You'd assume a 17-yearold living in the heart of downtown Vancouver would feel like he's in nirvana.
Not necessarily, says Dakota Daulby.
The actor, who grew up in Maple Ridge and now spends half his time in Vancouver, says he sometimes prefers his rural hometown - especially after the sun sinks under the horizon.
That's because Daulby could do without the racket that comes handin-hand with the big city's night life.
But Daulby is in Vancouver to be close to his parent's school, New Image College of Fine Art, where he's enrolled in the film acting program.
While the shine of living in the city can sometimes lose a little bit of its lustre, Daulby does hope to see bright lights in his future.
He recently starred in his first feature film, The Woodcarver, a movie in which he channels his inner rebel.
Daulby played Matthew Stevenson, a troubled boy suffering from the emotional turbulence of his parent's divorce.
He joins a hermetic wood-carver veteran, played by John Ratzenberger (Cheers, Toy Story), as they work together to repair the damage caused by an act of vandalism.
In The Woodcarver, partly filmed in the Whonnock area, Daulby worked alongside some veteran actors, including Ratzenberger.
From 1982-93, Ratzenberger starred on the small screen as Cliff Clavin, the knowledgeable postal worker/bar fly famous for spouting off trivia and hilarious one-liners.
"He's a funny guy; he's a nice guy," Daulby said, of Ratzenberger. "He cracks a lot of jokes. Since I was new, it was good to work with him, and it was easy to learn from him. It was easy to feel comfortable."
Daulby admitted that, prior to working alongside the seasoned thespian who played one of Cheers's central characters, he had never watched the longrunning, wildly popular sitcom.
"Now I see it on TV and I want to watch it," Daulby said. "Honestly, I didn't know who John Ratzenberger was."
Also starring in The Woodcarver are Woody Jeffreys (Eureka, Smallville) as Daulby's character's father, and Nicole Oliver (Supernatural, My Little Pony) in the mother role.
Pre-Woodcarver, one of Daulby's more challenging roles was starring in the short feature film Why Does God Hate Me that has been featured in gay and lesbian film festivals throughout North America.
Daulby played the role of a 14-year-old boy whose best friend tries to "cure" him of being gay.
"It all accumulates to good experience. I like playing those kinds of roles - it shows that you're not afraid to do it. You're not afraid to play anything," he said. "It's all good. No matter what the role is, it's helping me get good experience. It's helping me learn."
Daulby's love for acting started from a fascination with watching film, theatre, and student actors in local plays.
About two years ago, he decided to turn his passion into a career, as he enrolled in New Image.
"My whole life, I was around students and the productions, and it was very fascinating for me," Daulby said. "It was an exciting thing to be around. After a while, I decided I wanted to be in the movies rather than just watching them."
He didn't always want to be an actor, but said, "Something clicked in my brain and I said, 'I love this!'"
Hoping to be in the movies and actually being a working actor are two entirely different things.
Daulby describes the business as "extremely tough" to get into.
"You have to be able to take rejection," he said. "It's difficult."
He'd like to model his career after the versatile Johnny Depp.
"Johnny Depp is an amazing actor," Daulby said. "I've seen all of his movies. I love his character roles- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was pretty neat, Pirates of the Caribbean was pretty good."
After he graduates from high school Daulby plans to challenge himself overseas in Europe, where he would study Shakespearian theatre.
"Right now, it's full force towards my acting, which is what I want to do for my life," Daulby said. "I want to focus and put all my efforts towards that."
Daulby said his parents are behind him, full force.
"They support me with everything they do and they are really trying to help me, so it's good."
Directed by Terry Ingram and written by Thomas Makowski and Jack Nasser, The Woodcarver aired March 5 on Showcase, but you can also stream the film via http: //us.playstation.com/ games-and-media/movies/ wwjdiithewoodcarver2012.html.