Rick Gonzalez This familiar face has been in some of this century’s biggest blockbusters including Old School, Biker Boyz, and the Rookie. You can currently catch him in theaters playing in the number one box office smash Coach Carter. He also will be running things this July 4th weekend with two releases including Steven Speilberg’s War of the Worlds and Bounce with Lil’ Bow Wow.
Interview by Rob Schwartz
WHO?MAG: Coach Carter was a number one box office hit. What was your experience filming this movie? RICK: My experience is playing a lot of basketball in a basketball camp. They kinda built that for us. Also being around a young cast where the chemistry is real cool. It was a good time.
WHO?MAG: Before Biker Boyz, Old School, and Coach Carter, you were in quite a few television shows. How was the transaction from television to the big screen? RICK: Personally, I love film more than anything. The transition wasn’t a real big one since I wasn’t a series regular. Getting that real TV feeling didn’t set in. TV is a faster pace and I like to take my time with my work. The transition wasn’t a bad one. I really didn’t feel any transition.
WHO?MAG: How do you mentally get into your acting roles? RICK: While working on Coach Carter, I worked with an acting coach who helped me tap into a few things personally to lend to the character that I was playing. Most of the stuff that I do is comedy so it’s more about getting my timing right and not being afraid to be vulnerable and try new things to see what works and what doesn’t work.
WHO?MAG: You just wrapped up this summers upcoming blockbuster hit “War of the Worlds.” How was it working with Tom Cruise and Steven Speilberg? RICK: Working with them was a great experience because I got to see how they go about their work. I first hand got to see how Steven Speilberg makes decisions of a director and how he goes about his working and his mindset. Working with Tom, he’s just such a humble person. It’s so effortless the way they work. For me, it was more like let me see how they do things and let me take a backseat. Even though I have lines with them, I’m still watching everything they do to see what they think and what they talk about and how comfortable they are. They are both so brilliant at what they do. When you’re around them, you see why they are so successful at what they do.
WHO?MAG: Are there any actors presently that you look up to or study for your characters roles? RICK: I respect the John Leguizamos who are capable of being the character actor and still be the leading man. He can basically do anything. He is the kind of actor I would like to see myself as some day.