CLARK STANLEY

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I’ve been fairly quiet on the “what’s up” front for the past few months because I’m a firm believer in not talking about how awesome your chickens are until they hatch into awesome chickens.

Well, my chickens hatched, and they’re pretty cool — after finishing up a Copywriting course at George Brown in the Spring, I landed an internship with Clark Stanley as a writer / director and spent the Summer working alongside some very bright minds in the advertising world. My internship wrapped up last week and Clark Stanley are now producing the pilot for a web series that I wrote and am directing.

Anyway, I just wanted to tell you guys about these awesome chickens I came across. I’m feeling really good about them. Give the Clark Stanley page a like to keep up with some of the fun stuff we’ll be working on, yooo <3 https://www.facebook.com/ClarkStanleyCo/

A STEP BACK

WARNING: The following is longer than 140 characters.

Over the past few months, I’ve been telling people that I’m in the process of taking a step back from acting. I haven’t really been that specific as to my reasonings why, because I honestly wasn’t sure of what they were myself — I just knew that I was no longer drawn to acting the same way that I once was.

I’m taking a few moments to share my thoughts on the matter because I have received such incredible support from many of you over the past decade, that I feel I owe you all some insight as to where I’m currently at with my acting career…

When I started acting, I did it because I was compelled to do it – I had to do it. I read books, I studied performances, developed theories, and entirely immersed myself in the art. In the years that followed, I honed my skills, strengthened my relationships, and put my all into the profession.

So, what changed? When – and from where – did this apathy suddenly creep in? At some point, I began acting for the paycheque, rather than the passion; and for the past few months, I’ve been doing a good amount of soul searching, asking myself why…

Long answer short: I accomplished my goal.

Long answer long: The soul searching has allowed me to reverse-engineer my acting career and look back on why I got into acting in the first place. It sounds simple enough, but hey, I never really did that.

I’ve come to the conclusion that I got into acting for the same reason that I wanted to become a professional wrestler (my original plan leaving high school): because I had no idea who the hell I was, and until I did, I wanted to be someone else.

I honestly never really cared about fame or fortune – which I think most people think is a weird thing to not care about when you’re an actor, but hey – I was always more interested in character exploration, finding myself within that, and over the past decade of working within the art, I feel like I’ve slowly done just that, I’ve found myself (which is quite possibly the hokiest sentence I’ve ever written).

Acting is a tough career, any career in the arts is, and I admire any person who has that fire within themselves, whatever it is, to fight on and hone their craft, but I personally have reached a point where I am no longer compelled to sacrifice for my art. I like my art, I think it’s fun and exciting and interests me deeply, but it makes no sense for me to push on when I’ve already received what I bargained for.

I’ll probably look back at this one day and roll my eyes at the potentially (almost definitely) self-indulgent / self-important nature of this note, but you, my friends and family, are all the shareholders in “Glen Matthews Incorporated”, you’re responsible for my success, you’re the people that I answer to, and I owe you this, my personal insight.

And to be very clear, please know that this is not me quitting acting (calm down, everyone, please, CALM DOWN) – I’m simply taking a step back, so that I can focus on other things, like setting new goals and continuing to grow. I love acting, I truly do, but there are many other things I think I will love as well.

Thank you for your past and future support everyone. Let’s grab a drink sometime. Cool?

CORY BOWLES’ “RIGHTEOUS” ONLINE!

righteousAfter playing at what seemed to be every state and province in North America, Cory Bowles‘ short film, RIGHTEOUS is now online for your viewing consumption!

A young black man’s complicated day that starts with a sibling argument, a profiling, and an explosive face-off… only ends up more complicated when it all lands close to home.

Very proud of this one, you guys. Enjoy.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7iHOEoBnOU

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SCREEN NS NOMINATION

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The Screen Nova Scotia Awards were this past Saturday. LURE (directed by Jesse Harley) was nominated for four awards: Best Picture, Best Lead Performance by an Actress (Andrea Lee Norwood), Best Performance by a Supporting Actor (Richard Donat), and Best Actor in a Lead Performance, which I was nominated for.

Congratulations to Mike McLeod, for picking up the Best Lead Actor Award for his work on Thom Fitzgerald’s FORGIVE ME. I totally don’t hate you. I swear.

In all honesty, it was an incredible honour to be recognized for our work in light of the past few weeks spent battling the NS Liberals, trying to save our homegrown industry. Thank you to Screen Nova Scotia and everyone who had a hand in the evening. It was an excellent celebration of everyone’s hard work.

Update – June 15/15: Who needs Screen Nova Scotia’s stupid awards when you can get one from from the Eastern North Carolina Film Festival? That’s right, I picked up Best Actor honours from the folks down south! Thanks, kindly.

TOP 10 FILMS OF 2013

Ladies and gentlemen, I am pleased as punch to share with you the 10 movies from 2013 that pushed me to the limits of emotional investment while sitting and / or laying in my bed! It’s been a damn great year in film. It was tough to pick just 10, but here we go!

