We had the good fortune of connecting with Anna Kaskeeva and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Anna, what are you inspired by?
I get inspired by people, by people who make difference, who pursue their dreams in spite of everybody telling them “no”. Those are the people who make history. People like Lin-Manuel Miranda, Sylvester Stallone, Vin Diesel, Tyler Perry, Steve Harvey… they didn’t stop when everybody told them that there no roles for them because they are too dark, too light, too latino, has statter, has face paralysis… They stopped to create something new, to show the world who they really are. They are talented people. And nothing else matters. And when I look at them and their success, I think to myself that I can do it too.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m a short Asian girl, I’m an actress. There are quite a lot of us here in LA. It did overwhelmed me when I just started auditioning. I tried to be very nice and polite, tried to fit in. It’s hard when you had moved in from a different country, with a different culture and language. I didn’t know anybody here. And then somebody told me to stop trying so hard, to be myself. I thought that being an Asian girl from Russia is my disadvantage. But it’s just who I am. No more, no less. And how many Asian-Russian girls are here? So found myself… my direct, loud-mouth, bs-free self. I’m proud of where I come from and who I am today. I say it like I see it. I’m honest with myself first. And if somebody doesn’t like it… well… it’s a free planet, you are welcome to leave. I’m not perfect. I’m making mistakes. And what I learned is … humans suck. I want to have more dogs. True story. Ha-ha. But seriously… I just want to create and have dogs… more dogs… and cats… and maybe birds…
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take a friend to drag show in West Hollywood. I think that would be amazing!!! And then some comedy show. And a play. We would grab hot-dogs from Pink’s and burgers from In-n-Out. And definitely some tacos from street vendors but only if they have tomatoes in their salsa! It’s the best! And also corn on a stick! Have tried it? With cheese and chili? Oh, man! It’s the best! I’d also take a friend to my favorite park to meet my human and dog friends. I love dogs!! They give best kisses in the world! Actually I love all animals but I do think that some cats are jerks. Adorable, irresistible jerks. The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My shoutout is to Kheireddine El-Helou and everybody who made “The Crossing” possible. It’s a short horror film that came out in November on Crypt TV. And also Dave Shaw and Diversity Plus Entertainment who recently cast me in a new project and helped me to put “Narrow Aisles” on Amazon Prime.
Khereddine El-Helou, Anna Kaskeeva