Friday, October 4

Our Cover Model: William Mortensen Vaughan

One year later, we catch up with actor William Mortensen Vaughan.

Libertad:  What are the highlights of your entertainment career since your LA Libertad interview a year ago?

Vaughanster:  I had the privilege of being directed by Joshua Leonard, who played Josh in The Blair Witch Project, for the Alicia Keys lyric video "Brand New Me."  I appeared in one of the initial cuts, in my U.S. Army Dress Blue uniform.  Unfortunately, this footage didn't make the final cut, but I got some nice footage for my demo reel.
I also got some nice demo reel footage at the home of Miguel A. Nuñez Jr., who played Juwanna Mann in Juwanna Mann.  He used me as a news anchor in a Bulgattie jewelry commercial. 
I was also filmed for three episodes of "Auction Hunters," starring Ton Jones and Allen Lee Haff.   As a result, I met Joliff Nugas Sorianosos, who introduced me to Todd H. Mathus, who brought me into the American Legion.  As a result, I've had the privilege of frequently perhaps one of the most historic bars (and certainly my favorite bar) in Hollwyood, California, which is in Hollywood Post 43's basement. 
As a result of my membership in the American Legion, I've enjoyed the privileges of going on a cruise on the historic S.S. Victory Lane, and attending a dinner theatre (Yes, Prime Minister! if I remember correctly) produced by the Gary Sinise Foundation, starring an elderly actor I later saw acting in an episode of "StarGate" or something like that on television.  I'm anxious to attend another such dinner theatre October 6th; it's called Wait Until Dark.

Speaking of bars, I discovered that "The Jeff Probst Show" is my favorite TV show to be an extra on; the one time I got such a gig, they decided to leave me in their Green Room during the entire show, but they paid me and I got IMDb credit anyway, so I was happy with that.  Jeff has the nicest Green Room I've ever seen.  It's more like a bar.  I also had the opportunity to meet Jeff in person that day.  The handlers briefly kicked me out of the Green Room when he was about to come in; he walked past me and a small group of people back stage, and casually greeted us as he walked by.  Oddly, I was the only one to return his greeting. 

I also worked my second tax season as a sign-waving Mr. Liberty for Liberty Tax Services on Western Avenue, within sight of the Hollywood sign.  Although I used to think sign wavers should just kill themselves, I've found that sign waving is one of the most fulfilling jobs I've ever had.  Especially the four hours I waved a heavy sign in near freezing rain outside a brand new apartment building that was seeking new tenants!  Not everyone is willing to do that sort of thing; it takes a certain amount of intestinal fortitude most people lack.  I especially admire the people who do it in a custom character costume with a big head, like the black bird advertizing insurance, or the Pollo Loco chicken.  I think I'm a little too claustrophobic for that, although I did wear a gas mask in the Army while performing manual labor for hours on several occasions, in extreme cold, and I occasionally wore a lot of heavy gear in 130 degree heat in Iraq and Saudi.

More recently, I had the privilege of working for Nikki Zeno as a life guard at a pool party in Calabasas.  That's the best pool party I've ever been to, with the exception of Le Cirque du Soleil's O in Las Vegas, if you count that as a pool party.  It's very rare to find pools with deep ends over my end.  The deep end of Nikki's pool must have been at least nine feet deep - well over my head when I touched bottom.  And beautiful - with waterfalls...  Nikki denied knowing how deep her pool was.  How do you not know how deep a pool on your property is?!?!?!?

William in Sequoia National Forest

For the first time as an extra in my film and television career, I was provided with an entire costume, for Man From Reno, starring Pepe Serna, and Stephen Seagal's daughter, Ayako Fujitani.  I played a prison guard, and they provided me with a uniform, although I chose to wear my own black combat boots.

My StarMeter Rating on has risen more than 25,000 notches in the last week, 34,000 in the last four weeks, and 156,000 in the past year.  Apparently, my entertainment career is going well.

Libertad:  Who have you enjoyed working with?

Vaughanster:  Besides the people I just mentioned, I enjoyed working with you at Nikki's Hawaiian luau slash pool party, and on the sets of And Then There Was You, "Auction Hunters," and Other People's Children.  I enjoyed working with Dennis Nicomede on the sets of And Then There Was You, Ragamuffin and a Coca-Cola commercial.  It's always a pleasure to work with Graham Mackie Sr., Terry F. Smith, and James Green.  I enjoyed meeting Louisa Riofrio on the set of Jurassic Block, starring one of our favorite actors from "CSI:  Miami," Robert Lasardo.  Unfortunately, we didn't get to meet him.

