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Actor Alexander Nunez Stars In The New CBC Series 'Moonshine'

Photo by Farrah Aviva

During YV Media's interview with Alexander Nunez, we found out his greatest challenges as an actor and a screenwriter, his Top 5 favorite actors/actresses, and we talked about his role as 'Saint Sammy' in the CBC Drama series, Moonshine.


What exactly inspired you to become an actor?

Growing up, my family watched all kinds of shows and movies together. My mom is also a huge fan of Broadway plays, so I got to see plenty of musicals as a kid. Watching, I developed a deep sense of intrigue about the performers and how their actions would make me feel. It seemed like such a powerful thing to be able to affect people so deeply by playing pretend. I would think, “this looks fun! I think I could do that.” My parents never thought acting to be a practical career choice (and they aren’t wrong), but I had a really great elementary school teacher named Chana Machado, who saw something in me and begged me to find a way to entertain for a living. She told me, “Performing is what you are meant to do. You have what it takes to do this and thrive.” In times I didn’t feel I had the confidence to go forward with an acting career, I would think about her belief in me.

Currently, you're cast in the CBC Drama series, Moonshine. Can you share some details with us about the show and the character you play?

Of course! Moonshine is a crazy tale about the Finley-Cullen clan; a family of half-siblings fighting for control of their ancestral home and business, the Moonshine summer resort. The Moonshine lodge business is a mess, even on its best day. Everything’s breaking apart, the staff (aka the Finley-Cullens) sucks, there are years of back-taxes. With all of that in mind, the Finley-Cullens do some pretty desperate and questionable stuff to keep their business — and themselves — alive. I play Sammy, the “smart” one. He’s adopted and lovingly nicknamed “Saint Sammy” thanks to his role as the family’s emotional rock. He’s extremely dedicated to his parents. So much so, he’s willing to keep a huge secret from his favorite older sister, Lidia, to keep the peace. In our first season, Sammy displays superhuman levels of patience while trying to maintain peace in his family. In our upcoming second season, Sammy begins to wonder what life would be like if he didn’t waste all his potential on this crappy resort and his overwhelming family. He was fun to play in the first season. He always had a sense of coolness, and he was definitely a Moonshine’s strong silent type — but I can’t wait for people to see the direction we’ve taken Sammy for our upcoming second season (coming spring 2022).

Greatest challenges as an actor/screenwriter?

When you have experience acting and writing, the biggest challenge is sticking to the job you’re getting paid to do! I’ve been acting for longer than I’ve been writing. Now that I have some screenwriting experience under my belt, the way I take on acting roles has shifted. My main concerns are now; is the story good? Line count/screen-time aside, how is my character affecting the plot? Do their decisions matter? Are things happening to them or are they enacting change, whether it’s for better or worse? I love these questions because they aren’t actor-centric. My intention now is always to help better the project as a whole. You do, however, run the risk of overstepping and causing friction with your writing team, your director, and your showrunner. You never know how people are going to take critiques like “Why am I doing/saying this?”, or “this is a contradiction,” or “this doesn’t make any sense.” Sometimes being respectfully direct with your concerns creates a collaborative experience that elevates the project. Sometimes you’re told to shut up and speak lines that you don’t agree with. Every set is different. I’m finding that my greatest challenges now are finding the confidence to be selective with my projects, and knowing when to speak up, especially when it’s for the good of the project. Thankfully, Moonshine has been an extremely safe and collaborative set. Our showrunner, Sheri Elwood has continuously provided a safe environment to share ideas and concerns.