with Alex Raaen
Your new movie Chopping
Block - in a few words, what is it about, and what can you tell us
about your character in it?
In short, our
director Joshua Hull [Joshua Hull
interview - click here] put it best to me when he first conjured
this idea up as "It's Horrible Bosses meets
the 13th". My
character Will is a not too bright nerd and even less ambiguously gay office
worker that has a passion for L.A.R.P.I.N.G. and saying uncomfortable sexual
innuendos in conversation. Like Josh also likes to put it, he type-cast me.
What did you draw upon to bring the character to life, and how
much Bryan Wilson can we find in Will the nerd?
card carrying nerd myself that tends to use objectionable language I just
had to look at me trying to find my place socially as a kid in school. I
have actually never LARP'd unless you count sexy role playing time. And
lastly, and I know this hurts Michael Malone [Michael
Malone interview - click here], Raymond Kester and Josh the
most but unlike Will, I am straight in real life.
you get involved with Chopping
Block to begin with - and how did you end up on the production
side of things as well?
I met Josh through a former film
and TV partner at a horror convention and we hit it off. We kept talking
and we both wanted to work together and the stars finally aligned and Josh
called me to tell me he cast me as Will. As far as putting on the
"producer" hat I had produced other films, TV shows and
commercials and offered to do whatever was needed as we needed it. Like
trying to find the right masks for us five bumbling to wear for the
kidnapping I thankfully found the masks we ended up using in the film so
in real life "Will did get the masks". My producer role expanded
greatly after the shoot to get the film "distribution-ready" as
we needed a trailer, and I had a pretty clear idea what I wanted to do
with it and ran it past Josh and he said have at it so I cut it with help
from our sound engineer Joe Gaudin. After we got picked up by LC Films I
did the closed captioning (I had to type the word buttholes several
times), and the Blu-ray/DVD artwork, extra features and the revised poster
for the upcoming (August 30th) Blu-ray/DVD release.
What can you tell us about your
director Joshua Hull [Joshua Hull
interview - click here], and what was your collaboration like?
literally craps great ideas. Seriously, he will text or call me with an
idea for a film and I am always blown away at how fertile his mind is. And
Josh gives us actors yards of room to work a scene and allows us to just
be in the moment and see where things take us. We'd do two takes and then
on the third take anything went and a lot of those third takes did make it
in the final cut which shows the trust Josh had in us and the easy
environment that Josh created for everyone.
talk about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere!
know it sounds cliché when you hear about a production where the cast and
crew really bonded but that is what happened. I hit it off with Michael
Malone [Michael Malone
interview - click here] immediately and I had always wanted to work with Raymond Kester and
we along with some other cast and crew would hang out after we wrapped for
the day and would run the next days scenes and just hang out. And when it
was over there was this combo platter of pride and sadness and we all
literally could not wait to all work together again.
future projects you'd like to share?
Yes! Co-star Raymond
Kester and I began working on several ideas immediately after we wrapped
and we ended finishing a comedy script together that we plan to shoot in
2017. I also collaborated with Shay Dickerhoff (co-star from Resurrection)
and we also are finishing a comedy script that will involve Raymond and
hopefully a few other Chopping
Block alumni. And Raymond, Shay and I are
also working on a few TV projects together.
What got you into
acting in the first place, and did you receive any formal training on the
As far back as I can remember I always wanted to
be an entertainer. My first acting role was as the coveted Sir Mathematics
in a 4th grade play. I did some improv, stage combat and acting training
at St. Pete Little Theatre, Kestral Theatre and then named
Performing Arts Center.
What can you tell us about your filmwork prior
to Chopping Block?
got a small last minute part in National Lampoon's RoboDoc as a reporter
and got to do an improvised scene with Alan Thicke that was surreal. I
then got cast as a homicidal reverend (again with the type casting!) in
Resurrection and recently got cast as Dr. F in Pitfire of Hell (also
starring Raymond Kester) in a throwback scene with Shay Dickerhoff
as my monster.
would you describe yourself as an actor, and some of your techniques to
bring your characters to life?
I feel I am natural and
reactionary comic actor. I feel at my best and most inspired around
others. I have always liked physical comedy and I am drawn to characters
that have those attributes. I also use my improv training that helps
"be" in the moment. It's fun finding your character's voice and
building everything else around that. Ideally I see myself as a character
actor moving forward so I can really try weird and challenging roles.
Besides acting you're
also a musician, right? So do talk about your music for a bit!
up my mom had the most wicked cool record collection and I would got
through these after school and I stumbled on her Beatles' records and I
was never the same. I started playing guitar at 14 or so and started
playing solo in pubs and bars until I auditioned for The British Invasion
show at Disney's EPCOT. What I didn't know was that they also had a
touring cast that toured and that is where I started as John Lennon on
what I affectionately call my Sh*tting My Pants Across America Tour
2001. I was on the road for about a year and a half before I settled
at Disney doing five shows a day six to seven (8) days a week. During that
time I met Dave Mikeal and he became my producer for my debut album I Laugh At Things I Shouldn't. We recorded that over a four
month period in and around my manic work schedule and it was an amazing
experience and it got some decent reviews internationally and a few of the
tracks are in a few films and TV projects. I also recently scored the
audio drama productions In The Beginning and A Christmas
Carol with actor Daniel Roebuck among others. And lastly I am
finally tracking the tunes for my next album.
musicians, whoever else who inspire you?
Christoph Waltz, John Ritter, Johnny Depp, Kevin Conroy, Mark
Hamill, all of Monty
Python, anything from Edgar Wright/Simon Pegg.
The Beatles, Queen, The Who, Johnny Cash, The Beach Boys, U2, Weird Al
Yankovic. So many more really.
Whoever else: My wife
Claire that supports me no matter what, my mom always inspired me to
be anything I wanted, my best friend growing up Char-lee (her and my
mom would be over the moon if they were here to see what I've done) and my
current and incredible circle of friends.
Your favourite movies?
So many. Star Wars (4-7),
Blade Runner, anything Tim Burton, anything
Edgar Wright, anything Kubrick, anything Monty
Python, Creepshow, Trick
... and of course, films you really deplore?
Yentl. Simply terrifying.
Your website, Facebook, whatever else?
and you can stalk me online via Facebook, Twitter, etc. from there.
Anything else you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to
I really, really love chocolate milkshakes made the old fashioned way
with vanilla ice cream and Hershey's chocolate syrup.
Thanks for the interview!
You are most welcome!