Bruce Clifford used to be in Philly. Now he’s in LA. Traitor. Seriously, we love him and will couch surf at his pad some day. For now, we’ll just interview him.
Sue: Bruce, how did we meet?
Bruce: We met for the first time at the casting for A Perfect You. You had put a call out on the Stage 32 website, which is a wonderful resource for people in the industry to connect, and then we met at Googleworks for the audition!
Sue: Who all have you connected with at Stage 32?
Bruce: I have connected with you of course! Also various people in the industry back in Philadelphia, I just moved to LA so I’m searching for more ways to connect to people out here….I love reading the blog posts and the weekend blogs on the site. Also there are various job postings coming in and whenever I see a match that fits I make sure to submit.
Sue: I think it’s great that you went out to LA. How did that come about?
Bruce: Well, it was in the cards for a while. I always knew I wanted to come out but never pulled the trigger. I was always scared of taking the leap into the unknown and leaving my family and girlfriend. So earlier this year (MARCH) my buddy from Philadelphia who moved out here in 2014 called me up saying he had an opening for a roommate. So I had to make a quick decision whether this was the time or not. And I told myself If I don’t go now and take a chance at it I’ll never do it. So I booked a flight for April 18th, got my car shipped out here and left to chase my dream of becoming a working actor. Even though I was originally scared to come out, it all seems like perfect timing the way it turned out. I’m just glad I took the chance, and I’m enjoying my journey out here so far.
Sue: How great is that! You’re at the perfect age, I think. So what’s the scene like there compared to Philly?
Bruce: In Philly it was a very tight knit group of people in the film community, and I’d see a lot of the same people over and over with the same interests. It’s a very talented small pool there. In Philly you have to rely on making a lot of your own work, student films, and small indie films people are making to stretch your craft. There is nothing wrong with this at all. I loved everyone I met in Philadelphia, but I knew if I wanted to chase this as a serious profession I would have to go to a bigger market. Philadelphia people if they are lucky get 1 to 2 features a year and possibly 1 to 2 tv shows. With barely any tax incentives as of late Philly really doesn’t have a future on big budget products until that changes. Being in LA is so much more inspiring and makes me want to work that much harder. This is where it’s all happening. You can just feel a huge difference. It’s so diverse with everyone in the industry taking on all kinds of different roles. 95% of the people I have met so far are working or want to work in production. It’s amazing. Networking opportunities are endless. Also there are way more opportunities to audition out here because so many people are making films, and shorts, and web series. All in all LA is great if you just stay positive and persistent.
Sue: What a great environment. I guess I’ll have to get out there at some point. What town are you living in and what’s it like compared to Philly?
Bruce:: I’m living in East Hollywood. It has almost the same feel space-wise, especially if you are from northeast suburbs of philly where it is all row homes. Here it’s mostly apartment buildings and small homes where I am, all crammed into a small area. As you head a little more south west it opens up and you can find more single homes. Best thing is you can walk out of your door and see palm trees here. Very cool if your not used to it and a reminder you are in a warm climate.
Sue: What’s the nightlife like?
Bruce: I wouldn’t know too much about nightlife. I actually don’t party too much. But what I can tell you is that everything closes at 2 am here instead of 4 am in NY. I don’t know why that is. Maybe a lot of Californians like their sleep??
But what I will say is, that there is great local restaurants that have authentic Mexican food and it’s just so much more delicious than a chain. Also there is great craft beer places, and in-n-out is just amazing. (burger joint)
As for fun things to do at night, comedy shows are big! There’s one happening every night it seems like. Improv shows, stand up. It’s great if you want to laugh. So many talented people here. There are a lot of cool local bars too, and you just have to kind of find the one you like to hang at, or hang at different ones. All have their own style. I like the ones that do bring in a dope DJ. When I do go out I enjoy grooving rather than just standing or sitting at a bar.
Sue: Sounds like a lot going on. I imagine you’re having a great time out there. Any last words before I wrap this up?
Bruce: Besides missing family, my girlfriend and friends I am having fun. Just want to say what a pleasure it was working with you and meeting you. And if I had to leave on a parting note I would tell you and everyone who reads this to start taking action towards your dreams and goals. Just thinking about it won’t get it done. Sure, planning is great, but actually doing it and getting started is when it happens. Just try and try again.