Hugh Scott is a versatile actor, known for his many television appearances, including CSI, NCIS, and The Closer. He can also be seen in movies such as Prom Night, Sunken City, and Runner, Runner, while his voice can be heard on many commercials and voice overs (his was the iconic voice behind Del-Taco for many years). He was born in Dedham, MA, and caught the acting bug during his senior year in high school. Scott moved to the west coast and studied theater at the University of Southern California. Scott is currently a resident of Los Angeles and spends his leisure time hiking, exercising, traveling, and involving himself in the creative culture of his community. Recently, TNWU had the privilege to ask Mr. Scott questions about Deadpool, acting and his voice over work.
Deadpool has been much-anticipated by excited fans who love the iconic, quirky character – do you feel it delivers as expected?
There was so much build up and excitement leading to the release of Deadpool. I think the fan reaction has been pretty unanimous in that it delivers as expected. I know Tim Miller and Ryan Reynolds, along with the writers, literally spent years getting the tone of the humor and the quirks innate to Deadpool as a character just right. In my totally biased opinion (I’m a fan as well as an actor in the movie) all of their careful attention totally paid off. The word of mouth on this movie has been incredibly strong, and it feels great to be part of something that is so well received.
Tell us about your character, Cunningham, and his impact on Deadpool?
What drew you to the role?
Cunningham is a character that was based on Worm Cunningham from the early original Deadpool comics, which made it a really exciting role to play. Deadpool and I become friends when Deadpool is in The Workshop and gaining his mutant powers. It’s a very dramatic sequence in the movie and in Deadpool’s life, but he and I manage to find some kind of humor and bond during a dark time. In the film, my character offers a glimpse into the more vulnerable side of Deadpool. Even though he is mutating and becoming a superhero, the scenes in The Workshop have a tremendous amount of humanity and vulnerability that made it both a challenge and an honor to play.
This is one of the few superhero movies with an R rating. What are some of its darker moments (no spoilers of course) that earned that R? Was there intent going into Deadpool to make a darker, more sophisticated movie than the usual Marvel fare?
Deadpool as a character is an R-Rated guy, and I’m really glad the filmmakers fought to make this movie an R-Rated story. I think that played a definite role in the movie’s wide success. Specifically, I feel like the movie does a great job of tackling an intense adult relationship between Deadpool and Vanessa because they were able to keep an R-Rating. The action sequences are totally unflinching in their level of impact and awe, which would have been impossible to achieve in a kid’s movie. T.J. Miller is so hilarious and raunchy throughout his scenes! I’m really glad they were able to tell this version of Deadpool, and when younger audiences grow up, they can enjoy it as it is meant to be enjoyed. Until then, they will have to wait!
Deadpool is very close to an anti-hero. Where do you feel his place is within the superhero universe? With Daredevil, Jessica Jones and now Deadpool, it appears audiences want something more than the stereotypical good guy. Would you agree?
One of the most interesting things about Deadpool is that he doesn’t want to be a superhero, and consistently denies being one. I would say Deadpool is constantly skating the line between hero and anti-hero, and that is what makes him so much fun to watch. The movie is part revenge tale, and revenge is not a noble motivation. It’s awesome that audiences have responded so well to such a complex and off-beat character. If I were to guess, I would say that the world is getting more complicated and confusing in ways. Maybe stereotypical good guys aren’t as easy to accept at face value these days, and characters like Deadpool and Jessica Jones reflect that change. I think it makes for more realistic and empathetic storylines and I hope the success of Deadpool will herald a new era for this kind of content.
Despite the intensity, there are some very funny moments in the film. How was doing comedy different from your roles in crime dramas? Would you be interested in doing more comedy in the future?
I love doing comedy. I’ve been lucky enough to show more of my goofy side in loads of TV commercials and I’m really glad to get a chance to do it on such a big project. If you asked me to pick between comedy and drama, I wouldn’t be able to. They are both so rewarding and the process is so much fun on both. Luckily, I don’t have to choose and hopefully, I’ll get a chance to do more long format comedy in the future.
As a storyteller, what types of work do you hope to do in the future that might be widely released in an atypical format?
I am always excited by new methods of delivery for stories because they represent new avenues of creativity for journeyman actors like myself, and most importantly, new ways for audiences to enjoy these stories. It’s an exciting time for television when it really doesn’t matter if you work on (or watch) a show on network TV or streaming. It allows the filmmakers to be able to take risks that older models may not have allowed. In the example of Deadpool, the movie may have never been made if the Proof of Concept film that Tim Miller made with Ryan Reynolds did not get leaked on the internet to such a favorable response. That’s definitely inspiring to emerging filmmakers and something I remind myself when I sit down to write my own scripts and ideas. As far as the future goes, I am focused on landing a regular or long-recurring role on series because I would love the experience of working on a character for an extended period of time.
Do you have plans to continue doing voice overs? If you were offered a voice role in a video game, which game would it be and what character?
I love doing voice-over work and I plan to continue as long as they will allow me. I love doing accents and just had a chance to play a Scottish talking dog in a live-action family comedy. My dream roles for video games would be absolutely anything from Fallout or if Grand Theft Auto did a Boston-based concept, which would be an awesome location for that franchise.
Have you done much live theater? Is that a path you would consider adding to your already impressive resume?
I first fell in love with acting by doing live theater but I have not done any as a professional. I may be a little rusty in that regard, but I would certainly welcome the challenge and the chance to get under the limelight again.
What can you tell us about your work with Hillsides?
I support Hillsides annually. I learned about them through a former agent and they are a great organization that creates positive change for younger people in my immediate community. I haven’t had a chance to volunteer in person yet as I usually do my volunteer work through Laworks.com, but it is something I am definitely interested in doing more of.
Our site is called Talk Nerdy With Us – is there anything you can share that might be considered nerdy about yourself?
I think the most nerdy thing about me is that I’ve broken up with friends because of rigorous debate on the TV Series Breaking Bad. Don’t worry, those friends and I got back together…eventually. I’m also a pretty big fan of Syfy Network’s 12 Monkeys. I have a collection of 00’s indie rock and 90’s rap records on vinyl that nobody is allowed to touch but me. But between your readers and I? I don’t think that it’s nerdy at all. I think being an enthusiastic fan of anything, whether it’s science or comics or gaming, is one of the great ways to enjoy life on this planet. Sometimes nerd hobbies can get expensive, but that is the only drawback. Getting nerdy about the stuff you love is the only way to be!
You can follow Hugh Scott on Twitter @hugh_scott1.