Interview with Supercon star Clancy Brown
by Bobby Blakey
There are so many diverse actors out there, but few that have taken on such a diverse range of roles than Clancy Brown. He has amassed an impressive resume throughout his career starring in TV and movies including the Superman: Animated Series as Lex Luther, SpongeBob Squarepants as Mr. Krabs, the excellent HBO series Carnivale, Starship Troopers, Star Wars: Clone Wars / Rebels, The Shawshank Redemption, Warcraft and more recently the feature film Chappaquiddick and so many more. I had the chance to sit down and speak with him about his latest film the comedy Supercon co-starring Ryan Kwanten, Mike Epps, Russell Peters, and Maggie Grace.
Bobby: How did you get involved with Supercon?
Clancy: I was serving on a jury at a film festival watching very dark European movies in dark movies houses trying to judge them, which I find hard trying to judge art. Then this silly, silly sweet script came across my desk and it just hit me in the right spot at the right time. I had a conversation with the director Zak Knutson and we loved these characters and this world and wanted to tell this goofy story while having some fun. That was something I needed to do right then so I hoped on a plane to New Orleans and spent the next couple of weeks yuking it up with Zak, Maggie, Ryan, Russell, Mike and everybody and had a great time doing it.
Bobby: I know you have a lot of experience with the convention world. When you prepared for this role did you try to channel some of your experiences for the character or just try to create something all new?
Clancy: I have never experienced anything my character does. (Laughs) I think Adam King is an amalgamation of bad experiences. Zak, Andy and Dana are really the aficionados of cons. They kind of amalgamated all of these stories and a lot of the stories are myths, while others were witnessed so they jammed them all together to create this monstrous, ego center character Adam King. He isn’t really based on any one particular, but just a vessel for all the bad stories people have had. The majority of the people actually at the cons behind the table are enjoying themselves. Every once in a while there is someone who forgets who they are and behaves badly, but there isn’t that many Adam King’s out there. He is just an imaginary silly man who isn’t dangerous or anything just a big goof.
Bobby: You take on so many different kinds of roles do you have a specific process of choosing a role and how to play it?
Clancy: A good script will tell you what to do and what you are supposed to be bringing to the story. As long as I understand how I fit in the story and what I am supposed to do then I am good with that. You can easily get lost in the details and sometimes you need to, but I just try to be a team player and get the show done while having a few Yuks along the way.
Bobby: Do you approach something like this that is way more over the top in acting and physical nature than most of the other roles you take on?
Clancy: There is not that many screwball slapstick comedies out there anymore and I am not usually the top of the list for those kinds of movies. I jumped at the chance to do something like this and have a good time. So yeah, the approach is a bit different because you are serving the joke and you’ve got to set it up and make it happen. In historical or psychological dramas it’s a subtler mix where you have to get inside the head of the filmmaker a bit more and read the script a little differently. You really have to trust a lot more with those kinds of things. I think most people know when a joke works, but maybe you are not so sure when you are telling something is a thrilling part of the movie. You don’t know if you are building that suspense when you need to, but you know when you hit a punchline.
Bobby: You do a lot of voice work as well. Is that something you have to approach any differently than being in front of the camera?
Clancy: There are obvious differences to it, but I mean it’s basically the same thing. You don’t have to sit for hours in a make-up chair, but you have to give voice to the character. You have to pay attention to the story boards to make sure your voice matches what the pictures is saying. The directors is a lot of the time the person drawing or leading the animation so they can help you through that and you have to trust their idea of visualization. With film you are already in the environment where the camera and crew are the ones kind of out of place. With animation everyone is kind of out of place so you have to depend on what’s in the directors head or on those storyboards, but it’s basically the same discipline. Voice actors are tremendous actors by the way. I don’t really like just calling them voice actors, my friends that do primarily voice acting are outstandingly talented actors. They just don’t get in front of the camera too much.
Bobby: I can’t let you get away without asking if SpongeBob 3 is going to happen.
Clancy: Yeah, they announced it, but it’s been in development hell for a bit. Not because they don’t know what to do, but more problems in the upper floors or something with the studios being bought or shuffled around. Once that gets all sorted out we are going to do it, but just have to wait who is going to be signing the checks. I don’t know why they don’t just do it, but that’s not my thing man.
Bobby: I have been a big fan of yours for years with obviously SpongeBob, but also Carnivale, Superman: Animated Series and so much more. I really appreciate you speaking with me.
Clancy: Thanks a lot, I appreciate you speaking with me too.
Be sure to check out Supercon when it hits Theaters, VOD and Digital HD April 27th and then on DVD June 5th from Sony Home Entertainment.