Friday, January 29, 2016

Vote for what you want me to perform at the Christian Worldview Film Festival

I've been given 20 minutes to perform at the Christian Worldview Film Festival, so I thought I'd let you decide which pieces I should perform. Take the survey below.

Click the titles to see what they're about. Scroll down for the full list and Done button.

Create your own user feedback survey

I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Christian Worldview Film Festival

I'm excited to return for my third year at the Christian Worldview Film Festival and Guild, where I'll teach and perform.

Here are the selected films in which I perform:
Rather to Be Chosen
The Messenger's Box
The Screenwriters
Joni and Friends Family Retreat Trailer (possibly featured)
Mission Impossible: Joni and Friends Family Retreat (possibly featured)
Click here for the whole lineup.

I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Tips for New Actors

I just got a request for some tips for getting started as a Christian actor, so I thought I'd write a response here.

First, I recommend staying close to the Lord. If you're not, you will be turned this way and that by the ideas of this world, no matter what industry you enter. Get plugged into a Christ-centered, Bible-believing congregation, and make sure you're in a small group of some kind where individuals will hold you up and hold you accountable. If you're near NYC I keep a list of churches we trust at www.RichDrama.com/NYC.

Also be sure that your personal relationship with the Lord is constantly growing. If it's not, it's stagnating or you're moving further from Him. I'm determined to read through the Bible every year. I've written more about that at www.RichDrama.com/BibleReading. Make sure you're spending time in prayer. I always open the day committing the day to the Lord and end praying with my bride, Joyce.

In terms of getting work as an actor I recommend training. I teach acting for film at The Christian Worldview Film Festival Guild (www.ChristianWorldviewFilmFestival.com) in San Antonio, which is also a great place to network! I also teach at The Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp (www.ChristianFilmmakersCamp.com), and as I write this we have two openings left.

You may be called to get a degree in acting, either at a conservatory or a college/university. I've performed and/or taught at over 40 (www.RichDrama.com/Schools), so I'd be happy to share my insights about a school you're considering. Contact me through the form below. If you choose a Christian school don't assume you'll naturally grow in your relationship with the Lord. It still takes personal effort and choice no matter what your environment is like. If you choose a secular institute you can be sure your faith will be assaulted. I have a former student who attended Augustine College for a year before entering a secular institute. They prepare you mentally to engage with the secular mindset. InterVarsity and Cru have a presence on many campuses, and if you're called to an Ivy League School, check out Christian Union. I spoke at an event they held near Harvard, and I was seriously impressed: www.RichDrama.com/IvyLeague.

Stay busy. When I first moved to NYC I was waiting on line for tickets to Shakespeare in the Park, and the fellow ahead of me was an actor who had been in an impressive number of projects. He said, "Whenever you're not working, someone else is." Training will only take you so far. You need put it to use. Don't wait for someone to find you. Make things happen. Write and perform sketches or short films for your church.

Get a great headshot and résumé. It's important to do this right. Here's an article I recommend: How to Format Your Acting Résumé and Headshots.

Create an account at www.ActorsAccess.com. It's free, but until you have an agent you'll need to submit yourself, which is $2 per submission, or they have an annual fee. You can plug in your location and a number of identifiers, and you'll get regular emails with casting notices that match your criterion. There's no checkbox for "Christian actor," so be warned. Do you due diligence and seek the Lord's peace for every project.

About half of the films in which I've been cast I've heard about through Facebook. Scroll through my Groups and join the ones that may help you discover casting calls.

Consider getting coached for your auditions. Patricia MauceriMichael Joiner and Rebekah Cook all offer Skype coaching.

Even if it's a Christian project you'll still want to do your due diligence and seek the Lord's peace because there may be elements in the film you don't feel comfortable supporting.

In My Utmost for His Highest Oswald Chambers says, "Whenever there are competing concerns in your life, be sure you always put your relationship to God first." It may sound impossible to make a career in acting when there are so many projects out there that are propaganda for worldly wisdom. But I've been able to make a 20-year career in acting and applying acting concepts to the business world, and I've done my best to honor the Lord with all of my choices. I do a one-man play on John Woolman, who spoke against slavery a century before the Emancipation Proclamation. He was speaking to Quakers who owned slaves, but I think his words are just as true for Christians striving to honor the Lord with their skills: "The case is difficult to some who have slaves, but if such set aside all self-interest, and come to be weaned from the desire of getting estates, or even from holding them together, when truth requires the contrary, I believe way will so open that they will know how to steer through those difficulties." I've found the Lord faithful to provide for two decades, despite the narrow path I've chosen.

All the Best!

I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Sermon from Providence



Our church, Westchester Chapel, decided to cancel today's Bible study and service since the blizzard prompted the governor to declare a state of emergency for our region. The sermon planned for today will be preached next week, so for this morning I've recorded the sermon I prepared for Providence, in which I play Pastor Mitchell Little. It's a silent film, but I wanted to be preaching a real sermon when the camera was rolling. I never got through it when we were filming, so I promised my screen congregation that I'd record the whole thing and post it online. Today seemed like a great day to do that.