Libertad:  How sad are you the elections didn't go your way?

Vaughanster:  Very sad...  Also, very angry and depressed!  Things are only getting worse.  There's a partial federal government shutdown starting today [October 1, 2013].  This year, for the first time in history, the U.S. has more than nine million unemployed people.  Full-time jobs are decreasing, and part-time jobs are increasing.  People's average incomes are shrinking.

For the first time since Jimmy Carter, we lost a U.S. Ambassador (Christopher Stevens) due to enemy action in the line of duty.  As far as I can tell, Christopher Stevens was also the first U.S. Ambassador to be sodomized and dragged through streets before being killed.

Speaking of race relations, they are worse than they've been in a long time - perhaps since it was legal to own black slaves in the U.S.A.

After the George Zimmerman trial, NBC News and the Wall Street Journal conducted a survey.  Their poll showed that only 52% of the people in America felt that race relations were "good," compared to 79% in 2009, 72% in 2010, and 71% in 2011.  Twenty percent!  That's a huge drop!

Overall, Obama has been a complete series of disasters.  Nothing has improved since he became our President except the sale of guns and ammunition.

Libertad:  Are you still leaving California in a few years?

Vaughanster:  No, although I'd like to...  It looks as though I'm stuck here for the foreseeable future.

Libertad:  How's your education coming?

Vaughanster:  Not well...  Although I recently received a twenty thousand dollar Career Catalyst Scholarship at DeVry University, and admission to their Game and Simulation Programming program, based on my high entrance exam scores, they still haven't informed the Veterans Administration that I'm enrolled there, so there's no telling when I'm going to start collecting my housing allowance.  I've already decided to withdraw from DeVry after my fist term, which ends around Halloween.

I blame DeVry's V.A. Liaison, Ms. Denise Poorman.  She has told me repeatedly that if there's a problem with my V.A. pay, that's between me and the V.A.  My application for V.A. money to study at DeVry was approved by the V.A. September 11th; the V.A. is just waiting for DeVry to verify that I'm enrolled there.  There's no good excuse for this to take that long.  DeVry is the fourth school I've attended since I retired from the U.S. Army, and no one else has given me such a hard time with regard to my G.I. Bill.  The first school I attended since retiring was the Alliance School of Trucking, and they warned me it might take a couple months to get me into the system.  It didn't take a full month.  It's been about six weeks since I applied for college money to attend DeVry.

This is very sad, because I'm very interested in making video games and simulations, and I have enjoyed making and modifying a couple simple video games already, last month.

I'm thinking of studying to be a dog trainer next.  I don't fear dogs as much as a lot of people do.  I was once bitten on the shoulder by a Great Dane that had its front paws on my shoulders and could look me in the eye, face to face, but I kept my cool and kept petting it, so it only bit me once, and happily licked my face and wagged its tail most of the time it was with me.  Hopefully, I'll be able to capitalize on my affection for dogs and other animals.

Libertad:  Where do you see yourself in five years?  Ten years?

William in Sequoia National Forest

Vaughanster:  I see myself handling dogs and other animals on T.V. and movie sets in and around Hollywood.  That's one vision. 

Another vision is of me growing grapes and tobacco on a farm in Virginia.  A lot of it has to do with how my lovely, young wife's entertainment career goes.

Libertad:  What are your next career moves going to be?

Vaughanster:  I'm less focused on my entertainment career now, and I assume this trend will continue until I've exhausted my G.I. Bill housing allowance benefit.  By then, I hope to have made a name for myself in the Hollywood hound handling business.

Libertad:  Where have you traveled in the past year?

Vaughanster:  Orange County!  I finally saw the infamous Catalina Island, from aboard the S.S. Victory Lane.  Last month, to celebrate my lovely, young wife's birthday, we went with her parents to Sequoia National Forest and saw two of the most voluminous trees in the world:  General Grant and General Sherman!

Unfortunately, I neglected to rent a room with a private bathroom, so we roughed it a little for two nights, but I think we took some great pictures, including some of her as the real Green Fairy!  One tourist we'd never met before was so impressed, he asked permission to take a couple pictures of my wife himself.  Maybe she'll appear on the cover of the French edition of  Vogue magazine.

No comments:

Post a Comment