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modeling & talent ● breaking into showbiz
By Adam Hill
Curiosity Didn’t Kill
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
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
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
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
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