Jonathan Stoddard grew up in the Bay Area to a psychiatrist, a psychologist and three older siblings…wait, back up. I know you what you’re thinking, “Wow, he must be really screwed up!” And although you’re probably right, his entire world was about teamwork, and understanding and communicating his emotions. Little did he know, that he was being bred for a career in acting.
Whether he’s playing A Young John Abbott on The Young and the Restless (tv), a Psychopath for Lifetime (movie), or a struggling musician in No Place To Fall (series), Jonathan Stoddard is said to be *”… the transformational actor who conveys the vulnerability of humanity.”
Growing up on stage and performing roles like Tony in West Side Story or The Emcee in Caberet, quickly turned the Theater into his sanctuary, and is where you can still find heart on the weekends.
Welcome, Jonathan! Tell us a bit about yourself and why you do what you do.
Hi Divine Magazine,
My name is Jonathan Stoddard, and I grew up in San Rafael, CA. Acting is my life, and it’s the only thing I’ve found that constantly encourages compassion for all humanity, traveling to new places, learning new things, and working with the most creative people on the planet.
You have been very busy in the film and television industry! How do you keep your energy up when working on projects?
ADHD plus coffee…lots and lots of coffee. (Just joking) Mental and emotional energy is everything, and I would fall apart if my energy wasn’t there. Although coffee can be helpful, it can also destroy creativity and long-term energy, so I do my best to balance my energetic needs on a project-to-project basis. For example, if I have to work out and beef up for a role versus learning a new skill like horse stunts or even losing a lot of weight – energy starts in my mind and my heart. As long as my reasons are compelling enough for me, I can muster the energy to do anything. You could argue that energy and willpower are a fine line, but what ultimately matters is how I show up on set.
Here are a couple of ways I cultivate my energy:
1) I drink lemon water all day, every day.
2) I do something active every day, even if it’s just jumping jacks, squats, and pushups because I can do them anywhere.
3) I review my reasons why I want to be an actor and who I’m doing it for daily.
4) I created a soundtrack to my life to keep me inspired and motivated.
5) I journal every day about the future and what’s coming.
These are just a few ways I keep my energy up and am available to face anything thrown my way.
What is a typical day like for you?
I wish I could say sleep is part of a typical day! It’s hard to explain because there’s absolutely no consistency in my life other than the lack of consistency. Every month I’m in a new state, on a new movie, learning and doing something completely new and different. I guess a typical day consists of going over scenes for the day or auditions, maintaining my health, dreaming about the future, and going to work on the present.
What are some must-haves to get you through each day?
Every day, I have to remind myself why I’m here and who I’m doing it for. My family and friends are everything to me, and especially because I don’t get to see them, it’s a huge reason for me to work this hard. I can’t wait to provide them with the opportunities that I never had and make my parents’ day-to-day lives easier now that they’re older. I journal and talk to myself every day; everything else could fall apart, but as long as I do that, every day is full of meaning and purpose.
Do you have a quote or motto that you apply to your life and or work?
My favorite quote that’s had the greatest impact on me throughout my life was made popular by author James A. Michener:
“The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor, and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence in whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him, he’s always doing both.“
Who inspires you? Who would you like to work with?
There are so many people and things that inspire me in this world. I think the most inspiring thing for me is anyone who overcomes great odds to better themselves to then better the community or anyone who has achieved a great social impact with their art. I’d love to work with anybody in that capacity, from Tarantino to Woody Allen to Oprah Winfrey to Ryan Reynolds to Paul Allen to Banksy to Buffet to Billy Joel to Clint Eastwood to Merrill Streep to James Cameron to Elton John to Martin Scorsese to Tony Robbins and more. Music, film, art, philosophy, journalism, business investing, etc., the greatest minds all have one thing in common – they’re human, which means they all had to face pain, hardship, sacrifice, love, lost love, defying the odds and more to accomplish what they did. I’d love to work with and learn from anyone who’s accomplished on that level.
What advice do you have for other actors who are having a hard time getting work?
Two things: 1) Don’t give up and 2) start journaling every night about why you deserve to be a successful working actor. Most people give up, so your chances to be successful dramatically increase if you don’t give up. And finally, journaling at night has been one of the most powerful things that even Olympians do, so if it works for them, it’ll work for you. These are two things that are easy to do, but that means that they are also easy not to do.
What projects are you working on now?
I’m currently filming in Florida and have a lot of movies coming out within the next year, from TV movies to global theatrical releases. You’ll see everything from Christmas movies to Romcoms to Thrillers and Westerns; get ready!