My formative years growing up were difficult to say the least. This was mainly due to there being no emotional crutch on to hold to. It has taken me years to rid myself of all the negative baggage I had loaded onto me and despite all the hard work I have done in ridding myself of all that emotional baggage there are times when I am reminded of just how far I have come as a person and how much further I have to go on my journey.
As if life was not difficult enough one has to deal with the negativity and insecurities of others. This we all have to deal with be it in our personal and working lives. For myself, I find I have deal with the above simply because people cannot deal with me or I am or rather who they think I am, which are two very different conclusions.
Nobody knows me better than me. Nobody can be me, anymore than I can be anyone else. As an Actor, I cannot be anyone else. I can be that person/character by doing what that character does and I suppose by default I become that person. Maybe I am a mass of confusion and conflict for most people, I don’t know but working on a film recently I f0und myself in hot water with one of the actresses and was approached quietly by the producer and advised not to have any further contact with that actress. Given I had not communicated with that actress outside of the production for a week at that point was a point of annoyance for me – Not because the producer approached, as they were dealing with an issue created by someone else – But because the actress concerned didn’t have the maturity to read the signs that I had already cottoned on to what she was about and was having as little to do with her as I could. Unfortunately this is an occupational hazard whenever one works with young women who don’t have the maturity and brains about them. It is sad for me to have to say that because I was working far more closely with young women on the makeup and special effects side of things than I did with this said actress and they were far more professional and entered to the spirit of the production. It only takes one immature young woman (in this case a supposedly well-trained professional actor – a description I would strongly contest based on my experience,) to spoil things overall. I certainly left the wrap party with a bad taste in my mouth and for at time felt the whole experience was spoilt for me. A source of comfort for me was this ‘actress’ doesn’t really have a future in the business if this is how she goes about her dealings with her fellow professionals. We shall see however.
I lay great emphasis on being myself whenever I am not working. My work involves being people who are similar or very dis-similar to myself so when I am not in front of camera (even between filming,) or not on stage, it is nice to be able slip back into one’s own skin and be one’s self again if for a little while. What I haven’t time for is those who are insecure about themselves (as this one actress was,) and uses that insecurity to undermine me in the eyes of others (as this actress did).
I find whenever someone has a problem with me it is nearly always because I enjoy being myself, mainly because I am confident with who I am. Nelson Mandela’s Inaugural Speech as President of South Africa is a reminder that while letting your own light shine, you can inspire others to do the same. And if anyone has a problem with that, remember it is their problem, not yours!