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Rising Star Marine George: “I believe that the most sustainable way to help society is to make sure that your consumption doesn’t affect others negatively”

Since I studied development economics, I’ve pondered a lot on the question of doing good. I now believe that the most sustainable way to help is to make sure that your consumption doesn’t affect others negatively. Be as neutral as possible, environmentally-speaking, but also labor-rights wise. Most of us have no idea what kind of […]


Since I studied development economics, I’ve pondered a lot on the question of doing good. I now believe that the most sustainable way to help is to make sure that your consumption doesn’t affect others negatively. Be as neutral as possible, environmentally-speaking, but also labor-rights wise. Most of us have no idea what kind of sweat shop went into creating our phone or our fridge! So buy less, but also check how sustainable brands are before giving them your money — it’s part of my habits now, and it’s so easy with all the information that is out there.


As a part of my series about pop culture’s rising stars, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Marine George. Marine is a French actress, screenwriter and producer based in-between Los Angeles, Cape Town and Paris. Prior to her acting career, she studied Economics and worked in research, strategy, diplomacy, tech and defense across 4 continents. She is currently staring in the South African LGBTQ+ play Othello: A Woman’s Story taking place at the prestigious Artscape Theatre in Cape Town. She is also finalizing the webseries Wanderlost, which she wrote and produced. Additionally, Marine is taking part in several short and feature films and she will soon appear as a guest star in the upcoming series Up and Vanished, on Oxygen Channel.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

Pleasure, thanks a lot for interviewing me.

I grew up in Paris, France, and nothing destined me to move to Los Angeles for acting. I come from a family valuing academic success, I studied economics and worked in research and strategy before I decided to dive into the world of acting.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

It’s been a long journey! After spending a few years in a drastically different career, I realized there was more to the world than what I was living. More importantly, I reached a stage of self-confidence which allowed me to accept what I truly wanted and give it a try.

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

The story of self-discovery is definitely the most interesting! I know myself much better and my relationships with every single person in my entourage are definitely more authentic now.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

Maybe I got a bit arrogant…and it definitely wasn’t fun for me! I entered the industry thinking: “with all my business experience and work ethics, I’ll crack this — it cannot be that hard”. Damn. It is that hard. And harder. The greatest lesson you get from this is actually to not value your self-esteem and love to external success.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

I’m currently finalizing post-production for my very own project, a webseries I wrote and produced. If you like comedy, traveling, satire, diversity, and making fun of the instalife, this series is for you. It’s called Wanderlost and I cannot wait to share more about it! Our website is live: www.wanderlost.tv .

I’m also currently in the play Othello: A Woman’s Story, a South African LGBTQ+ contemporary adaptation of the Shakespeare tragedy, set in a prison. We’re lucky enough to be playing at the prestigious Artscape Theatre in Cape Town. This is one of my favorite projects ever as it’s a wonderful play, our cast is an incredible team of women from 3 different countries, and we’re addressing the very political topics of LGBTQ+ rights and femicides in South Africa.

We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

That’s actually exactly what my webseries talks about!

Firstly, it is important to help minorities be represented. However, I believe diversity should not be considered as a charitable action: we truly all benefit from it. Personally, I’m a hardcore traveler because I grew to realize that other people’s perspectives open my world tremendously.

Secondly, diversity allows for better relatability. Hollywood caters to the world and, sorry to say, but as a French woman, I sometimes zone out from too “American” films — I tried watching Billy Madison recently, but didn’t get the appeal…

Thirdly, diversity shapes our minds and our hearts. The more we see different people on screen, the more we will be accepting of them. We are all connected, let’s celebrate it!

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

  1. It’s not a straight line career. I came to this industry believing: get headshots, do some short films, get a reel, get repped, get a co-star role etc. You can approach it this way but you’re unlikely to go very far + it’s gonna be really boring. My motto now is: find and create the opportunities you enjoy — and work hard, always.
  2. Every second is an opportunity. I recently got booked in a wonderful project, only thanks to a random audition from 10 months ago, which I had never heard back from. I also got booked as the lead of a TV series from a random event I almost didn’t attend. In this industry, magic happens in the strangest ways if you work consistently. So, be open to opportunities every step of the way.
  3. You’ll need stamina. Although magic happens, this industry with also lead to lots of ups and downs. I recently got cast in my two highest-paying jobs ever, and they both fell through in the same week. It takes a good swimmer to not drown in the storm.
  4. It’s about the people you enjoy working with. The best projects I’ve done, I always had a wonderful time on set. Don’t be afraid to connect with people you enjoy working with, that’s how you’ll build a wonderful team and thrive.
  5. It’s a long ride, so you might as well enjoy it. This is the most difficult industry in the world, hands down. There is no hack to it. So my greatest suggestion is: know why you are doing this, know that there’s nothing wrong in changing your mind if you decide to, and while you’re at it, have fun. After all, that’s why you joined this world in the first place.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

I know it’s difficult, but we must all find ways to enjoy our daily lives. I have so many friends who hate their day job, and they have no idea if they’ll keep doing this for a year or for 10. So, although you want to give 100% to your passion, the best way to do so is really to nurture yourself and have a balanced, fulfilling life. Otherwise you’ll become bitter, and honestly nobody likes working with bitter people.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

Since I studied development economics, I’ve pondered a lot on the question of doing good. I now believe that the most sustainable way to help is to make sure that your consumption doesn’t affect others negatively. Be as neutral as possible, environmentally-speaking, but also labor-rights wise. Most of us have no idea what kind of sweat shop went into creating our phone or our fridge! So buy less, but also check how sustainable brands are before giving them your money — it’s part of my habits now, and it’s so easy with all the information that is out there.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I have two people in mind.

First, my acting teacher Alex Taylor, from the Taylor Acting Studio, who inspired me from the day I met him and guided me as an actress and a human being in the most wonderful way possible.

Second, my ex-boyfriend (he’ll recognize himself if he reads this). He truly gave me the confidence to own my desires and go through this whole career change, and I often wonder if I would have been strong enough to do this without him.

But I never had a mentor before, and I do believe that our strength is always within us. The hardest thing is often to validate ourselves without external validation. As soon as we realize we don’t need it, we grow wings.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

Since South Africa has greatly influenced me, I’ll share a quote from Nelson Mandela: “Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. […] Your playing small does not serve the world…as we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Personally, I used to think that empathy meant bringing myself down to be here for people in need, but the best way to help the world is really to lift people up. It’s easier said than done, and this quote — especially considering its author — is a wonderful reminder.

Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

Apparently, Ben Affleck is about to produce a film about the Democratic Republic of Congo. I spent 6 months in Congo myself and have mad respect for the work he does to raise awareness on this part of the world. So… let’s hop on a plane and eat saka saka together there!

How can our readers follow you on social media?

I’m on Instagram and Twitter as @sheikhamama. I also have a monthly newsletter on international movies. Thanks for being in touch! If you follow me from this article, I’d love for you to send me a DM and tell me what got you interested!

This was very meaningful, thank you so much!

Thanks!

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