[As I start my nifty new digital recorder]
Rico: So, you just download that onto your computer?
Teresa: Yes, you just take it out and it’s got
a little USB thing down here and you just put it right
Rico: Right, right, right.
Waitress: Anymore milk for you?
Rico: Oh, nothing, thanks, yeah. And then you guys
are old friends?
Seth: Yes. [Seth is my photographer, super friend
and sometimes chauffeur.]
Rico: From Arizona.
Seth: From Arizona. It goes back to our Doctor
Rico: Oh, nice.
Seth: Yeah. So since ’85.
Rico: These are the original Doctor Whos,
Seth: Yes. Exactly. We’ve been following the
new series as well, but, you know, we’re big
fans of the old series.
Rico: Right on, because not a lot of Americans know
about the old series. We used to get it all the time
up in Canada.
Seth: Right. It’s such a small group of people.
You either love it or you hate it.
Rico: Yeah, as a kid watching it, it was a little
intense for me.
Rico: Because I just wanted to watch the hockey, you
know. And with only three channels, flipping back
and forth over three channels and Doctor Who keeps
Seth: Aw, might as well watch this, huh?
Rico: Yeah. You tolerated it, you know. Yeah remember
those days. What year were you born?
Seth: I was born in ’64.
Rico: Oh, nice. Oh, look at all that.
[He spies my long list of questions.]
Teresa: Yes, those are all the questions I have for
Rico: Oh, nice.
Seth: It looks like a menu.
Rico: Now tell me again what you do during the day?
Teresa: I work for The
Nature Conservancy here in San Francisco.
Rico: Right on. There’s a lot to conserve here.
Teresa: Yes, there is.
Rico: Wow, beautiful parks and gardens and things.
Teresa: Mmm hmm.
Rico: I’m supposed to be doing this film at
the end of June that is filming just north of here,
but I’m not sure if they said it’s twenty
minutes or two hours north of here.
Teresa: That covers a lot of ground.
Rico: Cause what’s two hours north of here?
Just like the whole Napa Valley?
Teresa: Yes. [to Seth] How far can you get in two
hours going up?
Seth: Yeah, it’s about Napa Valley, San Jose
possibly, Monterey Bay if you squeeze an extra hour
out of it.
Teresa: Yes, but that’s south.
Seth: Yes, that’s south. So Napa Valley is about
it, depending on the traffic. On the weekends when
we go it’s less than two hours.
Teresa: It’s beautiful up there and when we
get out of the city that’s where we go.
Rico: I can’t wait. They say it’s just
Seth: This whole coast is beautiful up here.
Rico: Well, yeah, anything north of Cambria is. I
like that. The rest is just L.A. and San Diego. San
Diego is nice. I like that.
Seth: I went to school down there.
Navy Academy in Carlsbad.
Rico: Oh, wow. So not only were you an army brat,
but you went into the military?
Seth: Actually, no. I went into military school, but
I never pursued a military career. Somewhere I jumped.
Rico: Isn’t the whole idea behind the military
school to sort of….
Seth: Gear you towards it? Yes.
Rico: But you didn’t? You just got the education.
Seth: Yes, that was the big thing I got out of it
was the education and the discipline side of it.
Rico: Oh, sure. So they still treated you like a military
Seth: Yes, you got up in the morning and you made
your bed. You made sure your room was perfect. You
all went to breakfast together and classes together,
Rico: Oh, wow. And that was four years? That was high
school or college?
Seth: Five years. Cause it was tenth, eleventh, twelfth
grade and then two years of college.
Rico: Oh, amazing.
Seth: People always ask me, “Did you do something
wrong?” and no, I actually wanted to go. I was
just one of those odd kids that really enjoyed it.
Rico: Was that something that you just saw in your
father and said I’ve got to do that.
Seth: Yes, I think so, because he was a military man
and that was like the path I wanted to go.
Teresa: But you’re all over that now.
Seth: Yeah, exactly. Now I’m on my rebellious
side with the long hair, hippie.
Rico: Aww, living in San Francisco.
Rico: That’s awesome. What do you got for me,
Teresa: I thought we’d start with some Monk
Rico: Oh. Monk. Okay.
Teresa: Okay, how did you get the role? Did Tony Shalhoub
Rico: You know what? It was interesting because….
Remember the John Turturro character? His brother,
his sort of reclusive brother?
Rico: Right, I never saw the episode, but I met them
all. I mean I knew Tony from Galaxy Quest, but I met
them on that role. They were considering me for that
Seth: Oh, wow.
Rico: So when I went in and sort of approached it
from a realistic kind of way, it was like a really
wonderful audition with me and Tony. So I think that
sort of sparked something in them, because then the
next season they just said, “Do you want to
do this?” I hadn’t really watched the
show, so I didn’t realize how poignant that
character was, because apparently it was a glimpse
into Monk’s past before the trauma.
Teresa: Right. We hadn’t really gotten much
of that before in his relationships.
Rico: So that was pretty cool, but that’s how
it happened, sort of like a two step process.
Teresa: So have you watched the show much since?
Rico: Uh, uh.
Rico: No, I don’t watch much TV.
Teresa: No time?
Rico: It’s a choice I make, because between
the work and my kids and hockey season….
Seth: Something’s got to give?
Rico: Uh, huh. You know, plus all the good shows are
on at like nine, ten o’clock. And I like to
be in bed by then. And you know if I try to watch
a show that’s intense like Sopranos
are something like that I tend to carry it with me
so I don’t sleep and if I don’t sleep
I’m an asshole. You know?
Teresa: Did you get enough sleep last night?
Rico: I did, but you know I was writing until midnight
and I didn’t realize it was so late, but I did
get eight hours.
Teresa: That’s good.
Rico: Yeah, I won’t be an asshole anymore. Even
if I feel like an asshole, I won’t be.
Seth: How many kids do you have?
Rico: Two. Yeah he’s…. the boy [Quintin]
is eight and the girl [Madelyn] is five.
Teresa: Is the girl easier to raise?
Rico: You know what, psychologically easier, but not
in the moment easier. Because I sort of I look at
him and I realize that he is more of an extension
of myself and I feel the weight and the responsibility
of like having to be a good example for him. And not
that I don’t with her, but I know she has her
mother to teach her all the things that I know nothing
about like earrings and make-up and nails and fashion
and shopping. Aaaaah, you know what I mean? So my
time with her is just sort of spent just sort of hugging
Seth: Being Daddy.
Rico: Yeah, as opposed to my son. I have to be Father.
Rico: Saying, “You know what, dude, this is
how we do things. This is, you know, this is how we
deal with things.” With her it’s like,
oh mom will worry about that. But she is much more
temperamental and just, well, she’s a girl.
Teresa: Would you say she’s more like you?
Rico: Yeah, I think so. I think when push comes to
shove she is much more articulate and dramatic and
expressive than he is. So maybe, you know, who knows?
