TALES FROM THE SET OF WILL & GRACE
I was on the show for five years, from ages thirteen to seventeen. Requested by miss @evehewson ...
- •The audition.It started as a normal audition with the casting director. They asked me and five other boys to stay in the waiting room after the first read. Then we all read again, this time with a producer. They asked three of us to stay. Two more producers came in for the next round. Then they asked me and one other boy to stay. The next time I walked into the room it was the entire writer/producer team and NBC executives. They cast me that day.
- •Being so incredibly nervous before my first scene. Cracking voice and all.It was the season 3 finale of the show and it was at the apex of the show's popularity. I can't tell you the amount of nerves surging through my little body waiting for my cue backstage. Literally shaking. My scene was the last one so I had to wait all night and listen to the cast get monstrous laughs. When you watch that episode now you can see and hear how nervous I am.
- •Nick Offerman calming me down by talking about Megan Mullaly's tits.Nick was backstage during each and every filming and him and I would always hang out. He was a godsend. He must have been well aware of how much I was shitting my pants, and he made me laugh so hard. We discussed potential threesomes with Megan, different sexual positions, general ways in which to spice up the sex life - all very exciting things for a 14 year old.
- •Walking into Woody Harrelson's french fry oil trailer.I was on one or two episodes that Woody was on. He was hugely inspiring because he was a guest star, like I was, but the audience would fucking love him. He showed me his trailer once, and I remember it smelling very peculiarly.
- •Getting my first big laugh in front of the live audience.Massive relief. It means they're not gonna fire you.
- •My mother being honest with me after every show by saying, "You were great, but sooooo nervous."She was the only one who could tell how truly scared I was. As I got older and more experienced she would be so happy after each show, "You weren't as nervoussss!"
- •Rosie O'Donnell gave me an Xbox.Rosie played my mother on an episode of the show. My Aunt Dawn was a huge fan and told my mother to buy her these specific candy apples (they were actually delicious), and when I came in the next day there was an Xbox waiting for me.
- •Being on the soccer team and doing the show at the same time.I continued to go to an all boys private Catholic high school while I was on the show. My school was 20 minutes away in the valley so I'd usually start the day on set, rehearse for two hours, and then go to soccer practice.
- •Writing an email to Max Mutchnick and David Kohan - explaining to them why they were underutilizing my character on the show.They made me a regular on the show my next season, but I was only in a handful of episodes. I wouldn't say I was displeased, but I had expectations for myself and the character that I felt they weren't satisfying. I also had many ideas that I would "pitch" them. I was 15 and this was all done via AOL instant messaging.
- •Watching Sean Hayes learn the choreography for Dirty Pop in twenty minutes.Needless to say, he is unbelievably skilled as a performer. He was trained as a concert pianist. He was also so incredibly unassuming and down to earth. All four cast members were gifted Porsches after season two, and Sean was the only one who never drove his.
- •Watching Sean Hayes and Megan Mullaly improvise and create legendary characters in rehearsal.A lot of the bits people remember them for, all the physical comedy and gags they did, weren't written. It would all be discussed and improvised during rehearsal and to be privy to that process was pretty damn inspiring.
- •Jimmy Burrows' laugh.Jimmy Burrows was the director of every single episode of Will & Grace, also having directed Cheers, Friends, Taxi, and Frasier. The man is literally a living legend and a comedy god. He had a cackle and would laugh at everything. Whenever I watch any of those shows now and there's a laugh, I can hear him.