to any role or audition room. So, keep using your gifts, whether the job pays or not.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Davis: My website www.TamarDavis.com has all of my links. If you are a casting director, I do have an actor’s access account: http://resumes.actorsaccess.com/ashleytamardavis.

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Next Up

Avery Austin

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Name: Avery Austin

Hometown: Centreville, Virginia

Current Location: Los Angeles, California

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Austin: I’ve been acting since I was about eight, so it was just a matter of when I was going to move to Los Angeles or New York!

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Austin: I absolutely loved Judy Garland and “The Wizard of Oz.” I was captivated. Once I was old enough to watch “Titanic, according to my mom, Kate Winslet. (Laughter)

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Austin: I went to school first and got a BFA in Theatre and Acting. I did as many student/short films I could do while I was in school in order to get experience and footage. In all honesty, nothing can prepare you for the industry in Los Angeles until you’re there. (Laughter)

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Austin: After graduation from college, so 22. I graduated, and two months later moved to LA.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Austin: Oh my gosh, hardest first year of my life! I call it ‘the dark year.’ (Laughter) I would say I started to feel that LA was more of a ‘home’ after a year to a year and a half. It’s still hard sometimes, but I love it.

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Austin: I booked a co-star playing Vanessa on CBS’ “2 Broke Girls” about five months ago. That was amazing. SO much fun.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Austin: It’s funny because I have booked more comedy roles out here so far, but I love drama. I want to do a psychological, uncomfortable role where I have to ‘dig deep.’ I’d love to be on “The Handmaid’s Tale” or “Stranger Things” and “Shameless.”

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Austin: Drive and confidence.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Austin: I’d love to be in an Academy-nominated film. I’m sure that is most actors dream out here. I want to be a part of something that is more than just ‘a movie,’ but a story that lasts a lifetime.

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Austin: Just keep going. It’s going to be really hard. There’s going to be a lot of ups and downs, but don’t give up, especially right away.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Austin: My IMDb is www.imdb.me/averyaustin. I have an Instagram as well, @avery.austin.

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Next Up

Kristen Leigh

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Name: Kristen Leigh (McCusker)

Hometown: Westford, MA

Current Location: Los Angeles, CA

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Leigh: My earliest experiences with acting involved my three siblings and one of those giant VHS camcorders that you had to balance on your shoulder. We made lots of silly movies, like spoofs of “Star Wars” and James Bond. I started performing in musicals in middle school and by the 8th grade had decided that I wanted a career in theater. I went on to become very involved in musical and dramatic productions in our public high school’s theater program, at Westford Academy in Westford, MA. This program was (and is) top notch and it gave me a solid foundation. My decision to study acting was solidified my junior year of high school when I played Maureen in “RENT.”

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Leigh: As a young kid I looked up to Jim Carrey and Mike Meyers. I remember dreaming about being a female Jim Carrey. When I grew into my teens and young adulthood, I began looking up to strong women actors like Mindy Kaling, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Viola Davis.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Leigh: I was accepted into NYU’s Tisch School of the Performing Arts and spent the first half of my time there studying Musical Theater at their New Studio on Broadway. But I knew that I wanted to do all types of acting. I wanted to make sure that I received training in TV, film, and commercial acting, as well as voiceover. So halfway through my time in college I made the move to a Tisch partner program, Stonestreet Studios. I stayed in NYC for a couple of years after graduation and then decided to move to LA. Before I moved to LA I came up with a game plan of certain steps I needed to take and certain tasks I needed to accomplish before I arrived and for when I arrived in LA. There are so many different ways to get a foot in the door, you just have to be prepared for when that opportunity comes, and also put yourself out there and be open. And I never want to stop learning! I am currently enrolled in an animation voiceover class and I’m loving every minute of it.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Leigh: I moved away to Muhlenberg College when I was 18, and it was six hours away from my home, which was far for me. I then transferred to NYU the following year. I lived in NYC after graduation for a couple of years, auditioning, doing regional theater, student films, an independent TV pilot and voiceover work. Then I decided to move to LA in September 2016 to focus more on TV/Film/VO.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Leigh: Moving from a rural area of Massachusetts where I grew up to NYC was a drastic transition. But it was exciting and I was soon too busy with college classes and rehearsals to focus on adjusting. You just do what you have to do to get things done! I miss NYC sometimes. LA is a whole other beast, because it is a completely different environment. I don’t have school or a set schedule. I have to make sure that I set aside time to focus on my career. I get support from my older brother, who is also an actor in LA and from the great friends I’ve made, many of whom are co-workers at the restaurant I work at. It took about three months to feel comfortable and at home, and it’s still a work in progress, but that is to be expected… it still hasn’t been a year!

