12 Days of Advice: How to Be Famous, Mayne.

This is my last day, I did it!

I’m going to use this last day of advice to talk about the latest meme to hit the internet: Terrence Howard, mane. Aka, finding various ways to place Terrence Howard’s face onto an image and caption it with a funny quote that includes “mayne/mane.”

The viral joke stems from an old interview brought back from the dead (2008), where Jamie Foxx expresses his frustration with Howard. In the interview, Foxx shares how Howard criticized his music. Foxx then proceeds to do an impression of Howard’s acting skills, saying that every role Howard portrays is the same and all he says is “… Mane.”

Fast forward to 2017, Howard’s face and “mayne” quotes are Black Twitter’s favorite new toy. After a few days of memes, Howard finally responded with a video having fun with the jokes. While watching the video, someone in my circle said, “at least he’s being a good sport about it.”

My thoughts:

Of COURSE, he’s being a good sport. This is free publicity for him. In fact, I bet his agent is booking his next movie deal off this and his manager/lawyer are probably negotiating for extra because he’s “hot right now.”

My friend, who I’ve mentioned in the past as my “guardian angel,” told me once:

Being famous is about everyone seeing you and talking about you, all of the time.

It’s that simple.  In theory.

Here are some other notes I want to add, for those who want go viral / be famous…

(if this isn’t you or you could “care less,” stop reading. I don’t want any silly comments about “there are better things in life” blah blah… I have other entries for that. Today is all about the FAME, baby!)

HOW TO BE FAMOUS: 

  • Have everyone see you and talk about you, all of the time. As much as I loathe the Kardashians, the Hadids, etc. They’ve definitely got this on lock. Some people choose to be controversial in order to achieve this. That’s not my cup of tea, but hey, do you.
  • Be prepared. If this is something you want, and not an accident, be prepared. Keep multiple projects/offerings going. Start building your brand and your online platforms now, so you can take advantage of the traffic that comes your way. And if you have a heads up (like Teyana Taylor in Kanye’s Fade music video,) you have no excuse. Do you know how much money she could have made on the spot if she had a link to her workout plan available when that video dropped? I’m STILL mad about this missed opportunity.
  • Offer something of substance. Think about what you’re offering your audience. Are you a model? Selling clothes/products? Advice? A lifestyle? If you have a specialized skill, even better. Offering something of value allows you to have longevity and makes it that much harder to replace you.
  • Own it. Be yourself. Now is not the time to be shy, or try to be something you’re not. I’m under the belief that people love those who are the most comfortable in their own skin. If you pretend to be someone else, and you don’t have that confidence, it’s not going to get better. It’s going to get worse. Better to love yourself and have that core audience who loves the real you, rather than hating yourself in the long run for the sake of a few extra fans who could care less about who you truly are. “Sometimes the most revolutionary thing we can do is simply be ourselves.”
  • Act fast. As soon as your name/face hits mainstream, the clock starts counting down. NOW is the time to book interviews, negotiate longer term deals, milk this moment. Because at the end of the day, what is fame if you can’t monetize it? Better hop on it!

 

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12 Days of Advice: Day 11

Another actors tidbit from Amy Jo Berman but can be applied to any occupation and even relationships too:

If you gave an absolute KICK-ASS audition, you may not get the role simply because you’re too tall and the person playing opposite you is 5’2”…or you look like the Producer’s brother and he hates his brother.

But most often, the reason you don’t get the part even when you’ve given a totally amazeballs audition, is because of your mindset.

You may have a deep-seated belief that you don’t deserve it or you’re not good enough and that comes through your amazing audition and tells the Casting Director not to hire you.

Truth.

12 Days of Advice: Day 2

For my actor friends, this one is for you. My wonderful DP/cinematographer intern gave me this note while helping me with a video audition.

“It’s not about how good of an actor you are, it’s about the right actor in the right role. And that’s why the best actor doesn’t always get the part.” – KS

So act your pants off, and then let it go.

