It’s true. I was on a billboard in Times Square. For about two years, I was the face of T-Mobile. I was in every store, on every box, on the website, in magazines, on television and on a billboard in Times Square.
The audition for this fabulous print gig took place in a building on Canal Street in Chinatown. The temperature outside was 100 degrees, but inside, it was even hotter. It was one of those unbearable cattle calls where pretty girls stand in a line that stretches all the way down the hallway, curves down the stairs, and finally reaches all the way out of the entrance of the building.
All of the hours we spent preparing ourselves for this audition were wasted. Sweat smeared our makeup and humidity frazzled our hair. As we inched closer and closer to the casting room, the girls frantically primped their melted faces. At that point I figured I was so sweaty that nothing could be done. I just sat there and remained calm.The casting director came out and asked who was ready to go and the other girls yelped and panicked. I boldly raised my hand and said I was ready, sweat and all. They called me the next day and said the gig was mine.
They cast me for the T-Mobile wireless print commercial. Not only was my face EVERYWHERE, but I also made it on the T-Mobile television commercial, featured on Charles Barkley’s cellphone, (yes, I was one of his “fave fives.” You remember). I ended up scoring MAJOR residual checks for years after that.
But the greatest thrill to come out of this job was looking up to see my face on a billboard in Times Square. There’s something about that moment that makes you want to shout with joy and immediately call your mother.
All of that was lovely. A great high, amongst many lows, in the life of a struggling actress. My advice to all actors: join SAG in whatever way you can, and try to book a print commercial. It pays. Coming face-to-face with yourself on a subway or in a television ad makes you think that maybe, just maybe, this is the start of something big. After all, your face is up there shining in the lights of Times Square!