"He Wants To Be A Guy, But Also Wants To Be A Man"
CB: Can you give an example of a commercial where you really had to rely on that training, or where it was really helpful?
RS: Sure, let me see…well, I did a Cingular commercial that was on earlier this year, one of the dropped-call spots, where my wife called me and told me that she was pregnant, and the call dropped as I was like, celebrating…
CB: That was you?
RS: Yeah! That was me.
CB: [laughs] I had no idea!
RS: So, I mean, that was one that, you know, in the audition, they didn't know how they wanted it to go, and so they had given me, they had said, "Try it this way, where he's really really animated! Okay, try it this way, where he's much more subdued!" And then when we shot it, we did it, like, twelve different ways, and they ended up cutting it together with the very animated version.
CB: So obviously you had plenty of dramatic training, but given all the improv that you also sort of specialized in, did you want to be a comedy actor at all?
RS: You know, I thought I did. I mean, in high school, I was sure that my calling was to be on Saturday Night Live, or at least, if not on that show, something like that. I thought that was where I was headed. And as I got farther and farther along -- you know, in high school it wasn't a very strong theater program. Not to badmouth the program -- it was a fine program, but it just wasn't like a specialized acting program. But when I got farther along and got into grad school I realized, you know, I think I kind of like the scripted stuff more. I can remember starting grad school and saying something to the effect of, you know, if I never did another scripted word, that would be fine by me. If I could just improvise for my living, that would be fine. Well, as grad school went on and I learned more about technique and about the amount of incredible writing there is out there, I began to kind of renege on that statement. And I think that comedy is still something I want to do, but right now, for some reason, it feels like dramatic stuff has been coming a little more easily to me.