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GUEST POST BY ALEX SOARE: 13 Actors Who Made It Big Late in Life

March 6, 2015

Please welcome Alex Soare to the blog today!

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Alex is an opera singer and the founder of ArtRise, a social network for creative professionals. He’s sharing some wisdom with us today that you may find comforting if you feel like your professional success has an expiration date.

 

13 Wildly Successful Actors Who Made it Big Late in Life

Hollywood is chock-full of kids fresh out of high school, hoping to make it big in the movies.

Most of them will decide by age 25 whether they can make a living as actors or not.

However, there are many big names in Hollywood who didn’t achieve massive success right away – some toiled away for many years before landing a dream role, while some didn’t start acting until they were in their 30’s.

If you need a little motivation to keep trucking, learning about their unconventional paths to stardom may just do the trick.

  1. Harrison Ford

It’s hard to believe, but Harrison Ford’s career was languishing until he auditioned for the role of Han Solo in Star Wars at the age of 33. The Star Wars trilogy got him into Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones franchise, and Ford has been a bankable star ever since. In fact, ford didn’t even take acting classes until his college years, which he signed up for to help get over his shyness.

  1. Sylvester Stallone

Sure, he’s Hollywood royalty today, but Stallone wasn’t cast in Rocky until he was 30 years old, and up until that time he was so broke, he performed in pornographic movies to pay the rent. Many don’t know that Stallone is partially paralyzed on the left side of his face, which is precisely what gives him such distinctive facial expressions and enunciation – talk about overcoming the odds!  Read more…

Support The Redheaded Actress’ Feminist Indie Film!

March 2, 2015

Hey, Green Room Blog readers!

Remember when I wondered if it was crazy to self-produce, fundraised for a hugely ambitious Anne Boleyn play, shared my crowdfunding tips, and then produced a crazy successful and beautiful piece of theatre?

Well, I’m at it again.

I wrote a feminist short film called Choice, and I’m raising $10K by mid-March to shoot it.

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Choice is a film about the challenges of being a modern woman, and I can just about guarantee that there’s something in it that every woman will relate to. And something in it that every guy should learn!

We’re already 20% funded (hooray!), but we need your help to make it to $10K.

In exchange, I promise to create a great film, give opportunities to women in indie film (we’re hiring an all-female crew!), and tell you all about what I learn along the way. Plus, we have some fun perks you can get, too!

So please throw a few bucks our way if you can spare ‘em. I’ll do ya proud! :)

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Green Room Blog Live-Tweets #TEDxBroadway 2015

February 25, 2015

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I had the honor of attending Monday’s 2015 TEDxBroadway event at New World Stages as a representative of Green Room Blog, and boy, did I learn a lot.

The day was billed as a whole day of talking about how to make Broadway the best that it can be, and we were treated to 6 hours of talks on the subject from both theatre industry insiders and non-theatre people — think the founder of Warped Tour, a climate change expert, the VP of Marketing at the PGA Tour, and the woman responsible for running Governor’s Island, among many more.

It was an inspiring day talking about the future of Broadway, and lucky for those of you who weren’t there — I live-tweeted it all! And made a handy dandy transcript for those of you who missed the tweets.

Check out the transcript for wise gems from even wiser people. Already looking forward to next year’s event. Thanks for having me, TEDxBroadway!

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The Female Theatre Artist “Right of Passage”

February 23, 2015

Many women that work in theatre at some point come across doing in some way, shape, and form a production of Eve Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues.” This month I had finally dipped my toe into working on the play that to some is considered the female theatre artist’s “right of passage.”

In December I applied for the rights (and got them 2 days later) after a friend of mine gave me the idea to do the play. It seemed like the right time since not only had I never done the play before, but I was in a place where I felt I needed to express my voice on women’s issues. Thankfully, it seemed the world agreed since getting everything together seemed to really fit into place from finding the perfect venue to the right cast.

From watching the show several times in the past, while I developed a strong appreciation for it, I never thought about my own artistic choices I’d want to put on it until preparing to do the show. The first thing I realized I wanted to do was to actually make the stage look like a vagina (with the actors sitting on the outside layer and one chair upstage center representing the clitoris). Most performances of the show have actors sit on stage anyhow so why not do it in a way that help show what the show is about? On top of that, the actors got to perform inside a vagina (and how many people get to say that one in their lives?). Also it allowed me to really think about what I wanted regardless of what I’ve seen before. Several monologues that we meant to be for one person, I divided up into 2 or 3 people to represent a wide variety of women or really show different personalities. On top of that, a lot of actors in this production never did or even saw the show before, so they went purely with their own instincts. I felt that that was perfect, since it really allowed us to go an artistically free route, as oppose to go with the traditional ways the show is done.

