Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Sit Down With Shantel VanSanten

In honor of the new episode of Shooter, premiering tonight on USA network, we interviewed a VERY special Page Parkes alumni, Shantel VanSanten!
Shantel is a Page Parkes talent who plays Julie Swagger, the wife of Bob Swagger (Ryan Phillippe) in Shooter,  
we had a blast chatting with Shantel and getting the inside scoop on her LA life.

1.    Let's start at the beginning of your career…You grew up in Texas…How did you discover your love for acting?

I did I grew up for 2/3 of my life in Houston and 1/3 in a small town in Minnesota called Luverne. I was going to college and working as a model for Page Parkes. I had consistently taken classes and workshops for acting and had been involved in theatre since I was younger. I didn’t realize I could make a true career out of it till I was doing it. My passion for acting was ever present but the road to it being my job wasn’t always easy or apparent. It takes a lot of work, dedication and people who believe in you to encourage you!

2.    When was the first time you met Page and how did your meeting transpire?

I believe I was 15 and a stylist named Sheryl who worked for the agency found me and set up a meeting with Page. It was very nerve wracking but she said she saw something special in me and we had a very special connection. Page really cares about each and every client she signs and her passion for them is felt and seen in how hard she works for everyone. It wasn’t long after my meeting with her that I booked my first job for Foley’s which I continued to work for that client for almost 5 years after. She was always someone who saw something in me and pushed me to pursue. I am so very grateful to her for her love and dedication.

3.    You attended Agent Review, what was your experience at the event? How many times did you attend before you were placed with an LA agency?

I attended 3 agent reviews as a model and as an actress. I signed with an acting agency my second time. I remember being the most nervous I have ever been when I performed my monologue and wanting to run off stage! It was an interesting experience. It’s hard not to compare other people’s “results” with your own. But I always think back to the fact it only takes ONE… one agent, one person, one company, one director to believe in you and everything changes!

4.    When transitioning from Texas to LA what was the most surprising difference and the most cliche?

Let’s see cliché would be everyone feels like a small minnow in the sea here because the market is saturated but you have to know you bring your own set of experiences, talent, looks and passion to each job, role, audition etc. Most surprising was how much I loved this city and how the energy of everyone striving for success will make you fight even harder!

5.    You have worked on numerous projects, and we would never ask you to pick a favorite, but which character has had the best wardrobe? We loved your look as Kate Drummond in Timeless!

Kate was hands down the BEST! Period pieces are so special because they allow you to fully immerse yourself and lose sight of any parts of your modern self. From the accent, the clothes, the cars, the locations it all feels like you no longer live in the present day and really aren’t anything resembling yourself. I loved Quinn’s clothes ( on One Tree Hill) too because I got to keep lots of them. She had a style which resembled mine and the costumer allowed me to have a lot of influence for that role which I really enjoyed as well

6.    Your show Shooter is amazing, how has life on set and your shooting (No pun intended) experience been for this project?

This show is one I am so very grateful to be a part of for so many reasons. First being the people involved are so very talented. From our creator, to the producers, to the writers, to the actors and the crew. Everyone is a part of the shows success and all our combined passion is what you all get to watch as an audience. It’s also wonderful being a part of a show you love to film and to watch. Its an action packed show and its non stop for 10 episodes which means its also non stop for us filming for 4 months but we are all submersed and I think it shows in what we put on the screen. Season 2 is even better than season one because we know the characters and put them into new situations allowing them to change and grow and the audience to follow along with the characters they love and loathe.

7.    What has been your most challenging project/role? On that note, what’s next for your career goals?

It’s a beautiful relationship when work challenges you to be vulnerable you see the depths you have and each time you go a little deeper. Each job has been a challenge for me.. that’s the best gift ever though. When a character/story can inform me and enrich my life. I think working on oneself is an important piece of bringing roles into your life. Your experiences and self-awareness will certainly draw you to a character/story and inform your portrayal. Each one is another step in exposing parts of myself I had come to know and yet each character exposed a part of myself I didn’t know existed. So the challenge is to keep exposing yourself honestly to each role. My career goal is to constantly embrace the unknown and allow for my career to evolve as I do! I pray I get to keep creating as long as I am breathing.

8.    One fun question…what is your favorite workout and least favorite workout?

Favorite workout is pilates and least favorite is RUNNING!!!! I set a goal to run one mile without stopping and did that… I love a challenge but I DON’T LIKE RUNNING! Haha

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