We had the good fortune of connecting with Brian Distance and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brian, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
You should always take calculated risks. You can only grow if you take risks. When you take a risk, if you succeed you will be happy and can lead, but if you fail you will be wise and guide. Risk has always been important in my life. If I would not have taken any risks, I would not have left my hometown to go to college; I would not have graduated for Marquette University with a degree in Mechanical/Industrial Engineering and worked as an engineer; I would not have then gone onto Tulane Law School and then graduate with a Juris Doctor degree with an emphasis in maritime law; I would not have passed the California and Louisiana Bar exams; I would not have practiced maritime law, then political law, then finance law; I would not have been a successful and industry-recognized Wall Street finance attorney; I would not have graduated from William Esper Studio, one of the 25 top drama programs in the world; I would not have starred in over 30 major feature films, network and cable television shows, and off-Broadway shows; and I would not have been a cast member in Green Book which won multiple Oscars, multiple Golden Globes, and other awards. If I did not take those risks and many others risks, I would not be where I am today. Without risk, I would not have grown. Without risk, my life would have been boring. I am not finished taking risk; there is so much more I want to achieve before I leave this plane of existence.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Primarily, I am an industry-respected film and television actor with over 30 (and still counting) major feature film and network/cable television credits. I am truly a working actor Twenty years ago, I could not have envisioned this. On 9/11, I headed to work on Wall Street as a finance attorney for a large investment bank. Little did I know that that day would change my life forever. By the end of that day, I was blessed that I survived the terrorist attacks merely blocks from my workplace. In fact, the previous morning at 9 am, I had a meeting at Windows On The World (the top floor) in the World Trade Center. If that meeting was the next day, I would have died in the attack. From that day, I vowed that I would follow my passion; I had always wanted to act but life got in the way. From that day onward, I pursued acting as a calling, as a vocation. I became a fierce student of the acting process. I sought out mentors and teachers in acting. I read many book on acting. I took many years of formal training in the art of acting. I still am evolving and learning the craft of acting. Acting is a journey; acting is a process; acting for me is a marathon and not a sprint.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
In Southern California, I would honestly say you can never go wrong in DTLA for food, drink, and entertainment. I could literally spend weeks on end indulging in the diverse restaurants located which are often overlooked. In NYC, I love the vibe and energy. You would be hard pressed to find a bad meal there either. I’m a foodie 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?
Honestly, without the love, support and upbringing by my parents who instilled the love of God, education, and working smartly (as opposed to plain hard work) within me, none of my past, present, and future accomplishments would have been possible.