Charley Koontz is one of those actors you just can’t forget! Charley, known mostly for his role as the hilarious character Fat Neil on NBC’s hit comedy Community, took a minute to sit down with us and discuss teleportation, all things entertainment, working with Megan Fox and his upcoming movie projects…
What made you want to go into acting?
I have such a love for movies and television and visual art that I have always wanted to be a part of it. And considering my lack of business acumen and a pretty serious need to be the center of attention I naturally thought acting would be the best spot for me.
If you weren’t an actor, what would you be doing?
I absolutely love to read so I think I would be doing something nerdy like literary criticism or something. I’d like to be paid to read books all day and then have people pretend to care what I thought of them. I wish I had it in me to actually write the book, haha. Maybe one day I’ll have enough to say!
You recently shot a commercial with Megan Fox… Tell us the details! Was she clothed?!
I did! That commercial for Call of Duty: Ghosts was a blast and a half. Huge production, great people, shooting guns all day AND Megan Fox?! What’s not to like? She was fantastic. She was absolutely down for a laugh and we all had a great time running and jumping around together. Yes, she was clothed and yes she actually is that beautiful in person!
What has been your greatest memory thus far while in Hollywood?
I got to do an amazing guest spot on Royal Pains last year for USA and I got to meet Henry Winkler which was a mind blowing experience. The day I met him we were shooting a wedding scene and I was introduced and I said, “Henry before you say anything, I’d just like to tell you how glad I am to be wearing a tuxedo when I get to meet you.” The Fonz leaned in, grabbed my shoulder and said, “Isn’t this the life? Are you on twitter?” It was a pretty fantastic way to meet anyone let alone Henry. He is truly amazing.
What would your dream “project” be?
I have always wanted to play Jackie Gleason. He was such an amazing artist. Obviously you have the great physical bits that he did on The Jackie Gleason Show and The Honeymooners, but you also have amazing dramatic performances to back it up like in The Hustler with Paul Newman. Not to mention the fact that he was an incredible piano player and put out a ton of jazz albums. So, yea, to get to try to recreate some of those moments and also get behind the ultimate “sad clown” would be the dream.
What can fans of your character Fat Neil on NBC’s Community look forward to this season?
Neil is back! He’s still out there being awesome. You’ll have to watch and see! But Neil is back in the fray with the gang mixing things up.
How was it working with Chevy Chase and being the one that sends him off on the show?
I had the honor of getting to announce Pierce’s death in the Ass Crack Bandit episode this year. That meant a lot to have the trust of the show to not screw it up. Chevy is a legend so anytime that I can be in the same room as that kind of talent and energy and sheer experience is something I’ll never pass up. I imagine Chevy out there somewhere right now, roaming the earth like Caine from Kung Fu.
What would you like to be remembered for?
HAHA Anything. Curing Polio? Did we already cure Polio? Ok, it’ll have to be Cancer. Curing Cancer.
What other TV shows or movies are you currently working on?
I shot a film last year called APPARITIONAL about a team of TV ghost hunters that investigate an old abandoned prison and get into some pretty hairy situations. We shot at Missouri State Penitentiary and it really is a big character in the film. And then I have a wonderful little romantic comedy that is just finishing up post-production called YOU OR A LOVED ONE that I am really proud of. I can’t wait for everyone to get a look as all these great things! I feel very lucky.
If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
One word: Teleportation.