Jesus or Oscar?
“Would you do a gay scene?”
“Would you mind being a gangster?”
“Would you get naked?”
“Would you cross-dress?”
“Would you do a sex scene?”
At the age of 8 I decided I was going to be an actor. This made life easy and hard. Easy, because I felt like I was able to cruise through the education system. I was safe in the knowledge that whatever happened between Year 4 to Year 11 was irrelevant because I was destined for greatness. So every morning on the way to school my only thought was “How much fun can I have today?” Learning was seldom on the agenda.
I recently listened to two Christian performers in an interview. The first stated they actively refuse roles that are not necessarily in line with their faith, and the other admitted to refusing to kiss their on-stage partner as they did not feel it was appropriate to be intimate with anyone other than their future husband/wife.
I listened intently to both of them and being a Christian myself I could see exactly where they were coming from…but I did not agree. Nonetheless, it was a glowing reminder to me about how difficult the future could be and opened another thought in my head.
If it is not my colour holding me back from something it will be my faith…
Felt mad to even type that one.
My question now is, ‘How far do we take our craft and faith? At which point do we seperate our character from OUR character?
For me; I have no qualms with playing a character that is not neccersarily a reflection of my faith; nor do I have an issue in kissing/touching my onscreen/stage partner. Is that not why we love acting? Is portraying someone completely different to us while seeing the world from their perspective not at the heart of what we do? As performers should we not want to be pushed? Challenged? Even conflicted?
Of course this is all a grey area and although we may be believers our sensibilities and boundaries are different. We know ourselves better than anyone, so for those of us in the arts and in Christ we have to navigate not only our moral compass; but our spiritual one.