We had the good fortune of connecting with Hunter Phoenix and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Hunter, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I’m really a serial entrepreneur; I’ve started several businesses in the course of my life including having my own skincare line a number of years ago. This one however is closer to my heart than anything else has been. I’ve run away from acting a couple of times, but keep coming back to the craft and the business of show business – both fascinate me! In the last couple of years, and still fairly new to LA, I have talked to a lot of people about the business here. Although I never feel like I know enough, I came to realize just how much knowledge I possess about the industry and the craft. This is in part due to the years that I have spent in the entertainment industry, but also the number of cities and countries I have lived and worked in, which has given me a very broad and unique perspective. When everything shutdown for Covid I just knew this was the time to create an incredible resource for new actors, and something that would continue to grow for years. That’s when MyActorGuide.com was born.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I would say what’s sets me apart is a unique perspective on my characters and their lives, which comes from my own unconventional life. But the thing I’ve heard from casting most often is “optimism”. I have been told that there is an innate joyousness to my demeanor which brings with it hope and youth… unusual at my age. What a great compliment! The things that I’m most proud or excited about is always the next project! And I think it should be! We’re here to grow, create and constantly evolve as an artist and as a human being. The next project is always filled with the wisdom from previous ventures and the promise of something better. Professionally, I don’t think any career is easy; none of us gets a free ride. Some challenges are easier to overcome than others and we all have to find our own unique and special way. Ultimately though, for me, every challenge, even the ridiculously difficult ones have been overcome by sheer perseverance. It always came down to, “I’m going to make this work, no matter what!” The lessons this has taught me are: 1. Take a break if you need to, but never turn back. 2. It’s never a straight line… no matter how simple it looks. 3. Every new project is like doing a renovation on an old house … it’s the old adage of “opening up a wall, you never know what you’ll find”. 4. People are your greatest source of wealth in life, relationships your biggest asset, and really the only thing worth fighting for. 5. It’s never done. You never finish. And there are exactly enough hours in the day for everything and everyone who is really important to you. What I’d really like the world to know is that kindness matters. Compassion matters. And artist expression matters. By extension, supporting the arts matters, and not just financially, but by support the creative artistic, sensitive souls in your life. Artists put on the outside what everyone carries on the inside.
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.
My best friend did visit about a year and a half ago, and it was so wonderful to be able to show her around “my world”. I’ve lived in Beverly Hills for the last 5 or 6 years, so this is always the starting place. I love the Boulevard at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel for cocktails and The Polo Lounge for pure Hollywood nostalgia and a truly amazing dinner. But LA has got so many cool and wonderful places away from the glitz and glamour of Rodeo Dr. We spent a day just wandering Santa Monica Beach, from a walk down to Muscle Beach in Venice, all the way up to Back on The Beach Cafe…. super casual lunch spot with chairs in the sand. Although not right in LA, we did spend an afternoon at Huntington Pier and another sunset at Moonshadows in Malibu. Of course no visit to LA would be complete without a trip to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She absolutely LOVED seeing all the stars on the walk and the hand and footprints in front of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. I even managed to get tickets to be in the live audience at a Jimmy Kimmel show! We just couldn’t fit everything in a one week trip! I’m looking forward to her next visit when the city opens up again.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There have really been so many over the years, it’s hard to know where to begin. First and foremost I guess would the acting, dance and singing teachers and coaches I’ve had over the years. So many of them were so patient and tenaciously held my feet to the fire and created space for learning and growth to take place. (lol! even when I was really terrible!) Next would be the creators – directors, producers, creative directors and more, who have taken the leap to develop any and every project I’ve ever worked on. Without those people, none of this would happen. Also a big shoutout to casting directors I’ve worked with over the years, who have been repeatedly welcoming and brought me back in time and again. And most recently my agents at Sovereign Talent in LA, Luli Batista and Tracey Michaels who have been rockstars in persevering in spite of everything that’s gone on in the last year.