Graphic by RPP
Inspiration strikes the moment one surfs over to Jodi Lynn Thomas' twitter page. Her cover photo is a quote stating, "Be Someone You Admire." Jodi can definitely admire herself, for one thing, due to the wonderful acting career she's built.
The actress has appeared in films like Jane’s Got A Gun (alongside Natalie Portman), and Big Sky (with Bella Thorne, Kyra Sedgwick and Aaron Tveit), and television shows such as Netflix’s Longmire and The CW’s The Messengers. And this summer, you can catch Jodi starring as Pearl on AMC's series Preacher!
HYC caught up with the actress to discuss her new role, acting advice and more...
RP: Thank you so much for your time, Jodi! Why do you love being an actress?
JLT: Thank you! The list is endless. The biggest reason is probably learning about human behavior and what drives people to make the choices that they do.
RP: How did you land your first agent?
JLT: I went to a showcase in LA and didn't really hear anything back from any of the agencies there. I had submitted to a Colorado agency, and they called me right when I had gotten back. I went into their office and did a monologue. They signed me shortly after that.
RP: I think it's so cool that you've been an assistant at a talent agency - getting on the other end of the table is sort of the ideal "day job" for an actor. What kind of insight has that given you as an actress?
JLT: Agreed! It has helped me to see the bigger picture. You see how much work everyone puts into casting and submitting actors. It really is a lot of work. You know everyone is working as hard as they can and so it becomes less and less about you, as it should.
RP: Congratulations on Preacher! How did you initially get involved and what was your audition like?
JLT: Thank you! I remember it was my first audition this year. I was in a good place. I focused on playing the room and enjoying the chance to act.
RP: You play Pearl, an innocent role that contrasts against the heavy sin in the show. How did you go about creating your performance / How much did you know about Pearl's history going into it?
JLT: I just focused on surrendering to everything around me. I made choices based off of the dialogue and then followed any direction that was given to me.
RP: Did you read any of the comics that the series has been adapted from?
JLT: I have it in my bag right now and started reading it two weeks ago! I love it!
RP: Good! The show has been developed by amazing talent like Evan Goldberg, Seth Rogen and Sam Catlin. How closely do you work with them, if at all?
JLT: I mostly worked with Sam Catlin. He was very approachable and gave me a lot to work with. It was incredible getting feedback from such a talented professional.
RP: As an actress, what has been the most challenging aspect of working on this show for you?
JLT: Just not letting the fear take over, and remembering that I am worth working with all of these other amazing actors.
RP: How does working on a television show differ from other mediums?
JLT: The pace - it usually goes by a lot quicker.
RP: Throughout your career you've had the opportunity to work with amazing actors like Natalie Portman and Kyra Sedgwick. What have you learned from being on set with such acclaimed talent and have you ever received advice from any of them?
JLT: I learned so much from watching them perform in person. It is different than seeing them on TV. You really see the work that they put in. Something that stood out is that they take care of themselves - it is easy to forget to do that sometimes.
RP: Can you tell us about your upcoming film Priceless as well?
JLT: Yes! We just got news that we are getting a national theatrical release in October of this year! The project brings to light the truth and dangers of sex trafficking. It is a passion project and I hope it opens up a dialogue. I hope it opens some eyes and that it brings some love to those who need it.
RP: Sounds great. Any other upcoming projects you'd like to share?
JLT: I did a short film with Tony Todd last year that will be playing at the Denver Comic Con called 'Broken Cross’.
RP: To end on an inspiring note, what is your best piece of advice for aspiring actors?
JLT: Love yourself. Nothing is more important than how you feel about yourself and your choices. Work on your inner self as much as your art. It matters. You matter as much as your career.
Make sure to watch Jodi on AMC's Preacher and follow her on twitter @JodiLynnThomas!