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James Burleson Doesn’t Take Talent for Granted


James Burleson is the biggest up-and-coming actor you’ve probably not heard about. Yet.

But the odds are, you’ve seen him and didn’t know it. 

Some of James’s most familiar work includes an episode of Mystery Diners on the Food Network, where he played a manager who steals a barbecue sauce recipe from his uncle, the owner, and a role on Investigation Discovery’s Most Evil, the series finale of the show, in which he played a serial killer named Levi King. He also played Sean Penn and Jim Toth on two separate episodes of “The Price of Fame” on the REELZ channel. One of James’s most proud accomplishments is the film “The Johnny Starr Story,” based on a true story about a musician who dies mysteriously with his band in a plane crash. 

James Burleson felt a call to serve our country before the acting bug bit him. A United States Air Force veteran with 8 years of service, James concluded his service in 2011 to pursue a full-time acting career. “It was an enormous risk leaving a secure, military role into an insecure position, but I’m so glad I took the risk.”

Thankfully, the risk has yielded plenty of reward. James has acted in over 80 different productions, handling a wide range of roles in different, complex genres. In 2022 alone, James has acted in 6 projects including the Lifetime series #TextMeWhenYouGetHome as well as two feature films, Mister Gates (Dondaga Films) and Homeboys (NSM Production & JF Bailey Films), both expected for release in 2023.

“I knew from the time I was a little boy I wanted to be an Actor. I grew up in a military family, as my father served for 26 years in the United States Air Force (USAF). I had no ties or connections in the entertainment industry. I had to put forth all the efforts and actions into getting to know the business on my own. I went through many years of acting as an extra on productions, acting in many student films and short films. All of that eventually led to bigger opportunities like getting cast in feature films as well as episodes on various TV productions. Where there is a will, there is a way. My motivation and perseverance in doing what I love to do will never die.”

James’ road to acting has been anything but easy. In fact, James has experienced more rejection and adversity than most emerging actors can imagine… because many do quit after one or two tries. “You never know what a Casting Director is thinking, so do not worry about something you cannot control, like rejection. It will show in your face, and you most likely will not book the audition. Also, treat each audition as if you are having fun. Even if you do not book it, use each audition as a learning experience to succeed and grow stronger in your craft.”

And grown stronger in his craft, James has.

James is accelerating his career and aims to expand to over 100 credits within the next few years. “I’m a professional, and I’m devoted to mastering characters using methods of instinct as well as strong, in-depth improvisational skills. My goal is to make a cinematic impact on global audiences.”

“Success is achieved by taking fearful risks. Whether you succeed or fail at a risk, you still win by learning from each and every experience. It makes you stronger and less afraid in your future.”

You can follow James on Instagram @jburlesonactor.

Learn more about James:

Official website: 


IMDb: https://www.IMDb.me/jamesburleson

Demo Reel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oATjOSBTX4k

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jburlesonactor

Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/jburlesonactor

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/jburlesonactor