Your webseries Under the Doghouse - in a few words, what is
Under the Doghouse is about all those moments in life when you do not
have control. It is about that time when you wanted to let the girl
know just how much you like her and you couldn't find the words, or when
you had the shot at the perfect job and somehow blew it at the job
interview. Through Pete, we get to laugh at those situations and
just maybe feel a little better about them
What were your inspirations when writing Under
the Doghouse - and is any of the series based on personal experiences?
a comedy standpoint, I was highly influenced by things like Monty
Python, Broken Lizard, Seinfeld, The Big Bang Theory & a deep and abiding
feeling of personal pain... Maybe not so much of that last one, still you
can find pieces of me as well as a few of my friends in the characters and
situations. I was never nearly as hapless as Pete, but we all have
those feelings of life slipping out of control and I harnessed that and
blew it up.
talk about Under the Doghouse's brand of humour for a bit!
think my humor is a combination of the dry and the absurd, with just a
hint of intelligence hidden in the background for those people who might
want a whiff of something smarter than an extended fart joke.
Surrealism is a little hard to pull off on a low budget, think I did a
decent job as things were moving along.
also play the lead character in Under
the Doghouse - so what can you tell us about Pete, what do you draw
upon to bring him to life, and how much Bruce Nachsin can we find in Pete?
more of me than I'd really want to admit to. Pete is a nice but
somewhat hapless guy who really never comes up with the right answer or
know the effective thing to do, you'd like him to win, but he really isn't
likely, he just doesn't have the life skills. That isn't me in real
life. But for some reason, it is something I portray well.
Whatever that thing in me is that lets me pull that off is probably the
same thing about me that makes a lot of middle age women want to sit me
down, feed me a bowl of soup and ask me how my love life is going, I just
speak to the inner Jewish aunt in most people. Pete is probably what
you would get if you stripped me of all the life skills I have made after I
can you tell us about the rest of the cast, to what extent were you
involved in casting, and why exactly these people?
Bruce with Rebecca Lynch
the Doghouse was my very first production and like most first time
producers, I ended up having my hands all over it. Most of my cast
was taken from people I had met from various classes that I was taking at
the time. There were a few roles, Lori Plattner as Pete's niece
Sarah, and Rebecca Lynch as my lesbian friend that were written
specifically for that person. Other roles I knew what I wanted and
asked the appropriate actor I knew to be part. This was a very
reassuring thing for my first time out since I had so many new and
terrifying variables flying around that worrying about the quality of an
entire cast I didn't know would have been bad, I could complete trust the
people I asked. From there, we cast roles that I didn't have a
ready-made fit for. I did most of the work of casting, with the
exception of running the casting session, I had a female friend pretend to
be the casting director and I was the person who signed the talent in and
ran the camera. I did this for two reasons, the first was that in
casting the Beautiful Boss Lady, the audition sides were both her talking
dirty and then the business scene, I did not want any of the girls coming
in to feel that it was going to be sketchy so having a lady running the
whole session seemed like it provided a safer environment. Secondly,
I did not want people to know that I was the producer and lead actor
because then they would all have been sucking up to me the entire time, I
wanted a chance to see how they were in real life, actors do strange
things in the waiting room before an audition and I wanted a chance to
make sure I had a chance to see that. In the end, I got a very
talented cast that I could rely on.
talk about your directors for a bit, and how active/off-hands are you when
it comes to creative decisions on set?
I have to admit that
I was wearing a lot of hats by the time we got to set and was probably a
bit overwhelmed, we also had a very packed shooting schedule so at first I
was very hands off, especially the first weekend. It should be noted
that my original director had also been an acting coach of mine so I had
trusted him completely and deferred to him, even when I was personally
unsure of his creative impulses, any questioning led to uncomfortable
moments on set and I mostly went with the flow. However, by the
second weekend I was feeling like I needed to exert myself and be more
direct and mindful about how I wanted my scripts to play out. By the
third weekend, we had a change in the director's chair and I was not
afraid to make my desire known to the very talented man who stepped in and
at that point I was trying to make sure that my vision was fully
Do talk about the
shoots as such for a bit, and the on-set atmosphere?
we had a good time, despite the long hours. We had no money to pay
anyone so we made damn sure that the food was really good, we had a very
well stocked crafty table, complete with several homemade baked goods and
a lot of the meals were home cooked; the end result being that the crew
felt appreciated and cared for. Maybe I was just lucky but my crew
gelled well and made a very effective team, they also took quite a liking
to me and were willing to nearly kill themselves doing their best work.
That isn't to say there weren't problems, we had last minute locations,
equipment failures and of all things a snow storm in Los Angeles on the
one day we were going to shoot outside but we tackled all these situations
with relative grace. As far as the cast goes, most of them were a
friend or someone I had worked with before, be it a class or some other
project so I knew there would be chemistry.
