I had lunch with an actor friend who is 28 and doing really well. He’s got plenty of work but the defacto strike has him frustrated like everyone else. When I asked him how his summer was going he answered “I just want to work.”
That’s all of us. We want to work and we really enjoy the time working on the set, but do we really enjoy the time between jobs? Do we enjoy the days when we really can’t go to work, like right now? How do you handle this time?
You recharge. Re-evaluate. Re-invigorate. My advice to him? Travel. Go somewhere you don’t speak the language and you don’t know anyone, and you’ve never been before. He can afford to go far away, but even if you can’t go far away you can go somewhere that isn’t here. Travel and grow your artist by experiencing things outside your circle of comfort. Invest in the deepening of your artist.
What can you bring to any character that isn’t a character that lives in your home town, does your job and loves the person you love? You can bring sympathy and compassion and a good guess. That’s what we do we apply our sense of truth to each character. Stop pacing the floor in frustration and use this time to grow and walk in streets and through lives that will broaden your scope. It’s damn fun really. Money is always an issue but every actor out there gets their little fixes paid for somehow, you don’t need a lot of money to create an adventure for your psyche.
I appreciate how boring the waiting for SAG and the Producers to agree on something is. Don’t waste your energy complaining about the lack of work. Go work on yourself.