THE NURTURING OF MEN ARTIST PROFILES
By Fabiola Cineas
Hailing from Pine Bluff, Arkansas, ReSheda Terry has made her way around the country to fulfill her childhood dream of being an actress. She brought her ever-growing passion and drive to the set of The Nurturing of Men. Terry claims playing Cassie’s role helped her push boundaries and discover more about her own identity. To find out how, read the conversation with Terry below.
On set, you were one of few people who didn’t have a New York accent. Can you talk about your path to New York City and acting? I’ve had an interest in acting since I was a child. The community I grew up in in the South didn’t offer much. I took part in church plays and had some opportunities in a performing arts school, but there wasn't much else going on. I graduated and found myself struggling to find a job. I had a life-changing conversation with my grandmother who is deeply spiritual. At the time she was very sick, and she was reflecting on her life. She told me she wasn’t regretful of anything she'd ever done and she said to me, “what ever you want to do, just do it.” Her words really motivated me to move forward, and I knew that acting was the way to go.
What was your experience working on The Nurturing of Men? I’ve been in a fortunate situation being a part of this movie. Lionel is very passionate and he gets straight to the point. He’s open to collaboration. In school my teachers constantly talked about how set directors are in their visions, but Lionel had an openness. Not the kind of openness where he just let anything happen to his project, but he let people be a part of the vision in a useful way. He was very trusting even when I didn’t trust myself. It was a good experience to be a part of this kind of community.
Can you talk about a moment when you may have doubted yourself on set? There were moments when I created an idea of who I thought Cassie was, but I had to step back and realize that people are more dynamic. Some days they are hot, cold, lukewarm. I was falling into a trap of playing her a specific way and letting my judgment crowd who she was.
What is your ideal role? I want to be able to play anything. I don’t want to be limited by someone else’s idea of what the character looks like, and I don’t want to limit myself by sticking to a type. The end goal is to see life through a different lens with new perspective that will hopefully allow me to grow. So I’m into any role that allows me to do that, even if I’m uncomfortable. But I am drawn to action, sci-fi and thriller movies.
What’s next for you? I have so much farther to go on this path. I’m in the process of applying to graduate programs because I need to sharpen my abilities and grow a lot more. Natural ability doesn’t mean you should stop training. I have a responsibility to my community. Where I’m from we don’t have access to many opportunities. I want to feel confident enough in what I have to offer, to know someone can benefit from my gift.
What do you hope will happen with the film once it is released to a wider audience? I hope it is received well, and I want the truth of the story to be told. I see Cassie’s humanity although there were some moments when I judged her. But she is another person trying to make things work. I want people to think about the truths the movie presents.