From extreme comedy to intense dramatic roles, it takes a talented actor to be able to assume a variety of character types and have the audience forget about any previous roles the actor has played in the past. Having studied at the prestigious Yale School of Drama, Enrico Colantoni knows the art of capturing his audience no matter what type of role he is portraying at the time. After spending years on the hit NBC series Just Shoot Me, Enrico now stars as Keith Mars on the fan-favorite hit CW series Veronica Mars.
Q: When did you decide to become an actor?
Enrico: "When I was 20-years-old and moved to Toronto and took an elective in drama, that sort of put me in touch with the field."
Q: You attended the Yale School of Drama, how do you think Yale compares to other drama schools?
Enrico: "I think it's a good program because it's a professional theater program. Within the three years, you wind up doing forty full productions. You get a lot of hands-on experience, as opposed to a lot of other programs where you only get three or four in that whole time period."
Q: You've done quite a bit of theater, do you hope to return to that medium at some point?
Enrico: "Yes, if the opportunity presents itself, I plan on it."
Q: You spent many years on Just Shoot Me, what do you miss most about working on that show?
Enrico: "The camaraderie, the whole cast. We spent so much time together and there weren't many places to go off because there were no trailers, so we'd go in the back to the bullpen and have lunch. It was a pretty intense time for all of us, we were all going through various things. Seven years is a long time to spend with the same people."
The following questions about Veronica Mars were provided by our very own Animated TV Guide Nancy Basile, who is an avid fan of the series:
Q: How did the role of Keith Mars come to you?
Enrico: "I guess Rob Thomas was a fan and he and I read it and he said, 'I want you to do it' and I said, 'are you sure, I don't think I look like her (Kristen Bell) dad.' Then we talked about it and he said we sort of have the same jaw line and I said ok."
Q: Some viewers feel that this season, on the CW and with only 20 episodes ordered, plots have been dropped or simplified. How do you feel this season is going?
Enrico: "Rob's idea for the season is to not have one big mystery arc for the whole season. I like the idea that we have can tie things up sooner and get on with a new mystery. You get a little more bang for your buck that way."
Q: Is Kendall really dead?
Enrico: [laughs] "You know what? Everyone who dies on the show, we never see their body, so they might all come back in the last episode!"
Q: Are there former cast members you miss working with?
Enrico: "I miss Teddy (Dunn), Teddy was always fun, a good young man. I miss Kyle Secor and Harry (Hamlin). They just loved being there so much, they have such a wonderful spirit."
Q: How is it working with Laura San Giacomo again?
Enrico: "That was the biggest thrill, that had never happened before, I had never worked with someone so intensively in different circumstances and then do it again here. We were both a little cautious about the whole thing, this is a different show. All that richness that you bring with you from working with someone for so long is right. You can't pay enough for that, the history you have."
Q: Was she cast because of a suggestion from you?
Enrico: "Yes. Rob brought her name up and I said that was perfect."
Q: What can you tell us about Penny Lane?
Enrico: "Well, Penny Lane is a wonderful local organization, it's a halfway house, like foster care and they offer services for kids who are out of Juvenile Hall and have no homes. They're very nurturing, the work they do is really beautiful."
Q: If you could be on any other show on television, what would it be?
Enrico: " Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip."
Q: Anything you'd like to say to the fans?
Enrico: "Thanks for watching, no matter what. If you guys weren't watching, we wouldn't be here."