Michelle Rodriguez on Her Days as an Extra: “I had $2,500 due in bills that I had to pay”

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michelle-rodriguez-fast-furious-6Michelle Rodriguez might be best known for starring in numerous movies in The Fast & The Furious franchise, but her original ambition was to become a writer.  Though she has yet to write a film, Rodriguez spoke to The Wall Street Journal about how she ended up acting — including how she landed her first starring role in Girlfight.

Rodriguez recalls, “I was doing extra work because I quit school early and got my GED. I wanted to be a writer and I didn’t know how to go about it. My brother told me to go to a technical school because they actually help you get a job and I said I didn’t want to. He said he would give me two years, and then he would make me get a real job.  I remember going to Port Authority at 5 p.m. and everyone in suits and ties were so depressed. I knew I couldn’t do that kind of work, have that kind of a job.”

Like other struggling actors, the bills began to pile up.  She reveals, “I had $2,500 due in bills that I had to pay. I had no money and no job and my brother came up to me and asked me if I really wanted to act. I said ‘yes’ and he handed me Backstage, which is where all the new actors look for work.  Then the Girlfight thing came along.”

Indeed it did — not only did Rodriguez beat out 350 other women who tried out for the role, it was her very first audition.  Over a dozen years later she has done quite well for herself as an actress… now if she can only get that writing thing going again!

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About Author

In college, overachiever Christopher McKittrick double-majored in Film and English because he loves to read, write, and watch movies. Since then Chris – who was born and raised on Long Island, New York and currently lives in Queens – has become a published author of fiction and non-fiction, a contributor to entertainment websites, and has spoken about literature, film, and comic books at various conferences across the country when he’s not getting into trouble in New York City (apparently it’s illegal to sleep on street corners...)For more information about Chris, visit his website here!

1 Comment

  1. Ricky Foley via Facebook on

    I love stories like this. Great motovation to help keep me going.

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