Summer is entering its August lingering and relaxing phase, when we know it will be over soon and we feverishly try to grab the last sun rays. Here in Maine we know it is the last frontier before winter… (Well, almost: I love the October colors too! But there is a old saying that goes; ‘In Maine there are two seasons: July and winter”)
This July I was lucky to be able to read a lot and reflect on my path, purpose, and life by discovering incredible books and articles. I’ll share with you an amazing one:
Paulo Coelho’s new book: The Winner Stands Alone about the ruthless world of Cannes Film Festival
I have been at Cannes Film Festival several times. I even walked the red carpet for a film with Claire Denis, Chocolat. Everything Paulo Coelho says about the Cannes festival and the film business is true. It is so exactly what I once lived through, he could have written about my own story. In this book, he uncovers the most dangerous, destructive and insidious threat an actor can face in the business: the desire to be famous.
Glamour, and fame are the two most vicious demons an actor battles with. I would defy any aspiring actor to say that wanting to be famous never crossed his or her mind. Yet, if you work for that purpose, you will quickly find that it is empty. You will fight years to attain a goal that forever escapes you. It will never be enough. It’s an addiction. If you get wide coverage on your new film, you’ll want the cover of Vogue; you got invited to the Academy Awards? You’ll want a nomination. You got nominated? You’ll want an Oscar. You got an Oscar? You’ll want two, plus the Golden Globe. And when you finally reach what you think is the top, you’ll only find solitude and boredom.
Your purpose as an actor should be so much deeper than fame and glory. It should be a message of love and truth you want to give the world. Whether you choose to show what lack of love can lead to in certain roles, or what love can conquer in others, there should always be a higher purpose in your work. The gift of laughter with a comedy can help a depressed person. A film with a cause can move public opinion and lead to a change of policies. A war movie can denounce horror. Theatre has the same potential depth and you will even have more contact with your public. You don’t have a role? Take your talent to a retirement home or a low-income suburb school. The looks of awe on your audience faces will reward you more than many B-movie contracts.
You, as a performer, have tremendous power to express purpose through your work and change the consciousness of the world. You are the Living Work of Art and the one bringing in the energy that is needed now. Don’t forget that in your next audition. You are not there to become a star, but to shine like one, with the light of God’s will.
Art will save the world.
- Emmanuelle Chaulet, CRPL3 acting coach, energy awareness counselor, author A Balancing Act