Exclusive Interview With Michael Maize
You’ve seen him on your TV. You’ve seen him takeover our Instagram. Now get to know Michael Maize better!
SRS: You have starred in some of our favorite TV shows and films: Mr. Robot, Gotham, Marvel’s Iron Fist, National Treasure: Book of Secrets, Saving Lincoln and so many more! What do you get most recognized for?
MM: In the past year, I have been recognized for Mr. Robot a lot. I think that people have continued to watch Season 2 as the year went on, so I continue to be recognized for it. I still get noticed for National Treasure: Book of Secrets after 10 years. It still plays on cable and PayTV, and people continue to give shout outs! I shot a one episode guest star on Blue Bloods, and I surprisingly got a huge response from it. This is especially true when I am in New York City. New Yorkers hold their television shows close to their heart, and Blue Bloods has a huge following there and throughout the nation. There is even a cable station that plays Blue Bloods all day long!
SRS: Congrats on your recent work in DC comic’s Gotham as Grady! You’ve also played Dink in Marvel’s Iron Fist. DC and Marvel are two massive rivals there. Did you notice any apparent differences between the two while working with them?
MM: My experience with Marvel/Iron Fist is that it was much more understated. If you look at their 4 Netflix shows (Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist), they are all very natural and realistic in terms of their style and concept. The characters organically grow from humans in real life scenarios. DC/Gotham felt more outside the box and fantastical. The colors, characters and concept of the show are always pushing boundaries on Gotham and grow from a more embellished basis. I really enjoyed playing with my character on Gotham and pushing the edge with my acting style. As I walked through the sets, I loved how dynamic they were and I brought this in to my role.
SRS: Were you a fan of comics growing up?
MM: I was not a fan of comic books but I was a huge fan of comic book movies. I loved all of the original Superman movies, with Superman II being my favorite. I thought its villains General Zod, Ursa and Non were great, as well as the film as a whole. But, the Batman trilogy was my favorite growing up: Batman, Batman Returns and Batman Forever. I thought Michelle Pfeiffer did a phenomenal job as Catwoman and Jim Carrey rocked as the Riddler. I guess I was drawn to villains from an early age!
SRS: What can you tell us about your new project “Happy” for SyFy (based on the hit graphic novel by Grant Morrison)?
MM: I play the role of Le Dic. In the graphic novel, you see that Nick Sax comes to the crazily wicked Le Dic to try and win some much needed money at his poker table. Sax gets help from his new friend Happy (an animated blue unicorn) in trying to win against Le Dic and his table of degenerate henchmen. The TV show sticks closely to the graphic novel in terms of plot and style; but the specifics of how close are hush hush right now. So, you will find out for yourself when you tune in this fall! My character comes back later in the season, but even I do not know how my role unfolds.
SRS: Besides television, you’re currently working on a new film. What was it like working with Sofia Vergara and Joe Manganiello for Stano?
MM: Joe was extremely cool and personable. I play one of the main antagonists of the film, and through the intense drama of our scenes, we developed a great rapport on set. He had considerable ease with his technique which allowed us to play off of each other and reach some great heights. I only had one scene with Sofia. She was super cool. I can see why they do so well together as a couple. They are calm, cool and collected while still having great dedication and focus to their craft.
SRS: Do you have a dream role you wish you could play?
MM: A lead super-villain in a comic book film. I have always loved comic book villains since I was young, playing “Superfriends” with my brothers and cousins in our backyard. I think playing bad guys is a lot more fun, since I get to play something so far from who I am and how I behave in my day to day life. I also am drawn towards sci-fi films. I was really into science in my high school years and almost got a degree in Biology. I would love to play a xenobiologist who explores intergalactic life. This is so close to our future, and it would be great to explore.
SRS: On screen you play an action star but off-screen you take action for loads of causes: The Trevor Project, Broadway Cares, Shelter Box, Austin Pets Alive and so many more. What inspired you to do so?
MM: I feel it is very important to give back to society in every way we can. I am a big supporter of LGBTQ rights. In today’s current political atmosphere; hatred and homophobia have been given a new voice. After accomplishing major goals in the recent past, the LGBTQ community has been struck down again in many ways. The flames have been billowed and the bigotry is very strong. I believe that love will conquer all, but we must fight for the love to survive by proclaiming our truths. The Trevor Project is a fantastic organization focused on suicide prevention of LGBTQ youth. And, Broadway Cares is the NY theater community’s response to the AIDS crisis, raising millions of dollars yearly.
I have a deep fondness and respect for animals and animal rights. I volunteer regularly for Boxer Rescue Los Angeles (www.boxer-rescue-la.com) and BARC Shelter in Brooklyn (http://www.barcshelter.org). I also recently became a supporter of Austin Pets Alive. A large amount of animals and pets are victims of natural disasters. The majority of the aid goes towards the human population and rebuilding the locations themselves, so I think it is important to remember the animals that are left behind and now need help and/or homes.
— Michael Maize (@MichaelMaize) September 2, 2017
SRS: We hear you have a passion for fashion! What trends do you think will be popular in 2018?
MM: I think the 70s will continue to make a comeback: Loose, printed shirts open with chain jewelry, and pants opening up again to a boot cut. Strong monochromatics are getting hot as well, with an entire outfits being all white, black or red.