“My friends called me crazy,” recalled Charles E. Bonamy when telling people that he wanted to be an actor. At the age of 51 Bonamy decided that he wanted to pursue the longtime passion of his. Despite the critics, Bonamy pressed on, got an agent and began following his dreams.
His first audition was for a speaking role in the 1994 Wesley Snipes film Drop Zone. “I read for three parts in the movie, and ended up landing the part of a drug dealer” said Bonamy. Landing his first audition gave Bonamy the confidence that he needed to continue acting professionally. Since landing his first role in 1994 Bonamy has been landed numerous roles which include national TV commercials, sitcoms, movies and voice over work.
Out of all the celebrities that Bonamy has worked with, he said his favorite was Jamie Foxx (whom he worked with in the movies Any Given Sunday and Miami Vice). “He was so down to earth and cracked so many jokes” said Bonamy, “I also like the fact that he brings his mentally challenged sister with him everywhere he goes” he add. He said that his least favorite celebrity to work with was Wesley Snipes (Drop Zone) whom Bonamy says was “rude and snobbish.”
In 2000 Bonamy was diagnosed with prostate cancer and again in 2009 with throat cancer. During his 2009 cancer battle, doctors wanted to remove his vocal cords as a form of treatment. Bonamy refused the surgery because “without my voice, I couldn’t act” said Bonamy. Instead, he opted for the challenging process of receiving both chemo and radiation at the same time. It was a rough road but Bonamy pushed through and eventually regained full use of his voice. He eventually continued to land more roles.
Although he has been in may high budget productions, Bonamy admits that he enjoys the family atmosphere of lower budget productions and plays.
Bonamy offers 4 steps for those who would like to get in the acting business
Step 1. Get an Agent
Step 2. Take Pictures
Step 3. Check Your Email Regularly
Step 4. Pray
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Charles E. Bonamy is a voting member of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG)