The upsurge of a Pakistani American actor : Franklin Livingston: Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path? Living in the Midwest of the United States for nearly a decade made me feel that I was expected to spend my life in a specific stereotypical way. It began with my job at the local Christian church that helped me get settled in the U.S. I was astonished when my supervisor asked me why I needed to go out and have a nice dinner, once in a while, when I had tin can soups at the place I was living at. The senior pastor of the same church explained to me that people from my background should NOT even consider dating or having a family life because we don’t understand relationships and people from the Middle East could die at any given moment. In my opinion, they were basically stating that my life and people like me should not expect to progress any further than just being sacrificial lambs. We are not entitled to normal lives and should never experience it. We are less than the standard and lucky to participate at all. Discover additional info at Franklin Livingston actor.
What makes Franklin Livingston different? Franklin has been described as a living legend. His legendary persona comes from his unique and creative ideas mixed with his diverse cultural upbringing, world travels, his ability to relate to people of diverse socioeconomic class, and his teachable spirit. He is also comparable to World’s best content creators like Charlie Chaplin, Rowan Atkinson, and Chuck Lorre. The unfortunate reality that hit Franklin is that he came to birth when American film and television largely undermines the creativity of people with Non-White accents and skin color. Classic Hollywood still doesn’t consider people of color as intelligent, dynamic, and in-demand as someone of the Caucasian race. However, Franklin is motivated and getting started to prove that the paradigm of racism among American actors is long gone!
Franklin is a thoroughly trained actor and filmmaker who completed an apprenticeship right out of high school in videography. Since he grew up in an artistic household, Franklin already had significant exposure to acting and singing. Later, he learned about cameras, light, sound, preparations to shoot, footage delivery, editing, mixing, and coloring. Franklin ended up acquiring formal training at New York University. From working with a myriad of diverse cinematographers and technicians, he has learned about various lenses, lights, cameras, and audio equipment which has helped him develop a great eye on the subject of digital storytelling.
For our readers that may be interested in acting, filmmaking, and producing, what advice can you give entrepreneurs just starting out in the industry? Be sure to get the right educational foundation. Research acting schools that you are considering. When you have completed your education there, be sure you never stop self-training. In what ways has the Covid-19 pandemic had an effect your career in the movie industry?Speaking as both an actor that has auditioned with other actors, that turned out to not be so great when we got on set, and as a producer, auditions that are done mostly via zoom now, are awful for picking up on so many of the meaningful but more subtle details that you notice when auditioning in person. In audition rooms, you can see the person enter, you see how they walk and stand. Were their hip sockets relaxed, shoulders relaxed, jaw relaxed? Do they look the part?
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life? Visualizing. Actualizing. There is beauty and power in these practices. However, I feel that learning to live, breathe, and exist in the moment without stressing about the future and focusing on your thoughts and feelings right now — is vital and the most valuable lesson you could ever complete. Often on the set myself or my assistants might worry about staying on schedule or getting behind, but there is no resolution without conflict, and we always claim victory when we work hard and never surrender.
Franklin not only wants to help tell realistic stories, but he also acts out these stories. He likes to be practical. With his voice, body, and skills that he has been honing for years, he can show Hollywood that they have been waiting for a strong dramatic lead like him, but they simply haven�t even realized it yet. Along with being a gifted actor, filmmaker, and producer, Franklin is an empathic person. He loves being an active member of the community through his participation in social justice-based activities. He also enjoys cooking, traveling, sightseeing, motorcycling, driving through states, and jet-skiing. Franklin has observed the way other actors with brown skin have gained some headway, but they have typically done so through a particular type of comedic role.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started this career? I hired an acting coach presuming that he was impressive because he was heavily connected with local television industry in New York. However, he would continually squander time talking trash, discussing my fees, and reminding me that because of my looks that I couldn’t possibly be the kind of actor I desired to be. One day he referred to an ethnic actor and said since he is ugly and a bit fat — that is why he got hired. He cautioned me that if I wanted to be fit and charming I still will not be hired because I could never live up to the American standards of good looks to be cast in any worthwhile projects. He told me light skin and light eyes are mandatory for popular lead roles and I had neither.
With possibilities comes challenges: Like many people who have been affected by the pandemic, Franklin is no exception. He mentions that during quarantine, he developed a couple of health conditions. He gained weight, became depressed, and started showing signs of aging. He, therefore, suggests an acting technique that supports the actors and can empathize with their emotional and cognitive state so they can have well-balanced lives. Franklin goes back and reflects on all the popular American acting schools and realizes that they affect actors emotionally or disrupt their mental well-being negatively. He mentioned it’s time for classic acting schools to revisit their curriculums and research why most actors who survive their training are introverts. They after two or three years of training, their actors end up becoming socially awkward, emotionally closed off, and distant from those community members who are not from the same professional backgrounds as them.