, left, leads a theater class at Winthrop University
.Gentile, 33, is also an aspiring actor who has had success kick-starting his acting career in the Carolinas, and encourages his students to consider doing the same.
And Brett Gentile
, 33, has tried out for all of them.
The Rock Hill actor and theater instructor at Winthrop University
has scored a role in "Patriotville," being filmed in the Chester area.He
will be a part of the filming for three days this month.
No word back on "Asylum," being filmed in Rock Hill, and "Death Sentence," being filmed in Columbia.As a professional actor, Gentile finds work in the Carolinas and he says others can, too.He
credits the new tax initiatives the state offers for bringing in more filmmaking opportunities.Charlotte has already established itself as a city for commercial production, he
"There's so many opportunities here," he
said."One of my goals is to get students to stick around here a little bit."Gentile
filmed "Fall Down Dead," last week, over a long day in Winston-Salem, N.C.He
has been in two episodes of the TV series "Surface," shot in Wilmington, N.C.A movie he
made in 2004 is being released today on DVD. It's "Night Feeders," a "funny horror," said Gentile
.Instead of running off to the big movie-making cities such as New York or Los Angeles, Gentile left Ohio, where he earned his master's degree from Ohio University, for Rock Hill.He was lured here by a former professor, Annie-Laurie Wheat, from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he did his undergraduate studies.
Wheat is now a professor of theater at Winthrop
has a theory about choosing Rock Hill over the big cities, and he
shares it with his
sees Los Angeles and New York as each being like a castle, surrounded by a moat.A lot of people want to get into the castle so they jump into the moat.They wind up lost, turn back or get bruised and battered by the time they make it to the castle, he
"I'm waiting outside with the knight," Gentile
said, a grin on his
face.He'll make friends, he
said, and when the knight invites him in and lowers the drawbridge, he'll cross over to the castle.
Luck and chance
opportunities here, and if luck should come and he
gets an offer in one of the big cities, he'll consider it then.
"Acting is more about luck and chance in the beginning than anything else," he
enjoys teaching too much to leave it for full-time acting.
The lead actor of the Charlotte show had dropped out; Bumgardner asked Gentile
to fill in.
is very intense," Wheat said of Gentile
is an actor who kind of jumps into it with both feet and really makes a commitment to whatever character he's
A woman from an actors' agency attended the Charlotte show and asked Gentile
to audition for a part in the movie "Night Feeders."
The director of "Night Feeders," Jet Eller
of Midland, N.C., was impressed with Gentile
gonna do something, you watch," Eller said.Gentile
was able to get representation with the Jan Thompson Agency
.With that help, he
went on to do the movie "Cold Storage," filmed in Saluda, N.C.He
played the antagonist."I play a lot of bad guys because I'm not pretty enough to be a good guy," he
has had auditions and scored roles consistently since then.Gentile
start with theater, which he
claims as his
true passion.But in "this day and age, it's a hobby, because it doesn't pay," he
can triple what he
earns in months of working on a theater show during a single day of acting for a movie.He
does theater work with Actor's Creative Theatre and the Charlotte Children's Theater
.Gentile tells his students, "If you want to be a good actor, do theater.
A renowned actor?Do film.Want to get paid, do commercials."
Wheat's theory is: "I think that any person who wants to do acting needs to have as many different experiences, to really round out their training."Gentile
recently made a commercial for the Charlotte Bobcats, in which he
plays the unofficial spokesperson.
That's life outside the castle.