Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sunday Sales: Clark Duke

The last Sunday Sales for this month is about another actor. The July post about Chloe Moretz is my highest viewed post of all the posts on this blog. The 2nd most viewed page,  my "Writing Voice" post, only has a 1/5 of the views. So today, I'm going to tell you about an actor that is going to be HUGE one day: Clark Duke. This guy was in Kick-Ass with Chloe by the way.

Edit: 8/15/2012 Image removed. I don't want to be sued.

This is Clark in a shot from in September 2008 while Clark and his co-stars were on the publicity circuit for Sex Drive. Click the link for a larger image and photo credits and then click the jump.

I don't have a lot of information on this guy, but I'll tell you what I found. He is a 26-ish years old (math isn't working for me today) Arkansas native. Duke was a child actor in the early 90's as a regular on Hearts Afire. He worked alongside John Ritter, Billy Bob Thornton, and Night Court actress Markie Post in all 54 episodes. He was nominated and/or won (conflicting information) a Young Artist Award for "Outstanding Actor Under 10 in a TV Series" in 1992. Fast forward to around 2006. Duke took time off from acting for around 10 years to finish school. He befriended Michael Cera (the dude from Arrested Development and Juno) and that seems to have been the spark that brought him back into the spotlight.

For his college thesis film at Loyola Marymount University, Duke created, wrote, directed, and produced the pilot episode of Clark and Michael with Cera. CBS ended up picking up the film short and commissioned 10 episodes that premiered on over 10 Wednesdays in 2006. The website is totally fubarred now, but all 10 episodes are available on Youtube if you look. C&M is a hilarious mockumentary of the lives of these guys as producers that do very little to advance their careers. Lots of swearing, juvenile jokes, reality television clichés, drinking and some fights are portrayed. I loved it.

2007 to 2011 has seen Cera into almost superstardom. A lot of articles that mention Duke start out as "Michael Cera's best friend..." That is irritating when I'm trying to find information on Duke to say the least. 2007 to 2011 has not seen nearly as much activity by Duke, so maybe that is why he has gotten so much less press. But the guy hasn't exactly been lazy. He had a bit part in Superbad, a small-ish sidekick role in Kick-Ass (he was Kick-Ass's comic obsessed friend Marty), and starring roles in Sex Drive and Hot Tub Time Machine (HTTM). While filming those movies, he was also working as a series regular in the ABC drama Greek. He played Dale, the hyper-religious roommate of main character Rusty. He was in every episode for the full 4 season run. I find it quite funny that on IMDb, Duke is listed first in billing for Greek while the show's main character is listed 8th.

He filmed a movie with Eddie Murphy called A Thousand Words that I'm pretty sure he has a starring role in but that poor film has had nothing but trouble. The message boards for this film go back to 2008. I read that they reshot a good deal of scenes in 2009. A release date in 2010 didn't work out and it was pushed back to 2011. And then 2012. I read an article that Murphy was to blame for the holdup but I didn't find a source so I don't necessarily believe that. The fact that the IMDb description doesn't list half of the character names, has a 17 word description, and no trailer/posters/production stills makes me think that the January 2012 release is probably sketchy too. A post on the message board says it's going to have a January 2013 release instead and that seems more likely. Or the project is dead in the water. It is a shame because I'd really like to see this guy in more starring roles.

He had bit parts in several television series over the years. He was in 1 episode of Campus Ladies, which I can't find anywhere. He was in a CSI episode for about 2 seconds. He did some voice work for a few episodes of Robot Chicken and had a silent role in one episode of Drunk History (with Jack Black no less). He had a small role in his HTTM co-star Rob Corddry's Children's Hospital in 1 episode. Yeah, I think that covers it.

Obviously, I like the two films that he had a big role in: Sex Drive and HTTM. The C&M web shorts and his parts in Greek were funny, but this guy really shines in the movies. He plays the uber confidence=sexy Lance in Sex Drive. And he is the cliché basement dwelling MMORPG nerd Jacob in HTTM. Both roles are absolute aces in my opinion. I keep seeing his name on those "Top # Stars Under 30 to Watch" lists that every magazine does. Seriously, this guy is going to be huge. It may not be as an actor, but he is going to be in the industry for a long freaking time even if it is behind the scenes. He went to film school after all.

