“Dare I say, it is one of the hardest industries to break through, but there is so much to gain if you never give up.”
Interview by Joanne Kmaid
What gives you a boost in life?
I have a slight problem with my daily coffee intake! Although the boosts may not feel like the incredible uplifting rush I first experienced, it still plays a big part in my day-to-day life. I rely on morning cups of Jo to boost me into the right frame of mind.
However, the one thing that trumps any amount of coffee is making people laugh. This gives me a boost like no other. I feel super human when my videos receive good traction and positive feedback. I cash in on this buzz by throwing on my gym shorts and heading out to toss some tin, making the most incredible gains you’ve ever seen.
How does one keep the passion alive in this competitive industry?
Keeping the passion alive is extremely hard! From growing up in Tasmania and being trained in theatre to moving to the big city smoke of Melbourne was such a contrast. I was ecstatic to find myself an agent, and begin auditioning for various short films and commercials; but I did learn that you must be open to rejection. It’s super easy to let your emotions take over when you are unsuccessful in securing a role.
One way to keep the passion alive is to seek inspiration from people I look up to. This could spread from A-list celebrities to small town heroes who have touched me in some way. I also try to clear myself from negative influences in my life.
Would you recommend acting as a career?
I am so thankful that my parents encouraged me to follow my dream. I would absolutely recommend it to anyone who is passionate about creatively expressing themselves. Yes, it is a super-duper tough industry, dare I say one of the hardest industries to crack and break through; but there is so much to gain if you stick to it and never give up.
Share a memorable journey with us…
My first year of theatre school – It was an important time for us, with our first proper chance to perform on stage. I was cast in a challenging, emotional piece of work where the focus was based on raising awareness for Alzheimer’s disease. Leading to this point, I had primarily been involved in comical pieces, and here I was for the first time faced with crying on stage. Each practice run, leading up to the performance dates, was a challenge for me, emotionally taxing and vulnerable. When it came time for an audience, I soon realised it was also going to be the most beautiful, rewarding experience in my acting career. Making an audience laugh is one thing, but making them cry is another world.
You have been on both ends of the scale. Do you prefer acting or producing?
I think being a Leo, I’ve always been attracted to the limelight and love to perform. For the past 9 months, I’ve also doubled up as a producer for BIG Review TV, an online TV show. I’ve realised how much work goes on behind the scenes and the stress of so much responsibility. I would much rather perform, but there is a little voice in my head saying, “Hey Joey, you are getting a little older mate and you may not always be able to work on camera, so maybe you should find something else to do in the industry.”
What is a typical day for you?
I wake up around 7am, boil the kettle and knock back a cup of Jo before heading out the door to make it to the office by 7:30/8am. Depending on my filming schedule, I will either spend the day in the office e-mailing and making calls or out on the field filming a variety of businesses.
I will typically drink 2-3 cups of coffees per day depending on my mood and head to the gym directly after work. Post-gym, I will get some food into me, commonly pasta then end the day with some editing work which leads to YouTube distraction.
Does popularity increase your chances of climbing the industry ladder?
Unfortunately, yes, in most situations. The old saying, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know” seems to be a re-occurring scenario. Especially with the importance of social media in the modern world, it can play a huge factor in climbing the ladder. Popularity, in most cases, will be deemed by the amount of ‘likes’ and engagement you have on your chosen platform.
Can you lose yourself in too much popularity?
Absolutely! And you see many people go through this. I find it incredible when global celebrities stay humble. With popularity comes so much praise and attention, and that can work against your career. Feeding your ego can cause a lack of motivation; I would rather people uncover my faults just to push myself harder to prove them wrong.
So you’re a musician at heart… Why the jump to acting?
During acting in my younger years, I also fell upon music and found my heart for rap. There was a certain time in my life where I felt my skin colour did not resemble how I truly felt and I was heavily inspired by the American rap culture. To this day, I am incredibly excited by the combination of well-timed vocals, story-telling of gang culture, music videos of flashy cars and materialistic items. I wouldn’t say I’m over music; I still play around with writing lyrics and rapping to my bedroom mirror in my spare time.
Is it easier to embrace or fight change?
Ideally, I try to embrace change, though I would be lying if I said I didn’t find it incredibly challenging. We are in a fast-moving world and you definitely need to be up with the times if you want a chance of disrupting the industry. Technology in particular is constantly advancing. I remember the days of having just a single digimon to worry about; now it would appear I rely on several electronic devices.
What is more significant – Time, living the dream or being true to yourself?
This question is extremely hard! There is immense value in all three.
TIME – We all have the same amount of 24 hours per day, but what separates us is how we use them.
LIVING THE DREAM – There are way too many people working in jobs they are not happy with, but the worst thing is, they do nothing about it. Apart from complain to others how much they dislike their job. Yeah sure, living the dream is far easier said than done, but it’s all about baby steps and aiming for that adventure. We should all attempt to live the dream one day.
BEING TRUE TO YOURSELF – The only person who would know if you are doing this is yourself. It is super important that you believe in yourself. Life works in weird and wonderful ways, and I am a believer in the law of attraction. God and the universe will supply; just stay true to yourself.
Who do you aspire to be like?
I have a few role models – For the most part of my childhood and adolescence, I aspired to be like Dad. He held this incredible confidence within himself which I was fascinated by. As I grew older, I began to see Mum’s values more clearly, and how much of a loving, caring and courageous woman she was to make sacrifices I never saw as a child. My older brother has also impacted my life being of absolute chalk and cheese to my personality. If there is someone that will make me believe in myself, it’s him. He is one of the smartest guys I know, and at the same time a good person to measure my own success against.
This interview was submitted by Cinema Australia contributor Joanne Kmaid. If you have an article or interview you would like to submit for our consideration please contact us today.