Friday, February 27, 2015

Success Story: JAMISON JONES

Jamison Jones was born and raised in Rochester Michigan and spent several of his formative years living abroad near Frankfurt Germany. He began acting in High School and started his formal theater training at Western Michigan University before transferring to UCLA, then completing his BFA at California State University, Fullerton. Jones graduated with an MFA from the prestigious American Conservatory in San Francisco where he worked on such critically acclaimed productions as “Angels in America” with world-renowned director Mark Wing-Davey, “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead,” “Othello” and most recently, the West Coast premiere of “Maple and Vine.” His film credits include “Collusions” with Tom Everett-Scott, “The Lodger” with Alfred Molina, “Born to Ride” with William Forsythe, “He Was a Quiet Man” with Christian Slater and William H. Macy, “Dark Blue” with Kurt Russell and “Hollywood Homicide” with Harrison Ford. Television credits include the new Steven Spielberg series “The Whispers,” coming to ABC, “Burn Notice,” “24,” “General Hospital,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Days of Our Lives,” “Terminator,” “CSI: NY,” “N.C.I.S.,” “Crossing Jordan,” “Alias,” “JAG,” “That 70’s Show,” “Beverly Hills 90210,” “Will and Grace”, several TV movies and the new 2015 season of “True Detective” with Vince Vaughn and Collin Farrell. Other theater credits include the West Coast premiere of “Elemeno Pea” and the world premiere of “Doctor Cerberus” at the Tony Award winning South Coast Repertory Theater, “The Three Musketeers” at the Tony Award winning Denver Center Theater, “How the Other Half Loves” at the Pasadena Playhouse; “God of Carnage,” “The Foreigner,” “The Lion in Winter,” “All My Sons,” “Dancing at Lughnasa” and “The Rainmaker” with Tony-nominated McCoy/Rigby Entertainment at La Mirada Theater; “Fool for Love” with famed character actor Geoffrey Lewis; “Théresè Raquin” at Ensemble Theatre; “Dracula,” “Bent” and “Timon of Athens;” “Cyrano de Bergerac” at A Noise Within; and the European premieres of “Tennessee in the Summer” and “Purple Hearts” at the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland.

How long have you been on Actors Access and how has the service helped you?

Jamison: I’ve been on there since its inception 15 or so years ago. In the early days it was only the forward-thinking agents and managers who used the service, so it didn’t seem very beneficial at first. We all believed that casting would always want a Pic & Res in hand, but now I can’t give them away. It’s a great resource and allows people to see the work, view a variety of head shots and up-to-date resumes instantly. It’s an indispensable tool for actors and the industry alike.

How did you get into acting?

Jamison: I started acting in high school working on the only shows available to me, which for the most part were musicals. So I played Henry Higgins in “My Fair Lady” at 17, Bill Sikes in “Oliver,” which was much more my speed; dark and mysterious, “Carnival” and many others. My senior year I was asked into a special training program at Oakland University, taught by a professional actor from Meadow Brook Theater, igniting my passion for the craft and desire to develop my skill as an actor.

How did you book your recurring role on “The Whispers?”

Jamison: I’ve been working my way into the good-graces of Junie Lowry-Johnson and Libby Goldstein and the indispensable Monica Kelly, for a few years now and they brought me in on the role for the pilot directed by the genius Mark Romanek. I was fortunate enough to book it. The show got picked up and we shot in Vancouver over the Fall. I also booked “Longmire” with them as well as “True Detective.” They are truly one of the best offices in LA, working on some of the hottest projects.

Tell us about your character on HBO’s second season of “True Detective.”

Jamison: I play Vince Vaughn’s high profile corporate lawyer on the new season, which is a completely different story from what we sat in awe watching last season with Mathew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson.
It's a very top secret project, so I hesitate to say any more than that, but it’s going to be great. Nic Pizzolatto, the show’s creator, is an amazing story teller.

What has been your favorite role to play?

Jamison: On stage, the role of Timon in Shakespeare’s “Timon of Athens;” a little-known piece in the canon. The dream role is “Macbeth,” so if anyone out there wants to tackle that one give me a call. The most fun on screen was a guest star on an awesome episode of “Burn Notice” during a dream job in Miami with the funny and talented Bruce Campbell. I had a great role as the antagonist in a wonderful indie feature called “He Was a Quiet Man” with Christian Slater and William H. Macy.

What advice would you give your fellow actors just starting out?

Jamison: Be sure you love acting and can learn to like the business.
Doing it for the notoriety will leave you dissatisfied, you have to love the process, learn your craft, study the great teachers of the past like Stanislavski, Meisner, Hågen and my personal favorite Michael Chekhov. Build a great team that you trust with an agent and or manager that are passionate about what they do and support the actor in his/her career. I'm fortunate to have a team like that. And find a way to make money that isn’t time consuming so you can build your skill as an actor without the pressure of booking every job you go in for. Your job is to do the best work possible when you walk in the room to audition; the rest is out of your control.

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