What’s your Strong Suit // Bo Baker

 

1) You were raised in Arkansas where everyone roots for the Razorbacks. Yet when you moved to LA you became a USC fan. How does your family deal with you being a traitor ?

One national championship/player scandal at a time in football. Plus I went to school at USC, i didn’t just jump on the bandwagon. For basketball we all just agree to root for the Memphis Tigers. Nearly everyone in my family went to the University of Memphis, so we’re all tiger-striped. Where we lived in Northeast Arkansas all of our TV broadcasts came out of Memphis, so those were the games that we were able to see.

 

2)  What’s the smartest character you have played ?

Gee, I don’t get to do too many of those… definitely Cobra Commander. I mean he’s the evil genius leader of a terrorist organization bent on world domination. No job for a dummy.

 

3)  As Lloyd, the IBM salesman in a very memorable episode of Mad Men, you witnessed Don Draper having a nervous breakdown. What the hell was going through Lloyd’s mind at that time ?

Why is this guy so fucking drunk and what is he talking about? I mean, he called me the devil. When I first read the scene, I was like, this is going to take some work on my part to decipher, but we got it. I think Don was scared of the new coming technology making him obsolete. But who isn’t, hmm?

 

4) Who is the most famous person you have played pick up basketball against since you moved to Hollywood and were they any good ?

George Clooney. And yes, he is really good. I’d heard that he was good, but he was much better than I thought he would be. His pick-up games are kind of the stuff of actor lore. He just hustles on the court like no other and if you were on his team and didn’t hustle he would yell at you. It was pretty funny. He and I would just run the pick and roll, and he loved it. Real fundamentals guy, right down to his plain white nikes.

 

5) What are you working on currently ?

Trying to get my own film “Mantivities” that I wrote with some friends off the ground. We’ve been battling to get it made for the last couple of years. And through much stupidity and stereotypical Hollywood BS it remains solely in script form. We have a director and a production company attached to it, but i don’t have the best feeling about that right now…

 

6) What’s the best part you didn’t get.

Oh great, make me remember stuff I didn’t get… Uh, well… The role of Dwight on THE OFFICE came down to Rainn Wilson and myself. And everyone knows who got that one. I was already at that time a big fan of the British office, and I was really good at doing that kind of micro-comedy and was just slaying every step of the audition process. I tested for two straight days for that role. John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer, and I were together every step of the way, and then they got good news and I didn’t. I was so pissed I vowed to never watch the show. And I haven’t, not even once. Bitter, party of one. When I worked with John a few years later on Leatherheads we commiserated over it. He’s a good guy.

(editors note- the British version is better)

7) You’ve been offered a roll for scale in a terrance malik film or a commercial for Viagra that pays $250k. You can only do one. Which do you pick ?

The Malik film. Come on, the guy is amazing. I’ve worked with a few people who have worked with him, and they all had the most amazing things to say about him and his process of working. And really, who wants to be known as the guy who can’t get it up?

 

8) Tell us about your project in Mexico. How long were you there and how did you like it ?

I loved it. It was a mini-series that will hopefully be a regular series called TEXAS RISING. It’s about the formation of the texas rangers. It’s a historical drama that begins at the fall of the Alamo, and chronicles the war between Sam Houston and Santa Ana. I play a real guy named Big Foot Wallace. He was a hall of fame Texas Ranger, kind of an icon of the rangers. I found his autobiography in the Texas history department of the University of North Texas. This dude lived one hell of a life. It was really cool to get to portray him. We shot there from May to October of this year in Durango, Mexico. It was pretty wild. Durango is still basically the wild west. Up until the last maybe 10 years it’s been way too dangerous for anyone to go there. It was once a huge movie mecca, John Wayne still owns a ranch there. Or his estate at least. Big time cartel issues in the past, but now it is actually a pretty nice place. Pretty fun too, and with Bill Paxton, Ray Liotta, Chris McDonald, all these great actors- mostly dudes- all in full western mode in the wild west it got pretty… well… wild to say the least. The people of Durango were also really nice, but it was a whole other world. My Spanish has never been better.

 

9) You were on Grey’s Anatomy for three seasons. What was it like working with Clooney and Goose from Top Gun ?

Hahaha. No, I was on the doctor show with the guy from LOVERBOY and Chuck from ROSEANNE. They were both awesome. Especially Chuck.

Editors note: Clooney and Goose were on a show called E.R.

 

10) How many of your characters have died ?

Oh, god… i’ve died like 7 or 8 times. Up until Texas Rising, the general rule was if I fired a gun on screen, I would be eventually shot. I guess my character on AGENTS OF SHIELD technically died twice, and I played a video game character in VIRTUALLY HEROES who dies like 30 times in the movie. I’ve died way too many times. Plus there’s a rule of thumb that you want to die in a movie if it’s really memorable, but not on TV because then they can’t bring you back anymore. I seem to die indiscriminately.

10a) What does that tell you ?

Beware of your niche.

 

11) Do you plan on staying in LA ?

Eh… for now. I don’t want to stay here forever. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not an LA hater. It has some amazing things that you can’t find any where else, and the weather is amazing if a bit tedious. Rain is underrated. Sun can become a drag. I’ll take LA over say New York any day, but I grew up in the country and I definitely miss having that open space around me. If/when I get out of here, it’ll be somewhere where I can have more space. And if TEXAS RISING goes to series, I’ll most likely be living in Durango 6 months out of the year, so I’ll have plenty of space there.

 

12) What’s your Strong Suit ?

Resilience. I’ve been doing this- living I mean- for a long time. And I have no doubt or problem keeping up with it.



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