Real women in their own place. Not too crazy and just a pinch of naughty…
By creating evocative and alluring portraits of women with body types that have traditionally been left out of mainstream media, Me In My Place is redefining a genre that has been over-run with unrealistic expectations of what it means to be beautiful. With full acceptance of the “male gaze”, the images promote not just acceptance, but also an aspirational message about everyday appeal. The project is a celebration and is meant to be fun and open to all.
In an effort to monetize the project to keep it going, we created a simple mobile web app, more commonly called THE MIMP APP (https://mimp.findrow.com). This gave fans of the project a simple and inexpensive way to show support. In exchange, they receive more images, exclusive images that are not on the tumblr, and the ability to quickly view and ‘like’ their favorite content.
The MIMP APP was such a success, we decided there must be other content providers like us who would like to give their fans something extra, so we created FINDROW. With flexibility that Instagram and Facebook won’t allow, we give our content providers the freedom to express themselves as they see fit… even if that is not always safe for work ;-) Again, they control their own content and are leading the conversation about how they feel beautiful in the world. For a complete list of all the Findrow apps, click here.
(Michael Roark chats to MIMP)
pictures by @MichaelSRoark
words by Falene
If I ever find myself in need of a Hollywood heartthrob who also passed the bar (I might), or a lawyer with matinee idol good looks (who wouldn’t need that!), I may have just found the perfect candidate in Michael Roark. Now that this former attorney no longer spends his time in the courtroom, you are more likely to find him in worlds inhabited by Prada-clad vampires, net-savvy psychopaths and dystopian revolutionaries—who seem to have an unnatural penchant for all things leather. There again that does sound like your typical visit to the LA county night court, not that I would know of course.
Without realizing it you are probably already very familiar with this in-demand actor, who’s guest starring roles in “The Vampire Diaries,” “Magic City,” “Rizzoli & Isles” and “Revolution,” has created a slightly insane shooting schedule for him of late. Then his most recent foray into film “Magic Mike,” just happened to be one of 2012’s most successful movies. Which he managed to achieve without stripping down to his mankini, or grimacing through a Brazilian buttocks waxing. After receiving the Soderbergh treatment, this month he will officially be inducted into the ‘6 degrees of Kevin Bacon’ hall of fame. As Detective Warren, he will be playing alongside Mr. Bacon in the highly anticipated premiere of Fox’s new serial killer drama “The Following” (airing JAN 21st). Whether he’s working with some of the world’s most critically acclaimed directors, writers and actors; or on (all of) TV’s highest rated shows, I have to admit Michael’s change in careers looks pretty magical.
(EXCLUSIVE Tiffani Thiessen interview/shoot for MIMP)
"IT" girls just don’t seem to have the same longevity as the ones I grew up watching.
There were two gals in particular that every “Gen X Guy” (including MIMP’s own ME!) went gaga over, the angst ridden Winona Ryder and the the deliciously saucy Tiffani Thiessen. No matter your gender, culture or creed, Tiffani was for most the epitome of universal hotness. They may have actually coined the phrase “girl crush” shortly after her long running stint on “Beverly Hills, 90210.” Not only did every hot blooded male desperately lust after her, every girl religiously kept tabs on her sassy style (midriff baring sweaters, anyone?) and perfectly cropped 90s bob. Before “The Rachel,” young women the world over wanted Tiffani’s do. Not to mention the fabulously plucked eyebrows and plump (au natural) pout. Ah blessed nostalgia, those were days before 20 year olds felt the necessity to parade around with collagen-induced lips (sigh). Of course these were just a couple of the assets that had editors clamoring to have Tifanni on the covers of Cosmo, YM, Teen, People, EW, TV Guide and FHM (twice!).
First appearing as goody-two-shoes Kelly Kapowski in "Saved By The Bell," she went on to become 90s sex-symbol/icon (everyones favorite bad girl) Valerie Malone. Whether setting trends or gracing glossies, Tiffani in many ways came of age in front of an audience of millions. For over a decade she’s been a TV staple, starring in shows considered by most as ratings gold. Then somewhere along the way (without me even noticing), she grew up, got married, and become a mom. And there’s a very good reason I may have not realized all this happening right in front of me. She hasn’t changed drastically in the last 10 years, she really does look just as good now. Working constantly, always picking roles that compliment her life stage perfectly, playing the characters (even the campier teen ones) that we all connect to. The cute girl next door (SBTB), vixen (BH, 90210), the hottie (What About Brian), the hottie (Fastlane), the hottie (you get the picture), then the chops-flexing co-star (Hollywood Ending); and most recently the clever (smoking hot) wife of FBI agent Peter Burke (in White Collar). If you ever wondered what it takes to remain the quintessential “IT” girl, maintain a stellar career, have Bieber sport your portrait on his T-shirt and cause Woody Allen to close his eyes to simply listen to your soft mellow voice—it’s time you found out.
Being a TV staple, what’s that like?
Sometimes it’s crazy to think about how "Saved By The Bell" and "90210" ran for so long and internationally too. I feel very fortunate and blessed, to have worked on shows that lived for a while. Especially after experiencing that popularity at such a young age. Then to continue to say I’m a working actress now, I still really enjoy it.