TrunkSpace: What has been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Leigh: I’m still waiting for that big break! I guess I would say my big break was being involved in a short film soon after arriving in LA that made me SAG-Eligible. Since I’ve been in LA I’ve done several short films and a pilot for a web series that they want to pitch to networks. Right now I am focusing on obtaining representation and getting into the voice acting world out here.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Leigh: I would love to land a super heroine role, something involving action and combat. I have some experience with shooting (rifle, shotgun, and pistol), as well as bow and arrow. I have also done some boxing and kickboxing. I hope to take a stage combat course. I also love indie, fantasy, sci-fi.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Leigh: Experiencing life to the fullest and allowing yourself to experience all of the emotions that come with that. And, of course, taking those you care about with you on that ride. Exposure and connections with people and situations have helped me become a better actor with regards to emotional empathy. You have a better understanding of characters when you experience all that life has to offer. As an actor, you need to draw from experiences and emotions.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Leigh: I would love to be on a long-running sitcom, because I love comedy and being around energy and fun. Also, you’d get to develop relationships with the cast and crew and really develop your character over many seasons. Comedy is my favorite. However, to play a superhero in a film is another huge dream of mine! Marvel, here’s looking at you!

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Leigh: Do it. Take the plunge. You’ll gain self-confidence, learn so much about yourself and other people, see places you wouldn’t have otherwise, and you’ll be going outside your comfort zone, which is most important. Do what’s best for you and the dreams you want to pursue. Take the risk, but be smart about it. Before you make the move, do your research, reach out to people and make contacts. Make sure that you have some money saved up. I moved back home for three months before my move to LA, in order to work full-time and save every dime. You don’t want to worry about where your next meal is coming from while you are trying to focus on establishing your acting career. In the end, you will find good people to surround yourself with and opportunity wherever you go, as long as you remain open to exploring and working hard to achieve your goals.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Leigh:
My website: www.kristenleigh.net
My IMDb: www.imdb.me/kristenleigh
My Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/kristenleighmccusker
ActorsAccess: http://resumes.actorsaccess.com/kristenleigh

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Next Up

Chloe Campas

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Name: Chloe Campas

Hometown: Chino, CA

Current Location: Los Angeles, CA

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Campas: I remember always knowing. When I was little I loved to reenact Disney movies with my Papa. I’ve always been a bit dramatic to say the least.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Campas: My mom has always been a big movie buff, which resulted in my siblings and I always watching all types of movies. I was born in the 90s, so Julia Roberts was always an actress I admired. The only performer I ever remember being inspired by growing up was Johnny Depp. I loved the way he would get into theses crazy characters and let himself go. He always inspired me so much to become an actor, and really dig deep into characters.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Campas: I feel like my career is just starting as an actress. I am now beginning to really take my craft seriously, whereas before I feel I was a bit too immature to really go for it. I went down the school route first and now am getting back into acting head first. I wanted to wait until after I was finished with school to solely focus on acting and give it my all, because it is a tough industry to crack. If you don’t work hard, all of the talent in the world won’t help you.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Campas: Again, I didn’t initially move to Los Angeles when I first moved out of my parents house. I went to school in Orange County, and just recently moved to Los Angeles this year.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Campas: I’ll get back to you on that one!

