From Niagara Falls, New York to Saint Petersburg, Florida, Brian’s memories of his younger years are that of a happy, two-parent home where he and his friends congregated often.
Brian attendedEckerd College in St. Pete on a Basketball Scholarship which allotted him the opportunity to work for a sports management group right out of school. He then went on to be a licensed agent forThe NFL Players Association and The Major League Baseball Players Association.
Brian’s accomplishments continued to gain momentum as he embarked upon entrepreneurship with NBA legend and friend, Matt Geiger. They opened a Martini and Cigar Bar in Clearwater, Florida.
Brian’s ambitious nature led him to try his hand at acting. He sought mentorship in New Orleans, Louisiana from actor and producerJerry Katz.
He landed TV roles such as The Walking Dead (2010) House of Cards (2013) Bloodline (2015) NCIS New Orleans (2015) Queen Sugar (2016) and much more. Brian’s talents can be seen on many platforms, from the daytime soaps to documentaries to television series’ to film. I wonder what’s next… Broadway?
Let’s ask him…
The Lyfe…What movie role challenged you the most?
Brian…This is a hard one. I really don’t feel challenged when I’m acting but if I had to pick I’d say “The Fantastic Four”. I never really received any feedback from production in regards to my performance. That was weird for me.
The Lyfe…Who inspires you?
Brian…My son, Braylon.
The Lyfe…What motivates you to get up every morning?
Brian…Although I’m very passionate about acting, at the end of the day, I want to do so much more.
The Lyfe…What are some of the pros and cons of acting in movies opposed to television?
Brian…I love them both but on television, you get multiple episodes to be a real part of the story. I like that.
The Lyfe…Which celebrity is on your bucket list to work with?
Brian…Meryl Streep, Tom Hardy and of course, Denzel. Although, I don’t know if I would be able to keep a straight face working with Denzel; especially when he starts doing what I call his Denzel-isms.
The Lyfe…Do you have any Brian-isms?
Brian…My ‘Bad Boy’ smirk.
The Lyfe…What is the main thing you do to prepare for your roles?
Brian…Learn my lines. (laughing) I do extensive research on the characters. I really try to explore their world down to their living conditions. That’s the fun part, to play in roles with different living conditions other than my real life.
The Lyfe…In “The Walking Dead” you played a bad boy. Do you prefer bad boy roles?
Brian…I like the challenge of a bad boy role because they are more layered and complex. Those types of roles allow me to dig deep into that character’s psyche to try and figure out what could have happened in that person’s childhood to cause him to become so agitated by something so small.
The Lyfe…Share with us something you’ve never shared in any other interview?
Brian…I make my living in front of a camera but I absolutely hate getting my picture taken.
The Lyfe…Who does Brian Stapf respect the most?
Brian…My mom, for sure. She’s the backbone of our family. Even though she has a very strong work ethic, she still handles all of her ‘mom duties’.
The Lyfe…Are you currently working on any new projects?
Brian…Yes, I’m currently filming a television series on the CW called Valor. It comes out October 9th this year at 9 pm EST.
The Lyfe…Throughout your career, who is the one person you enjoyed working with the most?
Brian…I enjoyed working on the set of Treme in New Orleans with Melissa Leo and Tim Robbins. Being able to work with two Oscar winners was an amazing experience. That’s when I knew I made it!
The Lyfe…In 20 years, if you decided to turn your life into a movie, who would you want to play you?
Brian…Probably Chris Pratt. You may know him from Guardian of the Galaxies and The Magnificent Seven.
The Lyfe…Would you ever consider doing reality TV?
Brian…No! I refuse to argue in public so reality TV wouldn’t get enough interesting content from me.
The Lyfe…I know you love acting but would you consider any other career in the arts?
Brian…Yes, I’m actually a writer. But believe me, nobody wants to hear me sing.
The Lyfe…What is the best lesson you’ve learned from your parents?
Brian…To take responsibility for my actions. They taught me that whatever choices I make in life will determine my future.
The Lyfe…What is your best quality?
Brian…I’m very helpful. If there’s something I can do to help the people I care about, I sometimes overextend myself. I have a really big heart.
The Lyfe…What is your favorite vacation spot?
Brian…I actually hate downtime. I love to work so my favorite vacation spot is on set.
The Lyfe…What’s your favorite saying?
Brian…When someone says or does something stupid, I say, “Really?” I say that a lot, actually. (laughing)
The Lyfe…Where do you see yourself in the next ten years?
Brian…I would like to star in a regular television series and produce more writing, like screenplays; also mentor college actors. And, to answer your question from earlier, yes, I would love to do a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play.
The Lyfe…What would you say to inspire an aspiring actor?
Brian…You have to do the work. Stop thinking about it, just get up and do it! Stop procrastinating! Just do it! Just start and the rest will flow.