Haven’t heard of Vic Bagratuni? You will. Having seen this compelling actor’s stage performances twice, we reached out for an interview with Bagratuni for some insight into his current and former roles – and future plans.
Bagratuni followed a family legacy when he began his acting career. “My grandfather and great-grandfather were leading figures in acting and directing in the former Soviet Union. To live up to this legacy I was determined to become an actor.” He took part in productions in Germany and New York, where he studied at the Lee Strasberg Institute under Strasberg proteges Lola Cohen, Geoffrey Horne, Paul Calderon and Vincent D’Onofrio, as well as at the Actors Studio before moving to Los Angeles.
His favorite role thus far was being cast in Martin Scorsese’s Wolf of Wall Street. Scorsese is somewhat of an idol to Bagratuni. “Being in the film made me a better actor to be honest, and I’m humbled to have been given the experience.”
However, the role was not his most challenging. “I’ve taken on parts in independent productions that vary from challenges like learning sign language up to a level to carry on a conversation about philosophy in Waiting for a Train, and portraying a character who suffers from schizophrenia and is simultaneously dying of cancer in the play Parallel Stages. To create those characters, I had to dig deep.”
Bagratuni has new roles coming up including a role in Men of Granite starring Shirley MacLaine and William Hurt. The project is based on a true story about a high school basketball team that wins the State Championship. He’s also been cast in a television series, The Good Season, and collaborated on the independent project Sam’s Box, which has been making waves on the festival circuit.
“I’ve also been focusing on creating my own original content in theater and film, so I’m in the process of securing funding,” he relates.
His dream project? “My absolute dream would be a collaboration with Scorsese on The Irish Man or Sinatra.”
For inspiration, Bagratuni turns poetry, nature, music, and people watching. “ I like to observe human behavior and reproduce it artistically in my work.” The film that most influenced him is On the Waterfront; Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, Robert DeNiro, and Robert Mitchum remain favorite actors.
Although his training is in classical theater and his stage performances are electric, currently living in LA, Bagratuni sees himself doing more work in film and TV for now. “Of course I am staying open for whatever comes along,” he attests.