Today’s Notable Young Professional is Tod Fennell, an actor who you can catch in the upcoming second season of the television drama, The Art of More. We caught up with him to find out what inspires him and what advice he would share with other young professionals…
1. Describe what you do in less than 140 characters. Go.
I’m a professional actor, voice actor, and motion capture performer for film, television and video games.
2. What was the inspiration for your career route?
I started acting when I was a kid. At the age of 6 or 7, I had all the lines in the movies Ghostbusters and Back to the Future memorized and used to run around the basement playing all the characters at once. My parents were both professional choreographers and took me to acting classes and were extremely supportive.
3. What is the most memorable milestone in your career so far?
In 2007, I got to go to China to shoot a martial arts movie where I did my own stunts and wire work. It was an opportunity to experience a new culture and to combine two of my passions and skills I’d been working on since I was a kid: martial arts and acting.
4. Where do you see yourself in five years, 10 years, 20 years?
In five years, I see myself in the studio, recording some of the voices of characters for a cartoon show I intend to write. In the same vein as Family Guy, Archer or Rick and Morty.
In 10 years, I’d like to be shooting documentaries about things I’m passionate about. Namely, the environment, the search for extraterrestrial life, and the pursuit of renewable energy.
In 20 years, I’d like to have my own production company and be able to scout out original ideas from writers and produce their products and help them to manifest their vision.
5. Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
Believe in yourself is the most important thing. It may sound cliché but I can’t stress it enough. Surround yourself with people who believe in themselves and in you. Don’t share your ideas or your plans with small minded people who may discourage you. Cherish those creative relationships and always try to give back to your community.
6. Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is it (or they) important to you?
I support World Vision Canada because it’s so important to help these kids build a better future for themselves and the community who wouldn’t have the tools otherwise.
I also support Green Peace, because I think the environment is extremely important to all of us. It’s where we live, we can’t afford to wreck it for future generations.
7. What is one major challenge that you’ve had to overcome in your career? How did you overcome it?
In the entertainment business, you have to overcome self-doubt on a daily basis. You have to find the confidence to perform under stressful situations all the time and it’s easy to get overwhelmed by a fear of missing out. I think the hardest thing I had to learn was when to say no to a project or an audition and listen to my body when it says it needs a break.
8. What does the word notable mean to you?
Distinct, worthy of attention and examination for the purpose of emulation. I think that’s it really. We should all strive to be notable in our different careers and in our lives in general.
1. Where is your favourite place to wine/dine in your city and why?
Garde Manger and Gibby’s are my top two for sure. I love Old Montreal; the old architecture and the brickwork just make me feel good.
2. What’s the most visited website on your Internet browser? The most played song on your phone?
Does Gmail count, ‘cause it’s that, for sure. I’m on Facebook a lot, and Bloomberg. Most played song? “Guts Over Fear” by Eminem, or “No One Ever Tells You” by Seth MacFarlane.
3. Who’s one person you think everyone should be following on social media?
Elon Musk. Because…well, look at the guy. He’s building successful businesses based on everything I stand for.
4. What’s your favourite country to visit and why? And what’s the next one you plan on travelling to?
I love Italy for the food and the culture. (Been there twice) Next up, Costa Rica for the surfing!
5. What gives you the greatest FOMO?
Every day that goes by that I don’t get any creative writing done. And when a movie comes into town directed by someone I’m a huge fan of and I fear not getting a part.
6. What’s your guiltiest pleasure?
Fine wine. Single malt scotch. General Tao Chicken.
7. What’s something you wish you didn’t spend so much money on? What’s something you wish you spent more on?
I wish I didn’t spend so much money on cars. I’ve had 10 different cars in 14 years of driving.
I wish I spent more money on vacations and getaways. I get so caught up with work that I don’t travel as much as I’d like to. Surfing, snowboarding, music festivals, etc.
8. And finally, what does success look like to you? Work, play, or otherwise…
Success is when you’re surrounded with people you love, creating things you’re passionate about, all while maintaining a healthy balance. I’m happiest when I’ve got projects shooting, auditions coming up and shows about to be released, but while I’ve also got time to walk my dog in the morning, spend time with my family and get out on the town once in a while with friends. To sum it up, success is “balance”.