by Sherif Awad
This is Rossie McCree. I was born in Chattanooga, Tenn. To my mother Joann and father James Cordell McCree. I’m the middle child of five: two brothers and two sisters. When my parents split, my mother moved us to California where I lived until I was thirteen. We then moved to the Northwest where I grew up. I became interested in the arts when I was in grade school. I enjoyed painting, music, spelling bees and plays. When I first got on stage to tryout for a poetry contest, performing Where the Sidewalk Ends by my favorite Poet Shel Silverstein, the feeling I had and the attention I got I knew then I wanted to be some type of artist.When I got the part of Rudolph, in the Christmas Play, I then knew I wanted to be an actress.
Being that I loved movies especially the black and white films, my favorites were: Marilyn Monroe, Betty Davis, Diahann Carroll, Al Pacino, Angela Bassett and Sissy Spacek.
I really started taking acting seriously when I was in the 7th grade. I began to take drama classes throughout my school career, while also trying out for local talent events. When I was out of high school in my twenties I then enrolled in acting classes with Karen Lavoie The Actor’s Workout: Film/T.V. -MeisnerTech. After I completed the course I then went on to be cast in a local independent film, a Theatrical Play and I also was cast as an extra in a Lifetime film Love Is Strange which was exciting.
Yes, it is very satisfying to have achieved what I have so far. I enjoy connecting and working with other creatives in my area, I aspire to be a well known Dramatic Film/T.V. Actress hopefully in the future.
I’m sure there are challenges, I’ve been fortunate to have not had challenges being a female in the industry. I’ve been on sets where I was the only female and everyone was great.
Casting can be tough for me at times. I can audition for a certain part and go before a casting agent and come out with a different part which is great, I still was cast and given an explanation on why the change. There are times when you don’t get a callback,no reason, especially when you feel like you nailed that audition. It took me some time to understand that’s part of the business. I have been signed up with two of my favorite casting agencies here in Sacramento for some years now, Sacramento Casting and Forcier Casting & Productions.
After reading the script of a new offer, I then breakdown the character, giving the character a background, who is this person I want to embody this character and the more history I can give this character it makes the role more real. I learned this technique from the late Charlie Holiday, a Sacramento Legend while attending a special class at the CFF (California Film Foundation), in Sacramento.
My greatest achievement so far was being cast in a Sutter Health Video. Sutter Health is one of the best Hospitals throughout Northern California, this was a win for me as an actress and great for my career and resume.
I have also worked really hard to build an online presence on social media. Being that I’m a self taught makeup artist, I’ve been building my Instagram so that I can also break into the cosmetics and beauty industry as a well known Influencer.
My advice to the newcomers is to get acting classes, sign up with casting agencies. It’s also good to work with film students, it’s a great experience and allows you to be comfortable on set. Doing extra work is a good idea to take part in as well, and you must always Believe in yourself!
I always make sure that when I’m home with my family that time is for them and when working I’m absolutely focused on work.
I had a small part in the short film Strange Lights written and directed by Brian Eric Johnson, I play a mother and wife that dies of cancer. The film premiered at the FEEDBACK Festival in Los Angeles back in August 2019 and then premiered at Yonge-Dundas Square in downtown Toronto back in July 2019. I was in a short film called Little Anne the Comedienne written and directed by Narmandi Zaurice Parker, I play the role of the comedy club hostess. This film was submitted to Sundance 2021. I will also be in the short film Transplanted written and directed by Betsy Bynum, I play the role of Josselynn the neighborly neighbor and will premier in 2021 at A Place Called Sacramento Film Festival.