How do you keep picking ‘em?
It’s not just me (giggling).
(Not to be a perv, but her voice is like butter! It’s like a husky, sexy, sex-kitten!)
Yes it is just you (laughing) and NOBODY else!
Well when I was younger I didn’t really pick them, I was just getting lucky really. Now I feel like I can make more of a decision regarding what I want to audition for, or which projects I’m attached to. When I first read the script for this show (White Collar), I just fell in love with it from day one. The premise, the story and the character, call it women’s intuition. Now here we are, ready to start Season 5.
Is she a bit closer to home for you?
Oh yes! Elizabeth Burke is the closest to me, than any other role I’ve played in my entire career. I like that she’s not just sassy, but strong and driven too. At the same time she has qualities that I like, so I enjoy playing her.
Favorite 90s Jam?
I absolutely loved Boys 2 Men, but I’d have to say George Michael’s “I Want Your Sex.” I played that over and over again, I’m not kidding you.
Remember “I Wanna Sex You Up?”
I do, Color Me Bad ha ha.
(A tick tock you don’t stop).
Wine and chocolate. Or if a "Designing Women" marathon is on, I won’t switch it off. God I love that show.
If you could play any character, who would you be?
I got very close to that once, one thing that I always wanted to do was be a Bond Girl. I tested but didn’t get it. It was also probably the hardest rejection, because I’m such a fan of the movies. It was between me and 2 other actresses at the time. Unfortunately the actress who got the job, went on to be voted as one of the worst Bond Girls as well.
I know who it is, the seasonal doctor!
You figured that one out, just from that?
(Hint, Pierce Bronson, scientist. Or you could just click here lol)
Do you like Daniel Craig as Bond?
Love him as Bond, he’s right up there with Sean Connery. He’s just amazing, one of the best Bonds ever.
If you could be a man for a day, get their specific set of skills too, who would you be?
Mmm I’m trying to think, probably a rock star.
He’s not super manly though. If I’m gonna be a man, I wanna be a MAN. Tall and strong, I’m thinking maybe a basketball player. Or a person who can effect change in politics, maybe Obama.
Maybe you just want to be a black man, I know I do on occasion.
Do you think you have a type?
I don’t think so, but maybe I do without realizing, there are traits I love. My husband is a complete goofball, but that’s what makes him so sexy. He kind of exudes manliness. But at the same time, he’s very creative and a total dork sometimes. I love that (giggles). I enjoy that mixture, because I’m a bit that way too. Sure I like dressing up, but I like hanging out at home being silly in my boxers and a tank top. He made me laugh the first time I met him too.
What did he do?
The invisible hula hoop dance. The single most hysterical thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Seduced by an invisible hula hooping.
I need to see that! Do you like comedians?
Oh yes, physical comedy is very alluring to me. My real secret celeb crush was Chris Farley. I LOVED him.
You were the consummate sex symbol, was that a lot of pressure?
I think any time you are on a hit show as a young actor or actress, you feel that way. Then as a woman, there’s some additional pressures you feel to look a certain way and be a certain size. I was not the girl that was a size 2 and didn’t work for it. I was never the waify model type.
Yeah but you were on FHM’s cover twice (America, France) right?
Was I? I remember the first one they ran, that cover got banned! At that time, the airports didn’t want it on the magazine stands. It was considered too racy. Even though I had no top on, I wasn’t showing anything. Now of course that would seem very tame.
Speaking of being topless, Howard Stern once described you as having the "most perfect breasts" in the world. Thoughts?
Yeah, he said that before I had kids (laughing loudly). He first said that around the time that first FHM cover came out, it came up again when I did his show again last year. I’m not gonna say I’m not flattered, he’s Howard Stern, Howard knows boobs. The fact that he talked about me positively, I’ll take it! He was really nice and complimentary, in his own special way he was very respectful.
He’s an interesting cat. Both endearing, clever and a lil creepy, simultaneously (laughing).
(Why do felines keep coming up in my mind during this interview).
Enjoy doing the MIMP shoot?
I really did. Seriously, I haven’t done a shoot like this in a while, but I was completely at ease. It was intimate and sexy, but he(ME) made me feel so relaxed.
We were both really excited about this shoot & interview.
Awe thank you. It was great, he’s an amazing photographer and I got to be completely myself. I just threw on what I wanted, so it felt very true and organic.
Is Brian Austen Green a Warlock?
My theory is that he and Nick Cannon are witches! I mean both very cute boys next door, but how do they always date (then marry) such ridiculously hot women? I must know his secret.
He’s not a witch, I promise. Just a gentleman.
Absolutely, to me anyway. If a guy is gentlemanly, that gets my attention. I don’t like men to be too pretty-pretty, like a model. I like men to be men. I mean look at some rock stars, but they always get all the girls.
They have the “bad boy” cache though. Brian Austen Green always looked so wholesome.
Really? Hhhmmm wholesome you say (a blast of laughter slips in). Yes he’s one of the good guys, I have nothing but lovely things to say about Brian and fond memories. Respectful, funny and a great dancer, with a stunning wife.
He could dance, I do remember that… mmmm.
Heck yeah! (laughing)
Your co-stars, such ugly boys, eh?
