I had lost my wallet my senior year in high school and had to go to the DMV to get my license replaced. I'm standing in line when an older lady comes up to me. "You!" She says excitedly, "You were in that Neil Simon play! At the high school!" I redden - That WAS me! She smiles big, "You were very good!"
I can't stop thanking her and grinning like a fool. She had magically changed a boring day at the DMV into a highlight of my life: At just 17 years old, I was famous! And apparently, (and even better) I was a GOOD ACTRESS!
I was working the ole restaurant gig Friday night when I dropped some food off at another server's table. One of the ladies looked up at me, and gasped, "I've seen you in something!" She was so sure of it. "What have you been in?" And as I orally check listed every possible re-created events show I've starred in, she's pretty sure it was something bigger. I don't mention the two indie films I've been in only because, well, who HAS seen those? I leave them to wonder as I attend to my own tables (oh the glamorous life of the struggling actress!) and about ten minutes later, the other server comes up to me. "They're still trying to figure out where they know you from," she laughed. "I'm sure I just served them at some other restaurant, but I'll take it!" I replied.
It's fun to be recognized. It's like, hey, all your work is starting to pay off!
And it pays off in the weirdest of ways: I was contacted by a British News Reporter who is coming to the States to do a report on the Oscars. She told me she was interested in doing a companion piece; a juxtaposition of her first piece on the glamor of the Oscars, with a second piece on The Struggling Actress trying hard to make it. She found me on my personal blog and we're in talks to have her document my life for a few days trying to book projects.
I could have my 15 minutes of fame being famous for not being famous. I could be an international non superstar!
Of course, that's really not the goal. The goal is to have something major happen within the next year so that the reporter can come back to do a follow up piece.
I did a short a few months back and the writer/director has been showing it to his friends, and he's been diligent in letting me know the praise I've received. One of his friends just happened to have written the film Heathers and thought my performance was pretty great. And it just seems like things are beginning to snow ball. Is this beginning of the beginning? I understand there is still more work ahead of me, more hard work, but I'm getting excited because people are starting to know who I am. And that feels pretty awesome.
Feeling famous is feeling pride at how the hard work, the hard struggle, is paying off.
It's paying off.Lira Kellerman