I recently got the chance to talk to Mark Blum about his role in Sarah Jessica Parker’s new film, ‘I Don’t Know How She Does It’. Here, Mark talks about what it was like working with the cast and crew on-set and how he got into acting in the first place…
Hey Mark. Thanks for taking the time out to talk to me. ‘I Don’t Know How She Does It’ is currently in cinemas right now…
What’s the general plotline surrounding the film?
A woman, who is juggling complicated home and work lives, encounters challenges that force her to examine her priorities.
Tell us a bit about the character you play in the movie…
I am the father in law of said woman, who is played by Sarah Jessica Parker. My son is Greg Kinnear, and my wife is Jane Curtin.
How did you get involved in the project in the first place?
The director asked me to take on the part, and also to help flesh it out. Improvising a life and a relationship with Jane, Sarah J. and Greg was a prospect I couldn’t resist.
How would you say this film is different from other comedies?
Well, most romantic comedies don’t involve married mothers.
The film stars Sarah Jessica Parker, Pierce Brosnan, Greg Kinnear, Christina Hendricks and Kelsey Grammer – with Douglas McGrath onboard as director – what was it like working with the cast and crew on-set?
It was one of the calmest, most comfortable and confident sets I’ve been on. This is, undoubtedly, due to the personalities at the top – Doug, Sarah J, and Greg, all of whom are grounded, unhysterical types. If there’s a lack of panic at the top, it bleeds down into the project.
Let’s talk a bit about you Mark. What made you want to get into acting in the first place?…
Oh, it was the thing I loved; the thing that seemed to allow me the opportunity to utilize and indulge all my interests (literature, psychology, comedy, unexplained rage and despair, attractive women, and, I’m sure, several others I no longer remember).
What advice would you give to anyone who wants to pursue a career in the industry?
Toughen up, invest your money conservatively, enjoy the journey rather than the destination, and get out of the way of yourself.
You’ve been in a number of well-known films and TV series’ – which actor/actress has been your favourite to work with so far, and which project has been your favourite to be a part of?
Well, ‘Desperately Seeking Susan’ was probably the most fun I’ve had on a movie, because everyone was young and full of ideas, and no one seemed terribly afraid of failing. Favorite actor/actress is so hard. Ellen Burstyn comes to mind. On stage, Zero Mostel, Tom Aldredge, Irene Worth. Sean Connery was a huge kick, because I grew up on him as Bond. And he kindly said some Bond lines for me, which allowed me to be secretly young and wide-eyed again.
What’s currently on your I-Pod right now?
Gabriel Kahane, Alexei Murdoch, Stevie Ray Vaughan.
What has been the most interesting piece of local / national news you’ve heard in the last month or so?
That an enormous percentage of Republicans, and most of the potential Republican candidates for President, claim not to believe in evolution, global warming, or most accepted laws of economics.
What’s coming up for you in 2011/12?
I am currently performing in a play in NYC, called ‘We Live Here’, by young actress/playwright Zoe Kazan. I have just filmed a Law and Order SVU episode. I also teach at Brooklyn College and at the Hebert Berghof Studio.
Thanks for the interview!