Right, it was so hard for me.
Not to be completely unfair, but if you had to pick the best kisser, which one?
Oh boy, that’s a tough one because with one co-star I was a kid, then the others I was a young woman. I would have to say… and it’s kinda weird because we are still great friends and I love his wife too…
…Zack Morris! (cackling)
(Gosh I love playing this game, I’m not even using real names anymore. I’m channeling my teens! From her raucous giggles, perhaps Tiffani is enjoying this game too).
No, Jason Priestly and he was probably the guy I did the least on-screen kisses with. Talk about pretty boys.
He was prettier then some girls I knew.
And he has an absolutely gorgeous wife, who is also a very talented make up artist. She does my make up quite often. We all actually get together for dinners, maybe that’s why he popped in my head, or did this just get weird (laughing).
Now for some inexplicable reason (and out of my complete respect for Tiffani) I had to “try” really hard to not imagine these 4 beautiful people, swimming underwater, re-enacting the closing pool scenes from “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”. It was a difficult task on my part, but I managed it quite well I think.
Strangest audition of your entire life?
Woody Allen, it was strange but very cool. He flew the auditioning actresses to NY, I had no idea what I was auditioning for, which I’ve been told is the norm. With him you don’t get a script, sometimes you might get an idea of the role you might be up for. So 30 mins before I walked into the room to audition with him (and we had never met), they gave me sides to read. I also didn’t know what “Hollywood Ending” was about at that time, so the whole time I auditioned, his eyes were closed!
Which makes sense now you’ve done the film.
Well yeah, his character goes blind, but that wasn’t explained before. So I’m thinking, how is he going to make a decision about me, he just closed his eyes (laughs). Very, very, very nice man, quiet. It worked out well though.
Who’s poster was on your wall as a teenager?
Michael Jackson and Ricky Schroeder.
OMG! Silver Spoons!
Ever had a celeb girl crush?
I dunno if it was a crush, more that I just idolized her. Olivia Newton John. I think there’s also a part of me that wishes I was a rock star.
KD Lang, she was my sexual confuser. She was also Keanu Reeves doppelgänger, so… SOLD!
That’s hilarious, but now you mention in it. They kind of did look alike.
Whose music do you listen to?
Ben Harper, Mumford & Sons, Dave Matthews, Amos Lee . I’m more of a band than a DJ kind of girl.
What makes you feel saucy of an evening?
A bottle of wine works. Every time.
Finish this sentence, “In the next life I will be a… “
… a ROCK STAR!!
In my book Tiffani, you already are luv!
Tiffani returns as Elizabeth Burke on Season 5 of USA’s “White Collar,” airing Tues, JAN 22, 10/9c.
We will be posting a few selects from Tiffani’s shoot on the site, but you can see the entire edit on the MIMP APP here… Yeah, she’s still got it!
pictures by @SaulWilliams
words by Falene
Saul Williams is smarter than you!
The problem is he’s smarter than me too and I’m interviewing him. Usually chatting with complete strangers never intimidates me, in fact there’s nothing I rather do. There’s a certain intimacy to a phone conversation with a person you have never met. This time however in the back of my mind with every “silly” question I ask (not that that’s ever stopped me before), there’s a little voice taunting me. “Saul Williams is smarter then you! Yeah - that’s right! Saul Williams is smarter than you” and for some strange reason it’s to the beat of “You Can’t Wu Tang Better Than Me.” WTF? Perhaps it’s because Saul is not only creatively quite the genius, but academically he’s pretty impressive too; with a B.A. in philosophy from Morehouse and that Masters from NYU. When it comes to debating a topic, he’s usually got you beat, or at least in a quandary. Which of course adds to his mischievous charm and striking good looks. Not too far back the blogosphere was ablaze, how could he let “List of Demands” (his damning tune on over-consumption), end up as a commercial soundtrack for Nike? Intentional irony? Was it part of his satirical plan all along? Or was he just letting the most well intentioned progressives know, not even they have the right to dictate to Saul what’s cool or acceptable.
Influenced as much by Allen Ginsberg as Public Enemy, he’s collaborated with everyone from Erykah Badu to Trent Reznor. Emphasizing his utter refusal to be artistically contained. His is a voice that can contribute as easily to popular men’s mag Esquire, as the more highbrow New York Times and African Voices. He’s published 5 critically acclaimed poetry books, won the coveted Grand Prize at Sundance and the Cannes Camera D’Or, while shaking up the literary academia in his spare time. My brain matter got greyer just thinking about it! Now after the irreverent “Niggy Tardust” (an eff you to musical genres) he brought out “Volcanic Sunlight,” a personal music collection of sorts. For Saul Williams it’s more important to get people thinking, then talking. Whether you agree with him or not, really isn’t the point.
He skypecalls me from Paris. I suddenly feel terribly cosmopolitan.
Desperately Seeking Hattie
Words by Don Thomas
Pictures by Michael Edwards
Today we have a really, rare treat, an exclusive interview with @Hattie Watson.
