By: Charlotte Luft
James J. Goldthwait, alumnus of The College at Brockport and assistant producer, said he has a rule of threes when someone new is trying to break into the film industry. When you meet someone new, Goldthwait said to ask them to introduce you to three more people and then ask those people to introduce you to three more people. Soon, Goldthwait said, you will have a whole list of people who can help you to get where you want.
Goldthwait was not the only alumnus who came to revisit the campus on April 7th. Jesse D. Goins, an actor who starred in “Robocop”, and Paul A. Overacker, a technical director, also visited the college. The last time Goins, Goldthwait and Overacker were all at the college was for the Hollywood Comes to Brockport event in 2011. This year, three out of the four alumni returned again for the Hollywood Comes to Brockport II event.
Unfortunately, Stuart A. Kreiger, another alumnus who was to be the fourth member of the panel, was unable to come due to an issue with his flight, which left him stuck in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Before the main event at the Tower Fine Arts Mainstage Theatre was a lunch with students where they could meet and network with the alumni. Students asked questions all throughout the lunch, until the group broke to move to Tower Fine Arts. One of the questions asked at both the lunch and at Tower Mainstage was: what is your favorite memory of Brockport.
Goins’ best experience at the college was when he protested with the Black Student Liberation Front, now known as Organization for Students of African Descent, to get African American studies as a major on campus.
“It [his experience at Brockport] gave me a broader sense of what it meant to be a human being and not just an actor,” Goins said.
Though during the lunch Goins only talked about his experience with the Black Liberation Front, he later also recalled on another experience at the college that he felt was a big part of his time spent here at Brockport. He talked about putting on the play “Hamlet.” He recalled how during a fight scene that used actual metal swords, one of the actors lost his sword and it got stuck in the set.
“They [the actors for “Hamlet”] were doing this amazing fight scene and at one point the guy is supposed to lose his sword,” Goins said. “So he loses his sword, flicks it over his head and it sticks in the set.”
When talking about his career, Goldthwait always went back to the long hours and dedication it takes to be successful. He remembered the long hours he used to work with “Grey’s Anatomy” when his daughter was younger. There was even a moment when he was tucking her in on Sunday night and she actually said, “See you Saturday.” After this encounter with his daughter Goldthwait decided he needed to cut back on his hours.
“My job is schedule it all, make sure it stays on schedule and when the wheels fall off the wagon is to figure out how we are going to adjust to get back on schedule,” Goldthwait said. “It’s a long day, our days are twelve hours and that’s not counting lunch.”
Overacker mostly works in sports and makes sure that the captions at the bottom of the screen during broadcasts are correct along with a plethora of other things. Overacker said technology is constantly developing and he has to stay on top of it because it is a part of his career.
“As a freelancer I have to stay on top of the technology by going to training at different facilities or different companies,” Overacker said.
For the first time in six years students had the chance to experience the wealth of knowledge these three alumni had to offer. To learn more about the careers of the alumni who visited April 7th, go to the Daily Eagle.
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