Burning Up The Big And Little Screens!
By Rych McCain, International/Nationally Syndicated Entertainment Columnist
Being a steady working actor in Hollywood is a feat in itself and trying to light a flame in one area be it television or film to establish oneself can also be a monumental task. When an actor can manage to set a brightly burning flame in both mediums i.e., TV & movie simultaneously; that is a delicious situation indeed. Michael Ealy has firmly managed to glide between the big and small screens in a fashion that keeps him on top of the game. He is currently starring in the run away, smash hit movie “Think Like A Man” as the aspiring chief Dominic who just can’t seem to get it all together and has a co-lead role as police officer Travis Marks on the USA Network cop drama “Common Law.” Ealy has several television series as a cast regular under his belt including “The Good wife,” “Sleeper Cell” and others. His big screen credits include “Barber Shop,” “Takers,” “For Colored Girls,” “Miracle At St. Anna” to name some.
In his “Common Law” role as police officer Travis Marks who can’t stand his partner Wes Mitchell played by Warren Kole, Ealy explains, “It’s going to air over the summer on USA. Basically it is an action comedy about these two detectives who; while they do really well to solve crimes; they bicker and fight about a lot of little things at seven years into their relationship so their Captain forces them to go into to couples therapy which instantly creates a whole different layer to the cop show genre. All of a sudden the relationship is somewhat exposed and issues and demons come out and those themes run out like a chorus throughout every episode.”
Of course, Ealy always puts the “Ealy” spin on everything he does. What was his impression when he first read the script? He laughs, “For me, my character Travis, I thought, was a nice blend of Axel Foley and John McClainYou know what I mean? Like he’s brave but reckless, a little bit of a con man, borderline criminal but so much fun to play. I was looking for a television show. I was looking to have some fun and not do something so heavy because it’s hard times and you just don’t want to go to work everyday and have the weight of the world on your shoulders. So this was a perfect opportunity for me to do that.”
Ealy has compiled an impressive body of work with various themes so does this dictate a particular direction for his career to go? He ponders, “Yes and no. What has happened is that I’ve been pretty consistent with the drama. I’ve done a lot of drama. “Miracle” (reference to “Miracle At St. Anna”), started to break me out of that a little bit. Then I did a bunch of action in “Takers.” I just started wanting to get into comedy with this show. When I read this script I thought this would be good for me to start jumping into the comedy part of my career. Because I’ve never really been asked to do any comedy, people don’t think I’m funny. I had to audition three times to show people that I can make them laugh so it was just a next kind of logical step. At the end of the day I want to have a very diverse body of work. I really do and to me action, comedy, drama, I’m doing them all!”
|Mike Ealy & Taraji P. Henson heat it up (Sony Pictures Photo)|
Of course Ealy has long been the object of the ladies admiration and affection. Is the sex symbol thing sill rearing its head every now and then? Ealy blushes a bit and says, “I’m sure it is but you know what, if I can keep working with it, then I will. Listen, I know who I am, I know where I’m from. If that’s what other people want to put on me, that’s a good title to have if you ask me.”
Rych McCain Media/Syndication tm
(You DID Hear It From Me!)