Reno native lands roles in blockbuster movies

Published: Apr. 16, 2021 at 10:54 AM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Kristoffer Polaha has come a long way since leaving Reno for Hollywood.

“I always heard the joke, overnight in Hollywood takes 20 years. I’m like maybe they’re not wrong,” joked Polaha.

He got his first acting role back in 2001. But his career has blossomed in a place he least expected.

“Frankly it was out of a need to work,” explained Polaha. “My agent called and said listen, Hallmark is willing to pay pretty well for you to go work for three weeks.”

So he took a job back in 2015 for a TV movie called “Dater’s Handbook”, where his co-star was Meghan Markle.

“And so this one little move I did that my agent said no one was going to see has now been seen globally,” added Polaha.

That led to more roles with Hallmark, including the series “Murder Mystery 101”, which led to even more opportunities.

‘It’s the Hallmark audience that is so rabid, I got a book deal,” said Polaha.

He is now co-authoring a romance series called “From Kona With Love”. The first book, titled ‘Moments Like This”, was released back in March. It’s currently earned 4.7 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

“If you love my stuff on Hallmark, you’re going love this book,” added Polaha.

He’s also moved behind the camera, writing, directing and producing his own movies.

And he’s landed roles in some major blockbusters. Thanks to an audition years ago with director Patty Jenkins, he was cast in “Wonder Woman 1984.”

“She said, it’s small but it’s pivotal. Her words exactly, she said it’s edit-proof.”

He played “Handsome Man”, the person who’s body is taken over by Chris Pine. An unforgettable role in one of the year’s biggest movies.

“There’s a thing called IMDB, and my star meter shot to 65,” exclaimed Polaha. “I was like what the heck, I have arrived.”

And his star is still rising. He’s set to be in Jurassic World: Dominion, scheduled to be released in the Summer of 2022.

“It was a lot of hard work and there was a lot of rejection. And there was a lot of disappointment,” admitted Polaha.

He had roles in seven pilots picked up to air on TV, but all of them were eventually cancelled. That’s one reason why despite the recent success, he never forgets where he came from. The son of a former Reno district court judge (Jerry Polaha), who left town to follow his dreams.

“I’m a kid from Reno, Nevada who had a dream to go to Hollywood and make movies and tell stories. And it worked,” added Polaha. “I’m one of the guys it happened to work for. So if you’re at home watching this, I think nothing is impossible.”

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