Teresa: Okay… getting back to Monk, do you have
any interesting stories about what went on on the
Teresa: Was it all pretty smooth?
Rico: You know what? The only problem that I remember
was those damn dogs. You remember they had dogs for
the security. They were the nicest Dobermans. So we
spent more time trying to film it in a way that could
maximize their aggressiveness. And me going like aarrrgh!
and the dog is like err err err aarh. You know, and
[the director]’s just like cut. And you know
they had this bark for like two seconds and all the
sudden he’s like…. [makes licking noises]
They’re lickin’ you.
Seth: I think I saw a couple of scenes where you don’t
quite catch the aggressive side of the dog.
Rico: No, it’s sort of like [doing pretty impressive
Scooby Doo imitation] Errrr? Errrr?
Teresa: And when the dog’s running through the
store and he slips and you just feel sorry for the
Rico: Right, poor dog. What a dummy. And I think the
cut they actually used was me doing this. Uhhhh uhh
huhh uhh. The dog’s like okay.
Rico: And the fact that I got to hang out with Tony
again. And just sort of have this relationship with
him in a character way, plus the past that I’ve
had with him.
Seth: That’s something I really saw translate
across the screen, that you two knew each other.
Rico: Yeah. Nice.
Seth: That there was a betrayal in the friendship
and it really came across really well.
Rico: The coolest thing about Tony is that he’s
an old world guy and I think we share that. We have
that immigrant sort of mentality in a way.
Teresa: Well, that’s right. I guess both your
fathers are from the old country.
Rico: Right, so we have that in common.
Teresa: You also both went to Yale.
Rico: Yeah, and I knew of him before. One of the greatest
theatrical experiences I ever had was watching Rameau’s
Nephew at CSC in New York and I was like 23 or
24. And Shalhoub was doing it. And he was like the
greatest actor and it was the greatest performance
I’d ever seen up until that point. And I’m
reading his bio and I go, “Oh shit, Yale School
of Drama. I wanna go there.” So it was a combination
of watching his performance and seeing David
Alan Grier [also a Yale Graduate] in an audition
room. The two of them together sort of made me go,
“These are the greatest actors I’ve ever
seen. I want to go to Yale.” So I owe them a
lot, especially Tony, because if you’d ever
seen Rameau’s Nephew, he was like he was so
Teresa: What was it about his performance that you
think made it really stand out?
Rico: Well if you know the play, it’s a two
hander and it’s about I guess Rameau, some painter
or something during the French past, I don’t
know the history
of Rameau at all, but his nephew was a scoundrel
and a cheat and a vagabond and a drunk and a whore
and when an actor gets to play all those things….
he was having the best time. And his voice and his
vocal range were just so beautiful because it was
like a whole… I remember this coughing fit that
he had that lasted ten minutes and just how it built
and what he did and it would stop and it would go
back again. His physicality was just divine.
Teresa: You and he really
seemed to have a great rapport in your scenes.
Rico: I think so, yeah.
Teresa: Do you attribute that to having the past together?
Rico: Well, yeah. That’s valuable homework.
You know somebody and you already respect them and
admire them for what they do and what was the characters
Teresa: Joe Christie.
Rico: Yes, you know the admiration he had for Monk
and his ability you know he was like a true gumshoe.
He was like a true investigator.
Teresa: Have they asked you to reprise the role?
Rico: No. I wonder why? Maybe they know I’m
Teresa: You do have a series of your own.
Rico: But it’s sort of remarkable how so many
people have seen that and they remember that episode.
There are a lot of fans out there, aren’t there?
Teresa: There are.
Teresa: I think I told you that’s one of the
most popular guest characters they’ve ever had.
Rico: Incredible. You know I don’t get out much.
There’s a lot of traveling a lot of time in
the car, going to San Diego and stuff, so I’m
always amazed when people say, “Hey, I saw you
on blah blah blah.” I go, “Oh yeah that’s
right, that’s what I do. Good to see you.”
I think it’s a good place to come from.
Teresa: Is that pretty much the only feedback you
get for television roles. I mean for a play, of course,
you have the audience right there.
Rico: Yeah, I think that’s the best that could
happen, because when people say, “I appreciate
what you do.” That’s the greatest. So
let’s get back to Monk. [He leans over to look
at my questions.]
Teresa: I think we’ve covered that.
Rico: [Reading] Would you consider returning…?
Yes, I would consider it. Oh yeah, that would be great.
Teresa: Okay. Where were your scenes films? We’re
curious because we like to take pictures of where
scenes are filmed.
Rico: They have there own lot, right. What was that?
I don’t know, but I know we ended up on the
Universal lot, cause that whole diner thing with the
old partner was in a diner. That’s one of those
old streamliner things. And then we were in Simi Valley,
which I’ve never been to Simi Valley the whole….
It’s funny all those years in L.A. and I’ve
never been to Simi Valley.
Teresa: Simi Valley: that’s where the shopping
center was. That didn’t seem very San Francisco
Rico: Yeah, I know. I didn’t think so.
Seth: It’s funny to see a shopping center in
Rico: Right. Because that’s insane, right?
Seth: You may get six cars in a parking lot here and
that’s about it.
Rico: There’s got to be a…. I mean didn’t
it take place in some suburban part of it?
Seth: Yes, probably. That’s the way I think
Rico: Yeah, how does that feel when you know it’s
Teresa: Oh, that’s okay with me.
Seth: You kind of let your imagination go with it.
You know I tend to kind of try and fill in the gaps.
Rico: That’s what I love about the sitcom. They
just have the stock footage in the beginning and then
they’re in some stage somewhere.
Teresa: Everybody knows it’s a stage and that’s
something they agree to.
Rico: Yeah, but we had that stock footage. When I
did Hope and Gloria we had that stock footage of Pittsburgh.
It’s like, Pittsburgh? Awesome.
Teresa: Weren’t you glad you didn’t have
to film there?
Rico: Well, you know when we first did that pilot
it was set in Philadelphia, so you know I sort of
had an idea of a Philadelphia regionalism and then
they day we shot we go, we’re in Pittsburgh
now. I can’t just drop a regionalism. So I resorted
Teresa: That worked.
Teresa: Okay, what was the experience like working
on Galaxy Quest?
Rico: What was that experience like? Perfect. From
beginning to end. Because It’s not often where
actors are allowed to do their work. Sometimes directors
have such a strong vision of what they want.
Teresa: Is that more true in films?
Rico: Yeah, I think so, because I think they’re
scared. They really just want to hold on to that vision.
They’re afraid to sort of let go and let all
the elements come together. And I attribute the whole
experience to [Monk Pilot Director] Dean Parisot who
was the director who had this very laid back attitude.
He was brought on it late. I think it was… what’s
his name? [Barry Sonnenfeld] He had just done Wild
Seth: Uh Kevin Kline?
