Eric – Tungsten/Wolfram, #74 on the periodic table
Nell – Ununoctium, #118 on the periodic table
Hetty – Scotch 😉
Welcome back to Part Two of our interview with Anthony Azizi. Let’s find out about his time spent on NCIS Los Angeles and his part on Recruit (4X02).
Can you tell us what your experience was like working on the set of NCIS Los Angeles?
My friend Eric (Christian Olsen) who I did a movie with always championing me over there, and I almost didn’t go into this audition because I’ve been over there so many times. But I love them because I know half of them over there and all their directors who I have worked with in this industry. You start seeing a lot of the same people on different shows. So I thought should I try again? I did and I wound up getting the show! I also knew the director (James Whitmore, Jr.) because we worked on 24 together. Amazing director, lovely man….Whitmore Jr., baby! I love him! It was like a homecoming because I knew Terrence O’Hara, and I worked with Eric Olsen on Eagle Eye, and I knew Todd Smith from a long time ago… so it was fun to reunite again. I also have a history with Frank Military because we worked on the Unit together. Chris O’Donnell was very sweet and Daniela is a beautiful soul, great actress. So it was just nice because I knew a lot of the people there and it was great to be there.
I played a character by the name of Ahmadi ….and they called him triple A. They call me double A which is funny because here I am playing a character on the show whose name was triple A. He was an interesting character, very mysterious and I didn’t get killed! I think it would be interesting if he could escape his incarceration; it would be an interesting story line.
The scene was set in Afghanistan and I worked with Daniela, Chris, Todd, and Eric. By the way, I love Eric, he is a very sweet and talented man. Such a good actor and such a great guy, I love him. There are a few people who I look at in this industry and can say that he is such an incredible human being and he is one of them. So charismatic and such a lovely person.
It was in a very action packed scene. I’m a serious mastermind of a cell. One thing that was funny was the way Daniela had to accost my character. I didn’t know this…. but we had a military consultant – a lovely man by the name of Osama…. and I didn’t realize that when they grab a suspect who may be dangerous that when they go for the pat down they have to knock the turbans off in a certain way because they are worried that some of these turbans carry weapons. So, it was funny because we were having a scene where she had to take me down and she kept forgetting to knock it off in a certain way and the one time she did knock it off it kind of half came off, hanging there. So we had a cute little moment between her and I. A lot of fun.
It’s a great set to work on but I have worked on sets where it’s like a machine. 24 was like a machine. These guys who do action series take a long time to set up, reload guns, set up explosions and crashes… so you got to have a really well-oiled machine because you are going to have 16 hour days which happens a lot on one-hour dramas. NCIS:LA is that type of set and it was amazing at how well everything worked and how quickly everything worked. It was great.
What’s it like playing a character like that?
I like playing Middle Eastern characters but people are always complaining about why they are always portrayed as the bad guys? But I never have problems playing bad guys who are Middle Eastern even though I have been criticized by my friends. But the reason I don’t mind is because I’ve played such a variety of roles and it’s not that they are showing Middle Easterners as bad guys, it’s just that there is not enough balance. I don’t mind the roles, I relish it and I think it fun, but you are going to have to start being fair and balanced in your representation of my culture and my people. I can speak for the Iranian community and I can tell you Iranians are at the top of their sector in every field….. medicine, architecture, fashion designers, business owners, Google, Ebay, media moguls. But I think it’s starting to happen now. I started a film festival due to this frustration called the Noor Film Festival. It’s our fifth year and we try to promote Iranian actors and Iranian films so people can see them. We won an Academy Award last year. We just wanted to give people an idea where we are coming from culturally and as people.
You were a musician as well during your college years and could have gone into music?
The music industry has changed just as much since then as well. But I think for me music would have had the same challenges but I think I may have been able to get my head around becoming a musician because it may have been easier. But it’s a very difficult track as well but I really did enjoy it. I was in a lot of local bands.
What’s going on in your future? What are you currently working on?
I’m a writer and we got a script out that was optioned a year ago and we are still in the works of trying to get it produced. My partner Kurt Caceres (Sons of Anarchy) and I have a production company and we are trying to get back to our roots. We want to produce things that we feel strongly about. So I hope down the road this gets made. I would also like to be back on a series again which is a good place for me to be right now… to get some regularity, so I’m looking for that opportunity again too. I just want to keep working. I’m an actor and I just want to do the best I can every time I’m out there. I want to be part of something that’s good and then keep plugging away.
A BIG thank you goes out to Anthony for taking time out of his busy work schedule to speak with us. We enjoyed watching his work on NCIS Los Angeles and we look forward to seeing him back on stage or screen very soon!
“NCIS” AND “NCIS: LOS ANGELES” SWEEP THEIR TIME PERIODS AND ARE TUESDAY’S TOP TWO PROGRAMS IN VIEWERS AND ADULTS 18-49
All three CBS dramas—NCIS, NCIS: LOS ANGELES and VEGAS—won their time periods in viewers and key demographics, leading the Network to its second consecutive Tuesday win in key ratings measures, according to Nielsen preliminary live plus same day ratings for Oct. 2.
NCIS and NCIS: LOS ANGELES were the night’s top two programs in viewers, adults 18-49 and adults 25-54.
At 9:00 PM, NCIS: LOS ANGELES was first in households (9.2/14), viewers (14.87m), adults 25-54 (4.1/09) and adults 18-49 (3.1/08).