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Campas: I haven’t had my biggest break quite yet. I’ve worked on a few short films, and have been auditioning like crazy. Now that I’m in Los Angeles it’ll be a lot easier to manage my time, and meet the people I need to be meeting in order for my big break to happen.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Campas: I’ve always said I want my first feature film to be horror. I want to see what it would look like for me to be sliced up or killed in a crazy way. Plus, I love horror movies. Other than that I am pretty open to different genres. I don’t ever want to put myself in a box, and limit myself to what I can do or am capable of. If I had to say what genre I feel more at home in it would probably be drama.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Campas: Confidence in yourself. I feel as if Hollywood sucks people up and spits them out. If you stay true to who you are, and don’t take anything too personal, you’ll be fine.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Campas: I would love to make movies where I can connect to the character, and really move people with my performance. That’s the greatest high for me as an actress… making people feel. I wouldn’t ever want to become too famous, but I want to make quality movies, and travel all around the world.

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Campas: Go for it. Take your time. There’s always a role for every age, and hard work outweighs talent. Stay true to the person you are, and don’t change who you are to fit what someone else wants you to be. Surround yourself with people who bring you up, and who you trust, because you’ll need all the positive support you can get.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Campas: IMDb, Backstage, and Instagram @chloecampas!

Campas in “Chocolate” from director Odai Mukdad.
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Next Up

Lina Green

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Name: Lina Green

Hometown: Dallas, TX

Current Location: Hollywood, CA

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Green: I knew probably since I was little. My sisters and I would put on little plays for our family and friends just for fun. My friends thought it was so weird, but they said they enjoyed it. I dipped my toes in the water with my first acting experience in high school when I did my first play, “The Tempest.” I think that’s when I really got the acting bug. I waited ‘til after I graduated from college to come out to LA and really pursue it.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Green: I remember watching Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers as a child for hours a day. I watched every movie they ever were in together ‘til like 5 a.m. I think I sat in front of the TV for 15 hours straight watching TCM. I also was enamored with Lucille Ball. She made me want to be a fierce comedic actress. Seeing a woman at that time be so fearless on television was empowering. She was a force to be reckon with and I dreamed of one day being an inspiration like she was for other girls.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Green: I really didn’t have a plan. I knew I wanted to do something that for the most part was not only my dream, but its difficulty was high. About 10 percent of people actually become successful in this business and those odds were enough for me. I didn’t want to live with regrets, so I decided to move out to LA, take classes, hustle to get an agent and just do it!

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Green: I decided to take the leap of faith when I graduated from college. I had to wait some months because my sister wanted to come too. So after she graduated we drove from Texas to LA. The trip was a nightmare and that’s how I knew there was no turning back. It took 24 hours and we drove without stopping until we got to LA. I must have had about three panic attacks along the way, but by God’s grace we made it. I was 23 at the time and ready to truly live the life I always wanted.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Green: The move was an interesting one. I’ve never driven for such a long time, so that definitely was a challenge in itself. It took at least a good year for me to feel at home. I found the acting school, Playhouse West, where I made a core group of friends that helped the transition a bit. It also just took some getting used to. I was a southern girl now living in Hollywood. That’s quite a shock for a girl who has lived in Texas her whole life and never dreamed of doing something so brash.