Teresa: No, the director on that.
Seth: Oh, the director. No, shoot. And I’m such
a fan of the old television series.
Rico: Harold Ramis, maybe? Somebody like that was
supposed to direct it. He wanted Klein. The studio
wanted Tim Allen. He said “No, I’m tired.
I don’t want to do it anymore.” So right
in the middle of it they brought Dean in. He sort
of started behind the eight ball. Well, maybe that’s
how he works all the time. He’s just sort of
like, “Whatever you guys want to bring,”
which allowed me to just be goofy and bring that guy
in. He said, “Great!” Actors usually don’t
have that luxury.
Seth: The nice thing about Galaxy Quest is the parody
was spot on.
Rico: The writing was great, you know what I mean?
It was such a good story. So everybody was having
fun. There was not one ounce of drama going on. It
Teresa: There was nobody who thought they were bigger
than everybody else? It had a very big name cast.
Rico: Nooooo. And Tim couldn’t do it. You know,
I’m sure he was capable of being the Prima Donna,
but Sigourney [Weaver] was there you know to keep
him in check and Alan [Rickman] was there to just
remind everybody that there was a real fuckin’
actor on stage. So everybody was like hmmm. Even Tim
had a wonderful sense of humor about it. He goes,
“Huh, I guess this isn’t a Tim Allen movie
is it?” I go, “I don’t think it
is, Tim.” And he realized that it wasn’t
his movie. He had to interview. He had to meet the
people and then in the middle of the interview he
realized, “Oh, this isn’t mine, is it?”
He realized it and that just brought him right down.
He was actually a joy. He had such humility about
it and I think to date it’s still his favorite
thing that he’s done.
Teresa: I think it’s the best thing he’s
Seth: It’s funny because the thing about the
character, you know, he’s the Captain he’s
supposed to fix everything. He’s perfect.
Rico: Yeah, right.
Seth: That’s what he brought across in the character.
“It’s my show!”
Rico: Right, right, but not really though. Yeah, it
was all just great. And Chill was… I just remember
him as Chill.
Teresa: That’s Daryl
“Chill” Mitchell. Yeah, he had an
Rico: Yeah he’s like…
Teresa: He’s paralyzed from the waist down.
Seth: When did this happen?
Rico: Years ago. 7 or 8 years ago.
Teresa: This was just a year after Galaxy Quest.
Rico: Yeah, not much longer, yeah.
Teresa: And he continues to act.
Rico: He sure does. And why shouldn’t he? Yeah.
So what else you got?
Teresa: All right, so, Veronica Mars, which is well
it’s kind of not my second favorite series.
It shares the top spot with Monk.
Rico: Oh, right.
Teresa: As the star of the series, well co-star, do
you get any more control? Do you get input into the
Rico: Um, not really. Rob [Thomas] is pretty clear-minded.
He knows what he wants. You know he’s already
broken half the series, half the season for next season,
you know. What he is open to is problems that might
come up. Just a difficulty understanding the plot
line or a history point or…. but he won’t
tell you who the killer is. He won’t tell you
how much you know. He just sort of…. it’s
all on a need to know basis.
Teresa: So when did you find out who the killer was
Rico: Oh, when I watched it.
Teresa: You didn’t know until then?
Rico: I read that last episode, got to the part where
I died in a plane crash and I went I’m not going
to read anymore, but then they said keep reading.
Teresa [to Seth] I don’t want to spoil it for
you, but he doesn’t die.
Seth: Oh, right.
Teresa: But I won’t tell you who the killer
is in case I can get you to watch it.
Rico: I was so surprised by it. It was very cool.
I can’t talk about it if you’re going
to see it.
Seth: Oh no, go ahead, guys. It doesn’t mean….
Sometimes the information doesn’t always reach
the end point when I start watching it anyways.
Rico: Right. You’re on auto-pilot too.
Teresa: No, for some reason with Monk, I get spoilers
all the time and find out what’s going to happen
before it happens.
Rico: Oh, you do? Oh, nice.
Teresa: With Veronica Mars I try to avoid it entirely,
because it really would kind of spoil the show for
Seth: It’s like Twin Peaks?
Rico: Yeah, the whole season is around a big mystery.
Rico: But what they’re going to do next year
is have two or three big mysteries throughout the
year. So they’ll be like a six or seven story
plot line, a four story a four episode plot, instead
of this…. in the past it’s been one big
Teresa: With the separate mysteries for each episode,
Teresa: Why do you think they decided to go that direction?
Rico: Just to spice it up. Make it a little more interesting.
I think it’s hard to write 22 episodes having
to keep including bits of information.
Teresa: And not just the 22 episodes, but he brought
in the first season mysteries again.
Rico: All that stuff too.
Teresa: That was brilliant.
Rico: And that’s where you sort of look at Rob
and say, “You know what you know better than
me.” Because a lot of those things, they happen
in the moment. You know, “Harry Hamlin we need
you back for an episode.” Well, Harry says he
doesn’t want to come back for anything less
than four episodes. “Okay, well then we’re
going to have to deal with that. We’re going
to have to find another story line, it wasn’t
what we were intending, but what a great idea.”
You know so you’re working, you’re open
to everybody and everybody’s collaborative input.
That’s what makes him great.
Teresa: [Harry Hamlin’s] character’s resolution
was great for the audience, too.
Rico: Wasn’t it so satisfying?
Rico: He was so smarmy. What a brilliant man though.
I just love listening to him talk: a smart, smart
man. Yeah, but when he died I didn’t lose any
sleep. You can even tell in Keith’s reaction
when he asked Veronica so how’s Logan taking
the, you know, whatever and he’s sort of like,
thank god, another one bites the dust.
Teresa: I think Logan was as relieved as everybody
Rico: Yeah, but Logan, oh boy, talk about the weight
of the world.
Teresa: Do you want you’re TV daughter dating
Rico: You know what, he’s loyal and true.
Teresa: Okay. So how’s
it feel to be surrounded by all the younger actors?
Rico: It’s really weird.
Teresa: Not use to that are you?
Rico: No, not at all. Because I have admiration for
them, you know, their talent. So when they sort of
look up to you and say, “What do you think of
this?” I go, “Uh, I don’t know.
I’m a kid too. I don’t know.” And
then I have to rewind and go, oh yeah, I’m papa.
I’m a young papa, but I’m still papa compared
to them. I’m like what George Segal was to me.
Teresa: See, that’s what I had down here. Do
you feel like George
Rico: In a lot of ways, but George has got the greatest
stories in the world. George’s stories include,
you know, everybody. So I’m like “George
what was it like hanging out with you know Larry Olivier?”
[He does a George Segal impression, something not
too many people have in their repertoire.] “It
was all right. It was quiet.” Wow! Good old
Teresa: He’s kind of youthful
himself for his age, isn’t he?