Hattie is an instantly recognized model, whose image is literally flooding the internet right now. If you don’t know who she is, than likely somewhere along the way in your various online interactions, someone you know is a Hattie lover/follower. Or at the very least, has found themselves mesmerized by a random photograph or video that she was featured in. Standing at only 5’3” with her flaming red hair, shapely body, prominent tattoos and usually ‘au naturel’ freckled face—even amongst the beautiful people in the art crowd, she has no trouble standing out. A fiery walking contradiction, in physical feminine form.
The Secret Fluffiness of Josh Stewart
Words by Falene
Pictures by Josh Stewart
Josh’s ‘Heart’ illustration by Matthew Gray Gubler
Having seen (and enjoyed) many of the characters that Josh Stewart has played, I’m not going to lie—I was expecting a rather brooding fellow. He so convincingly embodies individuals, who more often than not are slightly “troubled.” Men who are constantly perturbed, or teetering on the edge of something truly awful happening. Leaving us all wondering what the character does after the day is done, the scene is over and the credits have rolled. Truth be told I know I do and it’s never good. Whether he’s agent, mute or thief, it usually involves a window, a sense of foreboding and a large glass of Bourbon. I mean do you see 'Detective William LaMontagne, Jr.’ going home, relaxing with a hot mug of cocoa and soaking his tootsies in the Foot Spa? Nor me, although he really probably should.
So imagine my surprise when a few minutes after our “hellos,” I realized Josh Stewart is in fact one of the fluffy bunnies of the world. Those few genuinely ‘good’ people, who enjoy dappled sunshine and feeding ducks. The ones you would want to give big hugs to and protect from all the troubles of the world. Which is odd when you consider that nine times out of ten (on screen), it’s usually the world that seems to need the protection from him. The actor who portrays the ‘melancholy and macabre’ so well, has an alluring coziness about him. A comfort inducing tone, that makes you want him to read you a bedtime story before tucking you in for the night. It’s bizarre, but I think I want Josh Stewart to be my dad! WTW? Which makes no sense at all, as I’m at least one year his senior. So instead of trying to convince him to adopt me (*which I was very tempted to do), or that he and Robert Pattinson could pass for family; we talked about how utterly gruesome his new film "The Collection" is. As well as his impressive portfolio of fictional character names and why he wouldn’t mind being is his wife for a day.
I give you (the-not-at-all-creepy) Josh Stewart!
Melissa Stetten: Lost in Translation.
These days beautiful women seem to have some unrealistic expectations forced upon them. Don’t get me wrong this isn’t "a pity party for the pretty," but recently I’ve noticed it’s getting a little out of hand. Remember how Megan Fox was vilified as “ungrateful” because of her cheeky (but genuine) opinion of a certain (borderline misogynist, sorry), director? Then when being dragged through paparazzi, she wasn’t cordial enough to a young fan baring blooms? Honestly, wouldn’t you have wanted to get the f$%k out that camera riot too? Then the defiant ones (Giselle defending her Tom), are quickly labeled as behaving "inappropriately." I’m not encouraging anyone to deliberately act like a douche, but did I miss the requirement that “the good looking who possess a vagina, should remain constantly gracious no matter what?” If the shoe were on the other (gender’s) foot, would it be the same? The answer is, most likely not. Or how about if the woman in question was average looking, would that be an issue or merely the butt of a joke?
Interview by Falene Nurse
Images by Michael Edwards
It was the day of the Endeavour fly over if I remember correctly. I was thinking about songs with the title name of Beth. There was that Kiss song, "Beth, I Hear You Callin’… “
And then she did!
Beth Riesgraf had a dizzying schedule that day—including picking up her sisters from the airport in hellish space-shuttle-related traffic—yet she still got back in time for our interview. She found a quiet place outside her house to take a moment. Beth is a very interesting cat: she’s the kind of cool that reminds you of a teenage Jodie Foster (in possibly every film she did in the 70’s). All tomboy swagger, cheeky wit and a glint in her eye. You know, that girl you used to want to be, or at least imagine yourself as equally spunky if called upon. Perhaps that’s why she plays the part of ‘Parker’ so well on "Leverage” – she brings a little of herself to the role. I’m a bit late to the party on this one, but “Leverage” is fast becoming one of my new favorite shows (joining the ranks of “Dexter” and “Grimm”). A lot to do with that is the two lead actresses in its ensemble cast: beautiful, smart and deliciously criminal, they thankfully haven’t been beautified to the point of distraction and impracticality. As is the case with most women on American TV today, even if the character being played (i.e. agent, lawyer, assassin, firefighter, etc.) doesn’t call for the actress to be in heavy makeup, skimpy tank top and full pout. I’m talking about you (“Crime Scene Investigation”) and your ridiculous investigative work clothes. I have to say watching ‘Parker’ and ‘Sophie’ is a welcome relief. So much, in fact, that before our call I had gone through a “Leverage” marathon. I had questions – about the sexual chemistry between ‘Parker’ and ‘Hardison’(Aldis Hodge) for one; as well as the numerous songs that the real Ms. Riesgraf might be named after.
Here’s how the caper went down.
