…clawing at the ceiling of his grave…

All this week, I'm recording the audio version of John Scalzi's The Android's Dream. It's a delightful book, with wonderful characters, smart dialog, and some of the most enjoyable side trips into world building I've ever read in a SF novel. Also, it's really, really funny.

Tomorrow, I'm going in later than usual, because I have an audition in the morning for a show that I'm really, really excited to possibly be on. I can't say what it is (whether I book the job or not, when it's all resolved I will reveal at least the title of the show), but it's something I've wanted to work on for years, with some creative people I really respect. So, yanno, fingers crossed and all that.

The sides I got for the audition are just wonderful (an incredible rarity these days, sadly) and the character is one of the best-drawn and most clearly-defined characters I've read in years. I'm really looking forward to trying on his skin for a little bit, and seeing how it fits. And then making a lampshade and some luggage out of it, so I can carry him with me wherever I go forever and ever and ever.

I'm really looking forward to this audition, and no matter what happens, I'm grateful to the writers and to casting for giving me something I can really work with, instead of something I have to overcome, which seems to happen more frequently than not, (and which I will blame on Reality TV, because … why not? Fuck Reality TV, man. Fuck it right in its empty soul and black withered industry-destroying heart.) This character is a thinker, reclusive, intense, and broken. The sides just hint at it, but there is something seriously wrong with this guy, and the scenes are so well-written, I can set my twisted imagination free to run around in the field of dark and fucked up things, and use whatever it digs up to inform the character choices I make. This sort of thing hardly ever happens (the material we typically get for television just isn't this solid), so I'm making the most of it; it's pretty fun, and tremendously satisfying.

This afternoon, I told my manager, "even though this guy is nothing like me, he's right in my wheelhouse as an actor, and I'm really looking forward to this, and I feel like I'm less likely to suck than a year or two ago, because I've been lucky enough to work a lot recently, and I don't feel like I'm all rusty and weird." He pointed out that I've been getting cast in a lot of roles like this, lately, too, so something is working when I play these guys … though both of us decided it was probably a good idea not to dig too deeply into the roots of this particular mystery. Besides, my imagination is doing a pretty disturbing job all on its own, and I don't want to mess with its mojo, lest it decide to turn me into a lampshade or something.

65 thoughts on “…clawing at the ceiling of his grave…”

  1. So… is it safe to assume that the show in question is not, in fact, Glee? 😉
    Sending good vibes your way, whatever the show might be. Best of luck at the audition!

  2. OOOO! More evil evil characters. Most wonderful. Now I’m going to spend too much of my time wondering what show it is you are auditioning for.
    Break a leg and all that!

  3. my moneys on warehouse 13 or SGU. Or it could be something completely different like vampire diaries, oh wait you said “with some creative people”…. either way, break a leg, and hurry up and tell us.

  4. Break a leg and all that.
    As for Android’s Dream… I usually don’t get into audio books, but I’m quite sure I’ll be making an exception for this one when it comes out. Totally awesome book and listening to you perform it will, I’m sure, also be awesome. Because really, how can a book with a chapter long fart joke not be awesome?

  5. So, Wil Wheaton, you’re meemaw hasn’t died. You’re skipping Texas w00tstocks to record and audition. You lied to us, Wheaton. We may never be able to forgive you.

  6. You do make a particularly prime twisted evil dude, so break a leg in your audition. Also, maybe someone else’s leg to really show how warped in the brain pan your character could be. In all practical honesty though, you might not be able to get a decent sized luggage set AND a lampshade out of his skin.

  7. “This sort of thing hardly ever happens (the material we typically get for television just isn’t this solid), so I’m making the most of it; it’s pretty fun, and tremendously satisfying.”
    Oh lord, don’t write things like that. You always get replies like, “So, did show XX really write a weak character outline??” And you have to write something evasive and polite, or something that defends the work that writers have to do under their grueling schedule, or whatever, for every show you’ve ever been on. I will assume that every audition for everything you starred in involved well-fleshed material from a team of crack writers and an ace director who, you hope, will hire you again. I mean, clearly they had the discernment and depth to choose you. Some of those *other* auditions featured badly drawn, undefined characters. But you won’t name names. :)
    Break a leg.

