Style Observer

My Kingston — Hector Lincoln

Sunday, June 18, 2017

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My thoughts on strutting the runway once more at CFW were... home, home is home, sooo many new and familiar faces. Hadn't been to CFW in seven years. 2010 was my last outing. In a way it feels like giving back, especially when talking with the new faces who ask many questions, are seeking advice, and are so eager to be seen; that hunger is unmistakable and I tell them to never lose it.

The first thing I ate was... a patty and washed it down with an ice-cold Red Stripe.

The acting bug hit me when... I did my first television commercial at four years old. I had no idea what I was doing. I loved going to the National Pantomime. Indeed, I looked forward to it and would go every year. I would tell my parents that that's what I wanted to do. They started with me studying music and the piano at eight years old, and then I joined a Children's Theatre group doing plays and musicals, which led to my performing little skits and an appearance on a children's show called It's A Smart World. I took different short-term acting classes here and there until I decided to go to an acting conservatory and complete a programme at The Actors' Institute in New York City.

My most humiliating experience to date... wasn't an acting or modelling experience. I once decided to do stand-up comedy and I had a few people who were kind of pushing me. I was able to get into a few fairly well-known clubs on the circuit. I had a routine which required a keyboard in which I programmed a few sound effects to go along with specific parts of the routine. So one night, while moving along, I completely pressed the wrong buttons and somehow reprogrammed the sounds. Could I find the right sounds? I literally felt the sweat pouring under my arms, and I just wanted the floor to open up and swallow me.

I started to ad lib and off the top of my head started singing I Love You Just the Way You Are. I was devastated! Then, from the back of the room I heard an audience member shout “This moth*******r is crazy!” and started laughing, which started the entire room laughing. They thought it was part of my routine. I ended up with a huge round of applause. To this date, this has been my most humiliating and embarrassing experience.

I landed a role in The Devil Wears Prada when... David Frankel trusted Patricia Field and casting to get people in the fashion industry for specific scenes. We had seen each other at several fashion events and so when I had been submitted for the role, it was a fit.

I have appeared on Law & Order... Twice! The first time I was Carlos Martinez, a drug lord from Loredo, Texas, whose subsequent murder triggered an investigation. The second time I was Jesus, a cook who was a rape suspect, who would later be found innocent.

My next project is... a short film being filmed in Kingston, Jamaica. I'm pretty excited about the story line and working with a terrific group of Jamaican actors and Jamaican writer and director. I'm also excited to finally play a Jamaican!

What keeps me auditioning in the super-competitive world of acting... is the love of the craft. The drive to work and the opportunity to learn a new character.

My worst fear is to... die with regrets.

On the local film industry... I have a few friends who are directly working in the Jamaican film industry who would have more insight than I would. From what I know, funding is a real problem. Creatively, we as a people have the material but the funding is not there. Right direction, creatively? I would say yes, but what are the stories that get the funding? But funding a project isn't easy anywhere unless you have the right investors, and to get the right investors? There are newer innovative ways like crowd-funding sites. Believe in your project and don't give up; you never know; explore all paths available.

Dinner with five thespians living or dead would include... Bette Davis, she's incredible and is the star of my favourite film All About Eve.

— Harry Belafonte, icon. One of the few actors in the business who I can identify with and whose career broke barriers and who continues to be involved in human rights.

— Oprah. Duh, because of everything Oprah! She could probably give me the best advice ever.

— Meryl Streep! Apart from being just brilliant, I think she's probably a really fun person to be around and extremely insightful and sensitive.

— John Travolta. His career, his stories. He could probably add a lot to the dinner conversation. Secrets of success.

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