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article imageMeredith Thomas talks acting, digital age, and life in quarantine Special

By Markos Papadatos     Oct 10, 2020 in Entertainment
Acclaimed actress Meredith Thomas chatted with Digital Journal's Markos Papadatos about acting, life in quarantine and being a performer in the digital age. She also furnished her definition of the word success.
On life in quarantine, she said, "My quarantine has been filled with good and bad days like so many of my friends and loved ones. At first, I embraced the welcome break from focusing on my career. I marked my calendar for the the 30 days 'Safer at Home' order and started home workouts, lots of baking, and long baths, but of course that’s when I though this would all be over much faster. I felt much better when my calendar had an end date marked."
"Now, it’s hard moving forward not really being sure what the entertainment industry will look like in the months to come," she said. "Since this industry is always evolving I’m just doing my best to evolve with it without too much kicking and screaming. Three days before California's 'Safer at Home' orders in March, the movie I was working on was shut down for safely because of COVID-19."
"I had only two shooting days left but felt assured we would finish once it was safe to do so as there was so much footage 'in the can.' Thankfully, we did come with many safely measures in place and finish the movie. I've been fortunate to have directors who have worked with me before reach out to work with me again during these unprecedented times," she added.
Actress Meredith Thomas
Actress Meredith Thomas
Kaz Photo
On being an actress in the digital age, she said, "It's such an interesting time to be an actor as everything is moving and changing so rapidly. It can be hard to keep up. I used to love to tell my war stories of pagers and Thomas Guides and mailing head-shots by snail mail."
"Now I'm telling war stories of actually attending live in person auditions instead of self tapes and Zoom callbacks," she said. "Most of the digital things I resisted I grew to like. I accept social media as part of my job and try to embrace the good aspects of it and do my best to stay on my life mission of fostering hope. I did this wonderful project called Disconnected that explores the dangerous effects social media can have on a family."
"It comes out before Netflix' The Social Dilemma and before the pandemic so as the title suggests it explores the disconnect social media and phone addiction can cause. Now we have spent the last eight months replying on the digital world to connect. The Instagram Live's with industry professionals, online film festivals, Zoom classes, performances and rehearsals have been a saving grace," she said.
Thomas revealed that she has three television movies coming out soon. "Two thrillers and one romantic comedy. In one thriller, I'm a hero mom type and the other thriller I'm the villain which was fun and really challenging as it was all shoot during the pandemic so in addition to stunt safely we also had to be concerned with COVID-19 safety. Sandwiched in between the thrillers I shot a romantic comedy called Save the Wedding. Playing a quirky mother of the bride was such a welcome break from the thriller's drama and the drama in real life," she said.
Regarding her plans for the future, she said, "I have been slowly moving into producing as well as acting. I am looking to collaborate with a great director and produce my first feature film. I am also still perusing film festivals for several short film projects I'm involved in."
When asked what motivates her each day, she responded, "The fact that I get to explore so many aspects of what it is to be human motivates me. Life makes me a better actor and exploring what is to be human and act through other peoples shoes makes me a better person."
For young and aspiring actors, she said, "I have never regretted going for something that I really wanted. It's okay to say yes to something and then change your mind too. Just the act of saying yes will move you forward. Don't judge yourself if the dream shifts and changes along the way as long as it makes you happy. Life is too darn short to be miserable for too long. My career has moved in all sorts of directions that I didn't plan on."
"As a young actress, I never planned doing stand up comedy or even being in television movies but by constantly saying 'yes and' the opportunities continued to present themselves. I certainly didn't imagine ever being a video vixen at my age but I've now been in videos for Elton John, Bon Jovi, and Led Zeppelin. When you do get those chances to act be so great to work with that you create repeat customers. Save your battles for what's really important to you but then fight like hell," she said.
On her definition of the word success, she said, "I have been fan of James Taylor since I saw him live in Manchester, New Hampshire when I was in grade school. He has a song called 'Secret of Life' in which he sings the secret is enjoying the passage of time and and that love is the only road."
"I think of all the years I tried too hard to create the life I have now. Success, for me, today in enjoying the life I've created and knowing that time will change this too. Still working on that love is the only road part but it's still a lovely ride," she explained.
Thomas offered the following inspiring words during quarantine: "Find the good in quarantine, plan as best you can, reflect, set goals, reconnect and know it's okay to not feel okay about it. We are all trudging through this. I'm used to being the cheerleader for people and I had to learn to tell the truth about when this has been hard for me. I can tell you that it really helped to tell people."
"No one really knows what the world and our industry will look like in six months or a year and that can either be scary or exhilarating or both but don't let the not knowing stop you for too long. The clean slate and or open calendar could be just what we need," she added.
To learn more about actress Meredith Thomas, check out her IMDb page.
Meredith Thomas
Meredith Thomas
Tandem Photo
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