  8. I was going to say Torchwood but it doesn’t really strike me as something you’ve wanted to be on for years, for as you’ve mentioned Doctor Who before, you haven’t really mentioned Torchwood. Though, I suppose that , a lot of the people involved in Torchwood are also involved in Doctor Who. And I heard rumors of some seriously fucked up characters showing up on the new American season. I’m over thinking and am intrigued, to say the least.

  9. Just wanted to add my voice to all the others wishing you luck (hey, no matter how much skill you bring, there’s always a good helping of luck involved!)
    I don’t watch US TV, but I love reading about your auditions and work because you love doing it so much. You have such a passion for it that it’s a little ray of hope and inspiration in the world.
    So, good luck! Roll well, Wil–hell, you can even use my ‘special’ dice if you like.

  10. May your talent be ripe at the time of picking.
    Hmm. Personally, I’d say were it Breaking Bad that would be awesomesause. And there’s plenty of room there for broken characters (pun intended). I suppose it depends on what he means by “it’s something I’ve wanted to work on for years,” since BB hasn’t been around for all that long.
    Although, it films close enough to Wil’s abode (closer than say Vancouver, or even Oregon), that he could get home to his family on weekends.

  11. I bet you’re going to do it anyway but please let us know when the audio book is available. Would be great to listen to on my way to and from work.
    *fingers crossed* for that big audition. Slay them!
    Your idea of making a lampshade out of that character is weirding me out slightly, though. ;o)

  12. “I’m really looking forward to trying on his skin for a little bit, and seeing how it fits. And then making a lampshade and some luggage out of it, so I can carry him with me wherever I go forever and ever and ever.” Was there a religion change? Did you become and Aztec priest? On a side note I recently started playing Pokémon red (never really caught them all sigh….) If you watch the TV in the main characters’ house it says 4 kids walking on a train track. Is this a reference to ‘Stand by me’ or is this known?
    Man I need a life!

  13. Oh. Another serial killer type.
    It’s giving you roles to play and that’s good but do you worry you’ll get type cast as the bad and/or disturbed guy? Frankly, I think that’s not the case, yet but there’s a definite theme going here.

  14. I really hope that audiobook gets released in a format I’m willing to purchase (i.e. not DRM-infested Audible). I really enjoyed your audiobooks and “The Android’s Dream” is my favorite book by Scalzi, so I’d really love to hear it. (I know, of course, that you don’t have any say in how it’s released; I’m just wishing out loud here.)

  15. I am so happy that you are doing the kinds of things that make you happy, even though that means the posts are fewer and further between.
    Castle hasn’t been around for years, but it would be fun to see you there. But rather than a bad guy I think that you could be one of the false leads that helps Castle bug the snot out of Becket.
    I’m keeping everything crossed that won’t stay that way if I get smacked inthe back of the head for you.

  16. Would love it to be Doctor Who (since they’re filming some episodes in the US for next year’s season). Failing that, Torchwood wouldn’t be bad. :-)

  17. Break a leg!
    You’ll be awesome :) I must agree an episode or two of Doctor Who would be outstanding and Torchwood would be equally outstanding. Whatever it is I’d probably watch it. :)

  18. Good luck on the audition Wil , knock em’ dead! I think someone needs to make a clown sweater patterned lampshade,in the style of R. Stevens portrait of you. Make it happen interwebs!

  19. Fingers crossed for you.
    Actually I can imagine you in almost any of the shows I like (yes, even in true blood!), but since it’s thanks to you that I now follow the BBT and Eureka I hope it’s another of those amazing show that I, for some reason, still ignore >:D.

  20. Since no one else has mentioned my idea, I think it could be House There isn’t a lot of room for not very nice characters on that show but I think you would make a great patient of the week and an even better Doctor at PPTH. Break a Leg and can’t wait to hear what happens! *sends you good vibes*

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