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Green: I think doing “Grey’s Anatomy” has probably been my biggest break. It was an amazing experience that I will always cherish. The cast and crew are so kind and the set really had a family atmosphere. To work with actors that I had been watching for a long time was like being in a dream. I am also on a webseries called “Sexless” that’s had a lot of success in the online community and the work I do on there is so fulfilling and keeps me going creatively.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Green: I would love to take on a superhero role… one that is comedic. I love roles where the lead is a woman and she is badass and doesn’t apologize for it. Roles like Carrie Mathison on “Homeland” or Stella Gibson on “The Fall.” These are woman with complexities who struggle with being imperfect yet are still the best at what they do. There something about seeing a sexy, smart, kickass woman doing her thing that is irresistible. Those are the type of characters I want to embody.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Green: To be completely comfortable and open with yourself. When you know exactly who you are and what you are about then no one or nothing can tell you otherwise. When you know that, those little insecurities and wanting to please people don’t get in the way of being the artist that you’re meant to be.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Green: Ultimately I would like to create shows for people of all ethnic backgrounds and walks of life. This is going to sound cliché, but I would like my path to lead to complete happiness and self-fulfillment. So often people go after goals and once they attain them they are still not happy. I don’t want to be one of those people. I want to be able to ultimately give back and help others to their dreams and goals in life.

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Green: To follow your heart and don’t expect your journey to look like someone else’s. (I wish someone would have given me this advice early on.)

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Green: At my website at linagreen.net or blog at eddijoyce.com. My IG: @justlinagreen

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Next Up

Marinela Zubovic

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Name: Marinela Zubovic

Hometown: Memphis, TN

Current Location: Los Angeles, CA

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Zubovic: I think I always knew ever since I was a kid that I enjoyed entertaining and making people laugh. It just grew into a real option in high school because I was spending all my time in the theater. From then it was about convincing my parents to let me pursue it as a career, and luckily, they did.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Zubovic: When I was 10 years old, I watched “Resident Evil” on VHS, and I saw Michelle Rodriguez playing Rain. Up to that point, I had only seen Disney princesses or damsels in distress on TV and in film. That was the first time I had seen a woman holding her own around men. I didn’t know roles like that were possible. I think my eyes popped out of my head I was so excited.

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Zubovic: I knew I had to go to a real conservatory style program and learn how to be a stage actress. I wanted to have a degree and real training behind me so I could have the confidence to walk into a room and know I was qualified to be there. USC SDA really prepared me for that. As for the industry, well I think that takes years to figure out, and I’ve only really started to understand what it means to be a young actress in 2017.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Zubovic: I was 18 and I was moving into my dorms at USC to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting. It was exciting and terrifying.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Zubovic: Going to college in LA is a lot different that actually living in the city. When I graduated, I felt really lost, like everything was new. I lived in a different part of the city, and I was struggling to even get an audition. It’s only been a year since then, and while I feel like I’m understanding LA more, it can still be a challenge. But the people I went to school with are some of my best friends and it’s so reassuring to have them around.

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Zubovic: I think I’m so new at this that even getting a manager or an agent can be a big break. It feels like you’re climbing a ladder, only every time you make it up a couple of rungs, you go backwards. I’ve learned to appreciate every little thing that comes my way.

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Zubovic: I would love a really gritty, real tortured role. I think too often they put us 20-year-olds in these cushiony roles because they don’t think we’ve experienced life yet. I’d love to get my hands dirty with something really challenging.

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Zubovic: Know who you are, and don’t let anyone tell you different.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Zubovic: As a child I think I definitely wanted the fame because I didn’t know any better, but a real actor knows that the joy is in the craft, so even something as simple as being able to make a living off of acting alone is my dream, even if I never sign a single autograph. It’s the same goal of making people laugh or cry or making them feel anything that breaks up the monotony of daily life.

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Zubovic: Go to school and get a degree. Plenty of people think that Instagram or YouTube fame is an option, but everyone has to be trained in order to exceed in their particular trade and this industry is no different. Having that solid foundation is what allows you to build an amazing career.

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Zubovic: You can check out my website ( www.marinelazubovic.com ) or my IMDB page. And of course, Facebook and Instagram by the same name!

