"Well if they won't give me a great part, I'll write one myself."-Chazz Palminteri.
On the most recent episode of my podcast, Unplugged with Brandon Steiner, I spoke with Bronx native, Chazz Palminteri.
Chazz grew up on Belmont Avenue in The Bronx, and just like many people who grew up in that neighborhood he had his own unique story. Unlike everyone else though, he turned his story into A Bronx Tale, one of the most influential films of all-time. Struggling to get the script produced, he never gave up, and he always assured himself and his father that he would never waste his talent.
Growing up Chazz's father wrote for him on an index card "The saddest thing in life is wasted talent." Chazz carried this all throughout his life as a constant reminder of this wonderful inspiration that his father had given him. His father couldn't have been more right, because there will never be anything sadder than seeing yourself or someone you love waste their talent away.
In life you have two options, use your talent to become a success, or never reach your full potential. Everyone in this world has one quality or skill that they can use to their advantage. The issue is people either never realize the gift they have been given, or choose to never do anything with it, and that is the biggest mistake you could ever make.
By not using your talent to get ahead you are letting your family down, you are letting all those people who have tried to encourage you to not be average down, and you are most importantly letting yourself down.
Why be average when you can be great? No one will ever be able to push you to be the best you can be except yourself. Others can try make an impact, but they won't ever be able to make you wake up each morning with an attitude determined to become the greatest you can be. Chazz Palminteri had many opportunities to abandon his potential and settle for average. He decided to take a chance, and he turned it into a legacy unlike any other.
I leave you with this... don't settle for average, don't miss out on the smallest of opportunities, and most importantly don't be a wasted talent.
In this episode we discuss:
- Growing up in the Bronx
- Being a struggling actor in Hollywood
- His one man show
- The creation and success of A Bronx Tale
- Being a die hard New York Yankees fan
- Wasted talent
- ...and more.