Best known as an actor, Dermot Mulroney has graced the screen in such films as My Best Friend’s Wedding, Point of No Return and The Wedding Date and has starred in TV shows such as Shameless, Crisis and Friends. But did you know that Mulroney is a professional cellist as well? He’s even performed on such soundtracks as Inside Out, Star Trek Into Darkness and Jurassic World.
Mulroney gets a chance to show off his cello skills on screen with a guest starring role on Amazon’s Golden Globe-nominated series, Mozart in the Jungle. He plays Andrew Walsh, a world-renowned solo cellist who visits the philharmonic and works his Lothario ways on Hailey (Lola Kirke), much to Maestro Rodrigo’s (Gael Garcia Bernal) dismay.
When I was watching Season 2 of Mozart in the Jungle, I thought your fingering looked very realistic. I started researching and learned you’re a professional cellist! I don’t think a lot of people know that.
I am! The makers of Mozart in the Jungle know that about me. I’m friends withRoman Coppola and Jason Schwartzman who are the creative producers. They called me to play a character that was world-renowned cello soloist. That’s because I am already a cellist and they know it so I was thrilled to be able to play it on screen. Great show. I really enjoyed that show when I saw it too, especially with Gael Garcia Bernal. He’s fantastic in this role.
How did you transition from musician to acting?
Really, I started them both as a 7-year old in 1970. It was a very big year. My first play and my first cello lesson. They were on dual tracks all along. I played the cello as a student cellist through high school and at college at Northwestern. Then I got lucky breaks and got started as an actor in my 20s and music went to the side. I decided, as a teenager, not to pursue it as a career in music because of the amount of practice and the time alone it would take to get to that level, to get into a conservatory. So when you love something and you set it free, you know what happens? Twenty-five years later, I dropped into an orchestra seat forMichael Giacchino, who is one of the busiest and hottest film composers. So whenever he records a score, I’m invited to play.
I was invited to play on Zootopia, which I think is the next Pixar movie. They’re recording a score all five days but I have a couple days on Shameless so I had to pass! The last couple of years I’ve worked as a professional cellist on occasion and in front of the camera too.
Do you play any other instruments?
I play a bunch of other instruments! I play different types of guitars. I’m a pretty good mandolin player, in fact. Piano. Mostly anything stringed. I can play them all. If you mean play them well… I recently began to learn to play harp. I’ve always wanted to learn how to play harp. It’s not so hard, if you put your mind to it.
You were in a scene on Mozart in the Jungle with Lang Lang, Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell and others. How was that to film?
That was rather incredible. It was so bizarre. It was meant to be. It was written that way to get all these music notables together in the same room and have them do something other than music. Playing out the scene with Dance Dance Revolution, bowling and Whack-a-Mole with Emanuel Ax and Lang Lang was one of the weirder days of shooting that I’ve ever had. (He pauses and laughs.) Jason Schwartzman was directing and he’s just the most fantastic guy, great director. So he was chief of the whole event, he would take people who aren’t accustomed to doing that, make them feel completely comfortable—sort of disarm the musicians who might have some apprehension about acting. It was really great fun to watch and be a part of. I’m interested how people pick up on that.
What’s your favorite piece to play on the cello?
The Swan—Le Cygne—from Carnival of the Animals is a favorite orchestra piece.
Who’s your favorite band or favorite musician?
Gosh, that’s impossible. I’m more inclined to The Rolling Stones, Lynyrd Skynyrd,Led Zeppelin. Those are always good favorites. I was going through Bruce Springsteen as Bruce was going through it. I have to tip my hat to all his musical contributions to my life.
What’s your go-to song to sing in the shower?
Come to think of it, I don’t sing in the shower. I don’t have one for you.
Do you have a favorite composer?
My favorite composer, I mentioned to you, is Michael Giacchino because I get to play his music before any else does! Fresh off the press!
Do you have a favorite conductor?
The guy we got here is so fun. I saw him recently at Disney Hall. So I’ll pickGustavo Dudamel. Growing up I was near DC and the conductor was a cellist—Mstislav Rostropovich—so he’s a particular personal favorite of mine and Gael Garcia Bernal! He’s doing a phenomenal job bringing authenticity to that role!
Both seasons of Mozart in the Jungle are available to stream on Amazon Prime.
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Dermot Mulroney Talks Hallmark Holiday Movies
Listopad 23rd, 2015 | Author: admin
Dermot Mulroney (not be confused with Dylan McDermott—their names are similar though they look nothing alike) decided to dip his feet into the Hallmark holiday pool this year. He stars in Hallmark’s tentpole holiday movie,Northpole: Open for Christmas with Lori Loughlin and Bailee Madison.
