It Takes Two, with Tony Edwards

The cast of Beyond Therapy

Jack's Hat               photo by Jeremy Barnard
Charles Van Eman



Beginnings, Endings, And The Life In Between

Behind the wheel of a 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass with $250 in his pocket Charles Van Eman drove from Pittsburgh to Los Angeles. Having just graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management (He wanted to manage a ski resort), he turned down a job offer by Club Corporation of America to be the assistant manager of their beautifully appointed club in Louisville, Kentucky.  Instead, broke and with $7,000 of college loans hanging over his head, Van Eman painted the house he was renting in East Lansing to earn traveling money, drove to Pittsburgh to say goodbye to his parents, then headed west to Los Angeles. 

He was looking for adventure as much as seeking to become a successful actor. With luck and several inspiring acting coaches like Scott Allen, Gordon Hunt, and later Cameron Thor, he managed to get work.

After doing several commercials and brief TV appearances he got his first guest-starring role as a punk rocker dating Helen Hunt on the ABC sitcom, It Takes Two.  Several TV and film gigs followed. With cast mates Linda Purl, Harry Shearer, Bob Picardo, David Clennon, and Carol Morley, he enjoyed a highly successful 100 performance run in the LA Public Theater production of Beyond Therapy directed by Paul Benedict. 

Around this time
he decided to write a screenplay.  Holed up in his bungalow three blocks from the beach in Santa Monica he began writing.  

Using that first screenplay as a writing sample he was offered a job adapting
the Louis L’Amour short story, Bill Carey Rides West into an audio drama for Random House Publishing.  Beau L'Amour, Louis' son and the editor on the project, was a tough task master and through that difficult process valuable writing experience was gained. 

While in New York for a nine month acting gig he studied creative writing at New York University and gave his voice to four Random House audio dramas adapted from L’Amour short storiesHe then returned to Pittsburgh to perform in the world premiere of the play, Spinners. 

Back in LA he adapted six more L’Amour stories for Random House and accepted an offer from the L’Amour estate to research Louis’ biography.  After traveling 15,000 miles around the country tracking the adventurous life of Louis L'Amour he came back to the theater appearing in his solo show, Beginners Mind.  Guest star appearances on several TV shows followed, and with Guerrila Theatre in Los Angeles, he performed in 24 Hours AM/PMShow Me The Love, and Shel's Shorts.  For Random House he co-produced the audio drama Son of a Wanted Man from a screenplay adaptation he co-wrote from the Louis L'Amour novel of the same name. 

A remarkable adventure so far, many more opportunities have come Mr. Van Eman's way.  Click on the IMDB link above for the rest of his television and film career.

Best of luck on your adventure.  Be bold.

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