Actor JEREMIAH GALLAGHER grew up in North Dakota, where his father was stationed in the military. After graduating from high school he moved to Tennessee, New York City, and Missouri where he studied improv. In 2010, he packed his entire life into his car and set out west to start a life in LA, where he is now acting full time appearing in commercials for Hulu, Hyundai, and Charter.
LUCIE BEATRIX: What role does social media play in your daily life?
Jeremiah Gallagher: I try to keep up with Instagram, so I check in a few times a day if I can. I love the community of that app — I’ve met people from all over the world through it! Some of the best folks I’ve become friends with here in Los Angeles are because of our connection on Instagram.
Besides the community of it, I just love photography so much and enjoy sharing my little stories and experiences through my photos and seeing other people’s beautiful work. It’s a photo museum all over the world in our hands. Amazing. Definitely a passion and valuable creative outlet for me.
I am absolutely terrible at all other social media.
What does the word “home” mean to you?
The idea of home has always been somewhat challenging to me. I hinted that my family moved a lot, and that I’ve been all over, so home has definitely never been a specific place.
I find it in moments. Every year I go up to Seattle to spend Thanksgiving with my best friend and his wife and little girl, and that week I spend there feels like home. I miss it and them when I’m gone.
Same can be said for Christmas time back in Dakota with my family. My favorite thing is teaching my nieces and nephews how to ice skate (EVERY YEAR! They never remember) and just being surrounded by them, laughing and falling and being silly. Holding as many of their hands as I can and pulling them around the rink until it gets dark. That’s my favorite home.
What gets your creative wheels turning?
That is a GOOD question. I get so inspired seeing creativity in others — a great movie or television series, a good book, music, photos and such. Also, the daily challenge to see things differently. I like to look for details or aspects of things that others might completely miss.
What are some of the songs in the soundtrack to your life?
This list could go on for thousands of songs, so I’ll give you my current soundtracks:
A.A. Bondy: Killed Myself When I Was Young, Seth Avett: Save Part Of Yourself, Iron and Wine/Calexico: Dead Man’s Will, The Head and The Heart: Rivers and Roads, Lost In My Mind, The Avett Brothers: Paranoia in Bb Major, February Seven, If It’s The Beaches, (The Avetts are the band of my life, I could list every song here.) David Bowie: Changes, Marvin Gaye/Tammi Terrell: Ain’t No Mountain High, Athlete: Chances, Tyler Burkum: End Of The Road, Eminem: Lose Yourself, Daniel Lanois: Sonho Dourado, Explosions In The Sky: Your Hand In Mine, Bob Dylan: I Was Young When I Left Home, Coldplay: Up With The Birds, The Strokes: I’ll Try Anything Once (demo), DeVotchka & Mychael Danna: The Winner Is
Where are the best spots to grab a bite in L.A.?
Bay Cities, Simplethings (on 3rd), Larchmont Wine and Cheese, Mendocino Farms (specifically the Banh Mi sandwich)
Best coffee place?
Intelligentsia, and LaMill; both in Silverlake
As a creative person, what keeps you organized?
My iPhone! Books, prayer and meditation and my preparation routine. I don’t use a whole lot of apps for things like this, I keep a little notebook though. It helps me to physically write certain things to stay organized or they can get lost in the abyss of technological distractions.
Does anything scare you?
Loneliness, teenagers and clowns. Mostly clowns. WHY DO THEY EXIST??
Describe a challenging time in your life and what you used to get through.
Many of these experiences. On my drive out to move to Los Angeles, my car broke down in the middle of the desert. I’ll spare most of these details in the interest of time, but I had just sold or given away everything I owned save for the few bags of things I could fit in the trunk of my car.
After being towed back to a tiny gross town and losing a week of my life waiting for the 1 mechanic to give me news, it came back that my car was totaled. Ultimately I could only take the backpack I had with me with a couple changes of clothes, and all of previous plans for Los Angeles also went out the window. I finally arrived in Los Angeles with literally the clothes on my back, very little money, and not knowing 1 single person here.
Just a few years later, I have a pretty incredible life here and feel so grateful. I have found that I am really good at building something from nothing, and that there is absolutely nothing that can ever happen in the acting world that is more difficult or impossible to overcome than what has happened to me in my life already. And I’m still standing, I’m still here and better for it.
Who is your hero?
My dad, who has been through unimaginable pain and loss and betrayal and is still the most loyal, loving and funny person I know.
Derek Jeter, because he was the best at what he did on the brightest stage, under intense scrutiny and he did everything flawlessly, with grace, a great sense of humor and respect. He’s the best.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
On the red carpet, happy, with my arm around the best lady in the world. Whoever she may be.
What is the best piece of advice given to you?
Nothing is ever gained by being mean, jaded or cynical. Work hard, treat people well, be kind. If you’re persistent enough and have enough courage, anything is possible.
What advice do you have towards anyone pursuing a career in a creative field?
If you can see yourself doing anything else, do that instead. It has to be the singular thing you love most in the entire world, so much so that you devote your entire life and well being to it.
You have to sacrifice and let go of everything else. Most people are not willing to do that. If you are, you have an extremely minuscule, basically impossible chance of making it. But a chance, and that’s worth it.
Also, I would say take action. If you have an idea, make it. Do it. If you want to do something, go do it. Make it happen. The only people who are working in creative fields are the ones MAKING that work. Once people see you actually doing things, they will give you more things to do. It’s the truest thing I can say about this industry. Work begets more work, but you have to start that process and follow through every step of the way.