Rico: Yes. And we’re born under the same astrological
sign, so I hope and pray that I am as youthful and
as happy as he is at his age.
Teresa: Do you think that at that age you’ll
still be doing television? Do you think there will
Rico: Yeah, no absolutely. It will be on little things
like that, but TV’s great. TV is fun and it
satisfies my blue collar work ethic. I get to go to
work everyday. You know, movies would be great, but
then there would be way to much time off in between.
Teresa: And you’d get nervous.
Rico: I’d get nervous. Even if the money’s
in the bank it’s just…. I don’t
know how anybody can just do one picture. Yeah, you
make like 90 million dollars in that one picture,
you don’t need to work, but my mind would rot.
I need to go and dig my ditches. I need to go bang
a nail every day. I need that and TV gives it to you.
And I’ve been really fortunate because it’s
been one show after another show after another show.
Even Hope and Gloria it was like 35 episodes it was
like a year and a half of steady work. And now we’re
going for three years on this thing.
Teresa: Are you surprised?
Rico: No. No, because we were we are truly the right
show at the right time for the UPN and the CW. If
we were on CBS or NBC we wouldn’t have lasted
a season. We just wouldn’t have.
Teresa: You think you’re sort of a prestige
project for them.
Rico: Yeaahhh. Oh yeah. That’s why that’s
why we have that clout, the press and the loyal, loyal
fan base, even if it’s a tight 4 Million.
[Try a loose 3 million.]
Teresa: But they’re there.
Rico: They are they’re so there.
Teresa: And organized.
Rico: And organized and that whole banner thing. That’s
enough to make Dawn Ostroff go, I love this show as
much as you guys do, she’s thinking, so yeah
that’s all I need. You know, ten million people
aren’t watching us, but you’ve got to
weigh into account that it’s not on a big time
network. Now the CW is going to cover like 97% of
the market that UPN didn’t so….
Teresa: How much do you think UPN was, maybe 70?
Rico: Maybe 70% yeah.
Teresa: So that doesn’t give you a chance really
to climb up in the ratings?
Rico: No, no, it doesn’t. Even in San Diego
you couldn’t get UPN unless you had a certain
cable subscription. So, that’s why I never watched
it, because I couldn’t get it in my hotel room
where I was staying. It’s like, “Look
they don’t have UPN. What’s that about?”
Seth: They did that with the SCI FI Channel for a
long time we couldn’t get that when they first
Rico: Yeah, couldn’t get it.
Teresa: Yes, but UPN’s supposed to be a network.
Seth: Yeah exactly.
Teresa: Well, not anymore. So are they going to continue
to film down in San Diego?
Rico: Oh, yeah. That’s the only chink in the
armor, I think. If they could film in L.A. it would
just be so wonderful. Everybody would be so happy.
Teresa: Well, now would be the perfect time to move
up, because Veronica’s going to college now.
You could change all the sets.
Rico: I understand, but it’s just, it’s
still not a runaway hit.
Teresa: And it’s cheaper to do it in San Diego?
Rico: So much cheaper. They save I don’t know
how many hundreds of thousands of dollars every episode
just by filming it in San Diego. Like half a million
dollars an episode they save.
Teresa: Wow. What do you think the CW will expect
from Veronica Mars next year?
Rico: You know what? I think they’ll expect
everything they’ve been expecting. Hold on to
Gilmore Girls, because that’s really their flagship
show, and if we do as well as them maybe even build
on them, you know, especially in that key demo which
they love so much that 18 to 34.
Teresa: They do get that demo though?
Rico: They sure do. Yeah.
Seth: [taking pictures] Can I get the thumbs up again?
Teresa: It’s a slow camera.
Seth: It is. This thing is like the old 1800s where
you’ve got to do the hold, freeze 30 seconds,
don’t move, you know.
Rico: [imitating sound of old-fashioned flash blub]
Schooom! Big plates.
Teresa: You mentioned before that you were directing
a play. Is directing something you enjoy doing.
Rico: It is now, but not on television.
Rico: Those guys are whips. They’re right brain
oriented. You know what I mean? They’re just
like [machine gun sound] efficient and organized and
I’m like “What do you think of this?”
and “How about that?” “Yeah, that’s
good. We could do that.” And all the sudden
there’d be a producer over my shoulder [tapping
his watch] “You’re four set ups behind.”
You know, it’s like I would just…. I would
lose it. But theater or a film when there’s
time to nurture and watch things organically evolve,
it’s great. It’s great.
Teresa: So is this the first play you’ve directed?
Rico: Yeah, my first play outside of an acting class.
Teresa: What’s it called?
Rico: Well, the theater company is the Echo
Theater Company and every year they do a series
of one acts and we commission playwrights that we’re
quite fond of to write new one act plays. This year
the theme was an outdoor park or a back yard. So we
got eight playwrights who wrote variations on that
theme. Mine was a seven minute piece called Hartshorne,
which is about two extremely conservative teenagers
who are looking to break out of their restrictions
and they become Satanists. So they decapitate their
dog. And it starts right at the end of the decapitation
where they’re going: “What did we just
do?” “What happened?” “This
is for Satan.” “Oh right, okay.”
Because, you know, it’s very funny and very
dark and it’s exactly what I like.
Teresa: Funny and dark?
Rico: Dark and funny. Dark and funny. Dark and funny.
Teresa: Veronica Mars has a little of that too.
Rico: It really does, right? Especially that pilot,
I really liked that pilot. In the original pilot it
was so much darker and seedier. I mean the opening
shot in the original pilot, before we changed it,
was her taking pictures of a john in a motel room.
And then the episode they showed she was like in school
in a classroom, but that opening shot in the beginning
it was like, ooh my God, Then where they live is just
so clearly on the other side of the tracks, where
the pool was just dirty and it was just like a small
apartment and that’s where they lived. Les Moonves
says, “We can’t have that. We’ve
gotta feel like she’s taken care of. Like her
father can take care of her.” Suddenly we went
up the social ladder a little bit.
Teresa: There are still lines in the earlier scripts
that give the impression that they’re living
in a little more poverty than it appears they are.
Rico: Yeah, yeah. Because the exteriors of that apartment
building is in Pacific Beach and it’s beautiful
and very expensive. It’s right on the water.
Teresa: There aren’t a lot of really cheap apartments
in that area.
Rico: No, there aren’t.
Teresa: Do you think having been the TV father of
a TV teenager that you’re going to be better
at being a father to your own daughter when she gets
to be that age?
Rico: Yes, because I feel that who I am I sort of
lend to Keith. I don’t think he was necessarily
written that way, but I love Kristin and I respect
her and I love my kids and I want to respect them.
So it does give me an opportunity to sort of see how
it feels. You look at a daughter and know that she’s
like doing things you don’t really want to know
and you give her enough rope to hang herself and you
know that you’re going to be there when she
needs you. That’s the only thing I can hope
for as a dad that when they are in trouble that they’ll
come to me. Not to stop them from getting into trouble,
I just don’t want them to hide it. I want them
to be able to come to me when they fuck up.
