Actors throughout Los Angeles and beyond strive day in and day out to get paid acting work. Above and beyond the business side of the biz, we often have to take a step back and rediscover the artist inside. When we ask ourselves “why” we want to be actors or why we do what we do, we hopefully come up with many reasons; The joy of creating,tackling a challenge, the opportunity to touch many lives, and many more reasons come to mind. And perhaps one of the best reasons of all, is to work along side talented artists like the brilliant Marc Zicree.
KARI NISSENA: Marc, Please share with our readers a little bit about your experiences in Hollywood and what got you started.
MARC ZICREE: I grew up watching TWILIGHT ZONE, along with STAR TREK and the original OUTER LIMITS. They formed much of who I am, my beliefs and what drives me, my moral sense, my ethics. When I got out of college, I knew I wanted to be a writer working in TV, but was challenged how to learn that trade and learn it well. I decided that by studying how a classic show was made, I might find how to emulate it. I started looking for articles or books about THE TWILIGHT ZONE and found there were virtually none available. I realized I would have to write the book I wanted to read. So at 22, I started writing THE TWILIGHT ZONE COMPANION, a book that is still in print all these years later, with over half a million copies sold. Shortly after, I sold my first script, which led to selling hundreds of hours of produced network shows and my rise from story editor to executive producer. It all started with learning from a great example.
KN: Part of the actor’s journey is to create great characters in their craft but to also develop great relationships in their careers. What kind of mentors have you had in your career?
MZ: Many of the great writers I grew up admiring from the shows I mentioned became friends and mentors – Theodore Sturgeon, Harlan Ellison, George Clayton Johnson, Richard Matheson, Ray Brabury. I went to science fiction conventions, took classes, interviewed them for magazines and books, did anything I could to meet them and learn from them. Most recently, I’ve been working on a book with Guillermo del Toro. He’s a great inspiration.
KN: If you could only give one piece of advice to actors, what would you offer?
MZ: It would be three pieces: really learn your craft, be collaborative and easy to work with, and always follow an adjustment given in an audition. Most of all see yourself as part of a team and be ready to help in any way you can.
KN: Any additional advice for actors and filmmakers who are waiting around for others to buy their films or to cast them in projects?
MZ: Build talented teams and create work that shows you to greatest advantage. With digital cameras, editing software on computers and the Internet, there’s no excuse not to. Affiliate with those who already have made a name for themselves and it will be that much easier to publicize your work.
KN: There is a ton of fantastic buzz going around about your new project “SPACE COMMAND”. Please tell us about this project.
MZ: It’s the culmination of everything I’ve ever done in science fiction, a really exciting series of films and shorter episodes I’m doing with some of the top science fiction actors, special effects guys and character and creature designers in the Industry. We’re raising the financing on Kickstarter — you can watch our videos and see all the great concept art at
KN: You and your team set a goal to raise $75,000 in 60 days and managed to hit that is just three days! You are now exceeding your goal by over $100,000. What an accomplishment! With so many projects out there that fall short of their goals, what do you attribute this amazing success to?
MZ: Preparation, hard work and a truly terrific team. More than that, I knew we had to create a breath-taking video that would show very specifically the level of quality we have in mind.
KN: How can fans of your work contribute to SPACE COMMAND?
MZ: They can pledge at
KN: Marc, Thank you so much for your time. We look forward to seeing what follows for SPACE COMMAND and all of your future projects. It is, as always, a pleasure to talk to you and I thank you for sharing your wisdom and advice with our readers.
MARC ZICREE is an award-winning writer-producer-director with hundreds of hours of produced film and TV credits for virtually every major studio and network.
He has written on assignment for Paramount, Universal, Disney, Sony/Columbia Tri-Star, MGM, New Line, CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox, WB, UPN, Showtime, PBS, Turner, USA Networks, Syfy, Discovery, Nickelodeon, the BBC, NPR, and is currently working with GUILLERMO DEL TORO, BATTLESTAR GALACTICA DIRECTOR MICHAEL NANKIN and major Oscar & Emmy winners on their film, TV and book projects! Fans of his work include Steve Spielberg, J.J. Abrams, Ray Bradbury, Damon Lindelof, Frank Darabont, Joss Whedon and millions of fans around the world.

© 2012 Kari Nissena

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