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Life & Work with Ido Samuel

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ido Samuel.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I grew up dreaming of coming to America one day and becoming an actor. Every film that I loved, I used to imagine myself in that role, watching and learning from what the big actors did. I studied acting with various acting teachers and schools for over six years, did many shorts that some did really well in festivals around the world and in 2012 a feature film I acted in won best film in Israel and was Israel’s pick for the Oscars and a short I was the lead in was doing extremely well in the U.S I decided this is the time to come to Hollywood and try to make my dream a reality, Here I was lucky to meet and work with some very talented people on projects that did extremely well such as DIRTY BOMB directed by Valerie McCaffrey in which I was nominated for best lead actor in a number of festivals. And suppose to be in a number of feature films which are waiting till it be safe to shoot again.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Not at all especially in 2020 when I was supposed to act in two feature films and have a great year career-wise, all were canceled or pushed because of the pandemic which takes a lot from you as an actor who sacrifices so much to get a chance to show your craft and once you finally do it disappears and you need to keep the hope and work on your craft, hoping the next chance will come soon. It happened to me a lot of times in my career when I thought I got to a place where finally I’m going to “make it” and then something or in my experience even someone prevents that from happening. You need to have a very thick skin in this business which is not always easy. After finishing the mandatory three years in the Israeli Defense Forces, I started studying acting in almost every acting school and workshop I could. I studied for about five years then decided I was ready to start auditioning. I booked about thirty short films as the lead which really was the best school for acting I could ask for, you learn stuff on set that they never teach you in school. I loved it.

After that, I acted in some bigger projects including “Fill The Void” which ended up winning best picture in Israel and another short film I did, “The Divide” which was screened in festivals across the US. I always dreamed about coming to Hollywood and with those two films, it felt like the right time to make the move. In the US. I didn’t know anyone in the industry so I had to start from nothing which is hard because LA is all about who you know and when you don’t know anyone and hardly get opportunities, you know you have to kill it every time. You can’t be just ok. It’s very hard for any actor in LA to make it but for a foreigner, it’s even harder. Being away from my family is the hardest part and I try to facetime with them everyday but it’s not the same as being with them.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I’m an actor so it’s hard to answer this question. I try to bring authenticity to each role and give my all. I did various of roles in the past from a kidnapped soldier, orthodox Jew, holocaust prisoner, mentally challenged, a knight to even Simba in the lion king. So I can’t say there’s one thing I specialize at. Even though in most of my roles, I’m either a soldier or get kidnapped or both. So maybe that’s my specialty, lol. I recently acted in a music video for ILLENIUM’s new song HEARTS ON FIRE, And the director wanted to shoot this story in a very cinematic and poetic way, telling a story that compliments the beautiful song “Hearts On Fire”. He really accomplished his goal and I am proud of my work in it.

What was your favorite childhood memory?
Going to my grandparents after school and spending time with them. My parents used to work long hours so after school me and my twin sister used to go to my grandparent’s house, where we had lunch (the best home-cooked meals ever), played and learned a lot from them. Their house always was a warm and welcoming place and my best memories as a kid were from there.

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Image Credits:

Andres Solorzano Ryan West

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