Seth: Not to fear to come to you.
Rico: Not to fear to come to me, right. That would
be the greatest achievement I could hope for as a
Teresa: I think some of the
best scenes in Veronica Mars are the ones when he
has those discussions with her.
Rico: Right, I love those scenes. When I get to work
with her it’s usually in a chunk it’s
like a whole day, because we do all the interiors
at the Mars apartment and the Mars investigation stuff
all in one day. It’s great, it’s great.
It’s like home. And then there are those odd
days when we’re on location and I’m working
with somebody that I’ve never met and it’s
Teresa: It’s not as easy cold like that.
Rico: Not as easy and it’s cold and you gotta
like you know jump out of window and stuff.
Teresa: They made you do that yourself? Didn’t
they have a stunt guy for that?
Rico: Oh, for sure. It was like, “Cut!”
“Oh, thank God. Doo Doo Doo,” coat over
my shoulders. “All right, action!” [Imitates
breaking glass.] “Great.” [Claps.] “Good
job, Rico. I love it when they pat me on the back.”
Teresa: After the stunt guy’s done the work.
Rico: “Thanks, thanks. Good job, Rico.”
“Shut up.” Rod, the guy who plays Liam
Fitzpatrick…. I actually saw the one episode
where he was about to beat the shit out of Veronica.
Remember that one?
Rico: And I thought, who is that guy? He’s so
intense and so mean. Oh fuck. And then when I realized
I had to fight him I go, “Are you kidding me?
Are you kidding me?” And I’m in the dressing
room and I see him and I go, “Uh oh.”
And he looks at me and he goes, “Do you remember
me?” I go, “I don’t know.”
“I’m Robbie from New York” “Robbie?
That skinny little fuck back in New York.” He
goes, “Yeah, I bulked up a little bit.”
But it turns out I’ve known him way back in
New York. We used to hang out all the time in New
York and what a joy it is to have that connection
with somebody that you’re supposed to hate.
I’m not one of those actors who needs to hate
somebody, you know, to hate them. I need to really
feel safe with them. I really need to trust them and
then we can we can get up and say, “Hey thanks,
bro. Thanks for holding me up. Thanks for, you know,
making eye contact with me. Thanks for keeping it
safe.” Thank God, cause he…. That’s
intense when you’ve got to fight somebody.
Teresa: I’m sure it made it easier for him to
do that, too.
Rico: Yeah, but he could do that anyway. He’s
that kind of actor. He’s all [panting]: “Arrr
I hate you.” And I’m laughing. “Action!
Cut!” It’s just so funny, because as a
kid I would embrace that whole method thing, you know,
bang my head up against the wall. And thank God for
Yale it was like, “You mean I don’t have
to that anymore, Earl?” [He imitates Earle]
“No, no. Just act.” My teacher at the
time Earle Gister had just lost his voice box to cancer
so when I met him he talked like [imitates voice box]
and for some reason I thought that would make him
deaf. So I kept talking louder, “Hey, Earle!”
“Not Deaf.” It took me awhile to adjust.
You ever talk to somebody with a voice box?
Seth: I used to work at Radio Shack and we had a customer
like that asking for parts and that’s so grueling.
Rico: That was tough, right? You really have to hear
it a lot to know that they’re being articulate.
Rico: But that initial shock of what, what did he
say? Alright, keep going.
Teresa: All right do have any other projects?
Rico: Well, this one movie Joaquin, Joaquin Sedillo
the Director of Photography on Veronica Mars, he and
his partner just wrote this movie. And he’s
going to film it and his partners going to direct
it and this is a movie I’m going to do this
summer with Steven Weber [http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001836/]
and another person, I don’t know his name. That’s
coming up in June. And then I go back to work in July
and I just finished directing a play. And I’ve
been writing a lot.
Teresa: What are you writing?
Rico: I’m writing something that started off
as a novel, ended up being a play and is now a screenplay,
because my intention was to write a screenplay, but
I’d never written a screenplay before, so I
just sort of wrote, because I didn’t…
you remember The
Artist’s Way. You know that book? It’s
a wonderful book.
Seth: Julia Cameron?
Rico: Yeah, so you know, I do my morning pages. And
I go, this is so much fun. That’s what I need
I’m just going to write what I want to write,
have a theme, and just get on my computer and write
190 pages and then just look back and see what the
fuck I wrote. And I go, wow, this is what I wrote.
It was all on a theme of Love, but of course it was
Teresa: And funny?
Rico: And funny and really, really quirky. But it
was a novel. It was dialogue. It was 170 pages of
dialogue and description, but it was a novel. Everybody
who read it said, “Oh, this is like impossible
to film.” And I go, “What do mean. I can
see it in my head. Tight shot here, you know, you
zoom in there. What’s the problem?” They’re
like, “Dude somebody’s got to read it
and understand what the fuck you’re talking
about.” I go, “Oh, all right.” So
I went back and then it was like a play because it
was just like all these ideas and things and it’s
like uhh uhhh [mimes offering to reader and does Scooby
imitation.] And it’s like, “No, dude,
simplify. One story not twelve different stories coming
together.” “But Dude, how do I do that.
That’s such a great story.” He goes, “That’s
another story.” I go, “Oh all right.”
So finally I went back to Vancouver this weekend with
all these notes from all these people who have written
screenplays and I go, “Well this is what we’ve
gotta do.” So I think I’ve finally got
something about, of course, it’s about an Italian
man in Toronto: a young Italian boy trying to you
know break loose, escape from familiar….
Teresa: Just a little autobiographical?
Rico: You know what it’s so autobiographical
that I had to mess with it. I had to make shit up,
because I had to go, I can’t fuckin just right
about…. Because I just left. I got my letter
of acceptance into the Acting Academy and I just went,
“See you later.” It wasn’t so hard
for me. So I had to make it difficult for this guy
and it’s really just fucked up, like keeps him
there. It’s like whoa, but I won’t bother
you with that, but I am. And I’m learning how….
Teresa: But it will be a film, right?
Rico: It will be a film and I’m learning that
because I’m sort of having a mid-life crisis….
Teresa: But you’re not there yet, are you?
Rico: I am there. Oh, I’m so there. Because
what happened was I spent all my life thinking I want
to be an actor. I want to be an actor. I’m going
to go to school to be an actor. I’m going to
study to be an actor. I’m going to be the best
actor I can be. And I never expected that it would
just…. I mean in hindsight you realize, oh shit,
it kind of happened quickly. Because my twenties were
in New York and I just wanted to learn. I went to
school. I wanted to study and the minute I was 30
work started happening and I go, “Oh, that’s
it. I’ve got the brass ring. Now what do I do?”
