By Amrie (My Take on TV)
If there was one moment in Season 1 of The 4400 that really got me pumped for what was to come, it was the moment where Chad Faust’s character Kyle Baldwin looked his dad square in the eye and said “I’m not Kyle Baldwin.” It was one of those chill inducing moments, one that kept you on the edge of your seat, invested in more. His portrayer, Chad Faust, is a remarkable person – writer, actor, musician, you name it, he does it. Chad’s written, directed, and produced six short films and one feature. “We Ran Naked,” a feature film about an author living in the shadow of his successful first novel, premiered in 1999, when he was just 19. He’s also released two CDs under an independent label, Zotzman Music. He has released CDs, won acclaim for original movies, and continues to do it all, before he’s even turned 30.
I recently had the pleasure of chatting with Chad about what we can expect for the future of the series, what he does in his free time, and who he’s dying to work with, among other things!
Amrie: Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions for us – we at thetvaddict.com cannot wait for Season 4 of The 4400. I personally just did a TV on DVD marathon of the show to get psyched for the premiere!
Chad: My pleasure. Thanks for watching the show.
Amrie: When The 4400 first started, what were you expecting? Did you know right away that this would be a hit?
Chad: Not at all. When I first read the pilot, it didn’t work for me. I was up for another show on FOX and was down to the wire on that. So I turned down The 4400 at first and tried for this other show. But then, when that fell through, I had to go back after The 4400 because I was broke and my car was blowing black smoke out the exhaust pipe. But once I met the people involved and felt the passion to do something unique and truthful, I started to feel the show’s potential.
Amrie: What can fans expect from Season 4?
Chad: Season 4 jumps on the unavoidable freeway of the religion or cult of The 4400 phenomena. My character, Kyle, is becoming the shaman to the Messiah that is Jordan Collier [series regular Billy Campbell] and together they have begun a revolution of hope and promise. They have cleverly used religion and politics as symbiotic powers.
Amrie: When you’re shooting, who do you spend your downtime with? Is the cast close?
Chad: I’ve never experienced such a harmonious cast. I have made some friends for life – it’s a big reason I keep coming back to the show. Joel [Gretsch, Tom Baldwin] and I are attached at the hip, he is one of my closest friends in this world. My brother lives here in Vancouver [where they film] and he just had a baby, so I’m enjoying my little niece’s first year. Occasionally, I drag some of the cast to the Cecil, a local dive strip club for a little euphoric depression.
Amrie: You’re an actor, writer, director, producer, musician, recording artist, the list goes on. What is your favorite thing to do? If you had to forgo all other things, what one occupation would you stick with?
Chad: I don’t think I could act without writing, or write without acting. If I only acted I would feel I had no direct expression, only interpretive, and if I only wrote, I would feel isolated and existential. They compliment one another. If I could only do one thing, I’d have to go do something else altogether. Go to India in search for the purpose of all this. Pull a Baba Ram Dass, or open a tequila bar on some beach in Mexico, and get fat and have tons of kids. [Author’s note – um, Chad, I speak Spanish, and I love beach weather and tequila bars…just putting that out there…]
Amrie: What TV shows and movies are you watching when you’re not filming?
Chad: I just got hooked on the genius that is “Rome.” I have to be a part of something that audacious and delicious. I’m inspired by a lot of the indie films that have emerged into the mainstream market lately; like, Last King of Scotland, Sherrybaby, Hustle and Flow. Films that are progressing the medium and telling stories in a new key of truth. I feel that some TV and films still pretend that we humans are more rational and more easily organized into a category than we actually are. I believe in the stories that challenge those old ideas and show us a little more accurately how we really are. Not everyone wants to see that. But as an artist, that’s what I have to show.
Amrie: What actors and actresses would you die to work with?
Chad: Terrence Howard, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ricky Gervais, Jack Nicholson, Sean Penn, Jeff Bridges.
Amrie: Where do you get your inspiration, when writing, or creating music?
Chad: I often get my inspiration from art that moves me the way I want to move others with my art. Other times, I get it from this light that dangles in my face, reminding me of my mortality.
Amrie: Where do you see yourself in your career, 5 or 10 years from now? What would you like to be doing?
Chad: I want to start my own production company so I can originate and bring to life stories that mean something to me. Whether I write them myself or collaborate with or facilitate others. I’ve already begun this process and have a couple of things in the works. A novel I adapted and an original screenplay of mine.
Amrie: Tell me a little about “Casa Hogar Sion” [an orphanage in Tijuana] and “Friends of El Faro” – what initially got you involved, how can people help?
Chad: Going down to Tijuana and spending time with these kids has changed my life more than I imagined it would. I went down there thinking it would be a selfless venture where I could help out these kids and by the time I left, I was thanking them profusely. It’s an orphanage with 120 kids, infants to teens. Every time I walk into the nursery, about six babies put their hands up to me, wanting to be held. I get about three of them in my arms at a time and share as much love as possible. These kids appear to be happier than most kids I’ve seen in the suburbs of American or Canada, but I think their pasts surface more tragically as they get older. That’s where we need to help them. Find career opportunities for them. Anyone can donate or get involved through the website, friendsofelfaro.com.
Amrie: Thank you so much Chad!
Chad: Thank you, Amrie. All my all…