The photos are stills from the film (used by permission). My character was preaching an Easter message in the cemetery where he first encountered Rachel, who used to own the Bible from which he's preaching.






This music video shows excerpts from the sermon in the film...


Here's the trailer for Providence, which is being shown now in theatres that will host the film starting February 12...


I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

The Escalator

When Joyce and I first moved to Midtown Manhattan in 2008 I was coming down this escalator the first time we saw a movie at the AMC Empire 25, and I said a prayer that one day I'd be coming down the same escalators having seen a film in which I'd performed. 

Maybe I was prompted to pray that night because I had been at the grand opening of the theatre in 2000. The gala was a benefit for a few Times Square charities including The Lamb's Church of the Nazarene, where I had been an intern for four years. The new cineplex's 25 screens were attached to the Empire Theatre, a playhouse built in 1912 where Bud Abbott and Lou Costello first performed together in 1935. The theatre was moved 168 feet westward to make way for the screens, shops and restaurants! The 3,700 ton structure was pulled by two giants. LOL! You can see what I mean and a number of fascinating features from the original theatre, which now makes up the lobby of the megaplex here. The grand opening was really something and had a major impact on me. You can read the original press release here.

At any rate, that prayer I said on the escalator two years before I'd even been in a feature film was answered tonight -- on Joyce and my 226th monthaversary -- in a small way. We saw the trailer for Providence, in which I play one of the lead roles. It's playing in AMC Theatres that will host the film starting February 12, but if you're not near one of those you can watch it below. The 4K footage looked stunning on the big screen. So, the greater answer to that prayer will be fulfilled 21 days from now when Providence opens in this architectural wonder.

Another way this is answered prayer is that Joyce had prayed I'd be cast in a lead role in a film that honored the Lord literally days before I was cast as Mitchell. She's trying to place when it was and she said it was as we were anticipating the theatrical-on-demand release of Beyond the Mask, in which I play Dr. Bonneville. That opened a week after I was cast.


When we were in Israel in May 2011 Joyce put a prayer in the Wailing Wall that I would be cast as the lead in a film that honored the Lord and I was soon cast as the adult lead in Indescribable, my first lead role in a feature film at that time.





I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

I Will Fight

I just heard from a friend that the trailer for Providence is now playing in the AMC Theatres that will host Providence starting February 12.

Here's another music video with scenes from the film. This one's by Caleb Allen​, the brother of Josh Allen​, who plays my character's teen self. We got to have dinner with their family after the Nashville premiere in November. What an amazing family! They all live on a bus! Seriously. They go from performance to performance and are so committed to the Lord's work they have no permanent residence. I told one of the daughters how blessed they are as young people to see that kind of dedication to the Lord lived out!



See the trailer and more music videos at www.RichDrama.com/Providence.

I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Second Interview with Harold Hendrick

Here are links to things I spoke about in my second interview with Harold Hendrick, which will air on KSIV-AM 1320 in the St. Louis area and online at www.BottRadioNetwork.com on January 19 at 1:45pm Central:

Beyond the Chariots
Jamey Hudson Taylor, III
The Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp
Providence
Eternity

You can hear the first interview by clicking here.

I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

The Tornado that Preceded Tomorrow's Performance

I'll be performing tomorrow for the St. Louis Arts Fellowship, and this is the story of my last performance for them...



I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

First Interview with Harold Hendrick

My first interview with Harold Hendricks aired January 14, 2016, on AM 1320 in St. Louis, MO. It is now online, and you can listen by clicking here.

Here are links to things I spoke about:

Performance in St. Louis
Big Fish Little Worm
Grandpa's Memorandum
Beyond the Chariots
The Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp
Providence
Eternity

The second interview has now aired and will post to this blog soon.

I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Dance of Life

Click here for the Palin's love story
and details on how to submit your
own love story.
Our friend, Cindy Palin, wrote and performed "Dance of Life" for the soundtrack of Providence, the film in which I play one of the leads.

We met Cindy and her husband, Lloyd, when Joyce and I were playing husband and wife in Mayflower II because our friend John Forbes saw we'd be near them. They ended up setting up things for my performance of Big Fish Little Worm, and then she sang.

Here's her music video with scenes from Providence...



You can see more of the music videos and the trailers for the film at www.RichDrama.com/Providence.

I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Performing near St. Louis

I'll be performing Big Fish Little Worm near St. Louis on January 17. Click here or the poster for details.

You can send people to this page by sharing www.RichDrama.com/STL.






I play a lead in Providence, a modern silent film opening in theatres coast to coast starting February 12.

Registration is now open for the 2016 Rocky Mountain Christian Filmmakers Camp.

Also, we're now taking sign-ups for Rio Ready.