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Posted May 26, 2018 by Kareem Williams in Featured Interviews
 
 

(New Exclusive Interview) Actor Gregg Daniel Talks Starring Role’s In Jerico And Truth or Dare |


(New Exclusive Interview) Actor Gregg Daniel Talks Starring Role’s In Jerico And Truth or Dare

1.Who is Gregg Daniel?
 
Gregg Daniel is the son of an Caribbean immigrant Father (who later
became a citizen) & an American Mom from the South. Both parents
traveled to New York City for greater opportunities where they met,
married and had my Brother & I. Growing up in one of the most
exciting cites in the world gave me exposure to the Arts in all it’s
many forms (dance, music, acting, etc.). New York had a strong
influence on me. I initially wanted to be a Jazz musician & still play
Jazz guitar. However, once the acting bug bit me, there was no
turning back. I studied Acting at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts
where I graduated & have been working ever since. My wife is also an
actress with a similar background, our daughter attends USC
majoring in communications & minoring in Dance.
2. What does acting do for you emotionally?
 
Acting allows me to access areas of my personality & life which I
might have otherwise ignored or shut down The craft of the actor is to
honestly recreate, inhabit & present a character. The only way to do
this is draw on areas of your life (painful & otherwise) which be similar
to your character and to use your own vivid imagination to create a
connection with a character.
3.Tell us about your role in the film, “Jerico” and how it came about?
 
Jerico is a compelling coming of age story involving two friends who
experience change in a small southern town after the Civil Rights act
is passed in 1964. I play Thomas Cook, a poor but ambitious Black
farmer who is struggling to achieve a better life for his family. When a
better paying position becomes available at the plant where I work,
I’m denied the opportunity to apply because of my race. Thomas
becomes angry at the denial & for perhaps the first time in his life,
speaks out about the injustice. Sadly, Thomas pays a terrible price as
one of his sons is murdered because of his Father’s defiance.
The filmmakers contacted me thru my Agents after seeing my work
as Reverend Daniels on the HBO series, “True Blood.” Once I read
the screenplay and saw how they managed to incorporate humor into
such a painful & incendiary situation, I wanted to join. The fact that
veteran actress, Irma P.Hall had signed on to play my Mother was a
big draw as well.
4. Since Jerico is a period piece (1964) and occurs in the deep south,
you need to be historically accurate for the story to achieve
authenticity.You need to use all the details of the period including
clothing, houses, automobiles, etc if you wish to paint the world these
characters live in. Even the dialect used by the inhabitants of the
region needs to be authentic.
5.You also have a starring role in Universal Studios film, Truth or
Dare.How is the role different from the role you have in “Jerico?”
 
Truth or Dare is a contemporary suspense horror film that happens
when a group of College students spend their spring break in Mexico,
They are lured by a stranger into playing a seemingly innocent game
of Truth or Dare. However, the game turns dead as the spirit of the
game is inhabited by an evil spirit. I play Detective Kranis who is
desperately trying to prevent the College friends from dying. I’m
frustrated by the lack of information they’re giving me but persevere
in spite of it. Both Detective Kranis & Thomas Cook are men who are
acting from a sense of concern for others. They’re both
compassionate individuals who want to guide & protect people they
care about.
6. What is the biggest lesson you learned as a kid that has helped
you in life as an adult?
 
The biggest lesson I learned as a kid is the firm belief that if you set
your mind on a goal & commit your all to it, you can achieve it. My
Parents didn’t come from an Arts background, yet here I am today
living & working as a Professional actor. I was passionate enough
about developing a professional career that I devoted every resource I
had to achieve it. Obstacles encountered along the way to your dreams
are there to test how much you want it & how to overcome
them
7. What is the hardest thing in your life you had to overcome and how
did you overcome it?
 
The death of a loved one is always a milestone in one’s life. I had an
older brother who was a musician. We were very close. He died as a
result of complications from diabetes in 2004. Clearly, losing him was
one of the great losses in my life. It was a gradual process for me to
come to terms with his passing. However, at some point I remember
the passion he had for music & how much joy it gave him. I also recall
how he supported me in my journey to become an actor. It gives me
great solace to know he would have been proud of me & without a
doubt, my biggest fan.
8. Where do you see your brand & career in the next 5 years?
 
I’ve been expanding into directing a lot. I recently won an NAACP
Theatre Award for direction of a popular August Wilson play,
“Fences”. I’ve directed other highly successful stage productions in
Los Angeles and would eventually like to direct in theaters across the
country. I’d also like to segue into directing film & television. I love
using the other aspects of creativity directing affords me, from sets,
costumes, lights, sound & wardrobe, it’s a wonderful challenge to pull
them all together.

Kareem Williams