We had the honor of sitting down with one of Drillbit Taylor‘s stars, Nate Hartley. Here’s what he had to say:
What was the most exciting part of working on Drillbit Taylor?
Nate: Just to get to work with so many comedy people. This was like my first movie, so I was really blessed to be able to have worked with all these sweet people. I mean Seth Rogen, Owen Wilson, Steven Brill, Judd Apatow, Kristofor Brown… just all these great people. I learned so much from everyone. That and all of the extras, all the girls… that was fun [laughs].
Now speaking of Seth Rogen and Owen Wilson, did they offer you any words of wisdom for your career?
Nate: Yes, Seth Rogen told me just be as dirty as possible. Owen Wilson just taught me how to get the ladies, because he’s good like that. He taught me some good pickup lines. They’re top secret though, and I can’t let them out. If I were to, then everyone would be using them, and everyone would be getting my women.
Have you tried any of them yet?
Nate: I have actually, and they don’t really work for me. Because his pickup lines are: you walk up to the girl and you say ‘Hi, I’m Owen Wilson.’ And it doesn’t really work for me, because when I say I’m Owen Wilson, they’re like no, you’re obviously not. So it doesn’t work [laughs].
I imagine that the set had to be a really fun place to be. Do you have any funny stories from set?
Nate: Yeah we did, we had this prank war, and everyone ended up getting involved. I remember one time, I think it was Troy and I, and we were both at our trailers. The trailers were connected, and what happened was we switched the name plates on the trailers [laughs]. So we switched them all, and everyone got confused. It was brilliant. It ended up with Troy going into Steven Brill’s trailer, and David Koechner going into Owen Wilson’s trailer. So that was funny.
Another funny story, we made this bet. I’m not sure if Owen was involved in this or not. There was a bet going on to see who could get the most phone numbers from the extras. My ploy of getting numbers was just going up to them and saying ‘Hey, I’m playing a game; you need to give me your number.’ Everyone else was actually serious about it. I ended up losing, which sucked, but it’s alright, we digress right?
[Laughs] Indeed! What was your favorite scene to film?
Nate: They were all fun. There was a really cool car chase scene, which was insanely fun. We shot that in a week, which seems like a long time to shoot a car chase, but it was a lot of fun. We got to run a lot, and since I’m just so athletic… [laughs] I’m not athletic at all. The whole fight scene was choreographed, and it was a lot of fun. They’d go into full detail with it. Every punch and kick is down to a T.
Oh! My favorite scene, the kissing scene… with the lovely Brooke played by Valerie… I had to re-do that scene a couple times, because I just wasn’t feeling it. I had to just kiss her a couple more times, just as an actor you know? I just needed to get in the moment.
You just needed to perfect it.
Dealing with bullies is something that I think the majority of people that have been to high school can relate to. What advice would you offer if you were in Owen Wilson’s character’s position? What advice would you offer to people dealing with being bullied?
Nate: Um… Hire a bodyguard! No, not at all. Hiring a bodyguard works in the movie, not sure it would work in real life. The advice I would give is just to keep on trekking on. I mean everyone puts up with it as you said. You just got to go through it. In the end, you’re going to come out the bigger and better person.
Obviously, you guys got picked on a good bit in the film. How did the stunts work? How much is you? How much is a double?
Nate: Well, if there are ladies reading this, it was all me. It was all Nate Hartley. Swords being thrown at Nate Hartley. Cars being ran into Nate Hartley. Fists being… No um… For the majority, I did most of my own stunts. There are a couple of stunts that they wouldn’t let us do. Like the spelunking, they were going to have us do that, but they ended up cutting that scene. There were a couple car scenes, like where the car is getting kinda close, it’s not us. It’s really funny though to watch the movie, and I’m like that is obviously not me! It’s amazing that people can tell that it is or is not me. Mostly Troy though, because Troy’s stunt double… there’s a scene where he’s in a chair and they’re throwing it up against a wall. You can obviously tell that it’s not Troy! You can see that there is manly hair on this man’s arm, and Troy was 14 when we shot this. And if he has manly man hair on his arms at 14… that’s just weird.
But yeah, we did most of our own stunts. It was very professional, and it was great.
You have great comedic timing. Is that something comes natural to you or something you’ve had to work on?
Nate: Oh, it’s so natural for me. I’m just a comedic god I guess you could say. No, not at all [laughs]. You just learn. To get to work with these people, you learn so much. Timing really is everything in comedy. That’s really the essence of comedy. If I was to say one word for comedy, timing would be it.
I know that you’re going to be in Fanboys. Can you tell me a little bit about the role that you will play in that?
Nate: I play Han Solo. It’s every boy’s dream to play Han Solo. I’m in a couple of the last scenes, and I just play the good-looking Han Solo. It’s not hard for me, because I’m already so good-looking [laughs]. Just to put on a little vest and a gun… and I mean boom, we got ourselves a movie. And it was a fun movie to be a part of. It’s got so many cool funny people in it. And Star Wars, one of the greatest movies of all time, to get to be a part of something that is even associated with Star Wars is such a honor.
Do you have any other projects that you’re working on right now?
Nate: Yeah, we just got done with this movie called Little Big Man, but I guess it just got re-titled to Role Models. That has Paul Rudd, Sean William Scott, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse, so that should be fun. The last I heard that comes out in August. Just got done with this pilot called Mars Sucks which hopefully be picked up very soon. It’s a funny show about a sitcom based on Mars which is just great. So yeah, just trying to live the dream.
Interview By: Emma Loggins