On this week’s Indy Spotlight, we highlight Action Braxton!
Lights. Camera. Braxton.
A key point about professional wrestling that cannot be emphasized enough is that it is an art form. It is a unique blend of physicality and executing an entertaining persona that can appeal to a wider audience. We repeatedly thought about these ideas as we learned more about Action Braxton, an independent professional wrestler who has made his mark in promotions including Future Stars of Wrestling and Championship Wrestling from Hollywood. Braxton employs high-impact moves that clearly speak to his athleticism in his matches, but he brings just as much energy to his character. This is especially evident when he makes his way to the ring with a clapperboard in-hand, making his “Hollywood’s Boyfriend” nickname all the more appropriate.
Given his wrestling talent, his interests in acting and singing, and his ongoing studies in TV / film producing, Braxton not only appears destined for more success in the ring, but also for a long tenure in the entertainment industry at large. Recently, we reached out to him to learn more about his passion for entertainment, what he enjoys most about being a pro wrestler, and more.
Can you tell us about what sparked your interest in acting, producing, or just entertainment in general? Also, if you landed the starring role in a major full-length movie that will be seen by millions, what kind of movie would it be, and who are 1 or 2 people you’d pick to be your co-stars?
AB: I actually started acting my freshman year of high school and ironically, I did it because I was already taking bumps and doing practice matches at training, I just wanted to be a better personality, a better character. So I took theatre and after doing my first show I realized “Oh I actually have 2 careers now.” Theatre led to me studying film and tv in Chicago, and eventually I came back to wrestling. My ideal breakout film would be a trippy, time and space drama like Inception. John Boyega and/or Denzel Washington can be there too.
When you set out to become a professional wrestler, was there one aspect of the profession that you picked up immediately? For example, we imagine there are some wrestlers who immediately excel at promos and perhaps take more time to get comfortable with some in-ring skills. What was your experience?
AB: I sucked at everything. And that was mainly because I was a timid, shy, scared kid. But eventually my peers pushed me to overcome all those things and I got better. I think once I discovered my character identity, everything else started to finally make a little sense because I had more of an idea of what goes where when putting a match together.
Video source: YouTube – LightsCameraBraxton
Are there any wrestlers, past or present, who have inspired your wrestling style or just how you approach the wrestling business in general?
AB: CM Punk, Eddie Guerrero and The Rock
What do you find to be the most fun aspect of being a professional wrestler? What’s the most challenging aspect?
AB: I think the most fun aspect is meeting other people who are passionate about storytelling. Sharing philosophies, ideas, and eventually getting to see them come to life and entertain others. I’d say the most challenging is the fight you have behind the camera to survive in your everyday life and also survive in a climate that is becoming more and more competitive. Having things that set you apart has never been more important because wrestling is just so good now. You hear “this guy is one of the best in the world” so often now and it’s true of almost everyone you hear it said about.
Finally, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues and issues of race, racism, and police brutality are at the center of most conversations in our country these days, it is understandable that many people are feeling sadness and anger, among other emotions. What self care are you doing to maintain at least some sanity in these difficult times? Are there any fun hobbies keeping your spirits up?
AB: Absolutely, I think mental health of black folks is something that generations before us didn’t really subscribe to because we attributed this stigma of “black strength” to ourselves and that idea of strength sort of involves no-selling everything and riding till the wheels fall off without taking care of yourself. Partly because systemic poverty didn’t really give them any other choice and I think this generation is coming to see that it isn’t exactly healthy. I workout while I watch wrestling, I play video games, I listen to musical cast albums, I binge on Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Disney Plus, all that stuff. Anything I’m doing to keep information around me uplifting and inspiring usually involves this entertainment business that I love so much.
**Be sure to follow and support Action Braxton on the following platforms: