Back to One

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Back to One, Episode 86: Emily Beecham

Emily Beecham won the best actress award at this year’s Cannes Film Festival for her brilliantly nuanced and tightly focused performance in Jessica Hausner’s art house science fiction film Little Joe. Recently she played The Widow in the AMC series Into The Badlands, starred in Daphne, and had a memorable supporting role in Hail Caesar. In this episode she talks about the importance of connection, avoiding “attractive acting,” Mike Leigh, the strenuousness of intense physical performance, her Little Joe hair, and much more! Back To One can be found wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and […]

Back to One, Episode 85: Stephanie Kurtzuba

Stephanie Kurtzuba plays Irene, wife of Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro), in The Irishman. It’s her second film with Martin Scorsese. She played stockbroker Kimmie Belzer in The Wolf of Wall Street. She talks about working with the legendary filmmaker and what sets him apart as an actor’s director. She also explains her process of extracting preconceptions made in the audition, and she gushes about her first love–the rehearsal room, but tells us why, despite her heart being on the stage, she wouldn’t give up working for the camera if she could. Plus much more! Back To One can be […]

Back to One, Episode 83: Devika Bhise

The Warrior Queen of Jhansi is the first Hollywood action film to have a female Indian lead. Devika Bhise not only stars in the film (opening Friday November 15th), she co-wrote it with her mother, Swati Bhise, who also directed it. In this episode, she talks about performing under stressful time restraints, how not having “the leisure to lose it” actually helped her play such a powerful leader, and the physical work required (including some “illegal” horseplay!), plus how her intense training in classical Indian dance helps her prepare for every role, and much more! Back To One can be […]

Back to One, Episode 82: Dorian Missick

I’ve wanted to sit down with Dorian Missick for some time. The seasoned actor has six dozen credits in television shows like Southland, Luke Cage, Tell Me A Story, and movies spanning from Two Weeks Notice to this year’s Brian Banks. In this hour, he passes on pearls of wisdom acquired from his many years in the business, like his new radical approach to auditions, why he aims for 100 reads of a script before first day of production, how he and his actor wife Simone Missick support each other’s journeys, and the importance of a “team sport” mentality, plus […]

Back to One, Episode 79: Tim Heidecker

I didn’t know if Tim Heidecker was going to show up for this interview, or if I was going to get his boorish, abusive, dim alter ego, Tim Heidecker. Luckily Tim Heidecker leaves Tim Heidecker in the On Cinema universe. That project he started with Gregg Turkington is comprised of an ongoing series called On Cinema at the Cinema, various spin-off series including The Trial of Tim Heidecker, special episodes, segments, tweets, songs, and now the feature film Mister America. In this half hour, I ask Heidecker to lift the hood on his performance style and the evolution of his […]

Back to One, Episode 77: Josh Pais

One could easily call Josh Pais a scene-stealer, but that’s not accurate. He actually feeds the other actor in the scene, and they both grow. Check out Leaves of Grass with Edward Norton, Synecdoche New York with Philip Seymour Hoffman, Lynn Shelton’s Touchy Feely, and his recent work on Ray Donovan, to name just a few of his dozens of credits. This fall he’s in Norton’s Motherless Brooklyn, and Joker with Joaquin Phoenix. In this episode he talks about finding the character in his body, counting on spontaneity, partying in the unknown, creating not recreating, and Committed Impulse, his high […]

Back to One, Episode 74: Wyatt Russell

Despite growing up in a Hollywood family, Wyatt Russell didn’t seriously consider pursing acting until an injury ended his professional Hockey career. In a few years he’s managed to cultivate a subtle and distinct style in comedies (22 Jump Street), dramas (Overlord) and a unique and unclassifiable series that lies someone between (AMC’s Lodge 49). In this episode, he talks about embodying the lovable Dud in that series, embracing an enunciation lesson from Joe Wright, getting “caught watching” Michael Parks, plus much more! Back To One can be found wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and […]

Back to One, Episode 73: Michaela Watkins

A Groundlings and Saturday Night Live alum who has evolved beyond her improvisational prowess, Michaela Watkins continues to surprise us. The Unicorn, Search Party, Transparent and Casual are some of her television highlights. And I loved her in movies like Afternoon Delight, Person to Person, and the important and inspirational Brittany Runs A Marathon. We talk about the vital role she plays in that film, and what, if anything, has changed in regards to meaty roles for woman. Plus she talks about being Jill Soloway’s muse, and the importance of embodying a whole person. Back To One can be found […]