Lovely & Amazing
Words by Falene Nurse
Photography by Michael Edwards
Tall and tan and young and lovely, might be famous lyrics about a certain Ipanema girl, but it also perfectly describes a rather lovely lady from Manchester. With her unique looks Judi Shekoni is no stranger to unusual roles, it would be very hard to typecast this girl! Before Zafrina in The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2, she had already portrayed a Bond Girl, a refugee, a gangster’s wife and an alien! At almost 6ft Judi certainly makes one damn fine looking Vampire in Twilight's latest (and final) installment. With her legs that (literally) go on for miles, her face and figure force you to take notice. Yet, it's her fun loving personality that really makes you stop and pay attention. She's so down to earth and mischievous, I soon forgot that next month she's going to be in one of the highest grossing movies of all time.
With her saucy humor, charm and modesty, she feels less like a Hollywood starlet and more like an old high school, gal pal. There’s really not an ounce of pretense about her. Yet amidst a whirlwind press blitz, this delicious Mancunian was kind enough to take time out to discuss her thoughts on British men, spirituality, kissing Goldie and of course my favorite topic—Michael Fassbender’s penis.
An Awesome (and Asinine) Conversation With An Avett Brother.
Words by Pisha Warden
Pictures The Avett Bros
If you’ve heard of The Avett Brothers, you’re probably a huge fan. At least, that’s the general consensus I’ve come to, based on my extensive internet research (does Facebook count?) in preparation for my interview with Seth Avett. He’s one half of the duo (and brothers) that lead this, folky, bluegrassy, rock ‘n rolly, and enigmatic trio (Bob Crawford’s their bassist and only non-brother) from North Carolina. And while I’m only kidding about the Facebook research (sort of), their music, which has been described as “epically genuine” can move even the most critical musicphile. But again, you have to know them first to love them. I’m not a hardcore music reviewer, I don’t speak that language, but I can certainly give you a vivid description of their latest album "The Carpenter"—which debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 chart last month.
They have managed to channel the spirituality of Mumford & Sons, the spunkiness of Ben Folds, the intimacy of Bon Iver, with a raw energy that feels more like listening to a live performance than a studio album. It’s eclectic and joyous, in the best ways possible.
A few noteworthy highlights from their career so far; Rolling Stone Magazine called them the “Artists to Watch in 2009,” with the album “I and Love and You” peaking at #16 on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums (#1 on the folk album chart). Paste Magazine also crowned it their Album of the Year. In 2011 they performed at the Grammys, joining Bob Dylan and Mumford & Sons for a rendition of Dylan’s counterculture war cry “Maggie’s Farm.” Which I can only describe (with all journalistic integrity) as AMAZEBALLS! So how is it that they’ve managed to remain relatively under the radar for over ten years? With the new album released last month and the exposure they’re receiving from their new Gap ad, that won’t be the case much longer. (Side note to my ladies—have you seen the blue eyes and dimples on these boys?!? Hubba hubba!) I had a chance to speak with Seth, as the band was putting the finishing touches on the album. His North Carolina drawl and easy conversation immediately charmed me, while making me extremely self-conscious about how much I curse when I talk. (Don’t fuck this up, Pisha, he’s clearly a gentleman!)
Interview by Falene Nurse
Images by Valente
V is for Valente and also for that voice, one that so far has been compared to Jonsi and those delicate sound birds with the cleverly placed electronica beats—The Postal Service. Not bad company to keep, for an emerging and relatively new artist. He’s also a bit of an artistic wonder, gifted songwriter, impressive producer and as his comparisons attest, he has one of those voices that sets itself apart by lingering in our collective psyche. If you’ve heard him, you need only use his name once as an immediate reference. Which is handy, as his surname lends itself effectively well to a one word musical moniker. Valente.
Muse, Mimic, Martial Artist - Meet The Many Faces of Patrick Fugit
Word By Falene Nurse
Pictures by Patrick Fugit
Patrick Fugit is the type of guy that you feel you have known most of his life. Maybe that’s because in a strange way, we have. We watched him come of age (and get ceremoniously deflowered) right before our eyes. He was only 16 when he landed the coveted lead in the Bildungsroman masterpiece "Almost Famous." Besides being considered by most as Cameron Crowe’s alter ego, he also represented all of our innocence and naivety essentially being lost—but in a good way. The pivotal moments when you start discovering where exactly you fit into the world, we witnessed then on his face. Or when you first learn your biggest hero, actually is a flawed human being capable of disappointing you, we could see in his nuanced expressions. We’ve seen “coming-of-age stories” a thousand times before, but rarely is it captured so perfectly on film. There are few modern roles that you can honestly say “no one else could have played that part,” Patrick Fugit as William Miller is definitely one of them.
It’s hard to believe the baby-faced actor is almost 30 now. Since his debut he’s gained numerous high praises and critical acclaim for roles in “Saved,” “White Oleander” and HBO’s “Cinema Verite.” Accolades for being both indie darling and crowd pleaser, Fugit’s been the romantic dead in “Wristcutters: A Love Story”, a ball-busted junkie in “Spun,” a Snake Boy in “Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant” and most recently, a monkey carrying hippy zookeeper in “We Bought A Zoo.” He takes unconventional roles and makes them endearing, constantly bringing a certain sensitivity and subtlety to characters that are really rather complicated. Whether he’s falling for a troubled girl, saving wildlife or pioneering reality TV, he has the innate ability to convince the audience (and usually his co-stars too) everything is going to be all right—eventually. God help us all the day he’s cast as the surprise serial killer, though come to think of it he would be a good match for another long lost relative of "Dexter." So I had a little chat about cleft chins, what’s next, listen to his impression of Morgan Freeman, and whether he might be Cameron Crowe’s secret muse.
