Raymond J. Harbert College of Business alumnus
Michael Fucci is a 1994 graduate of the Raymond J. Harbert College of Business, earning a degree in finance. Since his college days, he has proven to be quite the professional multitasker. Fucci, who lives in Sherman Oaks, Calif., is an actor who has made numerous appearances on General Hospital, Entourage, automobile commercials and even a soap advertisement featuring Oscar winner Charlize Theron. Remarkably, his professional reach doesn't end in the studios; Fucci, who received a law degree at the University of Georgia, is the founder and principal of AttorneyAppear.com, an agency that uses attorneys for fill-in roles, drafting law and motion documents or making court appearances when other attorneys are not available. But Fucci, a former Auburn Student Government Association treasurer, takes special pride in the numerous national and international mission trips he takes, helping others in need in a variety of ways. His journeys, which are featured in July's Shareholder Online, have taken him to the likes of Egypt (five times) and Haiti.
1. Tell us about your first attempt at Hollywood.
When I was SGA treasurer (at Auburn), I remember sitting in the SGA office in Foy Union and applying to law schools in California because I wanted to give acting a shot. I ended up coming out here (Los Angeles) for two weeks one summer where I met a well-connected talent manager at the proverbial corner newsstand. He immediately sent me out on my first TV show audition. I got a callback and got to read for producers. Although I didn't ultimately get the part, there was part of me that thought I could make it in the business. But those two weeks were short and I faced the decision of whether to stay in California or go to law school. In my mind, acting was always something that other people did. It was never something that I did, so I ended up going the more conservative route and enrolled in law school.
2. How can a business education be useful in an acting career?
In entertainment, you can get so focused on your craft that you forget it's called the entertainment business for reason. You can be the most talented actor in the world and never get seen if you forget about the business side of the industry. In Hollywood, having a business background is invaluable. It gives you the tools to market yourself better, build your career and make smart business decisions. It also helps teach you how to make good financial choices with the money you earn.
3. Where does your motivation for mission work come from?
The youth group from Central United Methodist Church in Decatur, Ala., and I go with the hope of helping others, but truthfully, we get so much more in return. You don't always get to see the results of your work. You simply have to trust that whatever work you are doing, if you do it to the best of your ability, God can use that. We're all part of the puzzle. I just hope that we touch lives and make them just a little bit better, a little bit brighter. That's what I strive for.
4. How can media be used for the good to help others in mission trips?
There are people in third-world countries in Africa that don't know where their next meal is coming from, but there is a TV in the village and they know who Tom Cruise and Michael Jackson are. Television is the only exposure that many of these people have of America or of Christians and with many of the shows on today, sometimes that view is not as positive as we might hope.
From Bollywood to Nollywood, you see pockets of cinema springing up throughout the world. Egypt is no different. They are incredibly talented and equipped. To be able to walk alongside them, teaching them what we know from our experiences in Hollywood, we can more effectively produce content for the Egyptian people, the Middle East and the world. To find a way to use this powerful medium for good - in a way that benefits people, teaches people, inspires people - that is my goal.
5. Do you have any strange stories from the set of General Hospital?
Once, I left the set with my stage gun (playing the role as a police officer). They started paging me to get back to the set. I didn't hear the pages. Someone had to come to my dressing room to let me know I was being paged because, as you can imagine, having a gun leave the set, especially with the new guy, is never a good thing.