Melody Cooper Jones is a Hollywood based Actress, Producer and Director. She is also involved with the Moxie Street Picture Shows. From the little sister in Christmas Carol to Masha in Three Sisters, to experimental Fringe Festival Theater in New York, to indie film, music videos and commercial work, she has enjoyed a versatile career.
Interview by Stephen Thompson, Ph.D.
Welcome to OpenBeast. Tell us about yourself.
Thank you. Well, I could give you all the boring basics about growing up in Dallas, Texas, getting a business degree and moving to New York to find my artistic self, before landing in Los Angeles to pursue my career. But I think the most important thing I’ve discovered is that I love life. I love people. I love creating. I love to dig down and identify my dreams and passions and chase after them, while helping those around me to do the same. Even if it’s the scariest thing ever! Not only am I an actress and producer/director, but I have had the pleasure of creating a career that also encompasses TV/web hosting and motivational speaking. I fail. I get up. I succeed. It’s been a crazy ride, but I love this crazy, kooky career that I’ve created, with all the crazy, kooky people in it.
How and why did you get into the showbiz world?
My step dad encouraged me to go out for an open call audition for a feature film when I was thirteen. He must have seen something that no one else did, because I’m not sure what made him think it was a good idea (smiles). I was shy and awkward and scared to death. But after three callbacks, I was hooked! I loved acting and it was exactly what the awkward thirteen year old in me needed to open up. I got into high school theater and that was that. I was in.
What’s your one best achievement or gig thus far?
Honestly, it was directing a play that we produced here in Los Angeles. I was not supposed to direct the play. I have a NY-based theater company with my business partner, Kimberly Yates, and we were producing an Elizabeth Meriwether play, called The Mistakes Madeline Made. It was the Los Angeles premier and we were pretty excited about it. We lost our director one week before opening, with a show that was not on it’s feet and a theater that was paid for, and a list full of press people who were coming to see it. We did not have time to find a new director, and Kimberly was IN the play… so I had to step up. I was terrified, but it was thrilling and wonderful and such a great learning experience. I was so proud when that play opened!
How do you get inspired?
Life. People. I am inspired by the passions of other people, how they interpret and respond to life around them. I definitely feed off of other people’s excitement. Hiking and walking. Reading beautiful literature. Deadlines. If I have a deadline it forces me to get inspired.
Any upcoming projects or initiatives you would like to discuss?
I may be partnering up with a motivational speaking team to launch some new workshops and with an online writing collaborative to release some new content in a pretty big way. Those two possibilities were surprising but very exciting! I have some talented screen writing friends working on some script ideas as my team prepares to produce a new film. We are looking for the perfect content. I just took on the job as the WMM Insider for the film collective We Make Movies to cover all the inside scoop on projects happening inside this 4000 member group! And I also just signed with my new agency, BMG Los Angeles and Peter Kallinteris and they are wonderful! I’m looking forward to a very fruitful future with them.
What are you leisure time activities?
Talking with friends. I’m a talker. I love to share. Reading and writing. Outdoor activities, like running, hiking, water sports, paddle boarding, camping, snow boarding – all while talking.