So all these TV Shows come and I go, “TVs pretty
good, but it’s not it’s not what I really
really want to do now.” And I was bored and
miserable and I hated Just
Shoot Me. Not the people, but I was just so miserable
by the end, because it was just 38 hours of just sort
of waiting around. You got your one scene. You go,
okay and then you gotta go. So in the middle of all
the years of Just Shoot Me, I would make myself do
like plays: MacBeth and Uncle Vanya. I needed to do
something that was, you know, larger than myself and
with Veronica Mars there’s absolutely no time
to do a play so I go, “I gotta do something”
So I just started and I go, “Oooh, what a wonderful
life project to just watch this thing come to fruition.”
Teresa: Even when you’re working on Veronica
Mars you have a lot of downtime, right?
Rico: So much downtime, but not enough….
Teresa: You have to be there.
Rico: You have to be there, a lot of waiting, days
off in between. I don’t work everyday like Kristen
does. So there are chunks, days and sometimes a whole
week where I’ve got nothing to do and I can’t
do anything else. I needed to find something fast.
And reading just kept putting me to sleep. So this
is the beginning of a new phase in my life, where
I want to create something that comes from me and
just watch it become something else.
Seth: There’s a lot of opportunity right there.
Rico: I guess. I’ve never done it before. I
feel like I’m in school all over again. Which
is so exciting.
Seth: Like a seed watching it grow.
Rico: Yeah. It’s like, how do you do this? And
how do you do that? How do you raise money? And how
do you get a distributor? How do you do all that?
I don’t know. I mean I’m not particularly
interested in being a producer or screenwriter or
director, but I know I have something I want to share.
And I never ever wanted to do that before. I always
wanted to be an actor for hire you know. Hire me.
I go to work. It’s really weird to say I need
to go to school all over again.
Teresa: I know how that is. I’m taking a television
writing class right now.
Rico: Are you? Tell me about it.
Teresa: It’s an online computer course.
Rico: Oh nice. Have you written anything? Yes.
Teresa: Half scripts. But I see from this class that
there’s a whole process you have to go through,
you know it’s not just write the script and
you’re done you have to go through a lot of
steps before you get to writing the episode.
Seth: Yes, the course, because I’ve just been
kind of following remotely, is they say write a one
paragraph description of the story, you know, a TV
guide synopsis and then write a page, an outline,
then write a script.
Rico: I know. I know. You know what? I took a class
like that and I go, “I can’t do it like
that I have to start backwards.”
Teresa: Naturally, I want to write the whole script
first and I now I have to go backward and pare it
Rico: Right. But that’s the thing about TV.
There’s no time for that. They are so efficient
and so organized those writer’s and it’s
just, well, boring to me. I like to just vomit it
out and then mold it and shape it.
Seth: I occasionally do training classes in my work….
Rico: Training? What do you train?
Rico: Oh, nice.
Seth: Troubleshooting and when I first started doing
the training class I scripted out everything I was
going to say for the next few hours and then eventually
I learned to tailor it down to you know the concepts
Rico: Right. Concepts and ideas.
Seth: But yes, initially I just wanted to write everything
Rico. Yeah, yeah. [To Teresa] Well, good luck with
Teresa: Oh, thank you.
Rico: There’s a staff writer on Veronica Mars
who was a teacher from Seattle a librarian up in Seattle.
Teresa: Oh, yes, I read about her.
Rico: Right, yeah. She just sent Rob a script and
he said come on down I’ll hire you. And she’s
like, wow. [Looking at the questions again.] Where
are we here?
Teresa: Is there anything you want to do that you
haven’t done yet?
Rico: Yes. What I just said.
Teresa: The writing.
Rico: The writing. And that’s the first step
in the process. Because it’s my voice. I would
like to experience life where it’s my vision
and not making somebody else’s vision happen.
I’m fine with doing that, but once in a while
I’d like to say “you know what guys, follow
me. I’m good at following you, I’m good
at like taking your words and making them into what
you want. I’ve got something now too. Can you
help me make it.” And that’s just a weird
adjustment to make, but that’s what I want to
Teresa: Anything personal: I mean I know that is personal
Rico: This screenplay and I know there are other stories…
I mean I know I want to write about my sister who
passed away when she was 10. I was six and she was
ten when she passed away and she was my greatest childhood
memory, but I sort of want to flesh that out for myself.
There are questions that I still have that I want
to have answers to. So if I have to make the answers
up in a story form, then I will. There’s something
in that that I need to explore. I don’t know
if it will make a great story but I need to do that.
Teresa: Who are your favorite actors?
Rico: Oh, the obvious. Mr. DeNiro, Mr. Pacino, Mr.
Giamatti who I went to school with is still one
of my favorite actors.
Seth: Oh, okay.
Rico: He was then and he is now, you know what I mean?
Paul was the kind of actor that would make you want
to quit. You know what I mean? Because he was just
so good at it. It was like I can’t do that.
Teresa: You don’t think you have that effect
on other actors.
Rico: I’m sure I do. In fact we belonged to
the mutual admiration society while we were at school.
It was such a thrill to watch him. Good actors, man.
Teresa: How about an actress? Anybody you’ve
wanted to work with?
Rico: Well. Sigourney was just a great example of
someone after so much time being in the business still
putting so much of her into it. I mean, I thought
she was like a ditzy blonde. I really thought she
was a ditzy blonde the whole time, because she was
just like that. And then Alan [Rickman] just did a
with her in the summer because she was an autistic
Teresa: She also went to Yale, right?
Rico: Yes she did and hated it.
Teresa: Did she?
Rico: She hated it. Because I think she was a classmate
Teresa: Oooh. Somebody else who makes you want to
Rico: Exactly, but I think that Sigourney was the
black sheep of that class and was treated as such.
You know what I mean?
Teresa: She came from a show business family right?
There may have been a little resentment there.
Rico: Maybe, I don’t know we really didn’t
get into it, but I just know. “Oh, yeah,”
she goes. “I hated that, they hated me and I
Teresa: It looks like she learned a lot anyways.
Rico: Yeah. Well, you know Whoopi’s my favorite.
Teresa: You did that pilot episode of her show.
Rico: Yeah, she’s a real performer, you know.
She’s a performer. I wouldn’t even classify
her as an actress or a comedienne. She’s a performer,
she’s everything. She’s like gimme that
hat and she’ll put on a play.
Teresa: Okay, what was your best professional experience?
Rico: My best professional experience was my first
professional experience. My first real professional
experience was NYPD Blue, because that was the first
time I felt that I was being respected for what I
did. And then they allowed me to do what I do.
Teresa: That was an incredible performance.
Rico: Oh, thank you, thank you.
Seth: I’ve actually never seen NYPD Blue.
Teresa: You haven’t? I hadn’t either until
I knew you were in it and I started watching the repeats.
Rico: When a guy like Dennis Franz comes up and says,
“You know what” This isn’t working
lets call Milch down and let’s talk about this.”
