I first met Dominic Pace back in 2018; we struck up a conversation on Twitter, and Dominic was kind enough to do one of our first success story interviews.
What immediately caught my attention talking with Dominic was he's the “real deal.” He didn't fake sincerity, give canned responses or phone in his answers the way some celebrities do. He always gave real candid and honest answers. In fact, one of the most requested questions readers ask is for interviewees to “share a money mistake,” Dominic was the first to answer the question. (How cool is that!!!)
His sincerity and honesty lead to me reaching out to him a few times during the year to pick his brain about a particular topic. Each time I would chat with him, the conversation would drift into other areas and I often found we would end up geeking out over a movie or show. Recently, we discussed the video game Star Wars Battlefront, when I was thrilled to learn than Dominic landed a dream role in the upcoming show The Mandalorian.
I wasted no time in asking that Dominic swing back by the blog to discuss success, Star Wars, and his upcoming role.
Tell us about yourself.
I've been a working Character Actor for over 20 years in Hollywood. Recent Guest Starring Appearances include Navy NCIS: LA, 9-1-1, as well Deputy, a new show which will premiere on Fox in January.
Dominic Pace on Star Wars Fandom
How long have you been a Star Wars Fan?
My mother was instrumental in providing a fun and creative childhood. From purchasing toys to taking us to the library to listen to various musical pieces, my mom had a lot to do with my introduction and love of Star Wars. We didn't have much growing up, but she always did the best she could to provide and make childhood fun and exciting.
I've been a Star Wars fan since I was 5. My mother got me the Cantina Playset as well as the original 11 or 12 figures. My love for the franchise took off from there. To this day, The Empire Strikes Back is still my favorite film of all time.
From the mythology to the parallels of family, along with the fantastic backdrop of outer space, Lucas is a genius.
Do you have any Star Wars traditions?
My sons and I purchase a Star Wars Lego Spaceship once a year. They have this mini Star Wars Galaxy hanging on fish wire from their ceiling. Priceless hours of quality time together with my sons.
Who is your favorite character?
It's a toss-up between Han Solo and Boba Fett as I love them both.
- Solo, as Harrison Ford, had the most amazing screen presence. How he took command of the screen was unmatched.
- Fett, because how cool was that outfit!? What boy doesn't love a rocket launcher or jet pack with an action figure? Not to mention one of the coolest ships in the Galaxy, The Slave 1.
What was it like as a fan appearing in The Mandalorian?
I've been in entertainment for over 20 years. I have over 100 TV and Film appearances. Being on set as a Featured, one-of-a-kind Bounty Hunter was one of the coolest experiences I've ever had.
You could feel the amazing energy on set as everyone knew they were part of something special. Having David Filoni, Jon Favreau, and director Deborah Chow as our leaders is such a privilege.
Walk us through the process; what was it like auditioning from other shows/movies?
It differed from other shows as this started simply as a makeup test. I hit it off with one of their lead makeup artists. I patiently sat in his makeup chair for over 6 hours.
He ended up giving me the most detailed prosthetic amongst the other Bounty Hunters. Patience, kindness, and professionalism were what lead to me receiving a childhood dream of a lifetime.
What was it like getting into character?
I think being a fan of the franchise and villains made it pretty easy. My heart was pounding at the opportunity, so the intensity of my unforgiving Bounty Hunter nicknamed “Gekko,” was easy to find.
Dominic Pace on Success
What would your mom say your most significant achievement is?
I would say my heart. I'm very caring a generous. I don't have walls up emotionally that is pretentious or meant to undermine someone else. I am a giver.
Professionally what are you most proud of?
My consistency over the years. I never quit, and because of that, I have seen the success and what can occur if you stay persistent in your dreams.
What did it take to achieve?
It is about being passionate about what you are pursuing. Otherwise, it would be too much work each day.
You have to love what you do. Then, no day feels like work, and you are focused and committed to your trade.
What tips or lessons did you pick up on the way to your achievement?
In order to be an actor, your schedule has to be flexible. Independent Contracting apps (Uber/Lyft/Task Rabbit/Instacart) are all priceless for you to keep your freedom. You can work when you have time and hustle at what you love when you want. It's been amazing.
What is one thing you have learned from being successful?
To appreciate the victories. So many of my peers are constantly chasing, but to a point, it can some times become toxic. You may not win the Academy Award, but you need to appreciate your small victories.
Is there a mistake you have made starting that you wish you could change?
I would've stayed Non-Union longer. There is a lot of content out there that is nonunion where you can star in the project as opposed to only having a few lines in the Big Leagues. I would've explored that more as I went through about ten years of just small parts on Television. I would have worked at a lower level but with meatier roles.
If you could recommend one book to help people be more successful?
Actor Steven Guttenberg wrote about his life in The Guttenberg Bible. I loved this book as he was a model of persistence in my trade
Dominic Pace on Money
How has success changed your views and opinions on money?
I believe in being conservative when I can financially, as you don't know what next year is going to bring. There are zero guarantees of another acting role after each one is complete. To save for a rainy day and pay off debt when you have that extra money.
I think as we get older, we take fewer risks. I like to pay off debt and knock out the mortgage. It gives me peace of mind. Respect to those who make high-risk investments, but I like to play it safe as I sleep better at night.
What’s the biggest money mistake you made?
When I was 18, I had a Visa Gold card. I was making decent money and living at home. I charged up a credit card during those years, and it took me a long time to pay off. I continually tell my sons to spend only what you have, if you can.
What’s the best money decision you made?
Buying our condo and sitting on it. It has appreciated over 17 years in Los Angeles, and we now have a nice ‘nest egg' in the equity.
I'll be Guest Starring on an episode of 9-1-1 on Fox opposite Rhonda Rousey on November 11th, right before the release of The Mandalorian. I'll also be starring in a Sociological Thriller titled Anonymous Killers. “Killers” is a Feature Film directed by A.R. Hilton and is due out early next year.
Any upcoming projects you are working on?
I am very much looking forward to branding this Bounty Hunter I portrayed in The Mandalorian. Next year will be filled with a lot of Comic Conventions all around the world.
Now with this newfound recognition and fame ;), I plan to do a lot of charity work and assist in others' dreams. I am content in many ways in what I have achieved. Paying it forward makes me happier as I get older.
Where can people connect with you online?
What is the best advice you have received?
Not so much advice but leadership from a Teacher and Coach when I was young. I was not a great student during elementary school. This teacher and coach, Roger Rowe, would never give in to excuses. Whether on the Football Field, or the Classroom, he would hold me accountable.
He showed me the first look of the world, and what it takes to succeed. At the time I thought he was just mean and didn't like me… little did I realize he cared the most.
What is the one thing you wish everyone knew?
That at the end of the day, though money and success are important, love is the only thing that matters. That's a different definition for many, but I am very much in touch with that and never let myself get too caught up in career to where I ignore the ones I care about.
Share a geeky fact about yourself.
I have visited over 250 Movie Locations over the country and world, simply due to my love of Pop Culture and appreciation of other artists.
I will still buy Star Wars books and merchandise from time to time and not necessarily for the kids. I've always loved the franchise since my childhood. This has been a way for me to relive those memories.
Do you have a crush on a superhero?
Not until Gina Carano in the new Mandalorian. She looks absolutely amazing and is such a solid talent.
Can you recite all the lines to A New Hope?
I'm well versed in Star Wars quotes. Lol.