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Musical Mondaze Promo Posters

Trisha Molina

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Name: Trisha Molina

Hometown: Las Vegas, NV

Current Location: Los Angeles, CA

TrunkSpace: When did you know that you wanted to act for a living?
Molina: I think I always knew that I was headed in that direction, but it wasn’t a fully formed decision until later in my life. I immigrated to America from the Philippines when I was 4 years old, and I had a difficult time making friends, so I took solace in retreating into my imagination. I was constantly coming up with these stories for my toys and I to act out, and I loved it whenever my mom pulled out the camera to record it all. By the time I was a teenager, I started taking drama classes, and acting became more of a coping mechanism to help me deal with depression. Once I started my Theatre major in college, it became so much more and I truly fell in love with acting. I couldn’t see myself pursing any other career. There’s just no replacement for the feeling that I get once I start delving into a scene or into the filmmaking process itself.

TrunkSpace: Was there a particular performance or actor/actress from your childhood that you remember being drawn to and inspired by?
Molina: It might not be the most groundbreaking of performances, but I definitely remember being a kid and watching movies like “Jurassic Park” and “Jumanji” and thinking, “WOW. I want to do that for a living!” I honestly thought it was the coolest job to have — still do! It wasn’t even so much the movies themselves that got me interested, it was actually the behind the scenes footage that inspired me. I love watching behind the scenes stuff. I used to watch this show called “Mega Movie Magic” on the Discovery Channel, and it would show you all of these behind the scenes special effects stuff that they would do in movies and I was so fascinated by the whole process. I loved seeing how all of these different parts came together in such a collaborative process and created something wonderful to watch and experience. It showed me this whole other level of movie making that I hadn’t even considered and it inspired me so much to be a part of this industry. It just looked so fun!

TrunkSpace: How did you decide to approach your career as an actor? Did you formulate a plan of how you wanted to attack what is known for being a hard industry to crack?
Molina: For the most part, I’m just going with the flow. I went to college and got my BFA in Theatre Performance/Screen Acting and that’s really about as far as I got with my plan. I had one all laid out prior to that, but once I graduated, everything kind of went out the window. Life happens, you know? I was at the mercy of trying to make a living wage and saving up to move out to LA, but it took a lot longer to get out here than I had anticipated. Even once I was out here, it took a while before I was able to really pursue this career path full-force.

Now that I am, I’m trying to remain as positive, productive, and flexible as I can be — which is really important, in my opinion. I’ve been taking an on-camera acting class for the last two years and am always striving to keep getting better in my craft. I’m represented commercially, but not yet theatrically, so I spend a lot of my time submitting myself for a variety of projects. I’ve also realized the importance of having a good network under your belt, so I do my best to make sure that I’m making real, genuine connections with people. As amazing as it is to have a plan, I’ve learned that it’s more important to remain flexible and not let the setbacks knock you down. Trust me, there WILL be setbacks, and what matters at the end of the day is how you deal with them.

TrunkSpace: When did you decide to move away from your home and pursue acting as a career? How old were you at the time?
Molina: To be honest, the actual decision to leave home wasn’t really completely mine, but I was 23 when I finally got out here. I had been trying to save up to move to Los Angeles for about two years after college, but something huge always happened every time I had enough saved. For instance, a family emergency came up that required me to go back to the Philippines on very short notice… which meant a lot of money went towards a round-trip plane ticket. Around six months after that family emergency, I got a random phone call from my boss at the time telling me that my request to transfer to our LA location was approved and that I had two weeks to find an apartment and move there. For context, I put that transfer request in a year prior to this, so I had NO CLUE that it would ever get approved.

I literally had just the bare minimum amount of money in my bank account to put a deposit down on an apartment, rent a moving truck, and maybe buy some groceries once I was there. As soon as I got the green light, I drove down here, found an apartment within a day and a half, and drove back just in time for my going away party. It still took me about two and a half years after that to get to a point where I could actually pursue my acting career. It was just such a crazy moment in my life because I had no real time to think about anything! In hindsight, though, I don’t think I would change anything about it.

