Wow, that's quite the character you play in The Salton Sea.
This Pooh-Bear, a cocaine-snorting kingpin, is not the most attractive
guy! I understand that you were the filmmaker's first choice
to play him!
I didn't know that until people began saying it today, but
that's nice to know, I guess.
So how do you feel about that?
Maybe that's why the director was so nice to me the whole time!
Obviously, I feel great about it; it's nice to know!
D.J Caruso, the director, said not only could you pull this off
but he was pretty confident that you'd be willing to take it
on. Why is that? Why do you gravitate towards these kind of quirky
Well I am glad that he was so confident. I would have asked for
more money if I had known that! I guess over the years, I have established
a kind of consciousness about my career that I can play different
types of things. I'm a character actor and probably for some
reason while he was reading the script, he saw me in the part and
knew that I could handle it. I would assume it was as simple as
Do you make a conscious effort to look for these kinds of roles?
No, I don't sit down and think, "I wonder what kind of extreme
character I'll play next?" But, I like good parts and good
stories. It doesn't matter if they are extreme characters or
good guys or bad guys; as long as they are good, chunky roles. So,
I guess in a way, I am attracted to them. They don't always
have to be so extreme but if they are written well, then I'm
You really took over this part; you were totally unrecognizable
for most of the film. It was such an incredible transformation.
Most of the actors lost weight to play drug addicts, but you put
on the pounds. How much did you gain?
I put on somewhere between thirty and forty pounds.
Was that your choice? Because you have done that before for a role.
Yes, but it wasn't really about weight; it was about having
met somebody in my past who was very similar to the guy that I played.
So, basically, I just took his character and put him in that circumstance.
I thought that it would be an interesting choice to go the opposite
way of what people think drug addicts look like. I knew that it
would still work because drugs don't only affect your weight
but they make you unhealthy and bit nuts. So, I knew that it was
a legitimate choice and that it would probably be one that nobody
else would make. That's why I did it.
You said that you will never do this again; is this true?
I think I have put enough weight on and taken weight off -- now
it's time to stop.
How's your nose doing? In this film, you don't have one!
How gross was that?
It's growing back!
I'm sorry, but that was a really creepy part of your character
the nose thing!
It was written like that.
Do you like working in films where you have tools to transform yourself?
Sometimes it's fun. If it's gimmicky, I won't do it. When it's
not, I'll do it. Pooh-Bear wasn't a difficult makeup job.
Basically, we just plopped this thing on my nose. Then there is
one scene where you see the hole in my face and that's all
done with computer graphics. They just put dots on my nose, so it
wasn't a lot of makeup time or anything like that.
Your day job is on the TV series Law & Order Criminal
Intent; you play a pretty normal guy! Is that the way you
stay sane in between all of these other roles?
Maybe it puts my karma metre into the grain a little bit. He's
not that normal. He's actually kind of a weird guy, if you
ask me, but I am having fun doing it. It's a really good show.
He's kind of a contemporary Sherlock Holmes guy. I like it, it's
an interesting part.