Dan, In Real Life
By Falene Nurse
Photographs by Dan Regan
Here at MIMP we like to mix it up a bit. Actors, bands, models and MIMP girls, but we also like to bring to the attention of our beloved MIMPsters people that are at the forefront of unique and creative endeavors. Dan is one of those people. Just to be clear, he is not Dan Regan trombone player from 90’s ska punk outfit, Real Big Fish. At only 26, his life could have taken a very different path. Don’t let his adorably deep dimples fool you. Dan could have been a very naughty boy. A very, very, naughty boy. And for legal reasons it’s probably best I don’t elaborate too much on that. Instead he chose to partner with 2 of his besties (Adam Moonves from NYC and Giovanny Artiga from Paris) to create lifestyle brand Black Banditz.
The Talented Mr Daley
By Falene Nurse
Images by John Francis Daley
In a city filled with charlatans and rehabilitated former child stars, it’s rare to find anyone extraordinary—or quite frankly normal—to speak to. That’s why when I first describe this young actor’s accomplishments, you might imagine that although undeniably talented, he would be destined to have the social skills and personality traits of Patrick Bateman. At 26, he’s already secured a spot on one of the highest-rated procedural dramas in America, has the cool-kid’s cred of being a beloved “Geek" from a cult TV show, and now is currently riding high as one half of Hollywood’s hottest comedic writing duos.
By rights he should have been a wild child turned shameless Lothario, whose exploits are documented by the paparazzi for daily tabloid fodder. Yet nothing could be farther from the truth. Instead John Francis Daley is cherubically handsome and refreshingly polite, confident yet friendly and far smarter than I ever was at his age. You do get the feeling that this just might be his second time around on earth. He could easily be harboring a very wise, old soul in there, one that can only be found through true reincarnation. That, or maybe his parents raised him well.
Either way chatting over the phone (*I know, I know, MIMPsters) is like talking to a friend from the old neighborhood. He’s charming and naturally giggly, but you don’t feel that the conversation is based on any type of performance designed to deliberately make you laugh. He automatically partakes in silly banter, whilst nonchalantly telling you about up coming projects. Though strangely, only when prompted. He might be the only humble, successful American male under 30, left in Los Angeles. I really wish I was exaggerating about that. When the topics of “Bones”, “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone," “Horrible Bosses 2” and “The Vacation" revamp comes up, he could easily be mistaken for a very well informed Cinefile. Almost utterly detached from his own integral role in each production. At times I completely forget that the person on the end of the line is currently starring on a particular show, or wrote the screenplay that we are discussing. It’s as if “John from #22”, is just letting me know what’s coming soon to the local Cineplex.
Interview by Falene Nurse
Photographs by Steed Lord
The city was hot, damn hot and I’d been searching for Iceland’s Holy Trinity for quite a while now. Albeit foolhardy without any address, recent sightings or even a cell number. A couple of leads had led me to a flea market in Silver Lake, a late night champagne dance party and a Scandinavian knitting circle dedicated to Bjork. But still, no joy.
Through the great vine, I had heard that the best place to find them was in New Crack City; where they liked to go to create both their music and art. The problem was this particular city was a fictitious one of their own invention. KALI,MEGA and DEMO (*nope, those aren’t their real names either), the art-collective known as STEED LORD are renowned for creating block-rockin’ beats, emotional synth-pop and occasionally a rather stylish clothing line for H&M. The trio are notoriously hard to physically trace, 100% DIY (do it yourself) and possibly slightly mad. So this interview might be a bit tricky to pin down.
I mean how could a recluse-writer find these elusive Icelanders, in an imaginary place based on a 90’s crime drama? I decided probably by going home first, the chances of me stumbling across them in the streets of Los Feliz were pretty damn remote. Like I said, the city was bloody hot! Upon returning to my abode, I immediately took to the internet and this is what I found. Steed Lord was originally the nickname givento their delightful, autistic, Persian kitty—Mr. Elvis. Apparently, he conjured up fanciful ideas of British noblemen, whilst posing freeze-frame in their living room. I also discovered an email address and started a correspondence, here’s an excerpt of the messages I received from New Crack City.
