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article imageLeith Burke talks about 2020 Emmy nomination for 'EastSiders' Special

By Markos Papadatos     May 22, 2020 in Entertainment
Actor Leith Burke chatted with Digital Journal's Markos Papadatos about his 2020 Daytime Emmy nomination for "Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Digital Drama Series."
Burke garnered an Emmy nod for his acting work as Derrick in the Netflix series, EastSiders, which was created by Kit Williamson. "That was a real surprise and a bright ray of sunshine. That was very unexpected, it came out of nowhere," he said.
"My castmate Willam Belli is such a lovely actor and an amazing performer. The fact that there are two of us in such a small category is such a huge win for EastSiders," he said. "It speaks to Kit Williamson, our fearless leader, director, and creator. It speaks about his strengths and his leadership. I am so happy for the whole team. It's a fun series."
For Burke, he acknowledged that EastSiders is a "hometown story" since he lives in the setting that they are shooting in. "It's all good," he said.
On being an actor in the digital age, Burke said, "I also teach a college class here in Hollywood. It's my job to let them know what is happening in the entertainment industry today and prepare them for what they are going to see. In teaching that class, it makes me realize that when I started acting, I had a black and white headshot, pager, and a fax machine. I've been through a lot of changes."
"This technological revolution, the advent of web series, and YouTube have changed things so much and so rapidly. It is hard to tell my students what is happening in the world today since things are changing so rapidly," he said. "The digital age has opened up many more opportunities for actors and creators to do their own work. This empowers artists to tell their own stories."
For young and aspiring actors, he encouraged them to "not wait" and instead they should "create." "Keep active and do anything and everything you can. Get your work out on paper and put it on film. Record and post. Put yourself out there. You need to get out there. Work begets work, action attracts attention," he said.
"These days, people are representing brands. As much as I don't really love the word 'brand,' in today's business atmosphere, that's really what it is all about," he added.
Burke revealed that he just shot a film named Lucky with EastSiders co-star Brea Grant. "When we finished EastSiders, she told me that she wrote a part for me in her film Lucky, and we filmed that," he said.
On the title of the current chapter of his life, he said, "The dawn of autumn." "I'm entering my 50's, and I play younger than I am. I have two kids that are middle school-aged and I consider this the autumn of my years," he said. "I really enjoy being a grown-ass man, and that's something I'm embracing and really looking forward to."
Burke defined the word success as follows: "Success is meaningless until you perform a successful act. Success is something that is really in the moment."
To learn more about Emmy-nominated actor Leith Burke, check out his official IMDb page, website, and follow him on Instagram.
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