Interview with Gregg Henry

Gregg Henry is currently co-starring in James Gunn’s new film “Super”.  Gregg has also worked Gunn on his last film “Slither”.  Movie Mikes had a chance to chat with Gregg about his new role and his returning role on  HBO’s “Hung”, which is returning for season two this year.

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us about your role in the new film “Super”?
Gregg Henry: The new film “Super”…written and directed by the great James Gunn…it was a pleasure to work with him again. “Super” also stars Rainn Wilson, who plays a man whose wife has gone missing. He’s pretty sure she’s been kidnapped. He needs help from the police so he comes to me. I sort of listen to his plea…listen to his case…and follow up on it. I don’t want to give away too much about the movie but I’ll say that Rainn’s character tries to take justice into his own hands with sometimes comic, often violent and sometimes moving results.

MG: How was it working with James Gunn again after “Slither”?
GH: “Slither” was just so much fun. We had a gas doing that movie. It was first of all a tremendous script. James is such a special and unique talent. He knows how to blend the genre’s of comedy and horror. He can take little bits of all kinds of genre’s and make them a whole. Where often people get tripped up trying to mix things up, James is really quite a master of it. Plus we had the hilarious Nathan Fillion and Michael Rooker…we had a great cast. We had a really fun time. Anytime James calls I’ll be there. I have a great belief in him. I think he’s a huge talent.

MG: We’ve also interviewed Michael Rooker and asked him this question: Was “Slither” a difficult production?
GH: Well, the production was (slows his speech) SU-PER low budget. We were just running and gunning and flying. It was filmed in Shreveport (Louisiana) with high speed cameras. James was doing 30-35 set ups a day. And we NEVER sat down! It was constant movement. The crew as well. The DP would have to set up the shots and he was scary fast. That made it a little dicey at times. But it was a great set…very congenial and great working conditions.

MG: Tell us about working with Thomas Jane on HBO’s “Hung?”
GH: You’ll get no spoilers from me! (laughs) We have a great time. The producers of the show also did “The Riches,” which I was on for two years. So I have a relationship with them. It’s always great to work with them. The show is…again…kind of a blend of things. You hear what the premise is and you think “this is going to be cheesy.” And it ends up being a really human story…very funny but, again, kindly oddly moving at times. And I have to give the credit to the great, great writing.

MG: How was it working with Joss Whedon on “Firefly” and “Dollhouse”? How did that come about?
GH: I got an offer to work on “Firefly,” which is where I met Nathan. We became great buddy so it was great to work with him time after time. And then on “Dollhouse” I got a call to come in. And I have to admit that I still don’t understand that series. I’d read the script four times and say, “I don’t get it…I just don’t get it!” But we had a great time
working on it. And I also think that Joss, too, is a very great, bright talent.

MG: Besides acting you are also a singer/songwriter and have recorded several albums. Tell us about that?
GH: I’ve always been a piano playing singer/songwriter, but I really started taking it seriously about 12 years ago. It’s a great part of my life. I have three or four CDs that are available on CD Baby. I use my full name for my music career, which is Gregg Lee Henry. I wrote a song called “The Back of Your Hand” that Dwight Yoakum recorded. The great, great Dwight Yoakum! He had a pretty big hit with it. The video went to #1 on Country Music Television and stayed there for about eight or nine weeks. The song is on his album “Population Me.” It’s still available and I urge people to buy it as a compact disc as the record company has some kind of hassle with iTunes (laughs). The singles that Dwight released from that album are not on iTunes. They were for awhile but there was some kind of legal problem. But I continue to do it. I’ve written a musical called “Little Egypt.” It’s was accepted into the New York Musical Theatre Festival. We ran it there in 2007 as well as a wonderful production at the Matrix Theater in Los Angeles. I have another musical I’m working on…it’s something I’m always doing. I play out at a couple clubs around L.A. about every other month to try out some new songs. It’s just something
I do.

MG: What other projects do you have upcoming?
GH: This season of “Hung” is just starting up so we’re shooting that. We’re pretty deep into that. I also have a movie called “Blood Brothers” coming out. There’s also another film rolling around called “Isolation” that hasn’t come out yet. It’s directed by Stephen Kay, who did the “BTK” killer movie I did for CBS. That was a difficult movie but
he did a great job.

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