Matt Keeslar heroes are Marlon Brando, Kurt Vonnegut, William Hurt and Kevin Kline.
Matt Keeslar's parents Fred Keeslar and Ann Ferguson divorced in 1977 when he was nine.
Matt Keeslar is 6 feet 2 inches tall.
Matt has a younger brother named Nathan.
Matt Keeslar: The hierarchy in Hollywood is based on fame, and that's why young actors get so depressed--they can't feel good about themselves unless they're famous.
Matt Keeslar: I have no idea why [Juilliard] took me–my audition was horrible. I did Edmund's speech during the mad scene in King Lear. I'd never seen anybody do it or anything like it. I didn't even know people did Shakespeare for real until I saw Albert Finney in The Dresser. That movie was a big influence on me.
Matt:(On choosing film and TV over theater) Maybe I've been avoiding it. It's really hard to say: Do you choose or do they choose? I've not been a really successful television of film actor for whatever reason, either because of my own personal integrity or because I just can't do it. It can be so hard to work under those circumstances -- the corporate politics and all that.
Matt Keeslar: I sang when I was in high school; I was really into community theater and musical theater. Then, when I went to Julliard, I just didn't concentrate on it. Julliard is a straight-play school, you know. They're all about classical theater and stuff like that.
Matt Keeslar: When I was starting off….starting off in any profession you want to shoot for the stars. I wanted to be a big movie star or movie actor in any case. That was 17 years ago and now I'm married and have a kid and all I want is a job I'm happy to do and have enough money to feed my family. It really doesn't matter that much anymore. I am perfectly happy doing this television show and if it went on for 6 years I would be ecstatic. If I had an opportunity to do a movie, I certainly wouldn't turn it down. I think that there are great things about both. The nice thing about his project is that it shoots in LA which is where I live and I get to come home and see my family at the end of the day.
Matt Keeslar:(About being on a summer show) I don't know. This is my first television series so I'm not sure about that whole thing. Not sure when shows finds audiences or if they do. I think we have a bit less pressure because we are on a small cable network rather than being on a prime time television network. And, I don't know whether or not Monday night is a good night or not. I guess what I'm saying is that I don't know much about anything. (Laughs). We're shooting in the summer in a wool Eisenhower jacket which is what I wear throughout the series – it can be a little warm.
Matt Keeslar:(On making entertainment that appeals to both kids and adults) It doesn't really matter to me. Let me put it this way: I think good art appeals on many different levels of a person appreciating it. There are some movies, novels, art work, paintings, etc. that appeal only to adults and that's mainly because they are adult themes that kids don't have the experience of yet. However I think there are a lot of things that can appeal to children like classical music for example that can appeal to anyone. And I think that that's one of the watermarks of a good piece of art that it can appeal to a broad section because it appeals to humanity, not just to a particular demographic. It's not my goal to make a family-friendly television show but it just happens that a good piece of work appeals to many.
Matt Keeslar:(When asked if he feels pressure playing a comic book hero) The short answer to that is no. I didn't feel a lot of pressure coming from the comic book fan base. I think that, like all fan bases, some people will love The Middleman and some people will have difficulties with it. It's a bit tongue-in-cheek, this comic book super hero, so, it is, in a way, both an ironic statement about comic heroes in general, and also a really passionate and loving look at comics and all of their multi-facets. It's a loving portrayal, but also a lampoon at the same time. We're taking a look at it through the eyes of Wendy Watson, your average, everyday art school graduate and how she sees the iconic comic book character played by myself, The Middleman.
Matt Keeslar: In today's world, I think that a hero has to be savvy of the world's events and the fact that the world is getting smaller. That a hero in the present day has to be able to draw from many areas, and you'll see that in The Middleman. The reason that he is effective is because he can speak Hebrew and Chinese, he can fight in a Kung Fu style, yet is very interested in art and artists and is offended when somebody is plagiarizing Wendy's paintings. He's a person who takes in the full picture, the big picture of what's going on in the world, and I think that that's what makes an effective hero, someone who understands the interrelatedness of humanity and the fact that our global world is getting smaller and smaller.
