We're discussing how she got her start in the entertainment industry, how her ADHD traits affect her work and approach to what she does, and some of her unique tips for actually finishing some of the 10,000 different projects you have going right now.
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Transcript for Ep 25: ADHD in the Entertainment Industry with Anaïs Lucia
Introduction to Anaïs:
Danielle: Hi Anaïs, welcome to the Neurodiverging podcast. How are you doing?
Anaïs: I'm good, Danielle. Thank you so much for having me.
Danielle: I'm so glad to have you here. Thanks for being here. Would you be willing to tell us a little bit about yourself?
Anaïs: Yeah, my name is Anaïs, I'm originally from a really small border town. I am an actress, host, stand up comedian, YouTube content creator, and I do a bunch of other things, too. I have many hobbies and I have been diagnosed with ADHD, anxiety, depression. So lots of things. I'm looking forward to talking about ADHD with you.
A Passion for Film
Danielle: Thanks so much. Yeah, I was noticing what I was like looking you up, you have done so many things! Like you said, you're an actress and a comedian and a host and you have three podcasts. I know you have a wide variety of things you're doing. So how did you get into the entertainment industry originally and start doing all this cool stuff?
Anaïs: Well, I originally started when I was really little, like four. I knew I wanted to be in movies. That's what I thought. I would watch movies. And I'm like, I want to do that. And it looks fun. I want to be a movie. That's how I thought of it when I was a kid.
It felt weird because I grew up in a small town where there's no entertainment industry. It's a border town. I remember in preschool when we would play that game where you would pretend you were adults and one kid would be like, "I'm a police officer," and one would be, "I'm a doctor," and I'm like, "I'm an actor." And the kids were like, "Well, that's not really useful for society. We're doing useful things. And you're like, 'I'll be an actor.'"
So I was like, "Oh, this is weird." No one else wants to do this. But, I knew I wanted to do it. And then in first grade they asked us, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" And I wrote, I want to be a movie star and a movie star and I want to make people laugh.
That's the exact thing I wrote. And I kept it! I have it framed because I found it later when I was in college, and I thought it was really interesting because I was like, that's still what I want to do. And I still like I like to make people laugh.
I thought it was really cool that at like six or seven I wrote that. I always wanted to do it, but because I was in a small town, my parents were didn't have any connections or anything. And I thought, How am I going to get into this industry if I'm in the small town? I don't have connections.
Around middle school, I started making my own movies. I was like, I'm going to give myself work because there's no work here, so I'm going to give myself work. So I just started making my own movies. My first camera was like this really cheap black-and-white camera. It was called TYKO Video Cam. You had to have it hooked up to your VCR because it would record directly onto the VHS tape.
I started making my own movies. I had my siblings, my neighbors in it. Then I started getting into directing because I would direct them and everything. And I was like, "Oh, I like directing too." (So yeah, I direct as well.) I just kept doing a lot of video projects in middle school and in high school.
I would find any opportunity I could to just make video projects and act and everything. In elementary school we did school plays and I always enjoyed them. Then, in high school I would ask the teacher when they would give us assignments, "Instead of writing it, can I do it in video form?" And they're like, "Sure."
Most of the time they told me Yes because I think it's something different. I was the only one doing it that way and it was cool because I enjoyed it and I would always get an A because I would do a good job and they're like, "You do this for a living!"
I'm like, "Thank you. I do want to do it for me." I did my senior project, I did like a ten minute long video and I made it funny because I just I that's just my natural inclination, making things fun.
Then I went to film school, I went to university, but then I didn't like their film program. So I took a break, moved to San Diego because I'm from Arizona. So I moved to San Diego for a bit. Then I was like, OK, I'm going to finish film school. And then I went back and I got my associate's degree in film.
After that I was like, well, I want to go to L.A. because that's where you go for work. I got an internship. I got a paid internship for this company I really wanted to work for and it was great. I started getting into background acting and taking classes over there, hosting and acting classes. I just started filming, short films.
I like directing and acting, but sometimes I'm in the mood to direct, sometimes I'm in the mood to act, sometimes I'll do both. Lately I'm leaning towards the acting. I want to act, I love acting, I want to just keep doing it more. And I did my first feature film. It came out last year. It's been in a few film festivals. Well, quite a lot, actually.
Anaïs: Thank you. I felt vindicated. Because in my small town, for someone who had Hollywood dreams, people tell you it's impossible or you're never going to make it. People are not supportive. I probably wasn't supportive. My town wasn't supportive. I was all alone pretty much in this dream. So, it felt like vindication.
If you want to check [the movie] out, you can. But I'm just warning, it's not for kids. I don't really go around advertising because an adult film. Not for young kids.
Danielle: It has adult themes.
Anaïs: Yes. Adult themes. There we go. I have never done a commercial, so that's something new I'm trying to book, is a commercial because I've done short films and things, but I'm setting my sights. I have a new goal this year. I want to try to book my first commercial.
Danielle: That's is so cool! I love that you have this idea, when you were so young and you just carried it through, because I feel like that's not a story that you hear a lot like that. You know, I think when I was six, I wanted to be like a baker or something, which is great. You know, I like cake, but to carry such a huge dream all the way through and work so hard towards it. That's amazing.
Anaïs: Yeah, that's what I like. I know people are different. I would meet people in college and they're like, I still don't know what I want to do. I'm like, I knew since I was like four. How do you not know? But people just have different paths. Like my younger sister, she was like that too. She would like to switch like, oh no, I want to do this and I want to do that. But now she got her degree. She's more focused. But growing up, she would like switch a lot. Yeah. It just depends.
Danielle: I mean, we need all those kinds. But it it's I think most of my family and me too, I paddle around, I try different things before I commit. It takes a lot of time for me to do that. It's always so exciting to hear about people who've just known from the beginning and have just gone straight for it, it's so inspiring and cool.
ADHD and Acting
Anaïs: But because of my ADHD, there are other things, a lot of other things I did, like branches on the side that I did. So I didn't mention those because the story would be too long. My main goal is acting, but I feel like I've lived many lives just because I've had many different jobs, pretty much any job you can think of. I've had over thirty jobs. Like I said, I like hosting, I do stand up comedy as well, creating content for YouTube. Always creation I guess.
Danielle: I think the arts is so important and getting diverse voices in the arts is so important. I also think that ADHD, this is my opinion, you should tell me as a person with ADHD if this is correct or not, but I think that ADHD and that willingness to try new things and try new experiences and get that endorphin rush of trying new things could bring so much into any kind of creative project. Just because I get having those experience must help you to build characters, build experience and bring that to when you're writing a script for YouTube or when you're doing any kind of creative endeavor.
Anaïs: Yeah. Then it does help as an actor with all the different jobs I've had. It's like, oh, have you ever worked at a retail store? I'm like, yes. Have you ever worked as a waitress? Yes. It helps me with acting too, because you have to have all these skills. So in a way, it's like like acting shows we have a reason to have all these different hobbies. It'll help us in the end with acting.
Danielle: Do you think that overall, ADHD helps you out with all of your jobs more than hurts you? I know that's a weird question because it's part of you, but do you find that your ADHD, ADHD traits tend to support you and what you're trying to do? Or do they get in the way more? Or both?
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