I'm an actor, and therefore have kind of a strange relationship with my own body. Since I've got a current headshot that presents me to casting directors with a certain 'look', I can't really deviate from that look lest I walk into an audition and present a different product than casting is expecting. Getting a significantly different haircut means I'd have to drop a couple hundred bucks on new pics. Since I only get new shots every couple years or so, I'm pretty locked into a certain look for that period. This can get a little insufferable - occasionally it can feel a little bit like I don't actually own my own face.
When I wrapped on Stage Fright, my hair was reeeal long. Like, significantly longer than my headshots - in the movie I'd essentially been playing a guy that's supposed to be a Disney Prince (thanks for buying me as that, casting!) and flowing locks just made sense. However, when I'd got back from shooting I really wanted to get back to a shorter cut. I'd also just recently seen the movie Beginners, which, in addition to being a fantastic drama, features Ewan MacGregor with a totally rad haircut.
|Rad haircut, Obi-Wan. Photo Credit: Beginners - copyright Alliance Films|
So, after confirming with my agent that taking a little more off that back and sides didn't constitute an extreme makeover, I took the plunge. I figured, hey, it's December, the industry slows down anyway, it'll have grown the inch or so back to normal by pilot season. Despite this, I was still a little worried - change, even subtle change, is scary when it's tangentially related to your profession. I walked into my barber with more than a hint of trepidation.
My barber, Jason, is hilarious. An ex-pat Brit who's cut hair in Toronto's Yorkville district since the mid-eighties, sitting in his chair is consistently a laugh and a half - the man wears a tie and a fake ocelot tail to work. He invented a sound-reducing 'pillow hat'. Comedy all around. He was very surprised to see me more than once in four months - but quite excited to see me try something a little different after giving me the same haircut for years.
As the tufts fell from my head it was glorious. Jason asked if we needed to take a little bit more off the back, if we were "really committed." I responded "do it" as if ordering a nuclear strike. May god help me.
After it was all over, I was real happy. As I ran my fingers through the back of my head and looked in the mirror, I felt super confident. It felt like a really subtle change that didn't compromise my look...
...then I got an audition that Monday. Suddenly, all my doubts flew back to me. "Oh noooooes!" I thought. I'm gonna walk in and they're gonna be all like 'What did you dooooooo?!?!' and I'm never gonna work in this town again! Visions of having to explain myself and my crazyhair flew through my head the whole weekend as I prepped.
As I walked into casting on monday, I braced myself for accusations of unprofessionalism.
Casting didn't mention it once. Of course. Nothing, not even in passing - audition went super smoothly. All that worry for nothing. Actors are weird, sometimes.
Long story short, sweet haircut, bro. Also, the audition went pretty well!
Now all I need is to get some implants on my (mostly beardless) face so I can physically grow some bitchin' sideburns. That'd be rad.
|Intense. Photo Credit: Erin Gerofsky|