‘John Wick’ star Shamier Anderson tells all

new york –

Shamiye Anderson is fully aware of his growing Hollywood profile and doesn’t take the moment for granted.

“I’ve been grinding for a very long time, and I still grind. And don’t forget that I’m pretty ubiquitous in the market right now. But my work ethic hasn’t changed.” hmm,” says the 31-year-old Canadian actor. “I am lucky.

Few people will accuse Anderson of indulging in the moment, as John Wick: Chapter 4, starring Keanu Reeves, debuted at No. 1 at the domestic box office last week with a franchise-high $73.5 million. . Anderson plays Tracker, a bounty hunter who stalks Wicks around the world for huge rewards.

“You get to share the screen with people you once admired and still admire, like Keanu Reeves, Donnie Yen, and Laurence Fishburne,” said the Wing Chun kung fu student. “These are the moments where you’re like, ‘Wow, things are changing.'”

Things are certainly changing, but it’s been a slow and steady journey. He starred in his February-released film ‘Bruiser’ with Trevante Rose, and Hal He’s in his 2020’s ‘Blujid’ with Berry and Nicole He in his 2018 with Kidman. He has appeared in films such as 2005’s Destroyer. His first film credit was in 2010’s Nostrum. Each role serves as a building block for shaping a budding substantive career.

“These are my co-workers. These are my sparring partners. How are you going to get to the truth and kill it by doing a great job? And when they call the cut I go, photo Can I shoot you?” he said. With a laugh, he said working with Reeves was a “pinch me” moment. “I’ve made some incredible movies with incredible A-list actresses and actors, but I’m still getting butterflies that I’m always learning, and with a smile on my face. I am learning.”

Anderson grew up in Toronto and was raised by a single mother with her two brothers. One of them is his Stephan James, who starred in 2018’s Oscar-nominated “If Beale Street Could Talk,” and Ava DuVernay’s “Selma.” For Anderson, who studied musical theater at Wexford College Eighth School, where he studied musical theater, Hollywood was always in sight, but not for James.

“I always joke that Stefan has never been to an acting class in his life and I’ve been training his whole life,” his brother said. Nominated, NAACP nominated.At this point, he’s more decorated than a Christmas tree.But that’s just how this business works.There’s no blueprint.”

However, the brothers have created their own layouts and it is now a family business.

Following protests following the killing of George Floyd in the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, the brothers formed the Black Academy (building a legacy of acting, film and knowledge) to combat systemic racism. bottom. They also founded Bay Mill Studios, a production company to amplify black Canadian creatives. Anderson said the company recently sold a project centered around famed painter Jean-Michel Basquiat to a major streaming service.

While black music by Canadian artists such as Drake, The Weeknd and PartyNextDoor has reached global heights, the film industry has not made the same progress.

“There are actually a lot of iconic Canadians in the film industry: Jim Carrey, Mike Myers, James Cameron, Ryan Reynolds. So Sandra Oh’s long list of cool people.” It’s a gathering,” he said.

“Black filmmakers – black actors and actresses – is where it falls a little short,” said Anderson, who deliberately straddles the line between actor and activist. There aren’t enough black people in the arts, there’s no shortage of talent, it’s just an opportunity.”

To highlight Canada’s wealth of talent, the Black Academy created the Legacy Awards. It is the nation’s first black awards show, described as a mashup of the NAACP Image Awards, Grammy Awards and BET Awards. Deborah Cox was one of the first show performers to win four nominations from the Canadian Screen Awards, including Best Host. In honor of, the program will be aired on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

While his social and creative accomplishments are a source of pride, Anderson’s biggest smile comes when talking about his musical alias, DJ Shamgod.

“I’ve been deejaying for 15 years. I’ve been using deejaying to pay my bills and to make money over the past year when I haven’t been able to get any acting work lately. Describing the multi-format DJ who played a set at the John Wick afterparty in New York following the premiere, “This is another person trying to be a musician.” I’m not an actor, I came from music, I’m really on the turntables and I’m really depressed.”

Anderson will return to “Invasion” on Apple TV+, starring in the currently streaming movie “A Lot of Nothing” and Brad Furman’s “Tin Soldier.” He is light-years away from the Scarborough neighborhood and watches his mother struggle to make ends meet. But he says his path is a reminder that turtles won races, not rabbits.

“It’s looking at my little boy and saying, ‘I told you so. It’s all going well. ‘ It’s incredible to see the work pay off.”

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