Mulroney and I chatted about the film and the holidays.
Tell me more about your role in Northpole: Open for Christmas.
I play the local guy whose responsibility is to get the inn nestled in the snow-covered woods, ready for Christmas Eve.
What drew you to this role?
I’ve been trying to entertain America for 30 years and have yet to do an honest-to-goodness Christmas movie. So I know that was long overdue. You know, every year we have to save Christmas – this year it was my turn. Not to give any spoilers, but Christmas is on! With an open heart and a genuine spirit of family and sharing I really felt it was a great time to do a film like this.
How was it working with Lori Loughlin and Bailee Madison?
I’ve always admired [Lori] from the early days and getting to know Bailee while we were working was really a great experience, too. She’s a terrific kid and so talented. I really felt that was a Christmas miracle—working with really great people but with intentions that were just as good as mine. I had a fantastic experience.
What draws you to a particular role?
I still stick with what I set out to do originally—to do a little bit of everything. There’s a couple things that are left, without a doubt. I can certainly tick off the little box that says, “Homegrown American Christmas movie made in Canada.” This year alone I’ve worked in a very wide range of projects which has always been a goal of mine. A raunchy comedy with Robert DeNiro and Zac Efron, Dirty Grandpa comes out [January 22]—a couple of independent films, a thriller with Jamie Foxx with violence and drugs and I have a regular gig onShameless, too. How can I justify doing the movies where I’m a coke-addled Mafioso if I’m not doing movies like Northpole 2: Open for Christmas, you know? I’m trying to karmically balance my contribution to the popular culture.
Any role that you didn’t get a chance to play?
Well, I’ve grown out a couple of them, that’s for sure. I never really did the war movie, like the grunt in the trenches, the GI movie. There’s plenty of stuff, you’ll see. It’s yet to come, really. It’s not that I didn’t get chance to do it, it’s what I haven’t done yet.
Are there any plans to do future Hallmark movies?
Well, certainly! My compliments toward them are quite genuine. I know Lori works with them on a couple of series and admires the way they work. The product they’re making is for family consumption. It’s very clean.
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‘Insidious: Chapter 3’s’ Dermot Mulroney Wonders Why He Avoided Horror Roles
Listopad 10th, 2015 | Author: admin
You can finally welcome Dermot Mulroney to the horror movie club.
After a nearly three-decade career in film and television working in just about every kind of genre imaginable, the veteran actor admits he’s pretty stoked to have found his first full-blown, traditional-style horror film in the form of “Insidious: Chapter 3,” which opens Friday nationwide.
Set prior to the events of the first film, the latest “Insidious” installment sees Mulroney playing a widowed father struggling to raise his two kids even under somewhat normal circumstances. However, his struggles enter a whole new supernatural realm when his teenage daughter (Stefanie Scott) becomes the apparent target of a malicious supernatural force.
In a candid conversation with Spinoff Online, Mulroney explains how he finally came around to embracing the long-avoided horror genre (despite having a genuine enthusiast living under his own roof), the successful dodges and weaves he’s made in recent years to give his career a flourishing second act and why you may never see him and Dylan McDermott in the same place at the same time.
Spinoff Online: After having not done horror for so long, I’m thinking this film specifically must have come with all those kinds of fun things that originally attracted you to acting?
Dermot Mulroney: Yeah. And I put off the pleasure of doing a horror movie for almost 30 years, so I don’t know what I was thinking. I mean, our thinking changed. The whole industry changed. So in all seriousness, there was a time where I wouldn’t even consider doing a horror movie, so it’s nice when that time changed because there’s no restrictions. It’s much more fun now.
I was looking at that 30-year filmography and you’ve done so many different kinds of movies. I’m thinking you have a pretty good sense of how the industry has changed and evolved. How are you applying that wisdom to the choices you’re making?
Well, it’s easier now, I think, because the choices are more varied. Through all those years that I worked only in films, one of my sort of side goals was always to try and find various different parts, explore the range of what you’re capable of, what you’re capable of being cast to do. And did a pretty good job of that. Now, it’s even wider and even more of an open playing field. Obviously, the old conventions of not crossing a line into doing television and all that are long gone, so I’m reaping the benefit, really, is the way I look at it.
And having made my really satisfying moves into television, whether it’s sitcom with “New Girl” or a conspiracy series with “Crisis” — and really the great shows I got on like “Enlightened,” “Shameless” — it’s been a blast over there. If I had only known that it was that rich in material, but it took the economy to change for the business react to that. Then it even took me another couple years to adapt my own philosophy to what the reality is. But once I did, I started working more because there are more types of jobs to take, and I found that I could still prioritize quality.