From modelling to music clips and the best of recent Australian TV Drama, at 23 Alexandra Phillips is carving out quite a career for herself. We caught up with the now LA based Aussie rising star to see how she is embracing the US lifestyle, and how she setting Hollywood on fire with her talents.
How long have you been modelling and how did that evolve into a passion for acting?
I joined Wink Models at 18 so I’ve been modelling for about 5 years now. I had been building my profile, making contacts and getting experience for a couple of years before that though.
Taryn Williams, Founder of theright.fit and sister company WINK Models, actually had a lot to do with me getting into acting, I probably wouldn’t be here in LA if it wasn’t for her. She encouraged to me audition for a feature film and I got my first call back and subsequently was put on ‘hold’ for the part. Before I knew it was landing jobs like Sheppard’s music clip for Geronimo and Channel Nines’ House of Hancock.
*The Geronimo music clip has since become globally famous. It went viral hitting over 25 million Youtube views, was nominated in the ARIA Awards for “Best Video” and hit Platinum in over four countries including Australia and the U.S.
*Channel Nines House of Hancock is an iconic story unique to the rising success of well known billionaire Gina Rinehart and Australia’s mining history. With heavy weight actors like Sam Neill and Peta Sergeant the film was nominated in the AACTA Awards and received much buzz over its documentary style of storytelling over the controversial story of Gina Rinehart.
You’ve been called one of our rising stars. How does that feel?
It’s really humbling to be acknowledged and supported in this way. My parents are Filipino, Spanish and Australian. So I have passion for diversity. Helping raise the profile and success of culturally diverse actors and models like myself is something I’m really proud of.
What’s a typical LA day for you?
We’ve recently had the TV pilot season here in LA so I’ve been doing a lot of auditions lately. it’s great to be working somewhere with so much opportunity and so many different types of roles.
I usually hit the gym for a workout on the morning, which helps me focus and stay fit. When I have auditions I always meet with with my voice and accent coach beforehand, even if it’s just over Skype to run through the script for practice. Then it’s audition time and then off to work at Soho House.
By being in LA I’ve built some great relationships with different actors, producers, directors and other talented people, because of them I’m now developing a screenplay and exploring more new skills.
Everyday is honestly about being emerged and growing in an industry I love, it’s exhilarating and exciting.
Words to live by
“Be present and say yes”
These days we can be so busy and overwhelmed by opportunity. It can be hard to focus and some find it paralysing. I like to embrace it. Whether you’re with people, doing a job, preparing for an audition or having time out, be present in that moment, it’s rewarding for everyone.
“The Alchemist” by Paul Cohelo also taught me that life is an adventure to explore, and when opportunities come your way, take them. “Yes” is a powerful word, you never know where it will lead you.
Favourite job to date
House of Hancock has been my favourite job so far, it’s such an iconic and well known Australian story. Playing Sam Neill’s step daughter Joanna was a pivotal role and it was exciting to be part of telling a piece of our history. Plus, working with Sam Neill was an incredible learning experience that gave me even more confidence to pursue this career.
Who inspires you?
Halle Berry is an actor who inspires me. She is the first African American woman to win the Oscar for Best Actress in 2001. She is an inspiration and evidence why diversity is such an important goal to work towards.
With a career full of versatile and challenging roles, she has worked consistently over many years to build her reputation; refining, perfecting and stretching her talent with each one. This steady career progression is the path I feel I’m creating for myself and I hope to set the same examples, and instil the values, for others as she has for me.
Your ideal role?
Nina Simone said that it’s an artist’s duty to reflect the times we live in.
I want to inspire others by reflecting reality on screen, in a positive and inspirational way. To play a person, who like me, comes from a mix raced background but works hard, isn’t held back or given special treatment because of their cultural background, and succeeds because of who they are and their ability.
My ideal role is one that does that.
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