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Brad Schmidt - I’M ONLY HUMAN

roy fire
Brad Schmidt - I’M ONLY HUMAN
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How long have you been acting? What is your proudest moment in your career?


I’ve been acting professionally for about the last 12 years.


There have been many ‘proud’ moments, but working on Broadway was my proudest.  Hands down. More specifically having my parents get to see me that first performance.


I was fortunate enough to work as an understudy for the Broadway play LOMBARDI, about the late great coach and I covered 3 parts.  ALOT of work.  One of the guys I was covering, Chris Sullivan, an amazing guy who is on the show, THIS IS US now, let me know he had to take a short leave and I’d be filling in.  I was EXCITED!! 


Naturally the first people I let know were my parents.  They came into NYC from Ohio with one of my sisters and watched the show.  Even though there were 8 or 900 pp in the audience, the only ones I cared about were them.  I’ll never forget the looks on their faces backstage afterward. I still feel good thinking about it.


I think most people want to make their parents proud of whatever they do in life and I’m no different.  I have such supportive parents, and approval from them, especially my father, has always important to me.  For them to see the actualization of a goal, that I had sacrificed years for, and that they supported, meant the world to me.  The look of pride and joy on their faces backstage after the show, is certainly a seminal moment in my life.

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Favorite job or co star?


My favorite job also happened to have my favorite co star, Kristen Bell.  I can’t sing her praises enough.


I had the opportunity to do a fun recurring role on the 3rd season of HOUSE OF LIES.  I was very nervous to be working with such an incredible group of actors that included Don Cheadle and Ben Schwartz who is so great.  I think they had won an emmy for best show the previous year so expectations were high.  Day 1, morning 1, really early….maybe 6 or 6;30am and I head to the HMUP trailer, and Kristen was already there getting her hair done.  Keep in mind we had only met once, briefly at the network table read so we really didn’t know each other.


Didn’t matter.  Right away she lit up, made me feel welcome and a part of this little family of theirs while the rest of us were still trying to wake up. She was so incredibly sweet, and kind and accessible…..I’ll never forget that.   She really set the tone for the entire energy on set. In my opinion she does all the things a film and tv star should; shows up to work early, works hard, knows when to keep it light and when to be serious and leads by example. If you’re not a fan yet you should be!


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What are your thoughts on social media creeping into entertainment on all levels.  Does it actually affect legitimate jobs regarding social media presence etc? 


This is tough.


I’m going to focus on the first part of this.


To be clear; social media, in my humble opinion, is the arm pit of the internet.

Most pp I know agree with this.


The problem, in regards to the entertainment business, is that the armpit is not going anywhere, and it is a VERY important part of our business now.  Its being utilized as another avenue to market what we see on the tv, screen and hear on the radio.  And its been proven effective, if not annoying.


So as an artist (I use that term lightly for actors), you have to figure out how to make it work FOR you.  For me personally this has been a long, moral struggle (for my wife as well who is a model), as I come from a time where I had to pick up my scripts/sides from a box outside my first agents office in NYC.  Don’t laugh.  I’m ancient.


Since it is now so entrenched in our business, the question is how can you make it a positive for yourself?  Instead of it being a cancer, I’ve thought about how I can use it help myself, and still be an authentic human being.


The fascinating thing is that it actually offers the artist a form of control over their career/image,  where mostly for any performer, there is none.


Don’t stone me yet.  Let me explain.


It used to be that the actors I idolized as a kid, you didn’t know anything about them other then what you read in a magazine or from the random interview.  Now, you see a lot of stars actually crafting a persona.  Not only that, but showing a side of themselves that the casual viewer wouldn’t know.  I think helps producers, agents, studios etc, to view these stars in a different way which helps their career, as well as  land different roles. So in essence, it is giving actors and musicians a bit of control in shaping their image, that was typically in the hands of others



A great example is Josh Brolin.  Love him as an actor and the majority of the roles you see him in are these dark, complex characters.  But follow him on IG, and you see the other sides of him.  He’s a doting father, family man, super in love with his wife, couldn’t give a damn about the machine of Hollywood, is funny as hell and also has this dark inner poet thing.  Obviously he is choosing what he wants us to see, but the point is HE is choosing, and the public now has this greater understanding of him other then the films he’s done.  As a result, you see he could really be cast in any archetype and it can work.  Like a complete rebranding of what you know about him.  So smart.


Kate Beckinsale is another.  Whenever her name comes up, most consumers think beautiful, great actress, Underworld. lol  But damn, on IG she is so fucking funny, self deprecating and sardonic of the world she lives in.  It’s made me, as a movie watcher, love her even more as an actress and view her completely differently.


We all know social media is like walking in a field of grenades.  One bad post, tweet or politically charged statement at the wrong time…..BOOM! lol

But it has also given these artists some control over their careers and crafting their public persona, where there previously had been very little except through the traditional PR machine.


How has balancing fatherhood affected working out or training? 


The only real change is finding the time. To get it in it has to be focused. If I didn’t feel motivated when I was younger I just wouldn’t go.  If I stuck to that principle now that I have kids I would NEVER workout. Ha!


The responsibility of keeping two little humans fed and alive, has helped me realize that motivation is bullshit.  You have to set a plan and execute it irregardless of how you feel.  I’ve applied that principle not only to being a dad, but working out and every other area of my life; especially work.  I’ve become a much more productive human since fatherhood so thanks kiddos!!


Do you have a fitness routine or suppliment that you swear by?


I put a premium on flexibility and joint strength and trying to maximize my bodies physiology.  Dr. Kelly Starett has a fantastic book called SUPPLE LEOPARD, which goes over his MobilityWOD program which I follow.  HIGHLY recommend. 


As far as supplements there’s a few I swear by.   I’ve been taking E3 live for over a decade.  You recommended Cell Tech drops and Biosil to me years ago and those are still a part of my daily protocol.  I’ve also been taking this neutropic called Qualia. Fantastic for concentration, alertness and memory recall.  It’s like lubricant for the brain.  A must before all my meetings.


How have you been able to stay grounded and relatively normal in LA when you’re constantly surrounded by abnormal people, behavior etc? 


My wife.  She’s from Wyoming and is as grounded as they come.  Always lets me know if I’m feeding into it, or letting the bullshit get to me. I also have 8 brothers and sisters that don’t let me get away with a thing. Not.  A. Single. Thing.  One bit of false pretense or Hollywood-ness and I get TORCHED. lol


Words of wisdom?  Words to live by? 


Be a good human.  Always. Strive for that. Everyday.  Our humanity is what connects us all.  No matter how different we are on the outside, we are all the same on the inside.  We are all sons and daughters, feel, bleed, have hopes and dreams and all eventually die.  These things that make us human bind us.  Don’t forget that the next time someone doesn’t deserve your grace…..then give it anyway.


 Matthew Felker