Advice for Creatives / Hustling in LA

Took a dance class to support my acquaintance from college who’s been doing his thing out in LA. I asked him and his sister for advice and here’s what they had to say:

  • Keep a checklist of what you want to do and who you want to work with. Check it often.
  • “Always feed the beast of your career.” Work within your craft/ industry. (As opposed to sourcing income from a diff industry/focus. It’s easy to get distracted.)
  • Don’t let the Sunshine get to you. NY is all about the grind, but in LA, it’s more laid back. Don’t do it. Keep your hustler mentality. It’s a trap!

Life-changing opportunities are coming my way.

Today I had the opportunity to audition for CBS! I dropped a headshot in the mail, and they responded, inviting me in. I flew to LA knowing that I was literally flying across the country for a 3-min audition, but hey, it’s not every day CBS hits you up.

The longest part if the process, was figuring out which lot to park in, and walking from the garage through the campus to the right building (and finding the right door to get to the right floor/room… Yes it was a JOURNEY).

But once I got there I was legit there for 3 min, including wait time, into, and performance. It went so fast, I couldn’t even guage how well it went. I’m just taking the fact that I’m not eating myself up alive as a good sign that I did what I needed to do — left everything in the room and if they liked something they saw, they’ll let me know.

“Don’t call us, we’ll call you.”

I also just started working for a media/ecomm hybrid startup that specializes in street wear. It’s the perfect side job to supplement my acting. I already loved the world of streetstyle and I get to produce/be on camera. Not to mention the founder is super flexible and supportive of my acting, and values what I bring to the table.

Looks like the fall/winter has BIG TINGS in store! I just need to book that guest star/costar role right now.

Ready for takeoff.

Last week, I found out that I have a big audition out in LA! I’m super excited and very nervous. My manager wasn’t as excited (weird), in fact, she’s been extremely “meh” lately.  But maybe it’s because it’s just an audition and I haven’t booked it yet.

I bought my plane ticket and I’ll be heading out to LA again for a week.

I’ve also been busy with a few shoots here and there, and things are moving forward with that streetwear hosting gig. He accepted my day rate, and once they accept the contract revisions, we’ll be good to go! *fingers crossed*

Things seem to be picking up for the fall, and I feel like something big is brewing. My manager said I absolutely HAVE to book a notable role on a big TV or Film project this fall in order to be shopped around for pilot season Jan-March. Otherwise, I’ll have to wait all the way until 2019.

Ughhh. I REFUSE!

 

I gotta pull a co-starring role out of my ass somehow with no agent, and not many high-level CD connections…..

Wish me luck.

 

Humanity is messy. People are messy.

Acting tips, bookmarked for my personal reference.

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For artists of color– lifting the burden of representing your race: 

Viola Davis was direct. “That very mindset that you have and that a lot of African-Americans have is absolutely destroying the black artist,” she said. “The black artist cannot live in a revisionist place,” she added. “The black artist can only tell the truth about humanity, and humanity is messy. People are messy. Caucasian actors know that.”

“We as African-American artists are more concerned with image and message and not execution,” she said, “which is why every time you see your images they’ve been watered down to the point where they are not realistic at all.”

“My whole thing is, do I always have be noble?” she continued. “As an artist, you’ve got to see the mess.”

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Auditioning – Leave your ego outside the door:

“​Leave your ego outside the door. Resist thinking about the potential outcome of this audition. Bask in the joy of living in the character for the 10 minutes that you have in that room.” ​- Warner Loughlin

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Audition Slates – Introduce yourself to a person, a human: 

I suggest that you slate as if it were an introduction to someone, not as a presentation, announcement, or line reading. When auditioning, I suggest that you honestly introduce yourself to someone in the room (usually the person running the session) while looking into the camera lens. You should be positive and enjoy introducing yourself. Smile, if it feels right, but if you smile just to smile, it will look insincere. Smile because you are confident and having fun, then it will be relaxed or engaging.Be spontaneous!

Don’t lock in one way of introducing yourself. Be aware that each time you say your name the inflection is just a little different. If there isn’t some difference each time, then you have probably locked into a “line reading.” Add a “Hi, I’m” or a “Hello, my name is” and then your name. This will make it friendly and less like you are reporting for military duty.

– Caroline Barry