Yesterday I had a fascinating conversation with actor Bobby Campo about Nikola Tesla. It reminded me of the fascinating connections between actors and the electrical engineer that was the topic of my book, Tesla: The Wizard of Electricity.
Campo currently plays Seth Branson in the Scream: The TV Series. He also appeared in movies such as Legally Blondes and Final Destination, not to mention roles in various popular TV programs like CSI, CSI:Miami, and Gray’s Anatomy. We had a pleasant conversation about a wide range of Tesla-related topics. I has impressed by Campo’s technical knowledge; he’s actually done experiments and built a Tesla coil. I gave him some background about my book, suggested he also check out Bernie Carlson’s Tesla book, and hooked him up with the Tesla Science Foundation. I enjoyed our conversation immensely.
Campo was sent to me by another actor, James Lee Taylor (aka, Jammy). I first met James when I was asked to advise the Director, Writer, and Cast of the off-Broadway play, TESLA, in 2013. I reviewed the play here, and it went on to a huge hit, completely sold out every night of its run in New York. James Lee Taylor has gone on to star in several acting endeavors, most recently in a guest starring role as the love interest of Gabrielle Union (yes, THAT Gabrielle Union) in the hit BET TV show, Being Mary Jane. Taylor is also a highly sought after model; so much so that it seems every update he posts comes from a different continent.
The fascination with Tesla by actors doesn’t stop there. Pop icon and actor David Bowie played Nikola Tesla in The Prestige, a 2006 movie about magicians featuring other big stars who like Tesla: Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, Scarlett Johansson, Andy Serkis, and Michael Caine. Other actors fascinated by Tesla include prolific actor Jack Dimich, who not only co-starred with James Lee Taylor in the above mentioned TESLA play but plays Tesla in a new documentary in production. Another huge Tesla project is Tower to the People, directed by Joseph Sikorski, one of the biggest supporters of Nikola Telsa and the Tesla Science Center at Wardenclyffe. Sikorski is also the driving force behind another Tesla movie in production, Fragments From Olympus: The Vision of Nikola Tesla.
I’ve been privileged to have been associated with these people. The interest and dedication to keeping Nikola Tesla’s name alive has been a wonderful experience, one that I hope will continue for a long time.
David J. Kent has been a scientist for thirty-five years, is an avid science traveler, and an independent Abraham Lincoln historian. He is the author of Tesla: The Wizard of Electricity (now in its 5th printing) and two e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate. His book on Thomas Edison is due in Barnes and Noble stores in spring 2016.