SKSM: Could you start with telling me a little bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?
Bryan Keith: Sure. I’m Bryan Keith. I’m an actor, theatre director. I grew up in the midwest. From St. Louis. I live in Los Angeles now.
SKSM: When did you know you wanted to become an actor?
Bryan Keith: I spoke about wanting to be an actor when I was 5 yrs. old. But I didn’t know I could do it until my second year of college really. After long thinking I might go into sports medicine, going away to University I became more undecided on what I wanted to do. I came back home, did some freelance modeling but really wanted more. I decided to take an acting class to see if I’d like it at the suggestion of one of my dads colleagues. From that moment I was hooked. It became my life, my passion.
SKSM: How did you become involved in Dedication Dollar Baby film?
Bryan Keith: A good friend of mine Cameo Sherrell who plays Young Martha in the film, introduced me to AD/Producer Kerry Ann-Ellington. Cameo and I worked together as bartenders. One night she mentioned this project she was working on, that she was excited about, and I was interested in getting involved. We had talked about working together creatively and this was an opportunity for that to happen. I was thrilled.
SKSM: What do you think it is about the story that attracts people so much?
Bryan Keith: Stephen Kings’ stories and movies… well we’ve all grown up reading and watching them. We’ve been drawn to them, scared by them. Then there is Dedication, one that hadn’t been done. A challenging story involving voodoo. Tyna met that challenge as she said and was perfect to pull it off. The larger picture of that is you can get the rights for a Dollar. Nobody offers their work like that. Its a pretty cool thing!
SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?
Bryan Keith: It wasn’t written for me and I’m not sure as to whom Tyna had in mind initially, but I came to the project as a referral by Cameo. I think I sent them a reel of some my other work, but Tyna and the Kerry trusted her word, and with all of that, they cast me. I have her to thank for putting my name in the hat, so to speak.
SKSM: You worked with Tyna Ezenma on this film, how was that?
Bryan Keith: Tyna knows what she wants. She works fast and brilliantly. She’s an absolute joy to work with. We have developed a pretty tight working relationship. We worked together soon after this project. She’s someone I would work with in a heartbeat.
SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?
Bryan Keith: Not really anything funny because on the day I worked we were shooting a very violent, emotional scene. So it was pretty serious. But there was a special moment. I think my birthday was either the day before or after, so they got me a little cake and sang happy birthday. It was a cool, sweet moment.
SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?
Bryan Keith: Yes. As I was saying earlier, Cameo and I are good friends. I call Tyna a friend as well. We stay in touch. I think she’s currently directing something now in Nigeria. Some of the others we see each other on social media.
SKSM: What are you working on nowadays?
Bryan Keith: I just finished directing a play for the Art of Acting Studios in Los AngelesArt of Acting Studios in Los AngelesArt of Acting Studios in Los Angeles. We created it all virtually, rehearsals to performance because of the pandemic and it not being safe to do live theatre. I’d never done anything like that before. New medium, and uniquely different challenges, but we made it work and people tuned in to see it. I feel proud that we were able to finish what we had begun, still create, and even chart a new course. Where there is a will, there is a way.
SKSM: Are you a fan of Stephen King’s work?
Bryan Keith: Absolutely. Stephen King is an icon of the genre. I’ve enjoyed his work for many years. I hope to be cast in something of his again. That would be awesome to bring more of his words to life.
SKSM: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
Bryan Keith: I’d say…hmmm…that I’m a bonsai practitioner/artist. Most are surprised when they find that out.
SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything you want to say to the fans that read this interview?
Bryan Keith: Thanks for taking your time reading this. Thank you for the support.
SKSM: Do you like to add anything else?
Bryan Keith: Let’s link up, & create. IG is @thebryankeith Stay safe, stay healthy. One love