Exclusive: Julie Dawson
Joseph Bruen: Julie did you grow up in Rhode Island all your life? I know you went to University of Rhode Island for public relations.
Julie Dawson: I was born and raised in Rhode Island. I grew up in North Providence, and later moved to Cumberland. So when I meet people, it’s interesting to tell them I grew up in the smallest town, in the smallest state in the country! I went to URI where I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism, public relations and a minor in theater. I graduated Magna Cum Laude and I am on the Executive Advisory Board for the Harrington School of Communication and Media at URI.
Joseph Bruen: What were your interests as a kid growing up?
Julie Dawson: Growing up I was always interested in entertaining others and performing. I started on stage at 2-years-old with dance, then moved on to competitive cheerleading, gymnastics, and other sports. I loved being in front of people with theater too. Other than athletics and performing, I really enjoy painting.
Joseph Bruen: What was your very first experience in front of the camera? Tell us about that first time.
Julie Dawson: I did background work when I was 16 in Dan In Real Life and ended up being a featured extra. That was also the first time I met a celebrity, Steve Carell, who is the lead in the film.
Joseph Bruen: You have done so much so fast. Which commercials have you been apart of so far and which was your favorite?
Joseph Bruen: I appreciate that! Thank you! I’ve done a bunch of commercials, some include: The Rhode Island Lottery, a few commercials for the Oxygen network, Salve Regina University, Rhode Island Local magazine, and other regional commercials. I think the most fun I had was working on a commercial for Los Mariachis in Wallingford, CT. I got to do everything I like in the commercial- drinking margaritas and singing karaoke! I was like, “I can’t believe I’m getting paid for this!”
Joseph Bruen: You have hosted many events at beautiful casinos like Foxwoods, what types of events have you been apart of and tell us about those experiences!
Julie Dawson: My most memorable moments from Foxwoods was being a part of the “Dream Team,” where I got to host monthly giveaways, weekend stage shows, but best of all, open for sold-out concerts in the Grand Theater for Jennifer Lopez, Smokey Robinson, New Edition, and a stunt performance by Criss Angel. I’ll also never forget being able to interview New England Patriot’s Tight End, Rob Gronkowski at one of Foxwoods’ Q&A and Meet & Greets. Other memorable hosting experiences would be for Dirty Water TV’s Dos Equis Masquerade in NYC, and now I’m hosting on-air with Goslings Sport.
Joseph Bruen: I remember meeting you at a local NEFW wrestling show in Massachusetts years ago and you had a good 30 minute talk with the late Ox Baker that day. What was that conversation about and any fond memories of Ox?
Julie Dawson: He truly was a gentle giant. Ox was truly a gentle giant and a legend! When talking with him at one of the indie wrestling shows, he shared with me his cookbook, some of his favorite recipes, and some of his experiences in the ring. I also got to work with him just before he died in Pinwheel, my first leading role in a feature film, which will be out Halloween this year.
Joseph Bruen: What are your long term goals in the world of entertainment?
Julie Dawson: I can picture myself being a season regular on a TV show, and I would like to act in more feature films as well. Action, drama and thriller films are my favorite.
Joseph Bruen: When you're not here, there and everywhere with all these gigs, what do you do for fun? Any hobbies?
Julie Dawson: Haha! People ask me this a lot, and I really have a great time when I’m working. I love to work- I’m a slave to it. I don’t have much free time, but I love being outside, by the water, and I really enjoy painting whenever I can.
Joseph Bruen: Who are your top favorite actor/actresses of all time?
Julie Dawson: Actresses I admire include Anne Hathaway, Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lawrence. Actors I admire are Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro, Anthony Hopkins, Tom Hanks, and Chris Pine.
Joseph Bruen: Tell us about your experience meeting the late legend Rowdy Roddy Piper!
Julie Dawson: I met Roddy Piper at a House of Hardcore “West Coast Invasion” in San Diego. I was a little intimidated to approach him at first, but I figured, hey, what do I have to lose? He was signing posters backstage and when I approached him, I told him I was a big fan, and if it would be ok to take a picture with him. He said of course and shook my hand.
Joseph Bruen: What was your involvement in HOH (House of Hardcore) in California in 2014? How was that experience?
