SKSM: Could you start with telling me a little bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?
Gregory Michael Brown: My name is Gregory Michael Brown, but most people call me Greg. I ‘m a filmmaker, writer, actor and photographer. I grew up in Paterson, New Jersey, have lived in Virginia and New York but have always returned to my home state of New Jersey. I have four children (three boys and a girl) from my two marriages and very proud of them all. The youngest son who is a professional musician and teacher, my middle son who is 26 and a writer, my daughter at 44, a human resource manager and mother of 4, and my oldest son a father of 2, and an athletic communications director and associate professor of a well know university in New York.
SKSM: When did you know you wanted to become an actor?
Gregory Michael Brown: I had always wanted to be an actor since I was a small boy. As a little boy and as a teenager I performed in various plays in church, grammar school and high school. My dad was a stage actor on Broadway, but he wasn’t a part of my life after the age of 6 and my mom who brought me up didn’t approve of me pursuing an acting career. She felt I should have other secure goals such as in business, maybe the military. As it turns out I was in business for well over 40 years as an IT professional and in the military as a senior NCO, with the U.S. Navy on active duty and the reserves and in the U.S. Army and Army Guard as a reservist for total of 36 years. When I retired from both is when I chose to go after my original dream of acting at the age of 59.
SKSM: How did you become involved in Willa Dollar Baby film?
Gregory Michael Brown: Chris Birk saw me listed on an actors’ website. I can’t recall which one though.
SKSM: What do you think it is about the story that attracts people so much?
Gregory Michael Brown: It was different from some of Stephen’s other stories and had a nice twist to it.
SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?
Gregory Michael Brown: I was asked to submit a video audition. The character, Henry Lander, was in the original short story.
SKSM: You worked with Christopher Birk on this film, how was that?
Gregory Michael Brown: Chris was great to work with. An easygoing personality and pleasant.
SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?
Gregory Michael Brown: On occasion I have chatted with Theodore Bouloukos, Jane Brown, Susan Kirby and was in contact with Chris Birk for a few years after we had filmed WILLA. Jane (who is not related to me) and I had mutual friends from our childhood. Susan and I shared credits in another film.
SKSM: What are you working on nowadays?
Gregory Michael Brown: I’m working on a couple of projects now. A full feature film and two miniseries. Some of which I am the actor, as screenwriter, producer and director and a film about Autism that a good friend of mine wrote.
SKSM: Are you a fan of Stephen King’s work?
Gregory Michael Brown: I’ve always been a big Stephen King fan. My favorites are Stand By Me, The Shining and Christine. Regarding the latter, my grandfather had a Plymouth Fury that had some peculiar characteristics. LOL.
SKSM: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
Gregory Michael Brown: I had just walked out of the WTC on 9/11 when the first aircraft hit WTC One while on my way to work. I knew that day would change the world. I’m a certified Emergency Medical Technician, SCUBA diver and an FAA certificated pilot. I flew for the Coast Guard as a civilian pilot after 9/11 on Search & Rescue and security missions up and down the Hudson River corridor.
SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything you want to say to the fans that read this interview?
Gregory Michael Brown: Go after your dreams, only you can make them happen.
SKSM: Do you like to add anything else?
Gregory Michael Brown: It was a pleasure meeting you and doing this interview.