We had the good fortune of connecting with Jade Santana and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jade, what role has risk played in your life or career?
If I hadn’t taken a risk I wouldn’t be where I am today. I was studying for four years to get a major in Architecture and I had a job in one of the best Landscaping offices back home. Two more years and I’d be ready to go, making money, getting ready for the next steps in life and all that. But I knew I wasn’t happy, I had pictured me being a totally different person by the time I had gotten to that stage in life. I realized that I had only done what I was told to do instead of what I’ve actually always wanted to do. In a spur of the moment decision, I bought a ticket to LA and enrolled in an Acting Summer Course just to see what would come out of it. I decided to really take those two weeks to make up my mind about my future. Yes, Acting is great and all that but do I actually have a shot at it? Am I good? Is it possible to make a career out of it? And do I love it enough to risk it all in order to follow what I believe is what I was born to do? Well, it turned out that the answer was yes for all of the above. The rest is history. I quit my job, dropped out of my university, got into a couple of arguments with family members but I left and restarted my whole life. I had no idea what I was getting into, moving to a different country to pursue a career that is probably one of the hardest to do so. So, yeah, risk-taking has played a role in my life, a huge role. Sometimes I don’t even know where and how I found the courage of leaving something that was so safe and steady for something that is the complete opposite. But I don’t regret it for a day, I’d do it all over again. Sometimes it’s only by taking a risk that you’ll find the thing that makes you happy.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I have a few projects on my way that I’m really excited about! First, is the feature-length film called High Noon Harvest which will be directed by Andrew Roa. Think about the Hunger Games and Westworld coming together. I myself have a soft spot for dystopian stories and I’ve always wanted to be a part of something like that. Another project is the web series Enculturation that I’m co-creating and it’s a rom-com, another genre that has a place in my life. There’s not much I can disclose at the moment, but keep an eye out!
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.
Okay, I know this will make me sound like I’m a tourist or whatever, but I love the Griffith Observatory. Back when I was doing my summer course here, that was the place where I made up my mind that I’d move to LA, looking over the city and at the Hollywood sign. Whenever I’m feeling doubtful or questioning all this, I always go there to kinda reflect, drink some hot chocolate and watch the sunset. Always. It brings me peace and it reminds me of why I started all of this. Consequently, that’s the one spot I never leave out of the itinerary whenever I have someone visiting. It obviously is a tourist favorite and a great place for taking pictures, but it also holds a sentimental value for me.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I owe so much of my journey in LA to someone called Judith Bohannon. She was not only my biggest mentor and teacher in Acting but also my emotional support when I couldn’t support myself. I would not be the actor I am today if it wasn’t for her, but I don’t think I’d have made it in here without her either. If you think that it’s a struggle to find a place to live in this town, I’ll tell you what: it’s almost impossible for internationals. I’m not gonna get into it, but what I’m trying to get at is that when I found myself with nowhere to go, she put a roof over my head. She welcomed me and gave me a home. Not only that, she’d drive me up and down, to and from auditions, performances and interviews. She did all that for me until I was able to get back on my feet. She’s honestly an angel in disguise and my family away from home. I’ll be forever grateful for her. Thank you, MsB!
Celso Junior Foto, Garage 26, Darret Sanders