Julie Dawson: I was in the main event with Reby Sky, Matt Hardy, Tommy Dreamer and Carlito. I was the valet for Carlito and mid-match, got in the ring and had a catfight with Reby. She totally kicked my butt and rolled me into a ladder. It was awesome!
Joseph Bruen: I`m assuming you have been compared to the lovely Stacy Keibler as you are her unofficial twin haha. Any Stacy comparison stories?
Julie Dawson: I have! I’m so flattered when people compare me to her. I was at a wrap party for a film, A Bet’s A Bet, which involved some pro-wrestlers (including Tommy Dreamer), and was standing in the VIP area of the club when a guest of the party approached me and said “Stacy?!” I turned my head and he said, “Wow are you Stacy Keibler?!” And I said, “No, I get that a lot though, thank you!” I could tell the guy was really drunk, so for fun, I told him she is my first cousin and he totally believed it. He was blown away and asked for a picture with me. I said sure! Five minutes later he brought over two other women and asked if they could also have a picture with me, I thought it was pretty funny! It would be pretty awesome to hang with the real Stacy Keibler for a day though!
Joseph Bruen: What was your role in the movie Boss Battle? Tell us about that film and your involvement in that project. The lovely Maria Kanellis was also apart of that film, what was it like working with her?
Julie Dawson: Boss Battle is a short film directed by Nick Principe. I was a supporting actor alongside Maria Kanellis. We played goddesses in the film. I have met Maria several times, and she is truly a beautiful person both inside and out! Maria is someone I really look up to and admire- she’s so talented!
Joseph Bruen:Tell us about your involvement in the Independent short film Roommate Wanted.
Julie Dawson: I was the lead in Roommate Wanted, directed by Paul Melluzzo. It should be out sometime this year. I was really excited to be cast in this film because I felt such a strong understanding and connection with the character I played, Maggie. Paul, the cast and crew were all great to work with- we all clicked. I hope to work on something else with them in the future.
Joseph Bruen: Take us through the movie Pinwheel.
Julie Dawson: I was cast as the lead, Riley, in Pinwheel. It was my first leading role in a feature film. I loved the whole experience working on it, I wish I could go back and experience it all over again. The film is directed by Daniel Dahlstrom, whom I have worked with before on a few projects. I was ecstatic that he asked me to audition for the lead, and when I booked the role, I studied and read the script several times each day until we filmed. I felt a deep connection with the character, also working with Daniel, the cast and crew came so easy. We all meshed so well with each other. It was really sad for me on the last day of filming, I didn’t want it to end! Pinwheel is a film I am extremely proud of, and I can’t wait until it is released on Halloween this year!
Joseph Bruen: What was the last film you worked on?
Julie Dawson: I was cast as the “Dream Girl” in Pitching Tents, a comedic feature that takes place in the ‘80s directed by Jacob Cooney. My scene partner was with Michael Grant from The Secret Life of the American Teenager. Other cast include Booboo Stewart (X-Men, Twilight), Jonathan Lipnicki (Jerry Maguire, The Little Vampire, Stewart Little), The Farley Brothers, Jim Norton (Spider Man), Marco James Marquez (Vampire Diaries), Spencer Daniels (Star Trek), and Vincent Pastore (Goodfellas). I think this film is going to be really big once it’s released. Although I was only needed for one day of filming, I had a great time on set, being able to meet and watch the actors work, and honored to be surrounded by so many talented actors.
Joseph Bruen: In closing, what is your advice to someone who is just getting in the entertainment world or even thinking about doing so?
Julie Dawson: I think my best advice for those seeking a career as an actor is never give up. This business for me has been a roller coaster ride-you have your ups and your downs. And although it is one of the hardest careers you can have out there, for me, it is also the most satisfying. I feel such a strong sense of belonging whenever I’m on a set. I know that acting is my purpose in life. If you feel the same way I do, and can’t possibly picture yourself doing anything else, you should follow your heart and put nothing less than all of your effort into it. I’ll be honest, it’s a lot of hustle, hard work, sleepless nights, but for me it’s all worth it when I’m doing something I truly love, which is acting. Stay strong, never take things personally, keep a positive mindset, trust few and pay your success forward by helping others.