Side note: He is a huge John Hughes fan (according to some HTTM interview I saw) and that makes me instantly fangirl. If you don't know, Hughes wrote 41 movies between '79 and '08, some of which are considered the most iconic films of the 80s (Sixteen Candles, Breakfast Club, Pretty In Pink, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Uncle Buck, etc). Hughes also produced 21 films and directed 8 films. The guy is a legend. Most of the Disney-esque stars of today wouldn't have a damn clue who John Hughes is so Clark gets my vote... for whatever it is I'm voting on.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS


Booksteve said...

Out of all that, i realize this comment may seem lame but...somehow I never realized John Hughes wrote and directed FERRIS BEULLER'S DAY OFF.

My FB friend Edie McCLurg was in that film. She's the woman who describes Ferris as "a righteous dude."

Dee said...

Dude, John Hughes was the shit. That is his IMDb page. He wrote so many of my favorite movies from the 80s and 90s... it is mind boggling. I don't guess it is all that huge for someone to write so many movies over nearly 30 years, but the fact that so many of them became iconic movies of the time just says tons about him.

The only two movies that are on my "favorite movies of all time list" that he didn't have anything to do with are The Lost Boys and The Goonies. I can't complain about The Goonies though because Spielberg and Chris Columbus wrote it.

Arts in the Family said...

She had a great scene in another classic John Hughs film Planes, Trains and Automobiles. She's got a great voice and laugh.

Alberto Ramirez Jr.

Dee said...

Edie has been in a lot of great movies... starting with Carrie, which is one of my absolute favorite horror movies (and Stephen King story).

Maybe I should add her on Facebook? Nah, I'm too shy. lol

Booksteve said...

She's very nice. A fan of my Geek's Journal blog. Kinda political sometimes. Doesn't post too often. Friend her.

She played Herb's wife on WKRP IN CINCINNATI, also. before your time, I know but...

Dee said...

Before my time, and yet I know WKRP anyways. I was a big fan of Howard Hesseman from the Bob Newhart show. I watched a lot of Nick at Nite type stuff. It is also where I ended up watching Get Smart, Bewitched, I Love Lucy, Petticoat Junction, Mister Ed, Mork & Mindy, and The Mary Tyler Moore Show. :D Did you see Hesseman in the New WKRP from the 90's and John from Cincinnati in the mid 2000s?

Coincidentally, WKRP is where I first heard of The Who back in the day (this would be late 80's for us youngins) because of their episode about the Riverfront Stadium concert. I'm not sure what season it was in but my dad said that at the time, it was a huge deal and based on a true story. He bought me "Who's Next" the next day and I heard Behind Blue Eyes for the first time and was hooked.

Yeah, I was a weird kid.

Booksteve said...

Cool. In fact, until you brought it up...and don't tell anyone. I have my reputation to protect---I did NOT remember Howard Hesseman from THE BOB NEWHART SHOW! I did catch him on the new WKRP though. He also starred in a later series called HEAD OF THE CLASS.

As far as the Who, that was most definitely an episode based on fact. 11 concertgoers were killed at Riverfront COLISEUM (not the Stadium) in December of 1979. Since the WKRP series was set locally and about rock music, they were kind of forced into doing an episode which turned out to be very sensitively done.

A guy I knew who ran a record store had his leg broken that night and ended up being interviewed by Walter Cronkite on CBS News the next evening. The thing is, I could easily relate because I was knocked down myself at the 1976 Wings concert and could not get up due to the stampeded of fans! In my case, I crawled off to the side and grabbed the first seat I could find. Same venue. Same situation.They banned the so-called "Festival Seating" for years thereafter.

No one told the band that night what had happened so the concert went on but as the audience filed out there were ambulances and hearses taking bodies away. Having only recently lost their legendary drummer to pills, this was another major tragedy for the band and led to Pete Townshend developing a major drinking and drug problem for several years. The Who finally did break up a few years later after only one more album. In recent years, Pete and Roger have toured as "The Who" from time to time (bassist John having since passed also) but they should more accurately be biled as "Two guys who used to be in the Who with an orchestra, a back-up band and two--count 'em TWO--drummers, attempting to re-create the sound 4 English twenty-somethings did on their own 45 years ago."

End of history lesson.

Dee said...

That shows what I know... I didn't realize there was a difference between Riverfront Stadium and Riverfront Coliseum. I remember watching that episode though. It was really sad, which is why my dad and I talked about it.

My only other experiences with Riverfront -Where Ever- was teeny bopper bands in the 90's and a random REO Speedwagon/Styx concert (which was a nightmare and incredible story in itself).

Dee said...

And apparently the concerts I just referred to happened at Riverbend Music Center, not at either of the Riverfront venues. Stupid River names. Ugh.