Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Spotlight On...Chris Bellant

Name: Chris Bellant

Hometown: Detroit, MI

Education: NYU Tisch School of the Arts (Stella Adler Studio)

Select Credits:
David Lindsay Abaire's Snow Angel, Twelfth Night (as Fabian), Insidious (at Theater for the New City), Twelve Angry Men (Juror #5, Stella Adler Studio).

Why theater?: Long story short, because it makes me happy. Film really is a director's medium. In the theater actors have an incredible freedom that doesn't exist in film. The audience is on a journey with the actors in a situation where literally anything is possible. I love the bond that's created between actor and audience- people who have never met before, and may never meet again, but agree to have an experience together in the moment.

Tell us about Killing John Grisham: The most remarkable thing about Jack Moore's play in my opinion is how relatable it is. He created a group of extremely funny and intelligent people who struggle with the same things as every one of us: the need for recognition, validation, and success; searching for love and acceptance; loneliness and alienation; feeling let down by the people who matter most in our lives; etc. The play goes places that I don't think the audience will expect from a comedy.

What is it like to be a part of Killing John Grisham?: We have a ridiculously talented cast and crew, the hardest working director in town (she has three shows opening this week! THREE!), an exciting new playwright, and a great producer. What more could anyone possibly ask for? It's been an exciting journey, and I sincerely hope that I get to work with all of them again soon because I have been feeling very lucky to be in the company of such great people.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?:
When I was a kid, I watched the movie Hook every day, and I was in awe of Dustin Hoffman. I told my parents that whatever he was doing I wanted to do. I recently had the great fortune of seeing Jerusalem, and Mark Rylance changed my idea of what is possible in the theater. Charlie Kaufman's writing is revolutionary. I'm inspired by people who challenge the boundaries of logic and imagination.

What’s it like to be a part of FringeNYC?: It's like a circus in a way. You'll see some really crazy things that will sometimes be frightening, but in the end you're always glad you were there.

Any role you’re dying to play?: One day I MUST play George in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Tom Wingfield in The Glass Menagerie.

What show have you recommended to your friends?: Jerusalem (if you haven't seen it, it's closing soon so get on it!)

What’s up next?: Writing and acting in a film titled Loserville, which I'm developing with producer Vicki McCarty and is attracting some all time great actors! Playing Macduff in a production of Macbeth, workshopping a new play by Darren Caulley, and just cast in a one act in the Estrogenius Festival, a festival of new works created by women at Manhattan Theater Source.

For more information on Killing John Grisham, visit http://killingjohngrisham.com/