Prevailing through his past and using it to secure his future, Collins Pennie is pressing his way through the different entries of entertainment.
At a young age growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Pennie decided that he wanted more for himself than what his neighborhood could offer. After turning 15, he set out on his own to make that mission a reality. Since that moment Pennie hasn’t looked back but prevailed forward. He has starred in several movies, including mega box office hits such as “In Time”, “Prom Night”, “Stomp The Yard 2:Homecoming”, “Half Nelson”, and the remake of “Fame”. He’s also starred on television shows such as “Hawthorne” and guest starred on shows such as “Law & Order” and “CSI: Miami”. He also starred in the Broadway musical “RENT” at the Hollywood Bowl in L.A.
Pennie took the time out to talk with And We Present about putting God and his faith first, focusing on his craft, and what’s in store for him.
Even though Pennie considers himself an actor, he has done modeling and performed for Beyoncé in two of her music videos. He explains, “I did a commercial audition and some of the people who work for her saw the tape. I was already acting and they decided to bring me in to audition for a part in her video and they casted me in her Get Me Bodied video.” After performing in that video, Pennie had a second opportunity about four years down the line for another one of Beyoncé’s videos. She [Beyonce] saw my work in “Fame” and she saw all the things I had done since the [Get Me Bodied] video, so her team asked me to come be the lead guy in the Run the World [Girls] video; I said yes and I had a blast working with her,” Pennie says of the experience.
Pennie contributes his road to success to his belief in God and his faithfulness. “God will honor your commitment if it’s about being the best artist that you can be,” says Pennie. “You have to have faith; trust and know what you want. If it’s to be the best artist that you can be, then focus on that and everything else will follow. It is very, very tough though. People can lose themselves by comparing themselves to others, but when you have a clear understanding that God has something else in store for you, you’re fine. God will not give you anything that you’re not ready for. Just continue to work hard and when it’s time, it’s time.”
Speaking of himself, Pennie wants to take his career to new heights, by honing in and focusing on improving and perfecting his acting, while continuing to take courses in dancing and singing. Although acting takes up the majority of his time, he does like to sing also. He informed And We Present that later on down the road he would love to work on singing because that is something that he still likes to do; but with his busy schedule he wants to make sure he has the time and dedication to tackle a singing career.
Right now, Pennie says, “I’m living; focusing on my craft and being happy.” When asked what type of legacy he wants to leave behind he says, “I want to be a legend…Changing the world and changing lives.”