Hey there MIMPsters…
Kicking off a whole new section here on Me In My Place… That’s right, we are now officially doing celebrity interviews… A little more informal than your regular interview, because Falene can not be contained… And the best twist of all, is that our MIMP celebs take their own images… What the What?!? So kick back and enjoy our little conversation with the ever talented and charming Matthew Gray Gubler
Interview by Falene Nurse
Photographs and Illustrations by Matthew Gray Gubler
He’s most recognized as Dr. Spencer Reid on “Criminal Minds,” the voice of Simon (one of The Chipmunks) and Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s shaggy-haired pal in “500 Days Of Summer.” For a while there he was a top male model, before that he graduated from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts—where he majored in film directing. So what goes on inside the nerdy-noggin of an artist-cum-model-cum-actor-cum-director? Have you seen his site? Well this, amongst other things. So as you can imagine I was thrilled it was a phone interview because a) I’m incredibly lazy and b) I’m pretty sure in person he would out “Beckham” me (that’s when the male tends to be prettier than the female). Which I could really do without first thing on a Monday morning. What transpired was a fascinating interview about mice penises, human ridicule and Mr Gray Gubler’s genuine enjoyment of both Bauhaus and the Mary Poppins’ soundtrack. There was lots to discuss, which I tended to do (as always) through a list of random questions, which seemed well suited to his train of thought. Matthew is an authentic eccentric, which is gradually revealed as he shares his observations of the world with you. His is an enthusiasm usually reserved to ecstatic puppies or childhood escapades, he wouldn’t seem misplaced in The Famous Five or any other Enid Blyton adventure. What most of us unfortunately lose along the way, this 32 year actor/director has managed to maintain—and if you speak to him you can’t help but go along for the ride. It started withsomeone wailing “HELLLLOOOOO!!!” down the phone. That someone was Matthew.
Matthew: How are you?
Falene: Ugh good, I just had blueberry pancakes.
Matthew: Good, good, where are you? Are you in NY?
Falene: No, I’m in West LA.
Suddenly I feel that I will have absolutely no control over this interview. Matthew is a frenetic ball of energy whizzing through the line, it’s difficult not to feel rather drab in comparison. I’m also not use to people asking me questions. I should probably start doing my job better—very quickly.
Falene: Is Gray your middle name, or are you Matthew of the Gray Gublers?
Matthew: It’s actually a very old family name, my grandfather was named Vivian Gray and he didn’t care to be called Vivian for fairly obvious reasons. So yes, yes, I guess I am a Gray Gubler.
Falene: What should I know about you?
Matthew: Mmm what should you know. Let me think.
Falene: Not me personally, but people in general.
Matthew: I’m actually a pretty good skateboarder, which seems to surprise a lot of people.
FN: Really!? (I too am shocked, then quickly realize how rude shocked can sound coming out of my mouth). Not in a bad way though.
MGG: I think because I’m a nerd everyone—including myself—fails to recognize that I’m coordinated. I’m actually getting into skateboard design soon too.
FN: You are!!! (now I jut sound damn right ignorant). I mean, I would never have guessed that.
Tell me 2 photographers you really admire?
MGG: I love Cindy Sherman for many reasons, she’s utterly unique, I admire her sometimes frightening portraits. That merger of herself and her vision, people that can do that I’m always impressed by.
Also Terry Richardson, I see a childlike genuineness in his imagery which I know is somewhat contradictory to how he’s perceived.
(Gasp! Every online “flower vagina” comment and joke I’ve ever made about Uncle Terry comes back to haunt me).
He takes photos because he’s curious, optimistic, and silly like if you gave a talented 12 year old skateboarder a camera and let him loose all over the world. He has a unique perspective.
FN: Mmmm I have to admit I’ve never heard him described like that before. You have your own GUBLERNATION, do your followers have a collective name?
MGG: Oh they do actually, I wish I had come up with it but I didn’t. I think a lot of them call themselves Gubloids. G-u-b-l-o-i-d-s.
These words seem fitting to an episode of Grimm. How marvelous!
FN: Gubloids, it’s sounds like globular.
MGG: Or a strange disease one might have.
FN: Something slimy perhaps?
MGG: Or a free floating bulbous object, I like it.
FN: What do you think of the MIMP site?
MGG: What’s not to like.
FN: In your mockumentaries you are very self deprecating, would you like to do more comedy?
MGG: Actually that’s what I love to do when I can, it’s my favorite genre. It was quite shocking to everyone that knows me when I got cast on such a serious TV show. Those documentary shorts were based on some of the people that I’ve come across in Hollywood, they are the funniest people in the world, mainly because they don’t realize it.
FN: Wow, they sounds truly awful. How fun!
MGG: Yeah, or stories I’ve heard about from others that were just hilarious to me.
FN: Is there any role you might be a little reluctant to play?
MGG: Reluctant, no not really, I’ll play anything. I promised my friend I would do a nude scene in a movie we made.
FN: Naked you say (clapping hands happily—but very, very, quietly).
MGG: And I’m kind of reluctant to do that, but I know I have to do it because I promised.
(How does one start digging for more info on this topic and in a manner that doesn’t seem like I’m objectifying him, when in fact that is exactly what I’m doing? Mmm dilemma).
FN: So, is it gonna be like Shame? Are we talking about that kind of nudity?
MGG: No, imagine like the smallest penis ever seen on film, have you seen Ratatouille the movie? About the cooking mouse?
FN: Erm yes, I have seen that movie, yes.
MGG: So imagine that “nude scene” was with a mouse, but then make that mouse human and then make that human me.
FN: That’s not such a great thing to say about yourself! (and yet I’m laughing hysterically to such an unexpected response, well played Mr. Gray Gubler, well played). Fave comedians?
MGG: Stand up comedy in general is really hard, because anyone who proposes themselves as funny, then automatically becomes sort of unfunny. Yet I love stand up comedy. My favorites(*this word is sung) are Steve Martin, Bill Murray and Bill Cosby. So in a way all stand up comedians. All of them and none of them.