Matt Keeslar:(On being recognized, sometimes as Casper Van Dien) When Casper was cast in Starship Troopers, I got a lot of calls saying, "Congratulations." I did a movie called Waiting for Guffman, and that's become a bit of a cult hit. I was Johnny Savage, the guy who drops out of the play at the last minute so that Corky (Christopher Guest) can take over. I also did Scream 3, which made a lot of money although it's not one of the more memorable films from that series. But other than that, it's the "Casper Van Dien continuum."
Matt Keeslar:(About Julliard) They prepare you in many ways for working once you get out of school. For example, they have a twelve hour turnaround. You have twelve hours between when your last class finishes and your first class the next morning. That's basically what you do in film and television as well. You get up in the morning, you work all day, take a lunch and dinner break, then you go home to learn your lines. You get up the next morning and go back to work again.
Matt Keeslar:(When asked if he likes doing horror) I do. I like doing horror and sci-fi movies. I think the sci-fi genre, although I think it is looked at as a 20th century phenomena, has been around as a form of fantasy for a long time. Look at The Winter's Tale, the Shakespeare play. It had a lot of sci-fi elements to it. Phillip K. Dick said that sci-fi requires the participation of the reader as well as the writer because the reader is the one who is imagining the entire world that the writer is creating. I like that kind of participatory matter. It requires the person that is watching to be interested in what's happening. It draws the audience in because they have to think.
Matt Keeslar:(About "Dune") I played Feyd-Rautha Harkonnen, which is the part that Sting played in the movie. It was a great part, although it was hard to live up to Sting in a bikini. I did my best. (laughs)We had this designer, Theodor Pistek, (who won an Academy Award for "Amadeus,") and his costumes were really bizarre, like stuff with metal flags coming out of the back, and satin pants. We did the final fight scene half-dressed.It was a wonderful experience. I also got to work with Fabrizio Storaro, the lighting designer. It was like a dream sci-fi role. My agent at the time warned me, "Do you really want to go to the Czech Republic for two months to do this relatively small part?" I said yes, that this was important, being only the second version of Dune that was put on film. I had a great time and I believe that a lot of sci-fi fans were also fans of the Dune series.
Matt Keeslar:(On "The Middleman" co-star Mary Pat Gleason) Mary Pat is awesome. I don't know that you can find a better mean, nasty schoolmarm android. In real life, she is the sweetest lady you would ever meet, but she plays the part to perfection.
Matt Keeslar: In a way, "The Middleman" and the character of the middleman is kind of perfect for a classically trained actor, because it's so focused on the verbal, on the way that he uses language, and a big part of the Julliard training is looking at language rich plays like Shaw, Shakespeare, or Moliere where the characters express themselves through very long thoughts with their language rather than a specifically emotional place. Although there's always emotion behind the language, it always has to be the language and the emotion has to be married to one another.
Matt Keeslar:(On his role in "The Middleman") I was sent a script that my manager said you have to read, because it's great. I sat down as soon as I got it, read it that night, called my manager and said okay, I want to play this part, and I didn't really care that much about what channel it was going to be on, or any of the other details involved. All I knew was that this was a great part and a great part for me to play. So I think the next day, they set up a breakfast with Javier and I met him for coffee and he basically said we really want you to play this part. That you're going to have to go through the whole audition process so that ABC Family can feel like they're participants in this process, but basically, you're the guy that we want to do this. I felt very confident going into the audition, even though it was quite a strenuous audition. I had to learn a lot of dialogue, but I felt, from the get-go, that this was a part that I could really play and I could do justice to
(about playing the character of Jekyll in the 2004 movie "Jekyll")
Matt: This is an addiction story from a hundred and fifty years ago. It's about a man who becomes addicted to the dark side of his personality.