That's me, Justin Charles Anderson-Bath. I thought I was really Simba and my Grandma didn’t disenchant me. When I was a kid I was a wild little rascal and I would be that kid to just grab you in the leg and scream and giggle at you for a response. I didn't know at the time but life was hard, mom and dad were stressed. You could feel the tension but little did I know what was coming next. The world that I thought was hakuna matata went down in the flames of Scar. Separations, women’s shelters, you name it. My parents ended up getting a divorce and my mother in the same exact month got hitched. I had no idea that this was even a plausible solution, a better alternative, a family bond. Anger entered my soul and I thought to myself, “Did I fail them? Was I the root cause and effect?” I lived with my dad, little brother, and Grandmother while my mom was hours away. Finally a few years later, after more negativity and battles at home, I finally decided that it was time to reconcile with my Mom and finish High School with her in Alexandria. I missed her and I craved her happy go lucky, kid-like personality that I had. Thinking back, it was not a pleasant time for me. I lost a lot of so called friends because of my weight and I didn’t sport the nice clothes.
I grew up in the Twin Cities, varying from Andover, Coon Rapids, and Anoka. Amongst all that city life has to offer, though, I always loved going to the family cabin in Deerwood, MN. A family homestead before I was even a twinkle in my parents’ eyes, it is a place of peace and a place of true freedom, not only in being but in mind. Nature and being a Minnesotan is something I’ve had the privilege in knowing, feeling, seeing and breathing.
In came more slings and arrows that can happen in one’s life. At 18 years old, my life changed. I found my mother at our home in Alexandria in the summer of 2009. It was dead silence, I could hear the birds fluttering, but in slow motion. The cars that drove by seemed like a vacant and unresponsive race towards the middle of nowhere. Breathing heavy, just thinking of the next move. The next step in my life, what I was supposed to do now. Moving forward, but in what direction do I take this burden that lay before me? All I could see for the next few years was the inflamed, rose colored revolver. I lost my Mother and one of my best friends. It made me grow up faster than most and made me realize that life is too damn short.
That's when I finally decided to go for the very thing I wanted so very long ago. Although going through much pain, it was as if Simba still lived in me.
I stumbled upon this conversation I had with a girl I used to work with at Medtronic in Brooklyn Center. She was an aspiring actress and told me about Caryn International, which at that time was located in Plymouth, MN. So I ended up taking her advice and I went in for an audition. I loved it, I felt love and passion. At that time I knew that this was what I was meant to be apart of. The theater: a place of freedom with no judgement, a place where human nature comes to life, a place most everyone has much to offer. Momma was resting on my shoulders, her never ending love rested upon me, giving me a sense of calmness.
It was strange. Not long after this, things started to happen in my life in a positive way. I felt a sense of direction. I decided to fine tune my craft and training in the dramatic arts. It seems when you are ready, a teacher will appear. Right around this time I met a very talented artist named Douglas Dene Taylor, a writer, director, producer, stuntman, actor, horseman, you name it. Doug is an inspiration to many in multiple forms of the performing arts (oh, and don’t wrestle him). Serendipitously, he was casting Paul Bunyan for a marketing video for the Brainerd Lakes Area. I was so honored to represent our great state of Minnesota.
After the commercial I knew even more that this is what I truly wanted. Being on set, working with the producers and directors (Doug Taylor and Keith Eveland), it was everything I had dreamed of and more. Then, a little over a year later in late April of 2016, I went to the "City of Angels" and performed at the Universal Actors Showcase, which is held once a year with the top talent from across the U.S to Canada. There was a little over twenty of us. We all met some of the top agents in the business. It was an experience of a lifetime, and I later found out it was a career move. I will be moving to the L.A area after this summer to pursue my dreams. With a manager in Volony White and two agencies with high interest, the sky is the Limit. Eating that ever so sweet humble pie along the way. Working with Mr. Taylor is something so valuable, so unreal to think of seven years ago. Special thank you to Ole and Lena's Sweet Revenge for giving me the opportunity to bartend; much love and gratitude sent your way. Doug is such a great guy that wants to build and make northern Minnesota the stomping grounds of the Upper Midwest for the arts in all colors and shades. As it should be!!! The projects we have coming your way soon are going to break your fishing lines and crack your faces with smiles and an eruption of laughs.
In closing, it takes hard work to do this type of business, but it takes a true artist to follow through when the casting of stones are above you. We aim to please at Action Entertainment and no matter what happens in L.A, I am truly blessed and thankful for all the opportunities on this conquest in life. Stop in at Ole and Lena's, I'd love to fill your glass up and give you a smile or two along the way.