EXCLUSIVE: JASON DAVID FRANK: THE MAN BEHIND THE MASK

1K Shares

THE RANGER

Media super-star Jason David Frank is a hero to millions.  For decades, he has portrayed Tommy Oliver in the Power Rangers franchise.  Now, he is opening up and talking about the man behind the Ranger.

HIS WRITING

Jason David Frank will be releasing a personal video that shares his inner struggles through his poetry.  He recently talked about what motivates his writing and how he copes with his ever-changing life.

“I write a lot.” Frank said. “I used to write all the time. And I still do, when I go through stuff. I think most of the time I write on airplanes. That’s the only place I can really write, to be honest. Because I’m confined, I’m trapped, there’s no Wifi, my mind goes everywhere. Especially when I’m traveling so much.”

Actor Jason David Frank, notable for his performance as the original Green Ranger and White Ranger, in multiple seasons of Power Rangers, attends the Comicon 2018 on 5th April, 2018. Photo Clint Egbert/Gulf News

BEING VULNERABLE

“This one, I thought it was important for people. And I was a little nervous even telling people that I do poems and poetry. Just because it’s, as you can see, this is a vulnerable side of myself. And just to put that out there like that, I was a little worried. But at the same time, I teach all my fans that we’re all equal, we’re all people.”

“…This one in particular, I felt it’s the two perspectives I have. Number one is how you put a band-aid over pain, and it’s covered, and you never think of anything else, but it’s always covered. But it’s never healed because we don’t take the band-aid off. Once they take the band-aid off, it bleeds. And so, I think a lot of people don’t deal with their problems. I’ve lost a lot of people in my life. I lost my mom and I’m on tour all the time. So, I do have to be that superhero, and I want to be. But at the end of the day, sometimes there’s problems that maybe I haven’t faced yet, just because I’ve been busy so long. That was one perspective of just allowing the mask to come off. Meaning, to deal with our problems.”

LEAVE YOUR LUGGAGE AT THE DOOR

“And I see this a lot at comic cons.  We’re all happy, we’re all there, we’re being entertained. It’s just one of those things where I look at everyone and I think, on the end of Sunday this is going to end. This is going to go back to life and back to reality. And I teach a lot of my students too, when they come to the karate school, to leave all their luggage at the door, and come in and train. But when they leave, unfortunately, the luggage is still there. So, I think it’s important for sometimes that we have to deal with life. And life’s hurts.  I’ve sent them to a lot of actors or athlete friends, and they can relate to that because they’re in the public eye all the time.”

JASON DAVID FRANK – THE MASK

“Through Power Rangers, we’ve all been through a lot of stuff during the show. And it was like, ‘Great. I’m so sorry to hear that. But bud, hit your mark and deliver your line.’  We so got used to training that every actor hits their mark and they deliver their line. And sometimes we forget who we are and what we’re dealing with.”

Fellow Ranger, Nakia Burrise said that she thinks “JDF has vocalized what so many people struggle with… putting on a mask to often be what we think others want us to be!”

Jason also spoke to Ciara Hanna, the yellow Ranger from Mega Force. Ciara also wrote poetry and Jason said “this hit her. The people on Instagram, we post what we want to post. We have the mask on, we’re big and tough and nothing’s going faze us. But in reality, we all have weaknesses and we all wear a mask.”

“That is something that we’re dealing with now. And in the short I wanted to have the outside people looking at me as normal. And as I look into the mirror… I use the drama masks. I thought the masks will give a good touch to drama and acting in life that you either have happy or you have sad.”

JASON DAVID FRANK – INNER SELF

“But the reflection in the mirror, for me, it seems like it’s stuck on happy, even though I’m dealing with a lot of stuff. Losing my mom, I was at Rhode Island Comic Con, when I had three days. And people don’t know, but every hour, I was counting just to make sure I can get through it. My mom said, ‘Get to Rhode Island. Don’t let those fans down.’ And I was like, ‘Mom.’ I didn’t know how long she was going to live, and I made it just in time.”

“And then there’s been plenty of times at shows out there where I just put the mask on. Now listen, the mask is not safe. That mask I put on, absorbs compliments and it feeds the mask and it makes me happy. But therefore, the mask, it ended up getting stuck, because I’m not able to deal with all my other problems, if that makes sense.”

THE VIDEO

“And the idea behind it is, in the reflection, you’ll see the camera pan and you’ll see a sad face. Which is seeing, it seems, from the outside. Like, ‘Man, something’s wrong with him. He seems a little sad even though that’s not the mask you see.’ But I see the reflection in the mirror. It’s always happy. Because the reflection in the mirror is happy. But underneath it sometimes it’s a little bit deeper than that.”

“So, I just thought everyone can deal with it. Because we all have outlets. I don’t drink, I don’t go to bars, I used to a long time ago. Seven years and I haven’t drank. Not that I have an issue, I just don’t want to resort to that type of therapy. And so, how I deal with mine is this, through social media. And so, I thought, ‘Man, I’m just going to be vulnerable. I’m going to make this piece.’”

Catherine Sutherland, who Jason has worked with closely over the several years they did Power Rangers together watched the video and felt that it “is a beautiful portrait of inner struggle and the masks we wear to cover our pain. We live in a world where so many show a veneer of their life. I love how JDF has shown courage, transparency and truth. It’s so encouraging to see. “

In Mask, Jason David Frank pour his heart and soul into his emotions and this video. Frank’s writings are a way of expressing his feelings and inner thoughts in a way that other can reflect or be inspired by. The one take away that Power Rangers fans and non-fans alike can take away is that JDF has been through similar situations that we all face. Mask can related to all of us in many ways.

QUOTES

Oh my God, Man! I got chills like 3 times a minute. That was so so cool. I love it! Gotta see more. -David Mazouz, Actor, Gotham

Creative and brilliant, I love it. -Kevin Sorbo, Actor, Hercules & Andromeda

Jason is one of the smartest and most creative people I’ve ever met. Mask just reaffirms his talent as a writer and actor! So proud of him. -David Yost, Actor, Power Rangers I like it. It reminds me of Eminem in slow motion. – Chris Sabat, Voice Actor DragonBall Z
I loved that. I really connected with the message too. Great stuff! – Vic Mignona, Voice Actor, Dragon Ball Super: Broly

Cool and Weird! -Bruce Campbell, Actor, Ash vs. the Evil Dead

You’ve created permanent art here. Letters from a dark and inspired place. It has to feel amazing. It can speak to a lot of people. – Sean Astin, Actor, Goonies and Stranger Things