MR. BICOASTAL: John Gallagher, Jr.
Featured in Bello Mag #48 July 2013 Beautiful Issue.
John Gallagher, Jr.’s first genuine L.A. experience involved flipping the bird to an impatient driver while commuting to the set of ‘The Newsroom,’ the HBO drama that returns for a second season this month. He attempted to make a left turn at one of the city’s many tricky intersections when a fellow driver laid on his horn.
“I got into a terrible road rage fight,” the Tony Award winner admits. “I let my emotions get the better of me. The guy proceeded to hang out his window and scream at me…I got to work, and I was terrified that this person was going to hunt me down, but that’s just me seeing too many movies.”
The Wilmington, Delaware native may have been a far cry from the pedestrianfriendlier sidewalks and subways of New York City, where he first soaked up the spotlight on Broadway in careerdefining projects like ‘Spring Awakening,’ but he’s gradually adjusting to his bicoastal situation now that’s he spending equal amounts of time in both cities.
“I thought New York City might as well have been on the other side of the moon growing up,” he remembers. It wasn’t until he started going into Manhattan for auditions that realized how close he was to the city – and his dreams.
Having grown as an actor on the stage, he thinks his theater background prepared him to tackle equally challenging roles in TV and film, especially while reciting those Aaron Sorkinwritten mouthfuls of dialogue as producer Jim Harper on ‘The Newsroom.’
“The muscle is already stretched, having already learned how to cover long passages of dialogue,” he explains. “The way Aaron writes is very musical and very specific, and so you want to be word perfect when you’re learning your lines because they’re like musical notes. They’re there for a reason. They all fit together. If you lose one, you lose some of the thread.”
Another challenge while making the transition from stage to screen: Those crackofdawn schedules. “Consistently getting up before the sun is up,” says the selfproclaimed night owl, “was a little scary.”
WHAT’S NEXT FOR JOHN: Starring alongside Brie Larson in August’s indie dramedy ‘Short Term 12,’ or what he calls “one of the best experiences I’ve ever had as an actor.” Based on the awardwinning short film, the Sundance and SXSW crowdpleaser is about a couple of twentysomethings who work at a foster care center for teens. “There’s some very intense and upsetting subject matter, but the movie itself is so full of life, love, hope and family.”
HIS SUMMER PLANS:The first thing he’s going to do once he’s back in New York is travel up to Vassar College, where he’ll get to workshop a play he wrote called ‘Sláinte’ (the name is a Celtic term which means “cheers” or “health” during celebratory toasts).
HOW HE DEFINES “BEAUTIFUL”: “To me, I like to keep an open mind and not have too much of a definition of what beautiful can be because I find that it can be very surprising. Things that you would have never imagined can strike you as beautiful and sometimes come around the corner and take your breath away. So, I try to keep an open mind and let that definition always be evolving.”
This fashion story from Bello Mag Issue #48 with John Gallagher, Jr. is available to purchase worldwide on iTunes Newsstand for iPad and iPhone.