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10. STORIES WE TELL: Sarah Polley’s documentary about her mother and the people who loved her starts off as a personal memoir then slowly becomes an exploration of the subjectivity and bias of memory. Great movie to watch with your family if you’re comfortable with uncomfortable silences with your family.

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9. BEHIND THE CANDELABRA: If this is actually Stephen Soderbergh’s last film then it’s a damn shame. Michael Douglas and Matt Damon are absolutely phenomenal in this love story gone freak-show, and let’s not forget there’s Scott Bakula with a moustache.

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8. Tie: SPRING BREAKERS and THE WOLF OF WALL STREET: Understandably nauseating for some but these two films were a large Tim Horton’s double-double of filth and debauchery for myself. Not something I would want every day, but when the time is right, when I need that extra kick, these two films will get me through to the end of the day with a helping of reckless abandon. Spring breakkkkkkkkkkkkk.
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0077. CAPTAIN PHILLIPS: Tom Hanks went full Hanks on this one.

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6. BEFORE MIDNIGHT: The third film in Richard Linklater’s incredible BEFORE series, BEFORE MIDNIGHT catches up with Jessy and Celine 18 years (EIGHTEEN DAMN YEARS) after the first film and continues to explore themes of life, true love, and the importance of walking.

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5. SHORT TERM 12: This film is such a damn home run on almost every level. It could have so easily slid into unbearable, noisy melodrama, but it always stays connected. Troubled teens? Bummer of a topic, sure, but Brie Larson and company guide it home with a gentle authenticity that invites you in (and then makes you weep).

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4. INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS: The Coen Brothers’ film about a musician who just can’t catch a break and is considering leaving his music behind him felt like an unwritten classic American novel. A perfect depiction of the fog an artist can find themselves in when a crisis of confidence arises. Oscar Isaac, you laid down one of the finest performances of the year, mixing drama, comedy and music, you my boy.

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3. A FIELD IN ENGLAND: I don’t think I’ve ever had a film invite me into it’s madness in such a way as this. Absolutely poetic and insane. I’ll let Martin Scorsese tell you what he thinks of the film “Audacious and wildly brilliant – a stunning cinematic experience.” Marty’s on board, so why aren’t you?! 

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2. HER: If you can agree to meet HER on it’s not-really-that-far-fetched premise, then you’ll be in for one helluva fascinating exploration of modern love. I feel for anyone who decided to laugh this one off, because it has so much heart and soul. Joaquin Phoenix, give me your powers (and your agent and manager’s contact information too, plz).

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1: THE ACT OF KILLING: Between 1965 and 66 in Indonesia, there was a government takeover where death squads brutally murdered between 500,000 and 2 million Chinese and anyone suspected of being Communist. The people who committed these acts are still in power and have never been held accountable for their actions.

THE ACT OF KILLING catches up with a group of these men, in their 50s and 60s, celebrated as war-heroes, and the documentary filmmakers encourage them to re-enact the murders and re-create them on film, and they agree to do so, hoping that the Indonesian public can see how heroic they were.

This film took me everywhere, I was mortified, shedding tears, and literally slapping my knee laughing a minute later. It’s a tough watch, and puts you through the ringer, but it’s finale is perhaps the most compelling thing I’ve ever seen put to film.

HONOURABLE MENTIONS: Enough Said, Sightseers, This Is The End, Frozen, Thor 2, and other stuff.

Movies are fun, right guys?

THANKS AFF / LUNENBURG SCREENING!


Above, myself and Vanessa Walton-Bone, star of my short film ROOM SERVICE, glam it up at the Atlantic Film Festival’s closing gala held this past Thursday.

Why did it take me almost an entire week to trudge back to the computer and write a post thanking the AFF? Because I don’t know if I’ve ever been quite so exhausted in all of my life. Thank you AFF for testing the limits of human endurance.

Also: thank you AFF for featuring my directorial debut, ROOM SERVICE, n’ stuff. That was awfully nice of you.

Those of you who know me know just how much it meant for me to have this film play here in Halifax. For those of you who don’t know me, please know that Halifax is as much a part of me as anything could possibly be, and it means everything to me to share this film with my peers here in Halifax.

Thanks for the experience, AFF. Looking forward to many more.

In other ROOM SERVICE news, the film will be playing in my home-home-town of Lunenburg County next Wednesday and Thursday the 3rd and 4th of October at Empire Theatres Bridgewater as part of the Lunenburg County Film Series.

**I will be in attendance on Thursday evening, introducing the films and eating popcorn.**

I couldn’t have wished for a better 2012 release to be paired with as we’ll be playing before the ever-so-whimsical feature film BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD, which I am madly in love with ever since seeing it last month.

Tickets are $8 and the screenings start at 7:00pm.

Here’s the Facebook Event page: http://www.facebook.com/events/447264695324035/

Until next time, wash up, ye’ stinkers!

Update – 10/3/12: I wanted to add a photo of the crew who helped make ROOM SERVICE. Left to right, my Cinematographer, Liam Higgins, my Producer, Andrew Hicks, meee, and my Assistant Director Ian Burns. And yes, I chose them all based solely on their gentlemenly good looks.