Actor and Writer Justin Mabrie is just getting started in entertainment. The Houston native relocated to Los Angeles to further his career but has also made quite a few stops on the way. Graduating from Hampton University with an MBA, he is a published writer with a specialty on relationships.
Justin has traveled all over the world, but his most recent role in 5th Ward has brought him back to his hometown. He’s now focusing acting and taking on roles that tell interesting stories. Most of his experience has come from stage productions and television series including Body Proof, General Hospital, and 5th ward.
Salute: You’re originally from Houston. What was it like to grow up there?
Justin: I grew up in Houston my whole life. I had traditional family values growing up, but my parents were divorced. When I started writing, I realized that I learned so much with them being divorced. I gained a different perspective after living with my mother, about how couples deal with different issues like dating and relationships. Also, how each issue can really affect the maybe next relationship you might have. So, I think later on in life I was able to pull a lot from there.
Also growing up we had a mortuary. I worked at the mortuary after school for two hours, so I learned the hard work value.
Salute: Since you do write quite a lot about relationships, what are some of the keys things that you learned by observing your parents?
Justin: I think communication is so key. I think we’ve all heard that. For each partner to communicate with each other and also go into that communication with the desire to understand what it is the other person is trying to say. Maybe you don’t agree, but at least you understand where they’re coming from and what’s their perspective.
Another thing that I learned is that when going into a relationship, define it by your own terms. Also, make sure your partner knows those terms as well. It goes back to communication so that everything is clear and you both are operating on the same page.
Salute: Tell us about some of the things that have done so far in acting?
Justin: I have a role on General Hospital. I have a show on the Urban Movie Channel called “5th Ward.” My co-star is Mya, the singer. I play her boyfriend who is in jail. That’s my most recent project, and I believe that it’s eight episodes.
It’s nice because the 5th Ward is a district in my hometown Houston. That’s where my church is, where I grew up, and where my mom grew up. To actually be telling a story about a family in 5th Ward was nice.
My character Tony is a pretty gritty character. He’s in jail but he’s been falsely accused. So often when we’re in jail we get in our head a lot. He’s getting information about his girl who’s out in the world and she’s coming to see him. He’s got some stuff to say and he wants to get some things cleared off his chest. There’s a surprise at the end, but during the show, Tony is expressing his emotions because he’s in a position that he knows he doesn’t deserve to be in.
Salute: What are some of the things that ring you enjoyment outside of writing, acting, and your career?
Justin: Looking for the next workout or the next workout class. One of the things that I love about L.A. is being able to hike. When say hiking to someone who is not from L.A. it sounds really intense. They think that you have to have a backpack and gear, but really it’s just running. I like being able to do workouts outside.
I’m also into food. I’m into the latest restaurant, the latest workout, and the next trip I can take. I love traveling. With working out, I take classes that include weights and cardio.
Salute: With traveling, where have you been outside of the United States to besides Qatar?
Justin: South Africa, West Africa, Denmark, Thailand, Roma, Ibiza, Barcelona, Sri Lanka, Oman, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Prague, Budapest. My next trip will be for a wedding in Mexico. I haven’t been there in awhile. I haven’t been to South America and I want to go there because I like a lot of their healthy eating practices.