“Milch is coming down?” “Yeah.”
And Milch is like, “Yeah what did you want to
say? Okay, that’s good. Yeah, let’s do
Teresa: That was a very realistic role and sort of
like a feature because it was a two-parter.
Rico: A two-parter, yeah. It was great and they treated
you good and you got to do good work and you got to
work with great people. Peter was…. Peter Boyle
was an innocent. You know, there’s another example
of a guy who’s been in it forever who still
is so concerned about protecting the quality of his
Seth: Boyle really disappears into his parts.
Rico: He really does.
Seth: You know, I know him, but if I come back and
watch a film and say that was Peter Boyle? You know,
he’s one of those invisible actors.
Teresa: But you have that talent to.
Rico: Thank you.
Teresa: Yeah, some of your roles I wouldn’t
have known unless I was specifically looking for you
in them. In fact I didn’t know for a while that
Mathesar was the guy on Just Shoot Me.
Rico: Yeah, Mathesar was great. I miss him.
Teresa: I heard some talk many years ago that they
were considering a sequel to that.
Rico: Yeah, they’ve been talking about it forever.
I think the original screen writer wrote a sequel.
I hope they don’t. They can’t.
Seth: It would be fun, but it’s almost like
past its prime sort of.
Rico: Yeah, yeah. And not only that, they do it with
every movie. You don’t even remember the first
Seth: Like Austin Powers.
Rico: Yeah it’s like now they’re just
all one big blur. Like is that one, two or three.
If there’s just one it’s like, there it
Teresa: It’s its own work of art.
Rico: Its own work of art, that’s right. I’m
glad they didn’t do it.
Teresa: What was your worse professional experience?
Teresa: You don’t have to name names.
Rico: No, and you know what it’s never a bad
emotional experience it’s always what your given
within the time constraints and the limitations that
your given that make it miserable. I remember doing
a whole thing on The Outer Limits that was really
a great thing to work on, but it was just one of those
examples where it happened so fast that you didn’t
have time to catch up with what you were doing, you
know, I’m my own worse critic, but if you don’t
feel like your connected to what you’re doing,
you just want to slit your wrists.
Teresa: I think it kind of worked for that character.
Rico: I think it did. Maybe it did.
Teresa: He was kind of supposed to be disconnected.
Rico: He was, yeah, disconnected and stuff it was
just like, uck, yeah. But no one bad, bad emotional
experience with actors or directors or anything like
that. It’s like I’ve been the luckiest
son of a bitch. No divas, no egos.
Teresa: No plays that bombed?
Rico: Well sure but, you know a bad review, but who
Teresa: So the reviews you don’t care about?
Rico: In the moment you kind of go aww they didn’t
get it, but they got it. You know what I mean? I don’t
understand the critic’s role in all this, because
I think they misinterpret their responsibilities.
A critic needs to understand an artist’s intent
before they can criticize it. If they don’t
get…. I mean that’s the only legitimate
thing you can do as a critic. What is the artist’s
intent? Did we actually accomplish the intent or not.
Don’t bring your personal shit into it. You
know, “I don’t like this stuff because
the kid had a high squealy voice and what’s
she doing?” I don’t give a shit about
that. Judge something based on why we did it. Why
are we doing this? Did we fail or did we achieve it?
Yes or no. And nobody likes a good guy. You have to
be smart to do that. You have to do your research.
Teresa: It’s gotten worse in recent years. People
don’t even know what’s good.
Rico: They don’t. It’s all a personal
one man’s, one woman’s, opinion of what
Teresa: They’re not applying a standard really.
Rico: No, they’re not.
Seth: There was this one time Sarah Brightman she
did a show here and the reviewer said, “Why
did she sing that song from the Titanic in French.
It was horrible.” And she sang in Italian.
Rico: That’s exactly what I mean.
Seth: Exactly, they don’t do their research
or understand why….
Rico: No, it’s like an emotional response to
what they’re seeing and suddenly that’s
legitimate? That’s worthy of print. And you’re
going to influence…. I hope neither one of you
[Ahem, not professionally at any rate.]
Seth: No, just critics of the critics.
Teresa: Well, it’s an odd profession to choose
though, isn’t it? I mean you don’t do
Rico: It is. It’s like, imagine the karma you’ve
got coming. It’s like I couldn’t criticize
a sci-fi show, because I don’t watch sci-fi
shows. You have somebody who understands the genre.
Who understands that and you have them criticize that.
Teresa: Was there a particular experience that convinced
you to go into the profession.
Rico: It was because at the University [of Toronto]
I had discovered the drama elective where I felt like
I was appreciated on some level. That somehow I was
doing something to make people go, “Hey.”
I had never recognized that in myself before. I didn’t
really grow up in an environment where people would
acknowledge your good traits. You know it was an Italian
immigrant family. You know, go to school, don’t
be seen, dream small, ask for little, keep your head
down and trudge ahead.
Teresa: Were you good at that?
Rico: Sure. That’s why I’m a good worker.
I’m a good supporting actor because I can support.
I can support your vision.
Teresa: But what made you get out?
Rico: Then this class was like, oh, you can actually
experience and have a life with joy and fulfillment.
You know what I mean? That you could learn something.
I can expand my consciousness and see what the world
really is. And it was scary.
Teresa: And it was pretty much on your own too? Your
family wasn’t supportive of this choice?
Rico: No, no.
Teresa: How do they feel about it now?
Rico: The cool thing is that Veronica Mars is in Italy.
You know, and up until now they’ve sort of taken
my word for it that I was doing it, because Just Shoot
Me was never there. They’d seen little movies
here and there, but now the whole family is sort of
getting around the TV now on Wednesday night and watching
Teresa: So maybe a little pride now?
Rico: A lot of pride. A lot of pride.
Teresa: That’s good.
Rico: Yeah, that is good.
Teresa: So you recently became a US Citizen is that
Rico: I did and I’m really proud of that. Although
I like having both, because I love Canada.
Teresa: So you can just go back and forth however
you like now?
Rico: I’m a lucky guy. It feels really, really
good to be able to vote and because I had just left
at the time. It was a weird time there was no election
at the time I left. So I never got to vote until the
last California…. what was that thing back in
Teresa: The bond thing.
Teresa: So what do you miss most about Canada when
Rico: No matter where I go, no matter what I do, it
will always be home. I’ll always feel safe.
I’ll always feel comforted by the people and
just the air. And sure enough every time I land in
Canada it’s like I feel a sense of relief. I
can relax. Here it’s all about you gotta do
this and you gotta do that and you gotta go go go.
And in Canada it’s just like relaxed.
Teresa: The pace is much slower?
Rico: Much slower. There’s still ambition in
Canada. People work hard. But there’s just a
reminder of where I’m from. This is where I
really, really belong. I was born here. That’s
what my dad did, you know, when he retired he moved
back to his home. I wouldn’t be surprised if
at 65, my kids are off, I go back to Canada.
