Monthly Archives: March 2012

My Animoto Video for ‘The Vulture Project’

Just a little video teaser for my novel, The Vulture Project …

My Animoto Video.

Richard Grieco: Not Just Another Pretty Face!

RIchard Grieco from 23 Jump Street :Cropped by...

RIchard Grieco from 23 Jump Street :Cropped by Magnus Manske 12:47, 6 October 2007 (UTC) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This story is for all you movie and television buffs out there. You know exactly who you are! You had full sized posters up on the walls and doors of your bedrooms. You bought anything with your favorite movie or TV star’s image on it. If they endorsed any product, you just had to buy it for yourself. You couldn’t wait to rush home from school to watch your favorite show and it really didn’t matter if it was a re-run or not. If it was a movie, you saved up your money just so you could see your favorite star on the big screen. You would have walked several miles to the movie theater if you had to or possibly even rode your bike (back when it was actually safe to do so). There wasn’t anything or anyone that would stop you from watching your favorite movie star on the big screen or small screen as well.

For some of you ladies out there in Movie and TV dreamland, Richard Grieco may have been one of your favorite actors. He was one of mine too, not because I have any particular reason other than he was from my hometown, or because of his dark, broodingly handsome Irish/Italian good looks he somehow was born with instead of me getting them. Mostly, I think it was because he was a regular kind of guy growing up in the same town as I did and although he is a few years younger than myself, I could relate to him in many ways. We were both born in Watertown, NY. We both came from a relatively large close-knit family, we both liked sports and music. He liked art and poetry as did I. We are both Aries and have half Irish blood. We both loved Italian food too! Mostly, we both liked acting and were very creative individuals.

Although Richard was not a personal friend, and was not in any of my classes, he was one of us. Just a local kid with a big dream who went out into the big, scary world and proved that he was more than just a pretty face. He was named one of the best faces of the 80’s after landing modeling contracts with Giorgio Armani, Calvin Klein, and Chanel. Richard went on to appear in over 36 movies and television shows as well. He even helped produce his own TV show, Booker. He even got a comedic stint on Who’s The Boss as Tony Danza‘s long lost Italian cousin. Who could forget 21 Jump Street or If Looks Could Kill ?

Hollywood is well know for chewing up actors and spitting them back out as wanna-be’s, has-beens and never will be’s. The streets of Hollywood are living proof of all the broken-hearted people that showed up, and gave it their best shot, but fell far short. They are the waiters and waitresses that wait on the successful actors. They are the bellhops that carry their luggage and the porters that park their fancy sports cars. And some are the clever ones that sell ‘Maps to the Stars Homes’ in Beverly Hills, Belaire, or up in the Hollywood Hills far above the working class and tourists. Everyone plays their role well, just like in the movies.

Richard Grieco was not among those statistics. He came to Hollywood and conquered the ‘City of So-Called Angels’. A town referred to at one time as Tinsletown. You see, Richard Grieco was not just another pretty face in Hollywood, he also had plenty of talent and perseverance. And possibly, just a wee bit of that local Irish luck was with him wherever his journeys took him in life.

Ok, I will agree that his charming good looks most likely didn’t hurt his chances of success!

What Blogging Has Taught Me

I thought this blog was very interesting and thought-provoking and really struck a chord with me as I can relate to most of the reasons why Kari blogs. Check this out and see how many reasons fit your reasons for blogging!

What Blogging Has Taught Me.

Viggo Mortensen Goes Viral

Viggo Mortensen en Sitges 2009

Viggo Mortensen en Sitges 2009 (Photo credit: IvanG)

It came as no big surprise when a former classmate of mine from several decades ago became one of Hollywood‘s most admired and respected actors of this generation. He has acted in more than 30 movies and been nominated for an Academy Award, aka the Oscar. A funny coincidence is that I spent three fabulous, yet frustrating years in Hollywood trying desperately to break into the same craft as Viggo had, only to return to New York to pursue other avenues, one of which was the desire to write novels one day. This was a childhood dream I held close to my heart  but never pursued until later in my life.

Fast forward to 2012. I now have my first novel published and it finally lands on Amazon as a Kindle ebook as well as a paperback version. The Vulture Project  is not up for any top awards or nominations, but Trish Morgan, the heroine who saves the day along side Harley, the somewhat reclusive Vietnam veteran should receive some adulation, at least in my eyes. Who knows, maybe they will come to life in a Hollywood film adaptation one day in the not too distant future and maybe, just maybe, I can convince Viggo to star as Harley and bring my characters to life on the big screen someday and perhaps he will pick up his long overdue Oscar! And maybe, just maybe, I can pick one up too for best film of the year.

Nothing wrong with dreaming big, right? After all, Viggo did and look where he ended up! So, my advice to anyone out there who is constantly being told to stop dreaming and be realistic is simple. If you have an unfulfilled dream no matter what it may be and no matter how big it may seem, I say go for it! What do you have to lose? Don’t let the sun go down on your dreams. You may even end up going viral and impact the world through your individual contribution. If Viggo can do it, then why can the rest of us accomplish our dreams and goals.

Yes, my friends, Viggo, my humble, unassuming former classmate from the past has gone viral…

Intro to ‘Adventures in Hollywood’

My adventures in Hollywood started out in the early 80′s after the acting bug grabbed hold of me while I was attending junior college in New York. I had signed up for a Theatre History class but when I showed up for class on the first day I found myself enrolled in a Acting I course because there apparently wasn’t enough interest in the History of Theatre so the Professor simply offered us an alternative. I was petrified and excited at the same time! Long story short, after two years of college I decided to head out to Hollywood and follow in the Fonz’s footsteps! I had two suitcases, a one-way bus ticket to Los Angeles, a lofty dream, and not much common sense I suppose.

I finally decided to share some of my adventures and highlights via my blog that I humbly refer to as The Hollywood Contender. As in, “I coulda been a contender“ a line made famous by Marlon Brando‘s character, Terry Malloy, from On the Waterfront. “You don’t understand. I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am, let’s face it. It was you, Charley. “

So, I hope you enjoy my stories as I recall them for you, my little gems as I refer to them. My collection of great memories that I feel honored to share with my readers.