We had the good fortune of connecting with Sam Puskas and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sam, we’d love to start by asking you about lessons learned. Is there a lesson you can share with us?
Everyone’s a star! But exclusively to themselves. As soon as you accept that you are only the main character in your own life, and there’s an equally attention-worthy, driven human being standing right beside you to whom you’re just as much a background player as they appear to be from your point of view, suddenly you’ll be enjoying a much smoother cooperation with your colleagues. My father’s credo. But it is a notion you can’t fully comprehend until you experience it on your own. Letting yourself see someone else’s path beside yours on your horizon will just widen your perspective. It’ll never make you less goal oriented or self efficient. I had to learn that not putting yourself in your peers’ shoes upon confrontation, or making sure to be looking at both sides of the coin certainly makes you a weak team player. And acting is just as much a close cooperation as Online Marketing Management or Graphic Design – what I did for 10 year before starting my acting career.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Primarily I work as an actor. But I’ve never been brave enough to only have a single root in the ground, I always try to be involved in as many things as I possibly can. Careerwise I mostly rely on two main pillars, these are two attributes of mine. My thankfully formidable stamina and indestructible will to create an inclusive, safe, good family-like atmosphere while working towards a common goal. Of course these traits might set me apart from some of my peers, but naturally in a good work environment one team member’s great characteristics complete another’s great ones and it all just adds up to success. I’ve learned that the only key to being in peace with yourself and the world is self-analysis. In my humble opinion you will not find yourself traveling far from home, that you should do if you’re seeking someone else. You will find yourself by listening inwards. Accepting what you find there, and working hard on what you find unacceptable. And when you really, thoroughly know yourself, everything suddenly just falls into place.
For all those tireless career builders out there, folks, If you’ll allow me, I’ve got one other thought for your consideration. Although we all have our dreams and aspirations, at the end of the day, we all serve the micro-community we’re part of. And that community always speaks to us if we choose to listen. It seldom misses to whisper what it needs from us. If we remain flexible, and observant like a child, we’ll all find our way. Even if it’s not the one we thought we should follow.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Let’s have an exuberant welcome dinner at Le Petit Paris in DTLA, then head down to Malibu Lagoon State Beach the next day, in an attempt to escape the strength of the scorching sun. Brunch at Lily’s in Point Dume Village early afternoon and a quick stop on our way home for some mind-bending dessert at Millet Crepe in Japantown. The Creme Brûlée Crepes will instantly make you forget about all your problems, just so you can add one to the list right after you finish, having gained 5 pounds. Wrapping up the day at the movies at Universal CityWalk, then it’s the Getty’s, to make the next 2 days memorable as well. Both the Center and the Villa deserve a full day. You can’t digest so much beauty and culture comfortably in a shorter period of time. Sunrise from the Venice Canals, sunsets from Hilltop Park on Signal Hill, and we’ll only be talking about this week on rainy days to come.
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?
First rule of climbing: Respect the mountain! You might be able to get to the top, but the hill is bigger and older than you, be cautious. It is inevitable to fall back from time to time. But what happens if you’ve got a solid wall at your back, following you as you climb. Then you won’t hit your head falling back. You just lose momentum and learn where or how not to step. Then you go on. Stronger, wiser. What is this wall? Supporters. If you’ve got’em, you’re pretty much safe, safe to climb towards your most far fetched goals. I’ve always been inexpressibly lucky in that regard. I’ve had a strong wall of supporters starting with my family of course, my astonishing parents, Juli Básti and Tamás Puskás, my brother David Puskas, without whom I do not know how far along would I be on my road. My incredible warrior among managers, Anthony Leones and risk-taking agent, Michael Zanuck. My fantastic boss, Judit Nahalka at Budapest’s Central Theatre that’s been my second home for ten character building years. My craft perfecting, unforgettable mentors at New York Film Academy – Mary T. Sala and Michael Connors to highlight two who I was deeply in awe of – and my peers naturally who became dear-dear friends, Chris and Josh Villegas, Pietro Barba, Giulia Asquino, Lu Mendoza and the list goes right on. Always ends tho with my sister from another mister, Dalma Keresztes. So my mobile wall is strong. It’s them. I’m free to climb safely.
Carla Fresquet, David Puskas, Nora Trokan, Dalma Keresztes.