Archive for August, 2008

Primetime success leads "Office" star to the big screen

Posted in Features on August 27, 2008 by Steve Mesa

After conquering primetime television as Dwight Schrute, the sycophantic assistant to the regional manager on NBC’s “The Office,” Rainn Wilson is setting his sight’s on the big screen.
Wilson, an Emmy-nominee, plays the former drummer of an 80’s rock band who gets fired before the band makes it big in The Rocker, which comes to theaters Aug. 20.
Wilson was looking for something to do after last year’s hiatus from “The Office” when the script for The Rocker came to him.
“It has great broad comedy and, at the same time, it had a lot of heart,” Wilson said in an interview with The Beacon.
The Rocker is Wilson’s first time as the lead in a motion picture and he has a great supporting cast that includes Jeff Garlin¬†(“Curb Your Enthusiasm,”) Will Arnett (Blades of Glory,) Jason Sudekis (“Saturday Night Live”) and Christina Applegate (Anchorman).
“One thing that was great was that the filmmakers put together the greatest comedy ensemble you can ask for,” he said. “There are a lot of actors in small roles, which really makes the movie more of an ensemble comedy.”
Wilson and his character in The Rocker share a similar goal that they both achieved: becoming a celebrity in their late thirties and late forties.
“I barely scraped by in my career and it picked up speed a little bit,” Wilson said. “With my roles in “Six Feet Under” and “The Office,” I found myself suddenly becoming a celebrity.”
Wilson had some harsh words for some legendary rock bands like Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, as well as many metal bands of the 80’s.
“I know most of the girly rockers can kick my ass, no matter how much mascara, eyeliner, blouses and leopard prints they wear,” Wilson said. “It seemed like it was heavy metal aimed specifically for girls and women.”
Following The Rocker, Wilson’s next role is as a college professor in the sequel to the 2007 summer blockbuster, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. The Transformers role will be Wilson’s first blockbuster, and it may just push him past his current status as comedy bit player and into the next level of popularity.
Besides his upcoming role in the Transformers sequel, Wilson has also written a script called Bonzai Shadowhand for Oscar-nominated director Jason Reitman (Juno).
“It is a very dark comedy with a great role for me in it as a down-and-out ninja living in the San Fernando valley in a halfway house,” Wilson said.