$64-question of course, where can we see Under
Right now, the best place to see us is by following this link to Funny
Remember to share it, like it and most importantly, vote it funny.
You can also learn a lot more about our little show at:
What can you tell us about critical and audience reception of your
series so far?
My mom likes it, does that count? So far, people are enjoying it.
As of today, we have been voted 74% funny at Funny or Die. I get
very complimentary emails and anyone I have personally shown it to has
laughed out loud. And we're just in the first episode.
where the series might be heading to narratively in future episodes? And
any future projects besides/beyond Under
the Doghouse you'd like to share?
Depending on how
this season does, we might have some further adventures of Pete. I
think if I am doing a second round of videos, it would focus on Pete's
attempts to learn to be a real man. Have it less about dating and
open it to more physical situations. I have outlined a complete
second season. Otherwise I have a few things in my mind, I have a
bunch of random sketches I have been thinking about using as the basis of
a sketch comedy show. I have a few ideas for short films that I am
planning on exploring with the DP from Under
the Doghouse. I am also on the cusp
of starting my own charity efforts in the area of job eduction for
As far as I know,
you have entered the filmworld as an actor - so what can you tell us about
your acting experiences prior to Under
the Doghouse, and did you receive any formal training on the subject?
landed into the acting realm by discovering that my original choice to
pursue fine woodworking in college was not going to work out, mostly due
to my abnormally high allergic reaction to most wood dust and so I ended
up needing to switch majors quickly and landed on the communication track.
I wouldn't go so far as to call it a formal training but I took a few
semesters at school, which lead to community and regional theatre. As
I was doing that, I also found other places to learn myself a thing or
two. At one point or another, I studied Method, Chekhov, improv,
cold reading, voiceover, Alexander and despite all evidence to the
contrary: singing. I spent a lot of time on the East Coast playing
either cruel and threatening characters, or very nice and sweet ones,
there wasn't much in-between. For some reason, I was usually cast as
some kind of foreign person, usually with a strange accent I had to pick
quickly before the show opened... I was never from "here", I was
always from "somewhere over there..." - wherever over there might
be. I did a few movies and TV shows on the East Coast before I got
into the union and then had to face the choice of moving either to NYC or
Hollywood, I went with the place where the threat of having to shovel snow
was at its lowest.
made you pick up writing and producing for Under the Doghouse?
most people who make their way out West to make it as an actor, I wasn't
really clear what that would entail, aside from knowing that I would need
an agent. After a few years of not much happening, I decided that I
was tired of waiting for someone to come along and hand me my
"break." I knew what my marketable roles are and I wanted
to have something that could showcase me at my castable best. I also
wanted to show that I could make what amounted to a 3 camera sitcom shoot
and make it happen. I had always talked about getting involved in
production but the truth was that I had no idea what that meant.
Doing Under the Doghouse gave me the opportunity to throw my very own film
school, mostly by trial by fire and learn a lot about the nuts and bolts
would you describe yourself as an actor and as a writer?
a writer, I think I find the comical and the surreal in every day life
situations. A bit like a lighter version of Douglas Adams or Terry
Pratchett, with a little bit of a crispy darker crust. As far as
being an actor, I think of myself as one who feels that story is king and
doesn't believe that any acting choice you can justify is the necessarily
the right choice.
writers, filmmakers who inspire you?
just list a few. To start, from the strange and bizarre things they
would commit to the screen, to the amount of control they managed exerted
on their projects, to all the individual success each member had gone on
to, I would have to say my biggest influence would be Monty
especially Terry Gilliam. Charlie Kaufman would be another; his writing
has such a unique skewed view of the world. Spike Jonze and
Christopher Noland bring such a sense of style and intelligence to all
their work. The actor whose career has been the most inspirational
to me would have to be Steven Tobolowski, character actor extraordinaire;
not only did I have the honor of learning and working with him, the man
has led an incredibly interesting life and the vast amount of different
characters he has played has been amazing.
My favorite movie of all time was The Life of Brian.
Otherwise the list looks like:
The Dark Knight
, Usual Suspects, Laurence of Arabia, Seven Samurai,
Million Dollar Baby, Being John Malkovich.
... and of course, films you really deplore?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
an interesting question. My tolerance for crappy movies is pretty
high, however I remember needing to walk out of Bee Movie around the 35
minute mark and demand my lost time of life back. I wanted to rip my
eyes out and stomp on my brain while watching the first Transformers, not
that the cartoon had ever been a multilayered exposition on man's
transcendent relationship with ever more intelligent machine life.
Similarly Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull did for my childhood love of
the Raiders franchise that Episode 1 did to my deep love of
series' website, Facebook, whatever else?
Come watch Under
the Doghouse at & vote us funny:
To learn more about the series:
Otherwise you can find out more and contact me:
(come be my friend!)
you are dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
gotta say, you are pretty thorough, thanks for profiling me and spreading
the word on Under
for the interview!