Acting aspirations

Freshman pursues acting after role in commercial at age 9


Munachi Johnson

Freshman Manning Poston holds up a screenshot from the Capital City Bank commercial he acted in at age 9.

Munachi Johnson, Staff Writer

Harsh lights hit his face. The sounds of people scurrying and shouting out fill the set of the bank. Cameras at every angle stare directly at him, while large equipment looms over him as they record his every word. The live set for the Capital City Bank could be intimidating, but 9-year-old Manning Poston, who is now a freshman, felt right at home.

“Acting has been a passion of mine since I was very young. I have a lot of favorite actors and I study a lot of films. It prompted me to want to become an actor,” Poston said. “Basically how it started was my mom signed up to a couple agencies and they actually responded back and got me signed with a few projects I could work on.”

Poston’s acting career started with that debut commercial for Capital City Bank, an experience which gave him an inside look into the process of video production and gave him an opportunity to get his name out. 

“It was on a Wednesday night. They called me at 9 o’clock,” Poston said. “They called and said that they wanted me inside the studio to take a few pictures and headshots. We went to the studio and within the next couple weeks, we booked a day to shoot. They rented out a home and some locations to film in. We would take 20 takes or so until we got the perfect shot. It took the whole day to film the commercial.”

Poston said at first he was very nervous.

“I had been on camera before, but not to that level or extent. As we progressed through [the filming], I was pretty much going with the flow. I had a knack for it,” Poston said. “There were a lot of mic men, there were the main directors and there was a light director. They really made a welcoming environment and allowed me to settle in and act. I didn’t know that it would take so many shots and so many different takes. I initially thought that one shot was either good or not. I had to do the same scene over and over again and it was very interesting.”

Despite his nerves, Poston said the commercial gave him insight into the acting industry, valuable experience and what it was like to be supported by a production crew.

“I did build a community. It really is like a family whenever you’re on set with someone. The whole environment is very special and welcoming. One time when I was on set, they had  another boy’s set of clothes which they made, and they made me really comfortable putting on someone else’s stuff,” Poston said.

Soon after he began his acting career, COVID halted his plans. However, he still researches auditions and is considering moving out of state to pursue more opportunities. 

“I go on different websites and app. There is a site I use called Backstage where you see jobs where they need a specific type of person that looks a certain way,” Poston said. “It allows you to send auditions to different acting jobs. I really want to get into an acting school, some type of program to further my acting.”

With his experience acting in the commercial as a foundation, Poston hopes to pursue the craft in the future.