Introducing Collin Arend, a tenacious and talented actor within the community
In this article, we turn our attention to Collin Arend, a local actor making waves within his community. I asked Collin a series of questions below are his responses.
When finished with questions please attach 7-8 photos (photos of you and your work/headshots, behind the scenes etc). Take your time on this!
Tell us a little about yourself, where your from, grew up, what H.S./College you attended, etc.
Well to start off, I am a California boy. Born in San Diego, California in 1994 and spent the first 8 years of my life there. My family moved to Leicester, New York in 2002 where I went to middle and high school. The transition from sunny suburbia to the upstate rural community was quite jarring. But over my years I came to love the western NY region and made it my home.
After high school, I traveled to Orlando, Florida to attend Full Sail University. I chose Full Sail as it was one of the best film schools in the country. I absolutely loved my time at Full Sail. The school, the friends I made, the weather; all made my time there amazing.
What inspired you to get into acting? Early experiences worth sharing?
I suppose acting has always been involved in my life. My first role was apparently in a church play when I was a toddler. So, very humble beginnings. I did theater in elementary through high school.
My love for acting really emerged from two experiences. First, when I was in my sophomore year of high school, there was a communications class I elected into that was essentially teaching us to make short films. My friends and I all worked on eachothers projects and some of my favorite memories from my teenage years come from the videos and short films we created.
Second, when I entered Full Sail University, obviously everyone there is a creative filmmaker and wanted to make projects with our fellow students. I was one of the few students that wasn’t camera shy, so I quickly got cast in many classmates' projects. I began to realise I truly enjoyed being in front of the camera more than behind and that’s when I seriously started thinking about my acting career.
Talk about a time where you have faced adversity/conflict and have triumphed.
When it comes to conflict on set, I’m sure every actor and filmmaker has more than one story. For me, in my years just out of university, I got myself casted in a handful of indie short films in Upstate New York. On one of these sets in particular, I bumped heads with the director several times. But it was our last day on set where the director and frankly the whole crew disregarded the safety of myself and my fellow actors. It remains one of the only times I had to lay it down with the director and tell him, "I’m not going to put myself or the other actors in danger. We are going to do it our way in which we feel safe, or I’m driving myself and the other actors home and you can find a new cast."
The director sheepishly accepted our demands, we got the last shots, and we wrapped and parted ways. Especially now, I think it’s important for actors to speak up when they feel unsafe or uncomfortable. It’s unethical and dangerous for a director or crew to ask you to do what you deem as such.
What do you believe sets you apart from other actors?
What sets me apart from other actors? This is a tough one. I would say my passion for creating a character and storytelling. I’m always looking for the smallest moments that can add a bit of spice to any character I portray. I love building a character and diving into their mannerisms, their thoughts, their quirks just to make them really feel alive.
Do you have other interests or hobbies?
For most of my career, my hobbies have been my job. But since the pandemic started I’ve been trying to broaden my range of hobbies. I love keeping active so I’ve been gravitating towards activities like hiking, volleyball, sword fighting, archery, swimming, and bowling. I also have a love for Dungeons and Dragons, which I highly recommend all actors try out at some point as it is a great acting exercise. I’m a colossal nerd, what can I say?
Any projects you have out or or currently working on?
I am currently acting in a handful of indie short films in the Rochester area. I’ve also been getting a good amount of commercial gigs over the past month. Most of my time has been dedicated to my passion project. I’m currently creating a medieval fantasy webseries called Paladin: The Brotherhood. We are looking to release our first season on Youtube this spring and will be pitching the series to several networks later this year.
Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years?
In the next five years, I hope to be getting more consistent acting work. Right now, acting is a little under 50% of my income. I would love nothing more than to be able to pay my bills just through acting. I hope to find myself an agent or manager, perhaps join SAG but still not sure when to join. I also hope to get more work on the west coast to give me an excuse to visit my hometown of San Diego more often.
What advice can you give in regards to individuals looking to enter your line of work?
If I could give anyone looking to get into the acting field a piece of advice, I suppose it would be; if you truly want this to be your career, be prepared to sacrifice alot of time and energy for it. Study as much as you can and do your research before any gig. And if you really want to be a consistently working actor, you have to give it your all.
A bit more practical advice would be, being a considerate and respectful actor is often more appreciated than being the most experienced. Actors and crew members want to work with others that are fun and easy to work with on set.
How can we follow along in your journey? YouTube? Social media? Sites?