Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Deeper Dish with David Moretti
If there was a law against being too gorgeous, actor David Moretti would be locked up forever with no chance for parole. Hopefully he won't mind me saying that, but come on, look at the guy - he's a dreamboat.
Born in Cranston, Rhode Island, David left behind a Biology major at Boston College to move to Los Angeles, where he interned at NBC for a summer, waited tables, took acting classes and graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in English. After a few small independent film credits and commercials, his big break finally arrived in 2007 with the lead role on here! TV's vampire series, The Lair. In deciding to play the openly gay character, he also made the decision to come out in his professional life. Since then, David has appeared in such films as Murder.com and Playing with Fire, written for Advocate.com and Gay.com, and worked with organizations like The Trevor Project and The Matthew Shepard Foundation. And now he's been cast in the title role of the new romantic comedy, Finding Mr. Wright, which also stars Matthew Montgomery and Eating Out's Rebekah Kochan. I am delighted to have the talented David Moretti here on the Dish to discuss his career and answer a few pop culture questions.
Let's begin with your new movie, Finding Mr. Wright. What's it about and who do you play?
I'm very excited about Finding Mr. Wright. I read the script and really loved it. It's a well-written gay romantic comedy with interesting characters who aren't your typical bland and/or angst-ridden "gay indy film" types. They are really normal people with normal issues who happen to be gay. This concept really attracts me, and I hope it becomes a trend in gay filmmaking. The central theme to a gay film does NOT have to be drug abuse, parental neglect or self-loathing.
Regarding my character, I wasn't feeling the role they initially asked me to play. I told them I wanted to be considered for the title character, and landed it! I'm - in no parallel to my social life - playing Mr. Wright. And you can probably guess what that means in a romantic comedy.
How did you get cast in The Lair?
The Lair was one of those things where I was just in the right place at the right time. It was a normal audition just like any other. However, they were moving very fast and needed to shoot it ASAP. From what I understand, I missed the first few rounds of auditions and wound up at the final callback as my first audition. I thought I was just meeting with casting directors, and I was actually on the top floor of a Westwood penthouse reading my lines for CEOs, development execs, producers and writers - it was pretty surreal. I got the job offer the next day, and we were filming within a week.
What has been your favorite scene on the show?
I guess it would have to be from season 1 where Peter Stickles and I had to dress like vampires from the Colonial Age for a flashback sequence. We were wearing these costumes that were rented from Warner Brothers. They were so gaudy we looked like drag queens - and evidently I bore a striking resemblance to Prince. The wig and outfit took hours to get in place, but it really did accurately reflect the time of hundreds of years ago. Period piece work is pretty fun, I gotta say.
What is the most memorable and/or funniest moment you have had while acting?
It was one of the first days of shooting season 1 of The Lair, and Brian Nolan and I were talking in a bar scene. It was a very intense interrogation. And all of the sudden this obnoxious telephone starts jingling. I try not to pay attention to it while fuming on the inside that some moron is interrupting my 'moment'. Turns out it was me. My Treo - and the caller was my Mom.
You began acting in high school with a sketch comedy group called The Blueberry Johnsons. Where did that unusual name come from?
Ha! You do your homework! We lifted that from this group called The State. It was this short-lived sketch comedy show on MTV that was like an edgier SNL. Many of the old cast members are actually currently the main players on Reno 911! We performed our favorite skits from The State at our school's variety show every year which got us a bit of a following. We eventually started writing original material and playing clubs around Providence. And we were only 16 at the time, so it was kinda funny having people pay to watch us when we couldn't even pay to go to the venue in which we appeared.
Since you write a fitness column as "The Abs Whisperer" for Gay.com, can you share with us one of your favorite fitness trends?
That name is going to haunt me forever! I'm a big fan of supersets. I think adding an aerobic (elevated heartbeat, high intensity) element to anaerobic (basic weightlifting) activity is key to breaking plateaus in your workout. For example, if you are going to do a basic chest press with a bar on a bench, immediately jump off and do 20 push-ups after your set. Or with biceps, do a set of basic curls, and then flip your wrists and do another set of hammer curls with no rest in between - then end with a static hold. Take little rest between sets and by the end, you'll be drenched in sweat and sore as hell. The key is to always keep moving. In LA, when I need motivation beyond my own means, I go to Barry's Bootcamp. They basically utilize this ideal for an hour in a group format.
What is your own daily workout routine in order to keep so fit?
I do yoga every morning, some element of cardio like a short run, and then hit the weights or do bootcamp. I like to keep really active. And the yoga is a new addition in 2010. But I'm completely addicted and it has really helped in my workouts. I used to judge it and think it was boring and too "hippy" for me - but if you find the right class, it can be really fun and change your body. Not to mention it took 20 some years, but I can finally do a handstand! I'm in the best shape of my life right now, and I think yoga has alot to do with it.
What Los Angeles experience would you highly recommend to someone visiting the city?
I would do a tour of a movie studio. Warner Brothers has a great one that stops by all the sound stages, actor trailers and backlot. And you generally see some TV star being shuttled around in a golf cart. The tour ends with a stop at their own little museum with relics from all their films, new and old. It's pretty friggin' unreal being face-to-face with James Dean's infamous jacket from Rebel Without a Cause.
If you could go back and give your 19-year-old self a wise piece of advice, what would it be?
I would tell myself to not care what other people think so much and "BE STUPID" more like the Diesel motto suggests. As a young actor, you have a tendency to take yourself way too seriously and trap yourself in your insecurities. Once I let go of my personal baggage and just started having fun with life, smiling, being confident, and being myself - I haven't stopped working and really started enjoying being me and the journey I'm on. And I never really know what that is, but I totally embrace that.
In high school I was:
The dork for a lonnnnnnnnnnnng time before I finally was accepted.
My favorite comfort food is:
Ice cream - cookies and cream.
ThunderCats, The Facts of Life, MacGyver, Married... with Children, SportsCenter and Talk Soup.
Today I never miss a television episode of:
SNL, 30 Rock, Wipeout and Will & Grace reruns.
If I was stranded on a desert island for a year, I would want to listen to:
Michael Jackson, Justin Timberlake, Janet Jackson, David Guetta and Miles Davis - in case the island isn't really deserted.
Five of my favorite movies are:
My life, It's Complicated. Sometimes I'm kinda Clueless, but never have Cruel Intentions. In the end, all I really want is a Christmas Vacation with a Pretty [wo]Man.
If I was asked to choose the Sexiest Man Alive, it would be:
Well, there is something about The Rock's grin, but I'd have to go with Ryan Reynolds. Humor, smarts and sex appeal in one package - yes please.
If I could have anyone in the world - living or dead - be a guest at my dinner party, I would invite the following three people:
Shakespeare - for the intellectual conversation and window into the past.
Ryan Reynolds - to look at.
Paula Abdul - for the comedy. I'd see how drunk I could get her and then watch her and Shakespeare try and converse.
What's next for David Moretti?
Well, I start filming Finding Mr. Wright in three weeks and other than that I'm tossing some ideas around with here! TV - but nothing is set in stone as of yet. I will keep you posted!
Thank you, David, for getting Deeper with us here on the Dish. To learn more about Mr. Moretti, check out his groovy website at davidmorettionline.com. You can also subscribe to his YouTube channel and become a fan on Facebook.