Mike White (right) with 'Gentlemen Broncos' co-star Sam Rockwell (left)
Gentlemen Broncos star Mike White does it all. He directs, produces, writes, acts and even competed on The Amazing Race (Season 14) alongside his father.
NYGossipGirl had the chance to sit down with the busy actor and talk about his role in Gentlemen Broncos and his upcoming project for HBO.
In the film, which is the second time White is working with director Jared Hess – the two had worked previously on Nacho Libre – White plays Dusty, a ‘guardian angel’ to Michael Angarano’s character, Benjamin.
White had to grow out a mustache and put on a long blonde wig to play his character.
“It was pretty hard to be taken seriously as a producer on the set,” he said. “It was pretty funny when I was wearing my outfits because I would leave the set and [you don’t] really realize [that] you’re in your outfit all the time. I walked into a Chipotle in my outfit and people were looking. Suddenly I was like ‘Oh my gosh, I’m going to get beaten up’ and then I realized the look on people’s faces was more like they thought that I was going to beat them up. So I wasn’t actually scared, but it was pretty amazing. People did not think that I was in costume, they just thought that I was a crackhead or something.”
White says that it’s not an easy thing to get a film made, especially one that isn’t your typical comedy movie, but rather a quirky one.
“I think that had Napolean not been such a success it would have been very difficult for this, as a script, to make,” he said. “At the same time I think there’s an audience for more freaky, outlandish stuff. In general it’s hard to get anything made and it’s hard when it’s outside the formula and this is so outside the formula.”
White as Dusty in 'Gentlemen Broncos'
White didn’t do anything to prepare for his role, but found some difficulties in playing Dusty, especially when one of the things he holds in the movie is a big snake.
“Jared really wanted him [the character] to have no facial expressions, no intonation in his voice at all, which for me does not come naturally,” he said. “You need to have a snake around your neck and Jennifer Coolidge cracking up next to you, crap [everywhere] and a big wig, and [at the same time] keep your face dead.
Although he would like to work with Jared in the future, right now White is focusing on getting his pilot for HBO ready. He’s teaming up again with Laura Dern – she starred in his film, Year of the Dog – and the show is going to be about a woman who has a nervous breakdown at work and goes to a treatment center by the beach to get her life together. She then goes back to her job and tries to make everything better again.
White is currently in New York doing some casting for the show, which he wants to make as real as possible, but with a slightly tweaked funny point of view.
White with co-star Michael Angaro in 'Gentlemen Broncos'
Although he’s busy with all his projects, he says that he’ll drop them for a chance to go back on the Amazing Race.
“I would go back to Amazing Race in a second,” he said. “You have these memories of doing it. Your adrenaline in life does not pump the same way as when you running in Siberia.”
Edited: October 30th, 2009