Interview with former MLB player and actor Stephen Bishop

Today’s interview is with Stephen Bishop, a former MLB player for the Baltimore Orioles. He was given an opportunity to co-star with Dwayne Johnson in the Universal Pictures/Columbia Pictures feature film “The Rundown” directed by Peter Berg. He has since been seen in a variety of episodics from Lost (as William Kincaid); to Brothers and Sisters (as Rick); Grey’s Anatomy and CSI: Miami. But it was his MLB career that has given him his biggest career break – playing David Justice in the Michael Deluca/ Columbia Pictures film “Moneyball” costarring opposite Brad Pitt.

This is an extract of the interview with Stephen Bishop.

How important is networking in the film industry?

This industry is all about relationships. It’s next to impossible, in my experience, to make things really happen without a strong network.

I have heard of actors and models landing a big acting gig without any auditions, is that true?

Yes that is true. Once you have established yourself as a skilled actor or a marketable name, then parts are often offered without auditions.

Why are some of the best acting and modeling jobs never advertised?

Because they are offered to stars before the production ever needs to search for anyone.

With who, where, and when should you network?

I think the best networking is done in social environments. It levels the proverbial playing field. If we’re at the same place then apparently you and I should take each other seriously.

Who are the best kinds of network contacts?

Loyal ones and those interested in having a strong business network that will be synergistic in nature.

What are some of the best venues for networking?

Fun events like Golf tournaments or Poker tournaments. Everyone is having a good time and being social.

How about networking on the internet? Do you have any tips on those?

I don’t use the internet much to network because of the fact that you never know what you’re going to get. I like to meet people and see if we are cut from the same cloth. Business is best done with people with certain characteristics. I can’t determine that over the internet.

What’s the biggest mistake new actors and models make while networking?

The biggest mistake new actors make is trying too hard to network. No one likes to feel like they’re being worked.

Sometimes, you hear a story in a magazine or newspaper where a famous director is looking for a particular character in an actor and you are perfect for that job, but you have no idea where or how to approach? What would you suggest in this situation?

If you see him somewhere, you have to be assertive without being aggressive. You have to take your chance. You should be honest and tell him your feelings. Odds are if you are PERFECT for the role he’ll see that before you even open your mouth. And if he gives you a window to show him, you’d better be good!

What’s the one thing an aspiring actor can do right away to get work in the film industry?

Find representation that believes in them.

You can read more about Stephen Bishop by clicking on the link below:

You can also follow Stephen on twitter @StephenCBishop

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