By: Danielle Van de Sande
Jason Stojanovski first appeared on the big screen as a 15 year-old star in Subterano, the biggest budget film ever made in Australia. Since his first role, which told the story of 11 souls remote-controlled by toys, Stojanovski has become a known face in Australia's horror genre. What particularly sets this Aussie talent apart, however, his life-long experience with Cerebral Palsy.
"I can gladly say that industry professionals have always seen my "disability" as an advantage," remarks Stojanovski, "Actors are always looking for ways to separate themselves from the pack. I don't need to try, I just have to walk into the room".
Despite the hardships of his younger years, Stojanovski's battle with the disease has helped drive his career, adding a story behind his persona in the casting process. Furthermore, it has taught him to "emotionally connect to and understand characters".
Unlike many others in the field, Stojanovski did not always dream of an acting career. In fact, his talent was discovered by chance. His brother won free acting classes in a competition, but was too shy to attend, so Jason was "dragged" there by his mother.
"The first class took me completely by surprise, and I've never looked back since. As much as I hate to admit it, I probably owe my mother for that".
Stojanovski has always been inspired by actors such as Depp and Pacino, who "mesmerize" the audience, and make unique role choices. However, the young actor makes it very clear that although he respects the big names, he would not consider them "role models" whom he wishes to mimic.
"I wouldn't get very far if I travelled down someone else's path...that's the beauty of life, I always get to pave my own," states Stojanovski.
And indeed, Jason has chosen a path less travelled. Recently, he has performed in The 7th Hunt, a gothic psycho thriller that is now being distributed in the UK, as well as an award-winning Australian TV drama. He is currently working on "What if..," a short endorsed by the Cerebral Palsy Alliance of Australia.
Stojanovski's current endeavor is to expand his career into the Hollywood market and to explore more dramatic roles, as he continues to serve as a spokesperson for cerebral palsy. Acting has not just become a career for Jason; it has become a way of life.
"Before I found acting, I struggled with the fear of never finding my place in the world. But I guess that's the beauty of what I found in acting; not only is it a career, it's also a means of discovery and growth as a human being".
For information visit: www.JasonStojanovski.com
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