October 21, 2019 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

Douglas Weston: A Venice Beach Story

by Guy Camilleri

Venice is rich with diverse, creative individuals. Someone who has been here a long time and that I’ve come to know is Douglas Weston, an actor, and a vice-president at Green Dot Public Schools.

Douglas is a profoundly talented actor with an impressive resume including stage, film, and television. He savors the Venice lifestyle and can be seen standing tall along with other locals giving his voice to issues that may negatively affect the community. On a larger scale, his work at Green Dot is having a profound effect on low-income families who are now being offered high-quality education at 22 schools across Los Angeles.

And, being the artist and consummate professional that he is, Douglas attends my acting studio on a weekly basis with his tribe of actors, writers, and directors at the Electric Lodge. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that it’s only a short bike ride from his home!

Recently, he and I sat down for a chat at one of my regular jaunts, Gjelina Take Away.

Here is a snippet of our conversation.

Guy: Do you want to be an actor or do you need to be an actor?

Douglas: I need to be an actor!

Guy: Why?

Douglas: I have a fundamental need to understand how my individuality relates to a larger frame of life as expressed through humanity and beyond. Acting is my portal into the human condition and to discovering a character’s flaw and finding their humanity.

Guy: When you first arrived in Venice in 1997, did you feel at home?

Douglas: No, not at first, though I did like the set-up of the town. I loved the building we were in by the beach, and I loved looking out and seeing the palm trees, the ocean, but I felt that it was temporary. And I did feel that it was temporary for about ten years, then something shifted, and I have become attached to it and now call it home.

Guy: And here you are, an Englishman living in Venice?

Douglas: I’m a half-halfer.

Guy: What is that?

Douglas: I’m half and half. My mother is a New Yorker. Although I was born in England and sent to grim English boarding schools, I came to discover my American Heritage during College. Except for a few years before and after college, I’ve been in the states almost ever since.

Guy: After graduating with a degree in English and History from Princeton, you traveled widely, trying on a variety of character building jobs. In addition, you worked as an actor with some of the best theater companies in New York – the Wooster Group, LaMamma and starred on Broadway before you planted your roots here. Whereas, I was born in Miami, raised in Cocoa Beach, then Hawaii (15 years), moved to New York to study with Gene Frankel, worked Off-Broadway and then headed west to lay my board down in California. The ocean and palm trees have for the most part always been in sight, but I also know that I definitely need Art in my life.

Douglas: I’m curious, what does Art do for you?

Guy: It helps to keep the feeling of being a ‘cosmic orphan’ at bay! I’m always learning more about myself through art and by hanging out with like-minded individuals.

Douglas: For me, art is a bit like being an archeologist, peering into the future, diving into the past. You’re pulling all that together, and you’re excavating it. And as a result, you’re forming a consciousness about who you are, where you are and maybe even where you are going.

Guy: Do you ever feel you would be better suited living in Hollywood, closer to where the action is, so to speak?

Douglas: No, because even though I’m an actor, I derive so much energy from swimming in the ocean and hiking in the mountains. It doesn’t mean that Hollywood wouldn’t provide that in some way, I’m sure it would because I love hanging with the acting community.

But living in Venice charges me in a way I don’t want to live without – I know my neighbors well, my wife and I have raised a daughter here and we’re deeply engaged in our local public schools. Plus, it’s filled with creatives everywhere you look.

Guy: I agree, that’s why I moved from Hollywood to Venice! And, shortly after I took a huge leap of faith to move my acting studio to the Electric Lodge. I haven’t looked back.

Douglas: It’s wonderful to see how much of Venice is coming to your studio in such a short period of time! It’s become a hub, and a rare outlet for artists of all walks of life to work out, to grow and take risks in a safe, supportive space – that’s also fierce about living truthfully moment-to-moment. It’s also a fascinating amalgam of people that come on a weekly basis.

