Derek Theler is relishing taking part in the dangerous man for the primary time. He spoke EXCLUSIVELY with HL about taking part in a personality really named Sasquatch, his coaching for the function, and extra.
68 Whiskey premieres Jan. 15 on Paramount Network. The all-new comedy-drama collection follows a multicultural band of Army medics stationed in Afghanistan on a base nicknamed “The Orphanage.” Derek Theler stars as Sasquatch — sure, that’s his identify — who’s the dangerous man we’re going to all like to hate. Sasquatch goes to be dealing with off with Roback and even hitting the boxing ring for some gnarly fights.
HollywoodLife sat down EXCLUSIVELY with Derek on the Television Critics Association winter press tour about taking part in Sasquatch and taking over the function of the antagonist for the primary time. Derek loves that he’s in a position to do “something totally different” from his longtime function on Baby Daddy. He was even in a position to tease Sasquatch’s arc over the course of the season. Derek additionally mentioned coaching for the function and speaking with troopers about their experiences.
What stood out in regards to the function of Sasquatch? Besides the identify, after all.
Derek Theler: As quickly as I learn the script, I cherished this function. The man’s identify is Sasquatch. That’s what my sister used to name me once I was rising up, so it was like an instantaneous connection. I’ve by no means had the chance to play the antagonist in a present. You don’t know his morals otherwise you usually query whether or not he’s a great man or dangerous man. He’s bought actually good intentions, however he’s additionally working for a extremely shady firm. All these issues gave the impression of the proper subsequent step for me in my profession to do one thing completely totally different and actually get into it. I’ve been having a good time to date.
What’s it been like for you as an actor to steadiness the drama and the comedy parts of the present?
Derek Theler: Laughing is one of the best drugs, and for these troopers who’re on the market, the stakes are so excessive and the one approach for them to remain sane and never stress out an excessive amount of is to search out humor in it. That’s what the present does. There are these moments the place life is on the road and there’s any person who’s critically injured. It’s a battle present. Not everybody makes it, however you’ve these actually heartfelt collection and solemn moments blended in with the humor. I believe that’s what makes the present so particular as a result of they discover plenty of jokes of their environment and the conditions they’re in. But the subsequent scene is perhaps they must go rescue somebody, so it’s a really distinctive strategy. I really feel prefer it’s a pleasant take a look at as an actor.
Sasquatch is launched because the antagonist, such as you mentioned. What else are you able to tease about his arc?
Derek Theler: Sasquatch is launched within the first episode as Durkin’s boyfriend they usually have a longtime relationship. His arc is an fascinating one to look at as a result of Durkin can also be sleeping with Roback, which turns into an issue and comes out within the open ultimately within the first season. I believe Sasquatch understanding that sort of drives a few of his future selections and what finally ends up taking place is you begin to see a few of his darkish aspect.
What was the coaching like for the present? Did you need to undergo navy coaching?
Derek Theler: There’s plenty of coaching that comes with being a soldier so all of us who’re play troopers within the present and went to the gun vary to work with weapons. I’ve at all times been conversant in weapons as a result of I grew up on a navy base. So taking part in a soldier has at all times been in my coronary heart. We educated with weapons, we educated with weights. The combat choreography took plenty of work. We work with the stunt workforce for that as a result of my character is like this MMA fighter and I don’t have that a lot expertise with that. That was one thing that I needed to get thrown into and take a pair extra boxing lessons and attempt to look the half as a result of Sasquatch is such an knowledgeable. That was thrilling for me as a result of these are all issues that I by no means bought to do on a sitcom.
We have to speak in regards to the boxing scene. How did that scene come about?
Derek Theler: First of all, we need to entertain an viewers however the subsequent most necessary factor is that it’s genuine and sensible. One factor that we’re very happy with is that we now have a navy advisor in each division on the present. So on the subject of the writers to the wardrobe to autos to our gear, we now have any person who’s an knowledgeable and who’s been to Afghanistan within the navy. Apparently, this in-ring MMA preventing factor is a bit little bit of a stretch however it’s nonetheless fairly enjoyable.
Did you discuss to troopers in any respect about their expertise?
Derek Theler: The advisors that we now have are veterans and ex-soldiers. I’ve a few shut associates of mine who I grew up with on a navy base. My three greatest associates in highschool all grew to become profession navy members. I’ve a good friend who grew to become an F-16 pilot within the Air Force and is stationed in Belgium proper now. I’ve bought an in depth good friend who’s going to Duke University to get his grasp’s diploma however he’s an Army Ranger. He’s getting his grasp’s diploma in political science and return on the market. He spent two excursions in Afghanistan. So I used to be on the telephone with him for hours and hours at a time speaking about what it’s like speaking to Afghan villagers and what life is like. How ought to I practice so far as understanding? So I’ve had plenty of alternatives to perform a little research and get in contact with my previous associates that approach.
Will we ever be taught Sasquatch’s actual identify?
Derek Theler: I do know it however it’s by no means talked about. Nobody is aware of it. It’s on this script. I don’t know if I ought to let you know what it’s. I don’t suppose it’s tremendous secretive. I don’t suppose any of the solid is aware of my identify. My precise identify is Roger McCauley. Don’t inform them, they’ll most likely make enjoyable of Roger as a result of Sasquatch is how I’m identified. But that’s his actual identify.
Did you need to develop the beard for the function?
Derek Theler: Yes. The humorous reality about that’s once I learn the script I used to be clean-shaven on the time. From the second I learn the script, I haven’t lower a hair on my physique. That was an fascinating factor, rising my beard out and seeing how lengthy I might get it and by no means having a beard in my life earlier than. There have been a number of individuals who have been a bit bit nervous to start with about if I might get the beard to the place it wanted to be for a reputation like Sasquatch.