Basil Wallace Biography
Basil Wallace Biography
Actor (Film, Television and Stage)
Basil Wallace immigrated to the United States from Jamaica, West Indies with his four siblings. They joined their parents in Brooklyn, New York where Basil went to elementary and junior high school. The family then moved to Long Island where he attended high school. It was while at Hempstead High School that Basil knew for sure that he wanted a life in the theatre. He auditioned for a Broadway bound play, Front Page, starring Henry Fonda, Estelle Parsons, and Robert Ryan. He won the role. That experience sealed his future.
He applied to Yale, New York University (NYU) and Harvard. He was accepted to both Yale and NYU, but chose NYU for both New York City and Lloyd Richards of famed A Raisin in the Sun, who was teaching there at the time. That same summer he was selected by Ellen Steward of La Mama ETC (Experimental Theatre Company) to become a member of her theatre. He is now a lifetime member.
He attended NYU for two years and while there he got his first off-Broadway play, The Pig Pen at the American Place Theatre. His life in the theatre had begun. For the next twenty years he worked as an actor, director and writer in the theatre. With La Mama he was director in residence for a year. As an actor he also took five plays to the Italian Theatre Festival under La Mama.
Throughout those years he worked off-Broadway, major regional theatres, and national tours. To keep his craft sharp he continued to take private lessons at places like the Negro Ensemble Company and The Players' Workshop where he eventually taught.
Mr. Wallace also taught theater aesthetics' for Lincoln Center for ten years. He was the Director of Drama for school district 13 in the Bronx, NY, and Director of Mini-Mobile Theatre for two years. He was one of the founding members and artistic director for its first year of the Caribbean American Repertory Theatre. He was also director of the Yard Bird Players for three years.
In 1990, Basil decided to move to Los Angeles to pursue acting in films. He auditioned for the film Marked for Death and got the leading role. He has been working in both film and television since then. Some movie credits to his name are Grand Canyon, The Wood, Free Willy 2, Return of the Living Dead 3, Caught Up and Deadlock. For television, you've seen him in episodes of West Wing, Judging Amy, The Pretender, Any Day Now, and NYPD Blue. Since moving to "Hollywood," Basil has started Boots Productions/JaCuBas Films for the development of new product.
He continues to learn and grow through working with other actors as both a coach and director of scene study. You can presently see him in the feature film, Blood Diamond.