Teresa: So have you been over to Italy a lot to visit
Rico: Yeah, once a year. I go once a year. Yeah, my
kids need to know here they’re from too.
Teresa: So is it that an unusual experience when you
over there. Does that feel like home to you?
Rico: Nooo. Not home at all. It takes me two weeks
just to get the language back. Just two weeks of getting
your brain around what you’re saying. And by
that time we have to leave. It never fails.
Teresa: But you did grow up speaking Italian?
Rico: Oh, yeah. Everyday.
Teresa: Because your Mom didn’t speak English,
is that right?
Rico: No English. My Dad’s English was broken.
Teresa: Did that make school more difficult for you?
Rico: Well, you know what it did and it didn’t,
because we grew up in an Italian neighborhood, everybody
was Italian. The teachers were Italian. The priest’s
were Italian. All my friends were Italian and had
Italian immigrant parents. The stores were in Italian.
My mother lived in Canada for 30 years and never had
to learn English. So it was like everybody was struggling
with the language. Everybody was coming to terms with
it. So it was like normal.
Teresa: So did you have like a trace of an accent
for a long time?
Rico: Just my oots and boots and my soaries. That’s
about it. What are you guys going to do today?
Seth: You’ve got your class.
Teresa: I’ve got my class today
Rico: Your class, the screenwriting. Nice.
Seth: The only time I jump in is when she has to watch
Rico: But you haven’t caught him up on Veronica
Teresa: No I haven’t yet. I’m having a
hard time with that.
Rico: I think you’ll like it.
Seth: I’m sure I would.
Rico: I’m going to wait for the second season
to come out on DVD and just watch it in one weekend
because maybe I’ve seen two episodes all year.
Seth: I tend to resist against watching it because
I might get hooked on it so…
Teresa: That’s what we need.
Rico: Yes, yes and that’s why I don’t
watch television. If I start watching the Sopranos,
Wednesday night’s going to come along and I’m
doing something and I can’t watch it.
Teresa: See, that’s what TiVo is for.
Rico: I tried the TiVo thing, suddenly I come home
at midnight and I’ve got twenty shows that I
need to watch. I go, “What is this?”
Seth: So where do you put life on pause to watch TiVo
for 20 hours.
Rico: Yes, yes. Then you have like twenty shows you
gotta catch up on. I go, like come on. Better not
to know what’s out there instead of risking
missing two or three episodes.
Thank you for articulating that for me because that’s
exactly what it is. The addiction of it. And I can’t
fulfill that addiction. I can’t satisfy that
addiction. I can’t promise the Sopranos people
that I can be there at nine o’clock.
Seth: Yeah and I know the Sopranos I would totally
fall in love with that.
Rico: Yeah, but I’ve avoided that on purpose.
I saw one episode of Sopranos and I’m like this,
Oh my God! The images. And it’s like when Tony
Soprano is going through heaven with the door, that
party, remember that?
Seth: No, I haven’t seen that.
Rico: Oh my god, it was exhausting watching that.
It was exhilarating. And I go I can’t watch
this. I can’t put myself through this. I’m
not gonna do it. I’m going to go to the airport.
Teresa: Where are you going?
Rico: Back to Los Angeles.
Teresa: I see, so you were just here for a couple
Rico: To tell you the truth I was in Vancouver and
I blew my friend off at his graduation. He graduated
from law school, because of our play. So I couldn’t
come to his graduation and I promised him that I would
come back this summer. So I knew that my layover was
in San Francisco. So I saw him last night. And I wanted
to meet you. So I’m glad it happened.
Teresa: Me, too.
Rico: Yeah uh, and Forest who you’ve been in
contact with is starting a website like an official
Rico: But I’m hoping we can put a link to you.
Teresa: Oh, sure.
Rico: That’s all right?
Teresa: Mmm hmm. Now Forest, I looked him up, he’s
like a sound guy. Is that right?
Rico: He’s a sound guy. He wants to be a manager,
you know, so he’s sort of managing my life.
Teresa: How’s he doing?
Rico: He’s, you know, he’s still a 26
year old kid who’d rather sleep in and stuff,
but he’s doing fine. And he’s really a
whiz with the computer stuff and the sound stuff.
So yeah, if that’s all right with you?
Teresa: That’s great. I’m out of questions.
Was there anything else you wanted to say?
Rico: No. I’m a little disappointed nobody came
to take an order.
Teresa: That’s true. She never came back.
Rico: Never came.
[I pull a bunch of pictures out for him to sign including
one with his Wayne Gretzky hockey stick.]
Teresa: Do you get enough time to watch hockey?
Rico: Yeah, I make time for hockey.
[As he signs Galaxy Quest DVD]
Rico: [quietly] Never give up. Never Surrender.
Seth: So did they pull you together to do the alternate
audio track on that or did they do that separately?
Rico: What’s the alternate audio track?
Teresa: It’s in Thermian.
Rico: It’s in Thermian?
Seth: The whole script. It’s the funniest thing
to listen to.
Teresa: I could only sit through twenty minutes of
Rico: You gotta be high.
Teresa: Oh, there you go.
Rico: Thermian. What a stupid idea.
[As he signs another hockey picture]
Teresa: I haven’t seen you play. Are you very
Rico: No. But I care a lot. So you know we get to
play with a lot of the pros or former pros. I’m
not good at all, but they admire my blind effort to
just go head first.
Teresa: And what position do you play?
Rico: You know what?
Teresa: Just whatever?
Rico: Yeah, defense, forward, wherever they want me.
Because growing up, again because of the immigrant
mentality, I’d end up watching Canadian kids
playing hockey. So again I was like catching up to
them. They were starting skating when they were four
or five years old and I didn’t start skating
until I was like nine. Way too late. Already too late
[As he signs the hockey stick shot.] I’m going
to write it over Wayne Gretzky’s.
Teresa: It’s like a double autograph. Have you
met Wayne Gretzky?
Rico: Funny Story. No, I haven’t, but Nancy
my ex-wife was Janet Jones’ best friend. And
Janet Jones married Wayne Gretzky. So here I am dating
this woman who was at their wedding, who knew Wayne
intimately, you know. Not biblically, but she was
the wife’s best friend. But they had just had
a falling out maybe a year before I met her. I’m
like, “Go. Go make it up to her. Go say you’re
sorry.” So, no, I never got the chance. Plus
Alan Thicke was very good friends with him, but I
always sort of just missed the party he was invited
Seth: What a fabulous morning. Thank you.
Rico: It’s such a thrill to meet you. Thanks
Teresa: Thank you.
Rico: I’ll walk you out.
never actually came back, so I really shouldn't call
it breakfast. I guess she thought we were busy and
she didn't want to bother us with, you know, service.
We weren't hungry anyway.