Featured Artist Interview with Actor Ned Garnier
A few weeks ago, we were fortunate to connect with Atlanta Actor Ned Garnier.
Atlanta Film and TV: Could you tell us about who you are, and what you do in the Atlanta Film and TV community?
Ned Garnier: I am an actor and have been acting for about four years. I graduated from Georgia State University with a Theater and Film Production degree with an African-American Studies minor. I have been having a great time creating stories within the Atlanta Film Industry.
Ned takes us on his journey about how he found his love of the arts, to where he is now.
"While I was in College, my first major was Computer Science. I found out quickly that I did not have the skills for it. I then went into Computer Information Systems, which was more on the business side of Computer Science. I wasn’t too bad at it. But, I realized that it wasn’t a degree that would make me happy. I knew the money was out there, and it wasn’t until I sat down and went through the things that I knew would make me happy. The one thing that I kept coming back to was film and acting! The next day, I decided to change my major and start the journey of storytelling."
- Ned Garnier
Atlanta Film and TV: What was it about majoring in theater and performance that made you happy?
Ned Garnier: If you ever saw the Disney movie Soul, you will notice that they hit on getting into the zone, which spoke to me. Getting into the zone is liberating. Playing different characters with different morals and ideas when you’re reading a script. With me, it’s something that is freeing. It resonates with me as an actor on the stage and in film when I can step out of my shoes and enter into a character that a writer has passionately written.
Atlanta Film and TV: Can you share with us about some of the projects you have worked on as an actor?
Ned Garnier: The first two projects I worked on were while I was in college. Both projects were short films for a competition called Movie Fest, where people within the school would make films within five minutes, and you would compete against everyone else who submitted. The top three submissions would go to the Con-Film Festival. My group won back-to-back both years, and I was able to experience the Con Film Festival, and where I got the passion for short film?
I got the opportunity to work on Black Panther and cast in Coming 2 America. With that experience, I studied under Arsenio Hall and Eddie Murphy. Currently, I am producing and casting a film called Lions and Lambs that will shoot, and we will be cast throughout Atlanta.
Atlanta Film and TV: You were both Chadwick Boseman’s stand-in for Black Panther, and Eddie Murphy’s for Coming 2 America. Can you share about those experiences?
Ned Garnier: At the time, it was only less than a year that I had switched into majoring in acting. I received a text message asking if I was interested in going to a fitting. At first, I entertained the thought. I didn’t know much about the industry, and I don’t know how they got my number. But, I thought - if it doesn’t work out then I’ll think of it as just a text message! The conversation continued, and I was asked if I could come in for a fitting on Thursday. I responded by saying, 'Sure. Where’s it at?' I was then told it would be at Tyler Perry Studios. To which I said, 'Oh. This might be real!' As I messaged them back, they called me, and asked if they could get me to come in that day. To which I responded, 'yes! One-hundred percent yes!' I sprint to my class, and tell my professor, 'hey! I just got this gig –I think!' My professor tells me to go. When I get to Tyler Perry Studios, and I’m being fitted, one of the costume designers asks if I’m ready to be put in a suit?
"At first, I didn’t know what they meant! And, I thought - there’s no way! The next day, I got there at 5 am. I get to the trailer, and they say, “well. Here’s the suit.” I was like - oh. OH! OKAY! Then they tell me that’s the last one, so don’t rip it! I was like OH! I was there during most of the reshoots, and I briefly got to meet Chadwick Boseman, and exchange words. But, nothing too deep. He was a very nice gentleman. This was one of the biggest experiences I got to be a part of and witness phenomenal actors and actresses do what they do! And, at the time, I knew that was what I was working for and working towards which was the art and was when I knew I was where I was supposed to be as an actor. "
- Ned Garnier