Bourke Floyd- Success is Sweeter the Second Time Around
Bourke Floyd is best known for his recurring role as Brady on the hit WB Show Dawson’s Creek as well as guest starring roles in Spin City opposite Michael J. Fox and One Tree Hill with Chad Michael Murray. Most recently he has guest starred on the Apple TV+ series Swagger with O’Shea Jackson Jr, The Cleaning Lady with Oliver Hudson, American Tragedy: Waco the Aftermath and the Shonda Rhimes series Station 19 as well as a series regular role in the VetTV comedy A Grunt’s Life. Bourke’s talents extend to the big screen with supporting roles in Big Momma’s House 2, Minority Report, Tears of the Sun, Gods and Generals, Hearts in Atlantis, and the upcoming film The Locksmith alongside Ryan Phillippe, Kate Bosworth, and Ving Rhames. Bourke started out his career in New York as a model in print campaigns for Abercrombie & Fitch, Valentino, and Calvin Klein then transitioned into commercials with national campaigns for The Gap and Quizno’s. He even had a turn performing on Broadway in the role of Roger in the Tony award-winning musical Rent. A world-class Stunt Man with expertise in high falls, precision, and high-performance driving as well as close quarter combat and weaponry, Bourke trained at the Bondurant Driving School and The Academy of Movement Arts and Sciences Los Angeles. He lends his star power to help charities near and dear to his heart such as the Leukemia Lymphoma Society and the Alzheimer’s Association. When not working or giving back, he enjoys cooking, karaoke, and spending time with his family.
HI, WELCOME TO ABOUT INSIDER! THANKS FOR TAKING THE TIME TO CHAT WITH US! CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOURSELF, WHO IS BOURKE FLOYD IN YOUR OWN WORDS?
I am a father first in both my priorities and my passion, being a father is the most important thing in the world to me. I am, and always have been, one of those people who is regularly performing. No matter if it’s just me and my family in the car or on stage in front of thousands of people, I love to put on a show and entertain people. In all of that, I try to anchor my words and actions in love, empathy and just overall kindness. I am far from perfect and I know better than to aim for perfection because it is unattainable. Instead, I try to only be better than I was the day before. Overall, I’m striving to be the kind of human my dog thinks I am.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR CHARACTER IN BRADY. HOW DID YOU END UP GETTING THIS PROJECT?
Playing the role of BRADY on the WB’s “Dawson’s Creek” was a game changer for my career. The show was iconic and a staple for teenage and young adult people not only in the US but around the world and to have been a part of such a pop culture phenomenon was nothing short of a blessing. One coincidental thing about working on Dawson’s was that it was filmed in Wilmington, NC where I was actually born. I was raised in Virginia but born at New Hanover Regional Hospital right in the heart of Wilmington. The show had already had a successful four seasons when I joined the cast and I had auditioned for 12 OTHER roles over those four years prior to finally booking the role of Brady. If there is anything to be learned by young actors from my career it is that you have to be tenacious, persistent and consistent in your work in order to climb the ladder of the entertainment industry. Working on the show was an incredible experience and I continue to maintain friendships with many of my fellow cast and members of the crew.
DESCRIBE YOUR JOURNEY TO THIS PROFESSION. YOU INITIALLY STARTED AS A MODEL, THEN TRANSITIONED INTO COMMERCIALS; HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE IN ALL?
I began acting in Richmond, Virginia with my high school’s Shoestring Players under the direction of an incredible theater teacher, actor and playwright Jeff Saunders. The summer prior to senior year I participated in a program through SPARC (School of the Performing Arts in the Richmond Community) and through that signed with a fantastic regional agency Modelogic. I did several commercials and some print work in the Mid-Atlantic area. I attended college on a football scholarship and earned my degree in Applied Mathematics from the Honors College at the University of South Carolina and acting as a profession was well in my rear view mirror as I moved to New York City to work in high finance. Enter the old adage of being “discovered” in the street, when I was stopped coming from the gym by a booker from FORD NY and, after a slightly embarrassing misunderstanding on my part, I was shooting the cover of an Abercrombie and Fitch Quarterly two weeks later. From modeling in both editorial print as well as runway work to dancing in world famous GAP commercials and being the voice of a sub sandwich chain to playing a lead role on Broadway it was a whirlwind and I left my position with that high profile finance company and started investing in myself as an actor. I signed with a theatrical agent and began taking classes with Margie Haber and pretty soon I was auditioning for television and film. Before I knew it I was working opposite one of my heroes, Michael J Fox on “Spin City”. All of this only occurred because of my willingness to listen to the ideas and offers of people far more experienced than I was. I was open to opportunities and not always seeking the immediate return for the investment of my time and talent. Building solid relationships and constantly striving to deliver your best work make you someone that others can count on and that is invaluable in the entertainment industry.
The experience of building my career as an actor was scary and exciting and forever changing. I had to learn self-discipline and thankfully had never heard the term FOMO. I didn’t live in a world with a Fear of Missing out on the party or the VIP experience, I chose, instead, to fear not being prepared or failing to deliver my best work and letting people down because I made irresponsible choices about my lifestyle. Everything in moderation including moderation. My best advice to young talent is to be kind, to be patient and most importantly, to listen to those around you and learn from their mistakes as well as their victories.