Funniest movie you have ever seen?
"Young Frankenstein,” all the Gene Wilder movies. Recently “Bridesmaids” was pretty great. Actually that girl too, Melissa McCarthy I think she’s a hilarious comedian. “Something about Mary” I almost died from laughter when I saw that in the theatre.
Tell me 1 secret. But please don’t take me back to the mice penises.
I’m a skateboard wizard. I’m pretty open.
Yes apparently, something like I dunno, do you have a third nipple?
I think Michael J. Fox is one of the greatest actors that ever lived(giggling).
That’s your secret?
I guess. Also let’s put Tracy Morgan on the comedian list. (My tiny-tangents seem simple digressions compared to Matthew’s ability to take you over to a previous question, then bring you back to the topic at hand). But Michael J. Fox is one of the greatest actors of all time. One of them.
I have lot of pets, I consider them pets although I don’t technically own any of them.
So they are just strays then?
No, 2 dogs that my family have and deer and raccoons in my back garden in LA.
You got scouted as a model and then fell into acting, do you think any of your peers might secretly hate you—just a little?
True I fell into modeling, but I’ve always loved entertaining. I use to do kids magic shows in Vegas. I’m sure I’m quite annoying to many people for many reasons, that could be just one of them.
Would demure be an accurate assessment of you?
You could say that.
Your character Spencer Reid is constantly being described as “awkward”, does that come naturally to you?
Comes pretty damn naturally unfortunately, so that’s kind of a bummer. I also overanalyze things. Yeah, even when I order coffee I’m not cool, it’s like (Urkel voice). “Can I have a 3 shot?”
Being on a series about serial killers, was there ever an episode that just freaked you out?
All of them are like that, unless I’m directing them, that’s a lot easier when I’m in control of the scary stuff.
There have been a couple of episodes that disturbed me to my very core(laughing with glee). I shouldn’t laugh, but some really bloody terrifying stuff happens.
Yeah, I’m also a very fragile human being (laughing).
Most embarrassing moment in life to date?
I don’t really get embarrassed that often. Only because I don’t mind being the object of ridicule.
A lot of your paintings and portraits are like illustrations, are you going to transition into animation soon?
Yeah, I’m hoping to do that next. It’s in a gestation period, but a friend of mine, we’re working on something.
I saw the behind the scenes footage of your first on-screen camera kiss, you seemed a little flustered. I felt bad for you, but then I laughed!
Well the crew is like my family, so no group of people could have enjoyed watching that experience more. I think you are only embarrassed when you fail to see the humor in your own ridicule. So I must love being the object of ridicule. Also not to sound like a douche bag actor, but beyond me being awkward anyway, I was thinking how would Spencer Reid feel about kissing mega babe Amber Heard?
Flustered, very flustered.
Yes, yes, I know. You see the fact is if you kiss me on screen it will only help your career as an actress. (As he says this he can’t get through the sentence without cracking up hysterically).
That’s right, kiss Matthew Gray Gubler on TV and you too can watch your career soar! Let’s put that out there.
OK, but it’s not true.
Let’s just put that out there anyway.
(In many respects it’s probably a good thing that I am neither a male actor or a director).
Could you do a 9 to 5?
I think because the hours are so long when shooting, anything I do after this would feel like I retired. If you love what you do, retiring isn’t an option. Retiring just means dying.
The last time you “swooned”?
I’m a permanent swooner.
Do you live in Las Vegas or LA, or is it a bit of both?
LA, Vegas and NYC. I’m in LA when we are filming. I’m nomadic.
If you had a theme tune, what would it be?
I don’t know the lyrics, but I know the instruments that it would include; a theremin, a glockenspiel and an accordion. It would sound like this "bow, bow, bow doink doink, bow bow." Like a creepy carnival.
(*I’m not really doing his rendition justice, so listen to the beginning of Chorlton and The Wheelies, delete the vocals and then add moments that sound like a human voice impersonating the guitar in a 70s porn soundtrack).
If you were a chocolate, what would you be?
I would be the forgotten piece, in your top pocket, washed and then melted. A Gubloid.
DJ or band?
What are you listening to these days?
This sounds fucking crazy, but there is a reason. I was listening to The Little Mermaid Soundtrack, Mary Poppins, The Doors and Bauhaus on Spotify. Little did I know everyone on FB could witness my 90% Little Mermaid and 10% Bauhaus. It was like a serial killer’s playlist!
Do you have a favorite quote?
Have low expectations and high hopes.
Who said that?
I’m like a 16 year old girl here, Connor Oberst from the band Bright Eyes. I love them but only teenage girls listen to them. And me.
Was it surreal or mind-blowingly cool being the voice of a chipmunk?
It was amazing, I still can’t believe that I got to do that.
You mean vacation? I dunno Gublerland, every day is a holiday in Gublerland.
What do you have to get done by tonight to rest easy when your head hits the pillow?
Oh man. A lot.
It’s official, I’m saving a spot for Matthew in my "People I most want to live in my closet and occasionally come out to entertain me" list. Ah yes he will fit very nicely between Jim Henson and Bjork.