Interview with Scott Krinsky – By Roger Froilan

This is Roger Froilan here, and as we retool our interviews section on Horror Haven’s WordPress page, we are going to add written interviews along with podcasts of great actors and actresses! As summer flies by, we are looking into the future at the fall where some of our favorite shows will come back, as well as some cool new ones yet to be announced! In that vein, we are presenting to you a series of interviews with actors in anticipation of the new fall season.

I had the good fortune to speak with actor and comedian, Scott Krinsky, today who is most widely known for playing Jeff Barnes on NBC’s “Chuck”. Scott felt that comedy, acting, and improve all go hand in hand together and that is why he got into the business. He was a journalism major in college because acting didn’t seem reliable…really, this was the fallback career to appease his parents, but he had dreams of being an actor since his teen years. When he first moved from Washington D.C. to California, he took whatever menial jobs he could to survive. One of these jobs was as a Production Assistant on Andrew Dice Clay’s second film, “Brainsmasher: A Love Story”. This was one of those jobs one had to do to get by, and unfortunately Scott didn’t get to meet any of the principle stars.

However, flash forward to the present day and not only is he a beloved character on “Chuck”, but he was also in the recent film “Transformers: Dark of the Moon”. Scott said he got the job in the traditional way. “Well, I auditioned and got the part!” he said. Only one of his dialogue scenes ended up in the finished product, but he was fortunate enough to be able to do scenes with John Malkovich. Scott said that they weren’t given much of a script and were allowed to do improv. He said that once Michael Bay got a feel for them as actors and knew their capabilities, that he let them improvise the scenes as he saw fit.

When it comes to “Chuck”, Scott says that there is room for improv, but “Ninety-Eight percent of it is scripted”. People often ask him if he’s created his own dialogue in particular episodes, but he tells them “No, it’s the writers!” I asked him if playing a drunk on screen was hard because one could overdo it or make it seem phony, but he replied that a teacher once told him, “When you play drunk, you must pretend that you’re not and play against it”. I did reference Foster Brooks, famous for playing a drunk, and Scott had to admit that he didn’t know who Foster was (shame on you Scott! 😀 ).

I asked if he had worked with Vik Sahay before, because their onscreen chemistry is so natural, but Scott said that it was truly the chemistry of acting. He said it was part of the magic and that they “didn’t even audition together”. Scott said that they didn’t recognize their own on-screen chemistry right off the bat, and it wasn’t until they realized the following that the characters had acquired online, that they realized what they were doing on screen was magic.

Now, “Chuck” is one of those shows that at the end of every season ends up on the chopping block, but manages to survive time and again. When asked why this is, Scott said, “I attribute it to the fans. NBC has had some rough years, and Chuck might not have survived on a network that was doing better”. He also said that the fans were very vocal, and the recent surge of Facebook and Twitter has helped the fans’ voices to be heard. He feels that the fans identify with the nerd/geek aspects of the show. I asked about the well-roundedness of the portrayal of the characters as nerds and geeks. Not all of them live in their mother’s basement, and the show displays various aspects of geeks that are not so stereotypical. Scott attributed this to the creators. “My first stereotype that comes to mind is the geek with glasses who is buttoned up, but it’s not about a look…it has to do with common interest”. He said that “Chuck” expanded that – He, Lester and Chuck, a nerd trimvurate are different, but still nerds. “Different demographics of nerdom”, Scott said.

When asked if this would be the last season of “Chuck”, Scott simply said, “You never know…” They start production two weeks from this writing, for the final 13 episodes. But Scott said that every year they get picked up for 13 episodes… “Anything can happen”. I asked if last season was a different approach, particularly if they thought the next season would probably be the last. He said the approach is up to the writers. “The mood is always fun…a great time and it comes across in the chemistry…the show is always light”.

When asked about some of the famous players who crossed “Chuck’s” stage recently, Scott admitted that he didn’t have many scenes with some of the famous people, although he did cross paths with Timothy Dalton. He said it was “Awesome meeting Linda Hamilton…Chevy Chase…sometimes you’re at craft services eating peanuts with them!” Scott seems to enjoy his work very much, and leads a very blessed life.

About “Chuck’s” future, Scott said that on the one hand, it is hard to get work when you are committed to a TV series, but he was lucky enough to get a part on “Transformers: Dark of the Moon”. When asked what he had coming up in the future he said that by the end of November, they will have finished shooting Chuck and that the future looked, “Very exciting…” It was a great pleasure to speak with Scott Krinsky and we wish him great luck on future endeavors. And who knows, his positive attitude about “Chuck’s” possible future made me as a fan of the show hopeful that this may very well NOT be the last season. But don’t quote us on that…

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