Thursday, July 17, 2008


As I type this Tucker and Czuchry are sitting on opposite sides of a table rehearsing one of the early scenes in the film. There is a particularly interesting exchange going on as one of Czuchry's suggested lines is being written into the film. Vaguely, Czuchry is suggesting that perhaps Nils and Tucker have not thought through the implications of a line- the line may reveal more than the two of them intend. He is a very astute actor.

The conversation has reminded me of an exchange I had with Tucker and Czuchry over lunch the other day. Tucker was relating to Czuchry the coming onslaught of celebrity that will no doubt change Matt's life. Czuchry has already achieved a level of fame via his role on Gilmore Girls (try putting Matt Czuchry into google) and now he is slowly coming to terms with how his life is about to be turned upside down as the titular character of a film that in all likelihood will do serious business.

Tucker related some interesting stories about having to put up with the "persona" of Tucker Max. Occasionally he will be out in bars or restaurants and be approached by fans who badger him about being "Tucker Max Drunk" or acting stupidly or hitting on chicks etc. It apparently does not occur to them that Tucker may in fact lead a normal life and that while he may shack up with a surreal amount of women, this in no way is indicative of his lifestyle. In fact, having lived with Tucker for a weeks now, the only thing that really shocked me is that Tucker watches Golden Girls. I haven't seen him throw dishes at a bartender, he hasn't set the house on fire (although he did participate in the bombing of Ian's bed) and he has yet to bring home a stripper.

It would seem rational that people would be able to distinguish between the Tucker in his writing and the Tucker who walks among us- apparently not. Now it is Czuchry's turn to carry on the torch of "Tucker Max" and the real Tucker could not be happier. Already Czuchry's fans have a hard time disassociating him from the "Logan" character he played on Gilmore Girls. I know this firsthand having recently browsed through Matt Czuchry fan sites looking for interesting questions to ask him. (Here's a few answers to questions I won't be asking Matt- he isn't married, he is single, he won't call you and he doesn't know how Gilmore Girls should have ended).

With the mantle effectively being passed to Matt, I shudder to think how many regular joes on the street will be hovering over him every time he chooses to have a drink. His personal life is effectively no longer personal. Who he dates, where he eats, when he fucks up is all public record. Certainly it makes you second guess if success in this business is worth it; or more honestly: Am I in this business for the right reasons? My standard answer to the query is: Yes, I want to tell stories. I want to be a filmmaker. I hope that I can maintain this mantra.

However, it's easy to be seduced by the allure of fame. Why are there so many terrible actresses in this business? Why are there so many awful movies made with wooden acting and little to no emotive effort from the leads? Maybe it's easy to point to a very simple example. Tell me who Ben Affleck is dating. I admit, I know the answer- Jennifer Garner.

Now tell me who Daniel Day Lewis is dating. Or if he is married. Or anything really about Daniel Day Lewis.

This is the sort of life I wish for Czuchry. He's a good kid with a great heart. He isn't in it for the fame and his work ethic reflects his devotion to character. Can he be Daniel Day Lewis? Perhaps not- it certainly is a tall order, but I'm not going to rule it out. If nothing else it is my most earnest wish that Czuchry continues to develop into an actor devoted to his art.

Czuchry understands character, story, emotion- the real underpinnings of the foundation that is acting. Ben Affleck used to, but in my estimation became seduced by the unflenching public eye. Maybe he came into the business for the right reasons, who knows?

What I do know is that setting a course to become a "star" or "celebrity" is a stupid idea. And you'll be lucky when Hollywood spits you out.

God forbid you actually get your wish.


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