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February 2006
PREMIUM: An Interview with Dorrian Missick

An Interview with Dorrian Missick
By Wilson Morales

For every actor out there, there is a day in the sun where they get to shine where as long as the day holds, they are on top of the world. For some, it’s a getting a part, and for others, it’s getting a lead role. Dorian Missick has been an actor for many years now, starting off with small parts in films (Lucky Number Slevin, Freedomland, The Manchurian Candidate, Two Weeks Notice) o episodic roles on TV shows (Law and Order, CSI: NY). He, like many other actors, are constantly working hard to grab the attention of someone who cast them in either a bigger production or give them a bigger role, and with his next film, he finally has. Though he’s currently on the small screen in ABC’s Six Degress, opposite Jay Hernandez and Bridget Moynahan, his next film role, Missick plays the lead to Pete Chatmon’s Premium. Developed at the Sundance Institute, Premium is a romance while also being a commentary on how African Americans are being portrayed in film. In the film, Missick plays Reginald "Cool" Coolidge, a struggling actor, fed up with taking stereotypical African American roles and waiting for his big break in a legitimate production. Along the lines of that, he runs into his ex-girlfriend (Zoe Saldana), who’s about to get married, and ponders whether or not he can change her mind. In speaking to blackfilm.com, Missick talks about his role, working with Zoe Saldana, and his upcoming film with Jon Heder.

What character do you play?

Dorian Missick: I play Reginald "Cool" Coolidge in Premium

How did you get the role?

Dorian Missick: The director Pete Chatmon and I have been friends for the last ten years and I have been all of his films since his NYU days.

How real can this story be for an actor, in terms of the struggle for work?

Dorian Missick: These scenarios, although seemingly ridiculous, are very close to real experiences I've had on the audition circuit. When you're first getting your feet wet in this business people will ask you to do the most outrageous things. Luckily I've been blessed that that's not my situation anymore.

Can you relate to this character?

Dorian Missick: Cool's passion for Charlie (Zoe's character) is something I totally identify with. I know what it's like to bee so deep in love with someone that you're willing to go to any extent to have that person. At the core he's just a little boy, and I've been told many times before by the women in my life that I have a little child just underneath my surface fighting for attention.

How was it working for Pete Chatmon?

Dorian Missick: Pete and I have been friends for so long and talked about this project so much over the years, that we developed a short hand that came in very handy on set. It allowed him time to work with the other actors more. His work ethic is very much like mine in the sense that we both won't sleep until we've crossed every "T" and dotted every "I".

How was it working with Zoe Saldana on the film and on Six Degrees?

Dorian Missick: Zoe is my buddy!!! I have been in love with her work ever since I first saw "Drumline", I even told Pete then that she was our Charlie. She's such a professional and focused actress. She's not too "girly" and we found that out very early in the 1st day when she ripped a mean one in the car (she'd kill me for saying that)! So she could hang with the fellas with our dirty mouths and yet she still has a very maternal energy about her and you feel very taken care of when around this beautiful woman. We had so much fun on "Premium" that when it came time for them to cast a love interest for me on "6 Degrees", my list consisted of one name! And I had to beg her to do it (she's a movie star, you know). We were very lucky to get her for both projects. That's my dog for life man!

What sort of jobs have you held prior to getting some film work?

Dorian Missick: Before my acting took off, I drove a truck for an inventory company throughout the northeast,but my favorite non acting job was working in the box office at the Public Theater. I'm still friends with everyone I worked with there and that was 10 years ago.

What sort of roles do you look for?

Dorian Missick: I look for characters that speak to something in me. Whether it's a curiosity of that person's lifestyle, or a desire to explore my dark side, romantic side, chauvinistic side...

Which do you prefer more, TV or films?

Dorian Missick: I really just follow the stories. Whether they be on the big screen, small, or even the stage. It boils down to the script.

What's next for you?

Dorian Missick: I have a film starring opposite Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite) called "Mama's Boy" coming out this summer, the fate of "6Degrees" is kind of in the air, but I would love to return for another season. If not, I have been offered another series that is a complete departure from my character "Damian" on "6 Degrees" by the creators of the FOX series "House"...stay tuned it could get ugly (Laughs)

Why should folks go see "Premium"?

Dorian Missick: People should go see Premium because it's a great story about love and the person who shaped us as the people we eventually become. There are a bunch of laughs as well as poignant thinking moments. It's a story about the human experience and so many people can relate to it. Plus we need the money!!!

PREMIUM opens on February 23, 2007



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