How did you get started in acting?
I’ve been acting my whole life. Just before it was called “make believe “and I didn’t get paid. I started acting on stage in high school. I played ‘third boy from the left’ in my school production of Macbeth.
Your major career influence?
I remember watching the Film “A Bronx Tale” when I was young and ever since then I wanted to be Calogero (the main character). My main mentor right now is Ingrid Veninger; the way she makes films is how I want to make films in the future.
Best advice you’ve received?
Act before you think.
Toss up between Joaquin Phoenix and Mark Ruffalo.
If you weren’t an actor, what would you be?
A director or D.O.P. I love film and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.
You’ve been named a ‘TIFF Rising Star’ – how did you first hear?
It’s very exciting! I first heard a month ago. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I checked the call display to make sure it wasn’t a joke.
You’re staring in The Animal Project – tell me a bit about your role in the film..
I play a character named Jason who is part of a troupe of misfit actors. Jason gets thrown into “The Animal Project” when he takes interest in Mira (a girl in the troupe). At first Jason is very reluctant to participate in the crazy project, but eventually he gives in and positive things in his life start to develop.
What are you most looking forward to about the festival?
I’m excited to meet film makers and speak to them about their development and motivations. That and seeing a lot of Films!
A place in Toronto you’d be proud to take people to?
What’s your favourite restaurant?
Marinella’s on College or Caffino’s on King.
Your favourite Toronto neighbourhood and why?
Little Portugal. I grew up there. And I love my heritage.
Least favourite thing about Toronto?
Toronto “fair-weather” sports fans…. and traffic.
A Toronto resident, other than yourself, who’s making a positive impact on the city?
I would say Jordan Tannahill. His work in the Toronto theatre scene has been so inspiring. I think it’s very important to this city for us to maintain our creative integrity. I also feel the same way about Stephen Dunn. Even though neither is from Toronto they’re both developing their work here. And that’s cool.