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Dylan Mask

Founder/ creator of behindDAmask productions
Graduate of Acting for Film and Television (2010)

Dylan Mask is an actor, filmmaker and writer who graduated from NC’s Acting for Film and Television program in 2010. He is the founder/ creator of behindDAmask productions.

Current role and career path

I began creating my own work because you can’t wait around for the work you want to come your way. I’ve been very fortunate to work on some very cool projects throughout my career.

I’m pitching an animated adult comedy around to producers, writers and animation studios. I spent four years putting together the series and creating a pitch bible (everything you need to know about the show).

This will be my third project that I’ve created under my production company ‘behindDAmask.’ The first project was a comedic web series titled Out to Lunch that follows a young actor who gets sued by Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison studios for copyright infringement. This series is available on YouTube.

The second project I created is a short dramatic thriller titled Cruel World. This was finished during the pandemic and had an amazing festival run, winning numerous international and Canadian awards. This film shows us that sometimes fate has different plans for us.

I began creating my own work because you can’t wait around for the work you want to come your way. I’ve been very fortunate to work on some very cool projects throughout my career.

The movie Firecrackers debuted at TIFF and was voted one of the top films at the festival. Going on to win numerous international awards and getting released in North American theatres.

I’ve worked in three different period pieces surrounding the war (American Revolution, Civil War, First World War) these pieces are what you get into acting for. You get transformed back into time and get to just ‘play.’ Everything from print campaigns to voice over work, commercials to audio series. I’ve been very fortunate to experience almost every outlet of this industry.

Dylan Mask decided to pursue NC’s Acting for Film and Television program after being involved in drama in high school. Since graduating from NC in 2010 he has founded Behind DAmask Productions.

Influences and inspiration

I’ve made this career my own because I have too. I have to personalize it to me and my struggles because that’s the only way to survive. I have to focus on my steps and make sure one foot is landing in front of the other. Sometimes it’s just a few inches and sometimes it’s a few feet! Understanding that this is your own unique journey helps you to get out of “where everyone else is.”

I’ve always felt that acting was a path I would embark on but I owe it all to my high school drama teacher at Welland Centennial Secondary School. We were rehearsing the school musical one afternoon when she asked me how my audition (for Niagara College Acting for Film and Television) went. I told her it was in an hour and that I wasn’t going to go because I’ll probably just come back for another year to play football … I told her I didn’t have anything prepared and she told me “You have an hour, I’m sure you can figure something out” and she kicked me out of rehearsal. I went and made up a monologue on the drive over and the rest is history.

Standout NC experience

Studying under Marty and Robin was a crash course in the real world of acting. They sugar coated very little and made sure we were aware of what we were getting ourselves into. I wouldn’t necessarily say my time at NC made me a better actor (what I mean is, I didn’t show up with zero knowledge and leave an Oscar contender) but it did teach me everything I needed to know once I left school. What to expect, how to prepare, how to work, how to understand. It gave me all the tools necessary for me to take my tool box and venture off on my own.

I was involved in intramural sports and I would recommend them to everyone! I would have to say Martin Doyle, our head professor in the program at the time stuck out the most. He treated us like adults and he was very blunt about how the acting industry works. He taught us the little things and made me realize you have to be all in.

“If you have a fallback plan, you’re going to fall back on it.”

Words of wisdom

This is one of the (if not the) hardest professions to ‘make it’ in. I think, first off, you have to be real with yourself about why you’re entering this career field. If it’s just about the money then I would recommend getting into finance.

It’s OK to want the big bucks (I want them too) but you need to figure out why you’re doing it. I personally want to tell stories and bring stories to life that connect with people. It’s very cliche but its true. When I first released my series Out to Lunch, I had someone from Colorado reach out to me and tell me how funny they thought the series was. It instantly confirmed that I had made the right decision to take the leap, spend thousands of dollars and put myself and my work out there.

I didn’t care if another person on earth saw it because it reached one random stranger who I’ve never met and that made me feel like all the stress and uncertainty was worth it.

My one bit of advice would be: stick with it. Don’t get lost focusing on the finish line. That can be discouraging because some people run faster than you, some people take shortcuts, some people get rides, etc.

Focus on putting one foot in front of the other and, most importantly, enjoy the ride. It’s not easy but that’s half the fun.