Did you ever wonder what it would be like to live next door to Kensi and Deeks? Actor D.C. Douglas found out first hand when he was cast in Neighborhood Watch, the long awaited Densi- centric NCISLA episode. D.C.’s character (Rob) lives next door to the NCIS agents who are working undercover as husband and wife to catch a Russian sleeper cell. D.C. enjoyed his time spent on the show and took a few minutes to sit down and tell us a little bit about his career and what it was like to work on the set of NCISLA.
D.C. Douglas is a talented character actor, voice over artist and director living in Los Angles. He has done a little bit of everything in his career including stage, film and television. He shared with us what it was like to collaborate with Linda Hunt on his short film The Crooked Eye and of course, working alongside Eric Christian Olsen and Daniela Ruha on the set of Neighborhood Watch. After reading his Facebook page and following him on Twitter, we knew it was going to be a treat to interview D.C. and he didn’t let us down!
Tell us a little bit about yourself particularly when you realized you wanted to be an actor growing up in Berkley?
Well, being born in one of the most liberal places in the US is automatically a supportive place for pursuing the arts or anything else that’s not lucrative! As long as I didn’t become “the man” I was doing okay.
To be honest, though, I knew I wanted to be an actor at age 7, but didn’t start doing theatre until I was around 11 and living in San Jose. I started out at the San Jose Children’s Musical Theatre. Both my parents were very supportive of it.
When did you make the move down to LA and what was the first project you worked on?
I moved to LA in 1985 to study at the Estelle Harman’s Actors Workshop. I could get student loans so it felt like I was pleasing my mother’s desire for me to go to college, while forging alliances with people who would become the most powerless in my chosen industry years later. Yeah, kinda wished I‘d partied with MBA majors!
My first gig would’ve been a horrible play somewhere. Or an improv show that went sideways… Or a student film? I know, I know, you mean real paying gig! That would’ve been a commercial for Roy Rogers fast food – got my SAG card that way.
You’ve done some theatre and improv, what do you prefer? Film or theatre?
I prefer big budget theatre that pays huge! Sadly, not much of that in LA, so I prefer film/tv! In all honesty, I love the audience/actor energy exchange of theatre, but my childhood dream was to be on that big box in the living room. That’s why sitcoms are the perfect synthesis. Sadly, they are going the way of the movie of the week.
Can you tell us about your short The Crooked Eye where you worked with Linda Hunt?
Well, first things first – if you love Linda Hunt, you need to watch my short! You can see it via iTunes (http://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/the-crooked-eye/id480353868) – then go to IMDb and give it a nice rating!
Working with Linda Hunt was amazing! I knew I wanted a celebrity with gravitas to narrate the film, but wasn’t sure we had the budget for it. It turned out that I didn’t! But, when I learned Linda Hunt liked the script and was open to taking the job, we made it work.
We recorded at her favorite studio – Buzzy’s. She was so warm and inventive. I also have a big voice over career so it’s always interesting to watch other VO pros work. She has a very organic style that involves rolling the sentences and words around in her mouth and mind until she arrives at the perfect place, then delivers the line in the clear. It was fascinating. The engineer mentioned that James Earl Jones worked the same way.
The short was a gift for my mother who had written the short story I based the film on. You can read more about it here as well as see a trailer.
You do a lot of voice over work; can you tell us what has been your most enjoyable project to date?
Well, as far as money, it would be my GEICO campaigns and doing 2 lines as the tiger in the Netflix commercial!
But as far as fans, it would be playing Albert Wesker in a few “Resident Evil” games, Legion in “Mass Effect” 2 & 3, and playing Chase – the police car autobot – in The Hubs’ “Transformers: Rescue bots”
As far as the actual “doing” of it? Everything except medical narration!
You had a role in Hot in Cleveland this year…was it as much fun to work on the show as it looks?
Absolutely! My scenes were with Wendy Mallick and she was such a joy. And spending a few days in the company of Ed Asner and Betty White? Well, you can read about my childhood fantasy come true here: www.myvoiceoverguy.com/voice-over/primetime-television-betty-white/
So here’s what all the NCISLA fans want to know: Tell us about your work on the upcoming episode of NCISLA: Neighborhood Watch… We hear it’s a relaxed set to work on…What was your experience like on set?
They are absolute a-holes. I asked for a hot tub in my trailer – no dice. I asked for hot wax pedicures every evening – nada! And forget about requesting a blue monkey to bring you Evian!
Everything you have heard is true! A VERY relaxed set. The people were sane and friendly. My scenes were primarily with guest star JP Manoux (a very funny guy I’ve known for years), Daniela Ruah and Eric Christian Olsen. Daniela is so damn pretty that I kept looking away for fear of seeming like an on-set stalker — I couldn’t stop staring at her! Add to that the fact she’s a down to earth, accessible person, and you have one classy celebrity. She made us feel very welcome.
Eric was also very welcoming and fun. One particular evening we were working with the stunts guy and Eric walked up and gave us some demonstrations of how NOT to fall on the ground. He was quite funny.
I have to give credit to the overall vibe of the set, though, to the first assistant director – Eric A. Pot. Imagine Brad Pitt from “12 Moneys” crossed with a young Sam Elliott. Yeah, he’s quite a character. A warm, funny man who keeps his humor even when things seem to be falling apart around him.
Tell us about your character…
Not sure what all I can share, but I play Rob who is “married” to Bob (JP Manoux). Two bakers who’ve been successful enough to move to the ‘burbs!
How does it differ from other shows you have been on?
Well, it’s true that hour-long episodic TV is rough work. You’re essentially doing a feature film in 16 days (2 episodes). So, many sets are, indeed, very tense. Some more so than others. A show I did many years ago (off the air now) was the worst. The make-up guy was telling me how he was trying to get the 1st AD fired. The executive producer/episode director was angered by wardrobe color choices… You get the idea. On the flip side, ABC’s “Castle” set was an utter joy to work on. Just like NCISLA.
Anything else about the show you think the fans would like to know?
It’s hard to share stories without giving away plot. No one likes spoilers! (But if you don’t mind, then you can read my report about it here: www.myvoiceoverguy.com/voice-over/ncis-workaholics-cbs-comedy-central/)
I do think your readers should know how grateful the cast and crew of NCISLA is for all the fans and their support. That was pretty obvious throughout the shoot.
What’s coming up for you next? What TV or movie projects are you working on now or looking forward to?
You can hear me as Chase the police car on The Hub’s “Transformers: Rescue Bots” every Saturday morning. I’ll also have a couple quick appearances coming up on Comedy Central’s “Workaholics” and TNT’s “Franklin & Bash.”
We know that you are on Twitter and you have a great blog. What’s the best place your fans can keep up with all your latest projects?
Probably on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/DC-Douglas-Actor-Voice-Over-Artist/120486757436?ref=nf
Or, if you missed a show I’ve been on, you can always visit http://www.DCDouglas.com
Thanks for reaching out to interview me! It was a pleasure!
No, D.C., it was our pleasure! Thank you for your time. Make sure you check out D.C.’s Facebook page and follow him on Twitter! There’s also a petition right now by fans of AMC’s The Walking Dead to get D.C. Douglas to guest star on the series. If you want to find out more, go to http://www.change.org/petitions/d-c-douglas-on-the-walking-dead.
Neighborhood Watch will air on CBS, May 8, 2012 at 9 p.m. EST
Stay tuned next time, when we talk to Gabriel Suttle also starring on Neighborhood Watch and Brian Avers, aka Mike Renko for his upcoming return to NCISLA. Don’t miss it!