Leo Contest Finalist Actor Interviews: Brynn Peebles & Marisa Emma Smith

Vancouver’s casting directors loved Brynn Peebles’ and Marisa Emma Smith’s entry videos to Casting Workbook’s Leo Award ticket contest.  Casting Workbook recently discussed challenges, dealing with industry ups and downs and the comedic side of acting.

brynn peebles casting workbook interviewWatch Brynn’s acceptance speech here.

1. How did you conceptualize your video?
I’m very much of the opinion that when an opportunity arises to laugh at life, one probably should.  It was already funny to me that I got to make an acceptance speech video despite not actually being nominated or cast in anything, so it made for a good set-up to make a joke around.  Any time I can make a joke out of my real life, I do.

2. Tell me about that t-shirt!
I made it years ago when I was auditioning for Glee, when they had this big online casting call. I’d gone to clean my closet and found the shirt, and thought wait a minute… I can use this!

3. How do you challenge yourself through acting?
I keep busy; I take a lot of classes and workshops whenever time permits, and try to get to as many of the casting director workshops as I can. I put my fingers into as many different pots as possible, and get my face out there as many different ways that I can manage. I always try to take control of what I have control over.

4. What inspires you?
Just the love of acting and performing.  It’s been my joy ever since I can remember, and whether I make ten million dollars or ten cents, I’ll never stop doing it.  Also I really don’t have a Plan B, so that’s a big motivator.

5. You’ve got different types of comedy in your special skills section.
Comedy in the broad spectrum has always been a huge part of my life.  I was more or less raised on Monty Python, John Cleese and Peter Sellers, so I grew up loving comedy.  My favourite thing in the world is to make people laugh.  My friend literally signed me up without me knowing one day for my very first standup gig and I had two weeks to write my first 5 minute set.  2 years later, I haven’t looked back.  It’s been a very pleasant (although terrifying) surprise.

marisa emma smith casting workbook interviewWatch Marisa’s acceptance speech here.

1. How did you come up with the concept of your video?
I thought “if I won for a walk on role that would be hilarious”, and I ran with it.

2. Do you have a personal favourite award speech?
Jared Leto accepting for the Dallas Buyers Club was inspiring, humbling and heartfelt.

3. You’ve done a lot of stage work! Do you have any advice for theatre actors?
Choose what speaks to you. It’s not about the money, so if you’re going to do it then choose projects that you can create art that entertains.

4. What brought you into the industry?
I was in theatre in high school and I did a degree at UVIC, and realized I wanted to get into acting professionally.

5. What inspires you to push through the ups and downs of the acting industry?
My husband inspires me; we are both incredibly driven. We both create our own work, and find stories that we want to talk about. We’re both actors and writers and directors. We lean on each other, and having mentors is really crucial.


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