Read more…

Conrad Cantzen Shoe Fund

February 5, 2015

Being an actor is tough. So when there are fun resources available to us, I’m all for it! One of the most fun is The Conrad Cantzen Shoe Fund.

Mr. Conrad Cantzen was an actor who starred in films and performed on Broadway in an impressive 17 shows (check out this 1937 Playbill from when he played Mr. Vik in An Enemy of The People!). He died in 1945 and left his estate of $226, 608.34 to The Actors Fund with the express instructions that it be used to buy new shoes for unemployed actors so that they don’t look “down at the heels” when auditioning for casting directors.

Today, 70 years later, the fund is still available to help you purchase a pretty new pair of audition shoes. The fund will reimburse you up to $40 for a pair of shoes costing no more than $100 if you meet the criteria and provide the original receipt and fill out an application.

To qualify, you must be:

  • An actor who is currently unemployed in the field
  • A current and paid up member of one of the performing arts unions

You can only apply for the fund every two years.

Happy shoe shopping, fellow actors! Thanks, Mr. Cantzen.

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Feminism in Theatre: Another Day, Another 20-Something Female Role Being Cast Non-Equity

January 12, 2015

If there’s any small, twisted comfort to be had, the Sony hack has shown us that even female celebrities aren’t immune to gender wage inequality. Actually, it’s not much of a comfort really, but at least I know that it’s not just me and it’s not just those of us whom I’d deem “working class actors.” Which doesn’t make the larger problem better, but it does help me to take it less personally. We all should be taking this personally, though.

There is a real problem in the entertainment industry with taking women seriously.

I’m sorry to get so real here on Green Room Blog, when I’m usually full of motivational wisdom and sharing successes, but if we’re being honest, I’m not really sorry at all because this is something that’s really been getting me down over the past year or so and it’s time that we all talked about it for all of our sakes.

If I had an acting job for every time in the past year that I’ve heard “You’re great, but we’re casting that [insert young female role here] locally” or seen a breakdown where all of the 12 characters are on equity contracts except for the two young women leads, I would be swamped with work and turning gigs down. Read more…

Battling the black dog…

January 7, 2015

My love of theatre has become my life, however my love of theatre has also saved my life in the past.

Depression is a battle a lot of us go through in our lives, I’ve found a lot of people in theatre especially have gone through a tough period in their lives which has brought them out stronger than ever.

In my life, I’ve battled with my family’s depression since the age of 9 and my own since the age of 14. During childhood, theatre kept me going through the family crises as it let me forget and go into a world of my own through my characters and of course I was spending time with some of my closest friends. When I had my own breakdown, the only week I was remotely happy for many months was the week of my show, and surprisingly the event that brought me out of my breakdown was getting into a summer school at Liverpool Empire. Drama was the only thing that I could cling onto, that one moment of happiness to grab hold to in the black cloud. Since then theatre has become my career, and yes it causes stress and problems of its own but still the high I get after a show can not be beaten by anything. It is still my escape and my reason for living and talking to fellow university students i know that theatre has helped a lot of people through struggles, and become who they are today.

But what is it about theatre that makes us do it no matter what?  Read more…

NYU 1st semester OVER!!

January 5, 2015

As I sit here in my break room at Disney World I say to myself where did the time fly by?

I just finished my 1st semester of graduate school at NYU. I am currently at NYU Steinhardt studying Theatre Education. It is such a rewarding experience to me. Leaving Disney 5 months ago was really hard for me and now I could not be happier. I thoroughly enjoyed my first semester at school. Being back in school, back in the greatest city in the world!!

What I find interesting when I was first accepted into NYU I had a lot negative comments from people saying “You won’t make it. Graduate school is extremely hard.” Well, don’t get angry for what I’m going to say but graduate school is not HARD at all, it is just a lot work at once and if you are not mentally prepared for it then it’s going to be rough.

Currently I will be graduating this summer with an MA but I’m applying to MFA acting programs. I hope to get into an MFA program after NYU. I would love to teach Acting but the whole idea of getting a Ph.d is just a bit to much for me right now.

Well, it’s time to go back to work but I will write something else later this week!!

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