By Erica Derrickson
Most people think you have to go to New York or LA to have an acting career, but Mike Giovanucci is proving that you can pursue your dream here at home in Boston. However he didn’t always think that way.
Initially Mike believed, like most people, that in order to pursue an acting career you have to go out to LA, so shortly after graduating high school he saved up money working as a bouncer at Cask n’ Flagon and followed his dream out West, to test the waters in LA.
His time in Los Angeles, however brief, was an eye-opening experience for him in several ways. On the good side he received positive feedback and encouragement from the casting directors and talent agents he auditioned for, building his confidence in himself as an actor. The downside, however, was the blunt feedback that he did not have the proper tools nor experience to be a contender in the industry.
Returning to Boston was a defining moment for Mike; rather than coming home with his tail between his legs he used the experience to learn and gain new clarity on what he had to do for his career. But not only that, he soon recognized that Boston has a growing film scene and a sense of camaraderie and solidarity amongst its actors and filmmakers that he did not find in Los Angeles. Mike then wasn’t just doing it at home for himself, but rather also to be a part of something, a vibrant and dynamic local scene. According to Mike, “everyone here is focused on making Boston a powerhouse location for great talent and productions in the movie industry.”
With a new resolve and motivation to make it happen in New England, Mike dove headfirst into the local acting community, seeking out resources online and in person. In his quest to become a contender he sought out professional headshots and started showing up to MPC meetings. He registered on local casting sites like Boston Casting and CP Casting and soon enough Mike was going to auditions for commercials, movies, student films and industrial projects all over the New England area, even landing some good parts.
One of his recent wins included being cast in a historical video with Northern Lights Productions that filmed on a military base on the Cape, commemorating the brave US soldiers who stood guard along the Berlin wall at the height of the Cold War. “We dressed in full gear and worked throughout the night climbing trucks, marching in formation, and jumping in tanks. It was a long day, but it was awesome doing something that honors those who defend our great nation,” he recalls of the experience.
Another job he got through an audition at Boston Casting was for a CVS training video, filmed locally and produced by (add)ventures, followed by a recent callback for a national Dunkin Donuts commercial. Needless to say things are moving. But the project Mike is most proud of is an independent short where he got to flex his Irish accent in a remake of a scene from THE BOONDOCK SAINTS for 41st Casanova Productions. His brogue was “on point.”
Overall Mike is happy to be here in Boston putting his hardy blue collar work ethic into practice pursuing his dream. More than ever he understands the enormous potential residing here at home in Boston, a city known for it’s strength, resiliency and team-mentality. According to Mike, “When you play for a team you make sacrifices, have your teammates’ backs and do whatever it takes to succeed. That team aspect defines the acting community I have found in Boston.”
With an optimistic eye towards the future Mike is resolved to succeed in his dream one way or another. Whether or not Mike decides to take his career back out west again, one thing is certain – no matter what he will always have the satisfaction of knowing he built the foundation of his acting career off the wealth of resources here at home in New England.
Erica Derrickson is an award winning actress, professional headshot photographer and founder of Hollywood East Actors Group. See her work at www.ericaseye.com and connect with Erica on Twitter at @ericaseye or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.