HOW IS YOUR EXPERIENCE WORKING ON THE OTT PLATFORM? WHICH IS BETTER, WORKING IN CINEMA OR OTT PLATFORMS?
The OTT Platforms have some very large benefits for the viewer and therefore benefit us as talent involved in scripted programming. One benefit is the sheer amount of content that is now being created and how many different homes there are for the content to be shown. While the union that represents film and television performers, SAG-AFTRA has a new contract for performances on the OTT platforms, commonly called “New Media”, the pay rate significantly reduced versus traditional, broadcast programming. There is also the question of quality over quantity with many of the programs not surviving past one, already shortened season. There is no doubt that a show like Stranger Things is a bonafide hit and would have been no matter what format it had originated, however the argument could be made that, were there not the addition of so many more outlets due to the OTT platforms, Stranger Things may have never been greet.
I love being able to work on great programs like “SWAGGER” (AppleTV+) and “American Tragedies: Waco Trials” (Paramount+) so I am grateful for the new manner by which these shows are carried, I still do think we, as creatives, need to hold ourselves accountable to the quality of the programming we are creating.
TELL US ABOUT SOME OF THE MOST FASCINATING PROJECTS YOU’RE CURRENTLY WORKING ON.
Right now I have a fantastic team of representatives including my agents at Mitchell & Associates and Sovereign Talent Group working and advocating on my behalf for multiple projects including some fantastic television projects as well as a starring role in a major film franchise. Nothing is signed so I am just attempting to put forth terrific auditions and continue on the other work I have already booked. While it isn’t in the entertainment industry, one of the more fascinating projects on which I am currently focused is raising money for charities I believe in, like Leukemia Lymphoma Society Greater LA Chapter. I have auctioned VIP Experiences with me to Universal Studios Hollywood through the CharityBuzz platform and been able to raise some significant funds as well as show the winning bidders a really good time and a side of Universal Studios that most of the general public don’t see.
WHO ARE YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCES?
My children are actually huge influences on me, both personally and professionally. I watch them process things with their imaginative and inquisitive minds and without having preconceived expectations or judgements. It helps remind me to explore any given situation and attempt to find the fun in it. Professionally I am heavily influenced by one of my mentors from Virginia, Mark Joy who is one of the strongest actors I have ever had the honor to watch let alone actually work with. I have also always loved the work and character choices of my friend Eric Roberts who can take any material and effortlessly elevate it without ever even hinting that he is “acting”.
WHAT’S SOMETHING WE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT YOU THAT MIGHT SURPRISE US?
This may not surprise those who remember me from playing ROGER in Rent on Broadway but going to karaoke is one of my favorite things to do. I’ve been singing since 8th grade chorus and I actually don’t know that I would have had the confidence as a performer when I was younger if not for my High School Music teacher, Carolyn Hall-Tinsley who auditioned me and accepted me into the select mixed choir group, Sounds Unlimited as a freshman. Karaoke actually runs in the family, my son Luca Bear has two aunts, Kim and Deb who actually own a karaoke company so he and I have sung karaoke together since he was four or five years-old when they have had parties at their house or hosted at kid-friendly events. One of my oldest friends, Trevor Penick, is a member of the group O*Town and we have had karaoke as one of our go-to nights on the town for over 20 years. So I suppose the most surprising thing about me may not be so much that I enjoy karaoke as much as it is how MUCH I enjoy karaoke haha.
ANY UPCOMING PROJECTS/ROLES YOU CAN TALK ABOUT?
I just completed a guest starring turn on “The Cleaning Lady” on FOX and have the great fortune of a fantastic role on the upcoming series “American Tragedy: Waco – The Trials” which stars Michael Shannon and Giovanni Ribisi and will begin airing on Paramount+ in the early spring. In addition to several independent films I have completed in 2022, I also have a small role in the new Brad Pitt/Margot Robbie film “Babylon” directed by Academy Award Winning director Damian Chazelle. “Babylon” releases in theaters nationwide on December 23. The project about which I am most excited is the upcoming release of the Nicholas Harvard-helmed film, “The Locksmith”. The film, in which I have a heavily supporting role, stars Ryan Phillippe, Kate Hudson and Ving Rhames and will release early 2023.
WHAT IS ONE MESSAGE THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO GIVE TO YOUR FANS?
First, I would absolutely tell anyone who is a fan of me and my work that I am humbled by their support and that I am notably grateful for that support but I am a fan of theirs as well. I don’t know how much of any impact my words may have but, regardless of the level of impact, I will always be consistent in my message of spreading kindness. Attempt to be kind to any and everyone you ever encounter because you never know what they may be going through or the journey they are on and the weight they may be under in any given moment. Your inkling of extra kindness may be just the spark to turn around their day or give them a much needed respite from pain, stress or negative thoughts they may be experiencing and kindness is contagious. Just as important, and occasionally even more important, be kind to yourself as well. We are our own worst critics and can second guess and beat ourselves up more than anyone outside of us. Be kind enough to forgive others AND yourself and be proud of the wins you get in this world as they can be far too few. My message is to be kind. Be Kind Always in All Ways.