Back to One, Episode 72: Lee Pace

Lee Pace has one of those dream acting careers where he gets to be painted blue or dons elf ears to play Ronan (Guardians of the Galaxy) or Thranduil (The Hobbit films), sparking the imagination of countless fans around the world, and then he hits the Broadway stage and knocks ‘em dead as Joe Pitt in Angels in America. I ask him if he takes stock of that aspect of his career, and we talk about a curious note Barry Sonnenfeld gave him while making Pushing Daisies that he still uses to this day. Plus why he’s not bothered by […]

Back to One, Episode 71: Jake Lacy

I first took note of Jake Lacy’s exquisite comedic delivery in The Office and How to Be Single, and was pleased to see him shine while going deep and dark, like in this year’s Diane, and last year’s I’m Dying Up Here. He even stands out playing opposite heavyweights like Rooney Mara in Carol, and Michelle Williams in Fosse/Verdon. I gathered from past interviews that he spoke with an authenticity that was going to work very well on Back To One, but I was not prepared for the level of comfort and delicacy with which he opened up to me […]

Back to One, Episode 70: Greg Kinnear

He started out as a TV host in the ’90s, but Greg Kinnear quickly made the transition to leading man thanks to legendary directors like Sydney Pollack and James L. Brooks investing in his acting talent. An Oscar nomination for As Good As It Gets followed, and he’s been making movies ever since, Little Miss Sunshine, Auto Focus, Little Men, to name just a few. This Summer he has three movies out — Brian Banks, The Red Sea Diving Resort (Netflix), and Phil, which he also directed. In this episode, we discuss the importance of tone, his penchant for playing […]

Back To One Ep. 69: Ruben Santiago-Hudson

Actor/writer/director Ruben Santiago-Hudson is the kind of artist whose awe-inspiring dedication to the work can almost be overwhelming. He won a Tony Award for his performance in August Wilson’s Seven Guitars. His autobiographical play Lackawanna Blues was a sensation at the Public Theater and went on to be an award-winning HBO film. He started directing plays (particularly Wilson’s) and is now one of the most sought-after directors working in theater. His production of Jitney on Broadway won the Tony award for Best Revival of a Play. As an actor, he can currently be seen on Showtime’s Billions and recently on […]

Back to One, Episode 68: Damon Herriman

It’s rare for one actor to be cast as the same real-life character in two different productions almost simultaneously. When that real life character is Charles Manson, that makes some news. Australian actor Damon Herriman has taken on this challenging role in both Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time… In Hollywood and the second season of David Fincher’s Netflix series Mindhunter. Herriman is perhaps best know for playing Dewey Crowe in the series Justified and currently plays Paul Allen Brown in Perpetual Grace LTD. We talk about the character of Manson, how good writing makes for good acting, and why […]

Back to One, Episode 67: Kevin Corrigan

Kevin Corrigan will always have a special spot in the Back To One pantheon, not just because he was the very first guest, but because he set the stage for the discussions on the craft of acting that were to come—personal, steeped in the work, confessional at times, often inspirational, always educational. In this hour, he shares some more inspiring personal experiences from a life in acting, and also talks about the work of those who’ve inspired him, from his friend Natasha Lyonne and his current co-star Pete Davidson, to Marlon Brando, Glenda Jackson, Taylor Negron, the actor Bob Dylan, […]

Back to One, Episode 66: Jesse Eisenberg

While he might be best known for his Oscar-nominated performance as Mark Zuckerberg in The Social Network, Jesse Eisenberg’s preternatural ability for making unique characterization choices has won him roles in wildly original films, both indie and studio, such as The End of the Tour, Adventureland, Holy Rollers, American Ultra, Zombieland, and two of my favorites, The Squid and the Whale and The Double. Now he continues that trend with Riley Stearns’ The Art of Self Defense. In this half hour he talks about the effort he put into finding the right tone to play the absurdity in that film, […]

Back to One, Episode 63: Jacki Weaver

Jacki Weaver’s “big break” story is unique because she was finally embraced by Hollywood at age 63, landing an Oscar nomination for her incredible performance in the Australian film Animal Kingdom, after being a staple in the Australian theater and film world for 30 years. She went on to great roles in such films as Widows, The Disaster Artist, and Magic in The Moonlight, plus the acclaimed new version of Uncle Vanya on the stage with Cate Blanchett, not to mention her second Oscar nomination for Silver Linings Playbook. And this year she stars opposite Diane Keaton in the cheer-elder […]

Back to One, Episode 62: Michael Kelly

Through six seasons on House of Cards and multiple Emmy nominations, Michael Kelly has brilliantly embodied the character of Doug Stamper, navigating him through the highs and lows of loyalty, devotion, and dark-heartedness, culminating with a new layer of antagonism in the final season. It was a tour de force performance. In this episode he sits down to talk about the nuts and bolts of his craft, his meticulous and elaborate script breakdown process, how David Fincher knocked him off his game, and why he will never stop worrying about the next job no matter what awaits him post-Stamper. Back […]