The debonair Morris Chestnut first captivated audiences with his portrayal of Ricky in John Singleton’s classic film, “Boyz n the Hood”. Since then, Chestnut has been a leading man in numerous films, including the recent thriller “A Perfect Guy” alongside Sanaa Lathan and Michael Ealy. Though the 46-year old actor’s most notable roles have been in films, he also has also appeared in major television series including “Nurse Jackie” and “American Horror Story”. Fox’s new medical dramedy “Rosewood” will show a very different side of the generally more serious actor. Chestnut will star as Dr. Beaumont Rosewood Jr., a private pathologist with a penchant for finding clues about the dead and who might be hiding some very serious secrets of his own.
Chestnut recently sat down to talk about his new show at a screening of the pilot episode. Here is what he told Shadow and Act.
On Becoming Dr. Beaumont Rosewood Jr.:
It was tough. I pretty much prepared on a case-by-case basis depending on what they had me do. We have technical advisors and doctors on the set to advise me on the best way to do procedures, and give me information on certain aspects of doing autopsies. My character is definitely flawed from a heath standpoint. He has certain things that he can’t do because of his heath issues, and that’s one thing that I love about the character because nobody’s perfect. He’s not a superhero. He tries to do right by people, he tries to do right in life, and he tries to do by women.
On Working With Lorraine Toussaint:
She’s a great actress. She came to the show a little bit late, but she’s definitely a welcome addition. She’s incredible. I love doing scenes with her because she’s so emotional and it adds so much depth to the show.
On Rosewood’s Closeness to Death:
That’s one of the aspects of the character that I love. He treats each day like it’s his last day. He knows his days are numbered, but he tries to instill optimism in everyone he touches and everyone he comes across on a daily basis. He enjoys life, and he wants others to enjoy life and have fun. You have to savor every moment and don’t take things for granted.
On Character Development:
Watching the character grow I think, is the fun part about a television show. All of the characters are going to grow and develop. That’s why I like to hear what people have to say about the show, because it’s not like a movie. Once we do a movie and it’s done, it’s out there and nothing is going to change. With this, if it’s something that you guys liked, or something you didn’t like that you want to see then let me know. Our writers are very receptive and you guys are our audience and we make this type of entertainment for you. That’s why I’m always open to hearing what you have to say.
On the Recent Change in Hollywood for Black Actors:
I think it’s great. With “Empire” doing as well as it’s doing, it’s open up the doors for us to have other types of entertainment out there, and different types of shows. Hollywood listens to people. People always ask me if Hollywood is Black or white. It’s really green. If people are watching, they’re going to provide you guys with more entertainment. You guys have much more of a voice then you make think, so if you don’t watch then Hollywood will stop making and producing these types of shows.
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