Kevin Fonteyne [Interview]

kevin-fonteyne

Do you ever have that feeling that you have simply caught a rising star, especially one on the cusp of exploding. I’m speaking figuratively of course, because if you tried to touch and actual star you would probably burn off all of your flesh in milliseconds, and also what are you doing all the way up there? So, yes, figuratively, catching a rising star is a pretty cool thing. Especially in this business. We’ve done it here at TWS a few times (3…that’s a few, right?), and today is no exception. The young man we would like to showcase with you all today is bound to be one of the biggest stars in the acting world in the next decade. His name is Kevin Fonteyne. Many a teenager may recognize from his recurring role as Marco on the hit television show Melissa & Joey, and many a sad housewife may recognize him from a nice run on Masters of Sex.

But, what intrigued me most about Kevin was the promise of an upcoming role that is truly fascinating. Next month, February 23rd to be exact, Kevin can be seen portraying the legendary Johnny Cash in the television adaptation of the Tony Award winning play Million Dollar Quartet that has been aptly re-titled, Sun Records. For music fans out there, this is a really big fucking deal, seriously. For hardcore, and even avid, country, folk, and/or blues fans, the premise of the show has already seeped into your brain, and you are probably pretty damn excited about this if you are hearing it for the first time. Then again, you probably already knew about this months ago, didn’t you? Anyway, for the rest of us out there, this is still an amazing series that is guaranteed to blow your mind. It is the tale of one of the most legendary jam sessions of all time that happened at the now legendary, you guessed it, Sun Records circa 1956 in which Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, and Jimmy Swaggart teamed up to become the official super powers of country music and rock & roll. And our man Kevin will be there as the legendary Man in Black through the whole thing, so we are obviously very excited about it.

Sun Records will premiere on CMT, February 23rd. And we here at TWS are truly hoping they can do this thing right. There are so many details that will most likely be glossed over due to cable television’s bullshit standards, but with an AMAZING cast on board, especially our new friend Kevin, and the direction of Roland Joffe, it’s hard to imagine this project not being at least “good”. So ladies and gentlemen, please enjoy a few words with one of the stars of Sun Records and a man you are destined to see more of in the near future, Kevin Fonteyne.

When did you first realize that you wanted to become an actor? And what keeps you in the business?

I think the first time I knew I wanted to be an actor was when I was in the first grade. Every kid was required to participate in the school play and I was given a role as an ensemble member and not a main part. But everyday during rehearsal there was a particular role that I loved to sing along with and say its lines in the background. On the night of the performance, due to reasons unknown, the young man who had the part didn’t show up. People were freaking out and needed someone who knew it. I said I did and ended up stealing the show! After that I knew performing was what I wanted to do! My love for this craft continues to inspire me to get better and every new character is a challenge which is why I can’t seem to stop doing this.

You had a semi-reoccurring role on the hit television show Melissa & Joey, portraying Joey’s nephew Marco, and a love interest to Lennox as well. How was this experience for you? Was there plenty of fun to be had on a set like this? What are some fond memories you might be able to share with us?

I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of working with everyone on that set. I couldn’t have asked for a better cast and crew to share it with. I fortunately was already friends with Taylor Spreitler (Lennox) before booking the role so it was great working with a friend.

In your career thus far, what would you consider to be the biggest challenges you have had to face to date?

I’d say the biggest challenges I’ve faced so far are also a blessing; they are my roles. I have been fortunate enough throughout my fairly young career to always play a wide variety of characters; from a military cadet, to a patient with epilepsy, and now to portraying the legendary “Man in Black” himself. It’s a challenge to stretch my imagination and body for these roles but I’m eternally grateful to not be typecast.

Have you had any aspirations to work in other aspects of film and television? Are you interested in writing or directing?

If I were to make any sort of venture into another avenue of the entertainment industry, I’d say it would have to be directing/producing. Though very time consuming I can imagine it’d be rewarded tenfold. Seeing your ideas and project take shape from the first infantile stages. As an actor you sometimes have to direct yourself or come up with motivation for a scene. An actor is known for their choices and the same for a director. So I’d say that would be the most logical next step.

Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming gig as Johnny Cash in the series Sun Records that we should be seeing soon in? What sort of preparation did you have to do to take on this role?

The show starts off before any of the music legends have even started their careers. It’s a great almost behind the scenes look at some things that the public wouldn’t know about Johnny; his relationship with his father, dealing with his brother’s untimely death, and joining the Air Force. I didn’t want to just play the idea of Johnny, especially since he is so iconic, so I read his autobiography, another biography, listened to nothing but Johnny Cash records, and practiced playing his songs and getting his voice right. I did anything and everything I could to try and embody this man and do him justice.
kevin-fonteyne-sun-records

There are some real heavy hitters on Sun Records, including the renowned director Roland Joffe? And, of course, our old friend Joe Chrest is in there as well. But, how has it been to work under the direction of such a legend like Mr. Joffe? Do you feel as though your acting chops have been improved? 

Working under someone like Roland was an absolute delight. The man is a visionary. He paints a story and literally every shot looks like a painting. He and I worked really well together. He gives actors a lot of freedom in scenes to do what they feel is right and genuine in the moment. I learned so much under his direction.

Aside from portraying The Man In Black, what else can where can we look forward to seeing you soon?

My team and I are currently getting a few projects lined up that I’m not currently at liberty to discuss.

What was the last thing that made you smile?

I just recently rescued a dog and it has been the most rewarding experience thus far. He makes me smile everyday.

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About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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