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August 1, 2014

Zachary Levi of Chuck: The TV Squad Interview - AUDIO

by Varun Lella, posted Sep 24th 2007 2:01PM
Zach Levi ChuckSo we are doing a little new thing here at TV Squad: the audio interview. It is part interview, part podcast, all fun. Please bear with us (or more specifically me) as we get the format down to something that is both interesting and informative to you, the audience -- kind of like Bill Nye the Science Guy. Only instead of science we have interviews with celebrities ... same difference.

It began last week with Joel's interview with Rob McElhenney of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Today I am posting a phone interview I did with Zach Levi of Chuck, which premieres tonight at 8 p.m. EST. If you read my Early Look post, you know that I love this show. Now that I have seen the third episode -- oh, the perks of TV blogging -- my opinions have been confirmed. However, I may have been biased when watching my episodes, because of this interview.

As you will hear, Zach Levi is the nicest guy alive. Very humble and thankful to be in the game. Unlike last week's audio, this is pretty much SFW.

Highlights:

The interview, which you can download here, is basic stuff, how we came to the show, why people will like it, how it is to work with cast and crew. You can kind of tell that I was expecting to write an article about him and not necessarily post the entire interview. However, there are plenty of interesting things he touches upon in the article.

We talk about the high production budget surrounding Chuck, with all its car chases and explosions and the lot. "It's about making really great television," Levi says, "and really great television is tough to do and takes a lot of money." It is essentially a weekly mini-movie as far as he's concerned. Which, to me, is good for viewers, but may give some executives some headaches.

I segue into a conversation about Heroes, which airs directly after Chuck. "If guys like me watch Heroes, then hopefully guys like me -- and girls like me -- will watch Chuck." Good logic ... I think? Levi makes a comment about both shows being in the same action-adventure sort-of universe. This leads me to push a question about a potential Heroes-Chuck crossover.

I was answered with not-the-usual coy let's-see-what-happens-with-my-show response I was expecting. "Gosh are you kidding me? I would crap myself that would be so insane, that would be so much fun," Levi says, sounding a little like Dane Cook in the delivery.

In the middle, the conversation enters a lull (which is my fault and I apologize for) and Levi gets on the train for HumbleTown.

Here are some tastes that HumbleTown has to offer.

"Such a dream, I couldn't believe it. As an actor you hope every year that you can just book a pilot, any pilot and have some work and you cross your fingers and hope it gets picked up, but more than that you hope you do a pilot with people like [McG and Josh Schwartz, director and writer of the pilot respectively]."

and

"Too good to be true."

and

"It's such a blessing. It's the biggest blessing in my life."

We chat a little about Shades of Ray and Wieners, two films that Levi has been working on. There are some cool non-Chuck Levi news tidbits to learn here, but the conversation is only rapping up to the big finale.

If you know Levi's history, you probably remember him from Less Than Perfect. I assumed that he would have tons of wild and crazy stories about former co-star Andy Dick, but the story he gave out was very subtle and gave some insight on the Andy Dick audiences don't get to see.

Apparently, Andy Dick likes to get healthy sometimes and goes through diet phases. "Eating healthy for him on this particular diet he was on was just eating watermelon all day," Levi says. "So we'd come to work in the morning and I see Andy sitting there with half a watermelon and he is digging out of it with a spoon and it would go on for a month or so."

Noting the success of Andy's diets, Levi quipped, "I guess you can lose a lot of weight eating just watermelon."

I pester him for one more question, even thought the publicist told me I only had 15 minutes: Why will people want to watch Chuck, in ten words?

The answer takes about thee full minutes. You think I am kidding? Listen to it for yourself.

"Action (period) Comedy (period) Secrets (period) Babes (period) Romance (period) Ninjas (period) Drama (period) Mystery (period) (Inaudible because I am talking about John Heder to offset our awkward silence) Nerds."

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