'Everybody Wants Some!!' Star Glen Powell Says 'Scream Queens' Season 2 Is 'Damn Good'
There are times when an actor on the verge of big things first steps into his moment, and Glen Powell has certainly stepped into his.
Powell became an overnight sensation with his alternately cocky and clueless portrayal of the verbose, sexually indiscriminate frat boy Chad Radwell on executive producer Scream Queens," a role he'll be reprising in the show's second season. And the actor followed up with a standout performance among the soon-to-be-all-star ensemble of filmmaker Richard Linklater's '80s-era college comedy "Everybody Wants Some!!" as Finnegan, the centered, smooth-talking undergrad everyone wished they were in school.
With "Everybody Wants Some!!" debuting on Blu-ray July 12th, Powell joined Moviefone for a look back at his game-changing year -- AND, having just perused the early scripts for "Scream Queens" Season 2, he offers a hint of what he thinks may be an even superior set-up for the slasher series.
Moviefone: You've known Richard Linklater a long time!
Glen Powell: I knew Rick from "Fast Food Nation," when I was like 14 or 15. Yeah ... I was 15 years old! So I knew Rick from that, but we literally hadn't kept in touch. We just kind of saw each other around Austin every once in a while. But I had to go through [a lot] -- I felt like I definitely jumped through more hoops than anybody to get this gig. That's for sure.
But you know what? That's the great part about Rick, is he's all about performance. He doesn't care about the resume. Most of these guys, it was their first movie ever. So it's really nice when a director has such confidence in themselves that they don't feel like they need to cast the flavor of the week, or who they can market, or who's got an Instagram presence or whatever the hell that people do now.
It's that he just casts the right person for the role, which is how it should be, and that's why I think Rick is obviously one of the best that's every been. It's because it's all about the product on the screen. He doesn't think like a marketing person, he thinks like a real auteur.
When you see this movie, you do get that feeling of like, the cast of "Dazed and Confused," or movies like "American Graffiti" and "Diner," where everybody is going to have a nice long run in Hollywood. What was it like to be around that kind of energy, where everybody knew that this was a good moment in time for them?
That's what I kind of kept telling everybody. I've been doing this a long time -- I'm still relatively a young pup, but what you start to realize -- and actually Quinton [Johnson's] walking in the room right now, and I've told him this a million times, this is his first movie -- I said, "It's all downhill from here. You're going to do a lot of movies, and for the most part this is the best business to be in in the world, and the happiest you'll ever see me is when I'm on a film set." But I said, "This is something that's really, really special, and just live in the moment."
Just like we were in the movie: "Just live in the moment and understand what it is, and that you are living the greatest period of your entire life. Because no matter how big of a film career you have, or however many franchises you star in or you become Tom Cruise or whoever, this is like the really special moment in time. There's nobody in this movie that anybody recognizes right now. We're all kind of unknowns, and we're kind of in the same boat. This group of strangers that kind of got put together and kind of bonded to create something I think is going to stand the test of time."
As you said, you've been doing this for a while, but you've had this amazing sort of one-two punch with this movie and with "Scream Queens" in the last several months. What that's meant to you, and how has that kind of propelled your career forward?
Man, it's been a nice change of pace! I think, when you move out to L.A., you've got to have confidence in what you do and your ability and whatnot, but you realize very, very quickly that it's not up to you. That a lot of other people have to grant you the right to act. It's really been a nice change of pace in terms of obviously getting the opportunity from Rick, and then the opportunity from Ryan [Murphy] to do this.
Now, I'm getting to be in rooms with really amazing filmmakers that I've looked up to for a long time. Like I said, that's the dream, and I don't take it lightly. You've got to make the right decisions, and you've got to keep working with people that are your heroes, because just working for the sake of working doesn't keep you around the club, and honestly, just because you're there doesn't mean you're in the club forever. So you've got to keep the same amount of work ethic and do the same thing.
But, I've got to say, I know exactly where I could be. I know more talented actors than me that are waiting tables right now. I know I could easily be waiting tables right now. So I really appreciate guys like Rick and guys like Ryan Murphy for taking shots on me.
Ryan and Brad Falchuk and their team can definitely keep their actors in the dark, and I know you were told almost nothing about "Scream Queens" Season 2 by the time they announced you'd be returning. Have they shed any light on how you're going to figure into the new scenario?
It's really funny: I literally just read the first two episodes on the train. It is fresh on the brain. I've got to say, what's really crazy is I think this could be a better season. I really do!
It feels very much like the sorority aspect of the Greek system was very fun and it has a certain amount of style and sex appeal to it that I thought was really, really fun. But I've got to say, this takes place at a hospital for like weird diseases and things like that. Where, inherently, terrible people that you saw in that other season, I feel like can thrive in an even better way.
So it's really, really fun. It's really ... it's damn good. The only thing that was a little shocking is how naked Chad Radwell is, so I'm going to have to start cutting carbs and sugar and figure out how to do a crunch in the next month!
That character could have easily been a one-off, and you certainly made the most of it. Are you creatively energized to be able to have a chance to take him to an even further level next time around?
The cool part about a guy like Ryan Murphy is he gives you, just like Rick, a pretty long leash on being able to kind of collaborate on stuff, and have my input in terms of flavor. If I had ideas, there were a lot of ideas that actually incorporated, that I was, like, sitting in bed at night being like, "Oh!" and I'd text Ryan or text Brad and Ian [Brennan]. A lot of it, they were very, very generous in that regard.
But I've got to say, there's a certain amount of ... you've got to figure out, just like making a sequel to these hit movies, they're rebooting everything, you've got to figure out what people like. You want to obviously change the character in ways that creatively energize you, but you've got to still stick with the greatest hits. So that's just the tightrope I guess you walk. I've never really done more than an episode of television, ever. So now I was on a show for a season, and now I'm going into Season 2. You just have to kind of figure out how to keep it fresh and fun, and still stick with the flavor that people dug before.