You never know who’s sitting behind you in Intro. to Sociology – the injured jock on crutches, the chatty sorority girl, the guy with a cold who you hope doesn’t sneeze on you. Lucky for me I had Ersan Barams, an up-and-coming actor with his sights set on Hollywood. Recently I caught up with Ersan for a two-part interview. In part 1 he discusses his budding acting career, the industry, and more.
How did you get into acting?
I originally got into acting because of two reasons. My friend of 8 years, Omar Evans, was originally into acting and found a clipping from a newspaper for an extras agency and showed it to me and I got interested in the idea of acting. Also, coincidently Omar was with me as well, when I went to see Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, I remember telling myself, “wow wouldn’t it be cool if I acted on film.” That’s how I got into acting.
A few years ago you were on the Discovery Channel reality show Oddities. What did you learn from that experience?
What I learned from being on Oddities was how “Hollywood” or “the business” really works. It isn’t just about acting. More effort and work goes into actually making a production happen, getting approved by the network executives as to what can and cannot be put on camera. Also it gave me a sense of how a set really works, and gave me a feeling of naturalness on camera.
What’s the best piece of acting advice you’ve ever received?
To act is to not act, rather to become the character in question.
Which actors have careers you would like to emulate?
Jim Carrey and Leonardo DiCaprio are two of my favorite actors of all time; their work as artists continues to inspire me to continue to pursue acting as a profession.
Do you prefer doing comedy or drama?
Oddly enough I prefer drama over comedy. I feel that my range as an actor can increase when I do more dramatic roles rather than comedy, but comedy is in my being so I can never steer too far away from comedy.
Could you see yourself doing a major sketch comedy show like SNL someday?
Yes, most of my jokes and an overall sense of who I am came from watching Saturday Night Live, also All That on Nickelodeon. To actually be a player on SNL would be a great honor and give me a great feeling to know that I am on a show that other great comedians were on.
What’s your dream role, and who would you like to work with?
I don’t really have a dream role per se, but winning an Academy Award is one award I would love to win and be so honored as an artist to achieve; so whatever role wins me that award, then that will be my dream role.
Jim Carrey hands down. He’s still young and I would love to work with him and learn from him.
Make sure you check back tomorrow for part 2 of my sit-down with Ersan where he talks about his new sketch comedy show “Mild & Content”. In the meantime, follow him on Twitter @ersanbarams and subscribe to his YouTube channel. Also, check out Ersan in the teaser trailer below for the noir short “Indemnity”.