Quality Quarantine Crime Drama

I haven’t owned a suit in years.  I’ve enjoyed wearing them, but my weight has fluctuated so much here and there the last decade that I never made the investment.  Plus, between slacks-and-a-polo car sales and nobody-sees-you-anyway radio careers, I didn’t have much need for a full suit.  When I got serious about this new career, not only did I know that I would require at least one suit for proper business occasions, despite it completely not being “my style”, but I would also benefit from having a wardrobe for “businessman, executive, party attendee, doctor, professional, blah blah blah…” OR in THIS case, a fancy lawyer! 

I know.  You’re asking what does a suit have to do with anything? 

Sunday, 5 April at 9 PM Eastern on ID Channel, a 3-Hour Special Event Investigation Discovery Murder Mysteries: The West Memphis Three chronicles the 1993 murder case in detail.  I play the role of attorney Dan Stidham in the show.  My scenes were shot in a few hours, but it was a great opportunity to be on set with these amazing talented creatives

This is the real Dan Stidham

I find it inspiring to be a part of a production like this.  I’m lucky so many of them are shot close to my headquarters.  These shows are shot and produced in a professional and smooth, seamless manner.  It blows my mind how tightly production is run, yet still offers a light and fun atmosphere on set.  It’s a work ethic and a team atmosphere that isn’t dissimilar to a team sport.  I sit in the green room, observing, watching for leadership styles and personality traits that contribute to the atmosphere.  I’m a people watcher and being on set is a delightful experience.  Some are highly focused, like horse blinders – while others are loose and able to just roll with whatever comes with a shrug.  From gaffers to hair & makeup to sound, lighting, the director and on, I just can’t speak to how much fun it is to be blessed enough to do what I do and be around that energy. 

For me, I come away with a sense of focus and motivation.  I see what these teams, regardless of which specific show they’re filming, work in a symbiosis – a homogeny – to put out a product.  Most of my work is alone.  I am a team of one on most of my projects.  However, seeing these sets and productions, from television shows and feature films that are shot in the East Tennessee area, and the commercial shoots as well, it’s inspiring from a creative standpoint.  It’s an opportunity for me to recheck my own process and apply some of what I’ve come away with from that specific shoot. 

In Knoxville, for those of us blessed enough to be able to call ourselves “working actors”, it’s a consistent churn of crime recreation tales.  One show after another, putting some of our society’s most abhorrent acts on public and prime time display.  However, these shows do more than reveal the darkness that rests in humankind – these are the stories of life…and death.  Every story told in these shows is the story of dozens of human beings whose lives were forever affected by the events detailed in a cable network dramatization.  When I’m on the set of one of these crime recreation shows, I am telling the story of someone who was involved in a horrific event, and sometimes someone who was murdered.    

Acting in some of these programs, like the one airing Sunday night, it’s pantomime in the background while the real-life players in the story and narrators weave the details with the visuals to create a compelling hour of television.  Granted, my all-time goal is to narrate one of these shows, I always enjoy being a part of them in every way I can.  Tune in Sunday night April 5th at 9PM on ID Network for the debut of my suit! 

A new show, Southern Gothic, premiers soon.  I will be playing a pastor in the episode titled “The Sinner” airing May 11th at 10 PM Eastern on ID Network