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modeling & talent ● breaking into showbiz By Adam Hill Curiosity Didn’t Kill the Cat An inquisitive nature can help you reach new heights I n spite of what the old adage says, curiosity didn’t kill the cat. It enlightened the cat. I may not have the answers to all the questions about living a successful life, but I’m confident in my belief that curiosity is vital to my growth, not only as an actor, but also as a human being. Recently, the wonderful young actor, Dev Patel, was nom- inated for an Academy Award for his powerful portrayal of real life Indian man Saroo Brierley in the movie Lion. The film is the inspirational tale of a young man who spends three years researching, and then traveling throughout India in search of his birth mother. Appearing on television, Dev Patel was asked by a moderator what an actor needs to do in order to portray a real person. He responded by saying, “What we do as actors is explore what it’s like to be human.” He had to identify with the humanity of the original Saroo. I was im- mediately taken with this statement. It immediately sparked my curiosity. Was he referring to empathy? I quickly looked up “empathy” in the dictionary. Empathy: The ability to understand and share the feelings of another. This is what I always believed empathy to be. I searched further. Another definition was: seeing with the eyes of an- other; hearing with the ears of another; feeling with the heart of another. My curiosity led me to another wonderful definition of what an actor does. We see, hear, and feel through the eyes, ears, and hearts of our characters. Not long ago, a student gave me a copy of the autobiogra- phy of Robert Vaughn. Robert Vaughn was an actor whose main fame came in the 1960”s when he was the star of the ex- tremely popular television series The Man from U.N.C.L.E. He also costarred in some of the most successful films of that time. The Magnificent Seven and Bullitt are two examples. His last films were 2016”s Gold Star and The American Side. His 22 PAGEANTRY RobeRt Vaughn last television performance was in 2015’s Law and Order: Spe- cial Victims Unit. Robert Vaughn’s first television performance was on Medic, a big hit in 1955. Before television, he was a stage performer. He continued to work throughout his career on the stage. That is 62 years of almost continuous work in films and on TV and over 70 years in show business. I am always curious as to what makes a successful working career. I immediately googled one of today’s most successful actors, Bradley Cooper, to see if there were any similarities be- tween the two actors. Indeed, there were. Both actors loved the craft. They diligently studied different methods to acquire the best acting skills available. They both did stage work. They both cherished an education, not only going to college, but returning for further education after graduation. Robert Vaughn even returned a third time to get a doctorate while in his forties. Robert Vaughn persisted in his career goal throughout his long life, and Bradley Cooper persists to this day. Robert Vaughn, who passed away last November, understood the im- portance of being constantly diligent and worked at main- SHOWBIZ Continued on page 64