Guy: Thank you, it’s a joy to be of assistance and witness the depth of the work, the collaboration and the projects being developed and ultimately, produced. This is in large part due to you, and I appreciate you for spreading the good word.

See you in studio Wednesday night!

Guy Camilleri is a Venice-based actor, acting coach, and poet. He teaches regular classes on Monday and Wednesday evenings at the Electric Lodge, in Venice. His private coaching specializes in audition preparation, self-taped auditions, original reels and career consultation. To audit a class and/or book a coaching session, email [email protected]. Follow Guy on Instagram @guycamilleri and Facebook.

Related Posts

Marina Spooktacular returns, Soulfull Cacao Ceremony & Concert: Yo! Venice Westside Local Show October 18, 2019

October 19, 2019

October 19, 2019

Yo! Venice Westside Local Show October 18, 2019 – all your fun local events and happenings in under 5 minutes*...

40 Units of Permanent Supportive Housing on Lincoln Boulevard?

October 15, 2019

October 15, 2019

Venice Community Housing submits proposal to LA City Planning By Sam Catanzaro An auto repair shop on Lincoln Boulevard in...

Edify TV: Westside Measles Exposure

October 15, 2019

October 15, 2019

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has announced that a person with measles visited several Westside businesses this...

Man Who Died on Venice Beach Last Week Identified

October 15, 2019

October 15, 2019

Cause of Timothy Hutson’s death still unknown By Sam Catanzaro Over the weekend investigators identified a man whose body was...

Body found on Venice beach, Building affordable housing too expensive? House homeless in already built units and temporary shelters? Yo! Venice This Week October 14, 2019

October 14, 2019

October 14, 2019 1

Yo! Venice This Week October 14, 2019 – all your local news and happenings in under 5 minutes.* Body found...

Prince vs. Bowie silent disco on the Santa Monica Pier, Los Angeles Brazilian Film Festival: Yo! Venice Westside Local – Oct. 11 2019

October 11, 2019

October 11, 2019

Yo! Venice Westside Local – Oct. 11th 2019 – all your local events and happenings in under 5 minutes.* Prince...

Body Found on Venice Beach

October 9, 2019

October 9, 2019

Body found Wednesday morning By Sam Catanzaro The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) is investigating a body that was found...

Building Affordable too Costly? Use Existing Units to House Homeless

October 9, 2019

October 9, 2019

Report released showing cost of developing affordable housing in Los Angeles By Sam Catanzaro As the Los Angeles City Controller...

Letter to the Editor: Bringing Homeless into Policymaking?

October 8, 2019

October 8, 2019

Dear Editor: It was ironic to see your cover story (Bringing Homeless into Policymaking? – 9/26/19), with yet another dubious...

Man arrested for stabbing wife on Speedway near Venice Beach, Thatcher Yard development to break ground in 2020: Yo! Venice This Week: October 7

October 7, 2019

October 7, 2019

Yo! Venice This Week: October 7, 2019 – all your local news and happenings in under 5 minutes* Man arrested...

Man Arrested After Repeatedly Stabbing Wife in Venice

October 7, 2019

October 7, 2019

LAPD arrest man on suspicion of murder Friday night By Sam Catanzaro A man was arrested in Venice Beach Friday...

Venice student donates over $1,000 to Bahamas relief effort, Skate, Bike, and Roll Breast Cancer event: Yo! Venice Westside Local October 4 2019

October 4, 2019

October 4, 2019

Yo! Venice Westside Local October 4 2019 – all your fun local events and happenings in under 5 minutes.* Venice...

Thatcher Yard to Break Ground in 2020

October 4, 2019

October 4, 2019 1

98 units of housing for seniors and formally homeless families By Sam Catanzaro According to a report recently released by...

Venice Fifth Grader Raises Over $1,000 for Families Devastated by Hurricane Dorian

October 2, 2019

October 2, 2019

10-year-old Scarlett Johnson raises money for Direct Relief By Keldine Hull As students around the world become more vocal about...