"I like to do a lot of charter acting and off-beat stuff, and that s not always easy to find," the actor, 47, tells PEOPLE
Credit: Gravitas Ventures/Everett

Playing a hoarder/former crack addict with bad teeth might seem less than glamorous, but Chaz Bono says it was just the role he was looking for.

“I like to do a lot of charter acting and off-beat stuff, and that s not always easy to find,” the actor, 47, tells PEOPLE of his scene stealing new part in the indie thriller Dirty.

“It was just a great part, a really juicy moment and scene,” he adds. “So when I read something like that I become really motivated to get the part. And that’s the way it was for this, I really had to fight.”

Bono was not the first choice to play Jerry the hoarder, and after a close friend managed to land him an audition, it was up to Bono to win over the producers.

“They didn’t even want me to audition,” he explains. “I think they had a different idea for the part and wanted a more comic take on him.”

Fighting for roles is something he has gotten used to over the years. As the only child of Sonny and Cher, he is determined to make it in the industry on his own. And despite being transgender, Bono has decided not to take any trans roles in order to avoid being type cast.

“It’s not something I think about, other than the fact that I don’t play transgender parts,” Bono says.

“It’s just a decision that I made at least at this point, until I get established,” he adds. “I’m a character actor and I really like to do stuff that’s kind of out there and edgy and I don t want to be seen as anything when I’m acting. I want to be able to morph into whatever. I don t want to get pigeonholed.”

The hard work and determination is starting to pay off. “This has been a good year for me,” Bono says. “I’ve started really for the first time, after just kind of grinding it out and doing a lot of smaller projects, I’ve been starting to break through a little bit.”

In addition to his part in Dirty, Bono recently made appearances on The Bold and the Beautiful and is working on a new comedic web-series called Where the Bears Are.

“I’m finally starting to get paid to act,” he adds. “So it’s been a great year.”

Dirty was released on July 12.