TrunkSpace: Was that move an easy transition for you initially? How long did it take you to feel at home and find a good support group of friends and peers?
Molina: It was a pretty easy transition for me; I felt at home almost immediately. Growing up, I had visited California so many times prior to moving here, so I knew what I was getting into. I never really felt like I belonged in Vegas, and I was so sick of it by that point; it was such a breath of fresh air to finally live in a place that I personally chose out. It definitely didn’t hurt that it was a solid 30 degrees cooler and I could go outside without getting heat stroke! I’m more of an introvert and I really love my alone time, so starting off without too many friends didn’t really phase me. In terms of finding my support group, I knew a bunch of people from college who had already moved out here to pursue careers in the film industry. They welcomed me with open arms right at the start, and that’s something that I’ve always been really thankful for. I still keep in touch and see them from time to time, but it gets harder the longer we’re out here; we just all get really busy. At this point, I’ve been here for five years, and I’ve found some great friends along the way through my acting class and through friends of friends.

TrunkSpace: What has been been your biggest break in terms of a particular role or project thus far?
Molina: I don’t know if I’ve really found my “break” just yet. It’s still early on in my career and I’m working on creating a strong foundation to build on. I’ve worked on some fun stuff over the last year and I’m so grateful for the opportunities that I’ve had so far. I’m keeping my outlook as optimistic as possible, so who knows what’s around the corner!

TrunkSpace: Is there a specific type of role you’d like to take on or a specific genre that you feel more at home in?
Molina: I don’t really want to close off any doors for myself and stay in one genre. I’d like to explore as many as I can! With that said, I’d like try tackling some more comedy roles. I think it’d be a great challenge because it’s not really a genre that I get to do a lot. On the other hand, I think it would also be a great challenge to tackle more drama, too!

TrunkSpace: What would you say is the greatest strength an actor/actress can have outside of acting ability itself?
Molina: That’s hard to choose! I think flexibility and perseverance are really important strengths, but my number one has to be self-awareness and knowing who you are as a person. You’re going to face a lot of obstacles both in and out of your career, and if you don’t know yourself or your self-worth, then getting to the other side of that obstacle is going to be a serious up-hill battle. As an actor, rejection is a major part of your life and you have to know who you are in order to not take it personally. It really goes hand in hand with flexibility and perseverance. I’ve found that hardly anything ever goes as planned and you really need the ability to just shake it off and keep moving forward.

TrunkSpace: What is your ultimate dream when it comes to your acting career? Where would you like your path to lead?
Molina: Ultimately, I’d love to be consistently working in both film and TV — mostly film. That’s really what I want out of my career. As much as I would love to say that I was an award-winning actress, my primary goal is to be a working one with a long, long, long career ahead of me. I love that there’s so much amazing storytelling on TV and streaming networks, but I would still love my primary focus to be in film. Growing up in America and being a mixed Asian-American, I never really saw too many faces or stories like mine portrayed in film, especially in the foreground. Now that I’m older and am in the film industry, I want to help fill that gap for viewers in a genuine way. I want viewers who were otherwise underrepresented to be able to watch a film and go, “Yes, my viewpoints are valid, too.” From personal experience, it really makes an impact to see yourself positively represented in the media, and I really just want to leave something for my future kids to look up to.

TrunkSpace: What advice would you give another young aspiring actor/actress who is considering moving away from home to pursue their dream?
Molina: If this is really what you want, don’t ever give up! Things happen at their own pace, so don’t compare your journey or your progress with another person’s. All that will do is cause you so much more grief and anxiety than you need (trust me). It’s also important to have a life and hobbies outside of acting that helps you to feel fulfilled. Good things take so much time to arrive, so you need to have a lot of patience. And I mean, A LOT of patience. You also really, really need to maintain a positive attitude in all aspects of your life, including your career. You’ll be so surprised to see just how much positivity occurs when you do!

TrunkSpace: Where can people (and casting directors) learn more about you?
Molina: A few places! You can visit my website at www.trishamolina.com or follow me on social media.

Instagram: @trishamolina

Twitter: @_trishamolina

IMDb: www.imdb.me/trishamolina

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