I was born in Los Angeles, California on August 20, 1977. I am Filipino-American. I was born deaf and at 18 months old was enrolled at the John Tracy Clinic in Los Angeles, a school for the deaf, There I learned how to listen, lip read and most of all, learned words and the meaning of them. My parents cried when I learned to call them Mom and Dad. My mom wrote stickies identifying things around the house so I could learn them. I can hear normal conversation with my hearing aids on. I learned sign language in junior high because I was raised oral at home. I graduated from California State University Northridge with a BS degree in Kinesiology.
What got you into becoming an actor?
When I was 15 years old I joined a Tae Kwon Do and Hap Ki Do class and became 1st and 2nd degree black belt in 1998. After that I learned White Lotus Kung Fu in late 1998. The techniques I learned helped me – body and mind – be disciplined, stay healthy and keep in shape. I totally enjoyed doing this. It was so much fun. It started as a hobby. Soon I was doing karate demos on stage in events such as the Korean Thanksgiving Celebration, birthday and holiday parties, and even tournaments. I won a gold medal in one of them. My friends and family began to say I should be in the movies. They believe I can do it. At first I only wanted to do it for my own physical being. I didn’t think of being in the movies. Soon I took acting classes and workshops. I’ve always wanted to audition for martial arts/action films. I have excellent martial arts skills and tough with fight choreography and stunts.. I completed my first home movie, “RUN!”. I had a small part in the music video, “Shine”, where I played the Sheriff. Both films are already in Facebook.
Tell us about your experience about acting for Campus Nightmares Gallaudet Murders?
“Campus Nightmares,” based on a true story, was dramatic and shocking. It was scary to play Joseph Mesa because he murdered 2 deaf students. The first one was Eric Plunkett, 6 months later Ben Varner was murdered. I had to act like the serial killer. I had to be like Joseph Mesa. I was more afraid and nervous of what my friends’ and family’s reactions would be. Will they think less of me because of this murderous role? Will they understand that that is not me, that I am only playing a part in that story? These were the thoughts that went on in my mind while waiting for the airing of the show. As the air date gets closer, the waiting, excitement and nervousness all came to me.
What is the most rewarding experience you have had and what made it so?
First, I have had the pleasure and experience of working with the actors, actress, directors, producers, and the crew of “Campus Nightmares.” I learned a great deal from them and we all became friends. The second most rewarding experience was to see the completion of our hard work, how well it turned out. Thirdly, it was a weird feeling to see myself on the tv screen.
Are there any words of wisdom you’d like to pass along to your family, friends and fans?
Don’t let words like “no, or can’t” stop you. I don’t let “no call backs,” “we’ll call you back” or frustrations take me down. Never give up. The next good role or the next good thing is just around the corner.
Who or what inspires you and why?
I like the martial arts actor Collin Chou. He played Seraph in the Matrix Reload and Matrix Revolution movies. He inspires me because he’s an excellent martial artist who worked hard to get where he is today. He came from a large family and started martial arts training when he was 5. At 12 he started his career as stunt and got his first leading role at 18. I met him in person and we became friends. He is very friendly. He loves working out to keep in shape. He has a beautiful family with his wife, Wanda and 3 children. I admire him because he is a role model to me.
Completely Silly Random Questions:
If you could be a superhero, what would you want your superpowers to be?
I want to fly so I can easily catch criminals. I want to be strong so I can protect and defend the good from the bad, and I want to have some kind of superpower tools to use.
If you were a tree (or animal) what kind of tree (animal) would you be?
I would be a lion. The lion can run fast and is big and strong like “The Lion King.” Besides, I’m a Leo – that’s my astrological sign.
You have the choice to live with a gorilla who knows sign language or a dog who sings lullabies, which do you choose?
I chose a gorilla, because we can communicate with sign language. It is gonna be fun.
If aliens landed in front of you and, in exchange for anything you desire, offered you any position on their planet, what would you want?
I will tell the aliens that I will take any position on their planet IF I can have my own action movie series or TV series showcasing my martial arts skills.
If you could trade places with any other person for a week, famous or not famous, living or dead, real or fictional. with whom would it be?
I will trade places with our family bird, Togo. As Togo, I can fly way up in the sky. I can sit on tree branches and I have no worry except to find my own food and water.
My favorite part: The questionnaire concept was originated by French television personality Bernard Pivot on his show Apostrophes, after the Proust Questionnaire.
The ten questions Lipton asks are:
1. What is your favorite word?
“Car,” I love fast cars.
2. What is your least favorite word?
“NO!” It makes me sad.
3. What turns you on?
Greetings from friendly people
4. What turns you off?
People with bad attitude – I want nothing to do with them.
5. What sound or noise do you love?
Racing cars like the fast and the furious series.
6. What sound or noise do you hate?
Scrunching up paper
7. What is your favorite curse word?
8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
I’d like to be in the movies doing Martial Arts moves, like jumping and triple kicking.
9. What profession would you not like to do?
I wouldn’t want to be a teacher.
10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
I would like God to tell me my sister, Cecile, is happy and well in heaven.
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