The embodiment of brawn, beauty, talent and brains, actor Mehcad Brooks is a sight for sore eyes in the somewhat stale Hollywood landscape. You may recognize the rising star from his numerous movie and TV appearances, including “Desperate Housewives,” “The Game.” However, it’s Mehcad’s breakout role of the captivating and complex drifter known as “Eggs,” on HBO’s hit series “True Blood” that earned him international recognition, and the opportunity share his well-honed craft with a wider audience.
Single and completely committed to his career, Mehcad confesses that health, family and music are the most important things in his life. As we ‘speak,’ Brooks is enduring a demanding schedule consisting of 3 new films and a new role as the “lovable douche bag” in ABC’s new mid-season legal drama “The Deep End.” Despite it all, the sexy Renaissance Man managed to set time aside for a convo with Clutch; revealing an adventurous, cultured, thoughtful, and alluring actor on the rise.
Clutch: When did you decide to pursue acting? Were you inspired by your modeling career?
Mehcad: My modeling career inspired me to date models. That’s about it. (Laughs). I paid for portions of college through modeling and that was the main purpose. I was always uncomfortable standing still in front of cameras. I just felt plain stupid.
Clutch: So when were you bitten by the acting bug?
Mehcad: I’ve wanted to be an actor since I saw my first opera live at the age of 15. Then later that summer I wrote, directed and acted in a play with my brother and I knew I wanted to be an actor professionally. I was always the class clown and I figured I may as well get paid for it. It was ironic, my brother and I would watch Eddie Murphy’s Raw and Delirious everyday after school before our parents got home. It never occurred to me that he was being paid to entertain people. And that really fascinated me.
Clutch: You participated in the Tag the World Triathlon this past summer; They can be pretty grueling. Do you participate in those types of events frequently?
Mehcad: It was actually my first triathlon. I’m just glad I finished. I normally don’t do those types of things but it was to raise money and awareness for foster children in Hawaii. That’s really close to my heart.
Clutch: Lucky for us ladies, you appear quite often on screen in a topless state. You are in REALLY good shape. Have you always been so fitness conscious? What’s your diet and work out regimen?
Mehcad: I just work out more days than not…or try to at least. I also am on a strict regimented french fry and pizza diet. Depending what you put on the pizza, one can cover all the major food groups. (Laughing). Actually I grew up in a healthy household. Mom cooked fish, turkey, chicken, etc. Fresh veggies. I lucked out. Food is fuel for the body and if you can put good fuel in your car then you should do the same for your body.
Clutch: It’s no secret that you are a very handsome, talented man. Do you ever feel objectified when the press focuses on your striking physical appearance?
Mehcad: I’m uncomfortable even answering that question because it means I’m agreeing with your opinion. It can make you uncomfortable at times but it comes with the territory more or less. There were plenty of days I was sitting on my sofa wishing someone would at least say…”hey aren’t you that guy from..?”
Clutch: Many of our readers remember you from “The Game” where you played Jerome, Melanie’s love interest, but you’ve been featured in many movies and television series. In the long run, what direction do you see your career going?
Mehcad: The direction my career will take? As long as I keep working I’m like a kid at Christmas. Or Chanukah, whichever holiday you get more presents on (haha). I’m going to direct and produce one day and I’m writing and developing a romantic comedy at the moment.
Clutch: Excellent. We’ll definitely be on the look out for that. We want to know more about you. Your on screen presence is powerful and unique, can we know a little more about the man behind the script – who fuels the magic? In other words, what makes you tick; brings you joy?
Mehcad: What makes me tick? I’m a pretty simple guy. I like the simple things in life. I’m very close to my family and keep positive people in my life. I also love to meditate. It centers me and it’s a great way to relieve stress. I love being out in nature and traveling. Seeing the world firsthand forces you to understand how we are all interconnected and makes you more responsible about giving back to the Earth and protecting her gifts. And you can always find me on my guitar, on my Wii and recently on a surfboard.
Clutch: Describe your personality.
Mehcad: Personality. Hmmm. I’m really outgoing. I try to live life to its fullest extent everyday. But I’m a nerd and proud to admit it. Being smart and educated is sexy and we need to get that right. We have had it flipped as a culture for too long.
Clutch: That’s the truth and it’s high time people recognize that. So, what’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced as an actor?
Mehcad: The biggest challenge I’ve faced as an actor was a character named Salaam Alexander from an upcoming film entitled Fencewalker. He had an innocence about him that I lost years ago. He hadn’t seen or known the world to be quite as cold a place as it can be from time to time. Humans are so fragile. And he was hard to embody because he goes through so much in the duration of the film. Some of it was so devastating that I just had to accept the circumstances of what was happening to him and it was tough. Really tough.
Clutch: Your depiction of Eggs was major element of True Blood’s success this past season. What was it like being on the cast of such a outstanding series?
Mehcad: True Blood was an incredible experience. Exceptional writing. We were blessed enough to allow the human animal to run free in our performances with impunity. We’d sit around set and ask ourselves, “Are we really getting paid for this?” It was therapeutic.
Clutch: What are your thoughts on Eggs’ tragic demise? Bon Temps will never be the same, and True Blood fans will miss him dearly (ahem). Can we ever expect to see Eggs (perhaps in different form) again?
Mehcad: Eggs coming back to Bon Temps? Your guess is as good as mine. I think I would have made a bad ass vampire. But you have to trust a mind as creative as Alan Ball’s. He knows what he’s doing and it was a pleasure working with him.
Clutch: Yes. ‘Eggs the vampire’ would’ve been sexy as hell. Tell us about your new role on ABC’s upcoming drama “The Deep End,” and your thoughts on portraying this character.
Mehcad: My new character is Malcolm Bennett. He’s a young hot-shot attorney. I see him as a cross between a young Barack Obama and Jeremy Piven’s “Ari”. He’s a charming, straightforward, lovable douche bag with a touch of sensitivity. Dave Hemingson is a brilliant writer and he’s really rounded out a well-conceived cast of characters with real strengths and as well as weaknesses. It’s a joy to play someone so complex, diligent and dynamic.
Mehcad revealed himself to be a dynamic, gifted, charismatic and quite frankly, enticing individual. We concluded our talk with Mehcad’s response to a question of the guiding principle in his life:
My personal philosophy is a quote from Douglas Wilder: “The fear of error is the death of success.”
Keep your eye on Mehcad Brooks. This self-proclaimed nerd is not only redefines the term, but enhances its meaning. The antithesis of one dimensional, Brooks is the real thing. We look forward to witnessing the driven, creative-spirit continually break the mold, creating a new image in Hollywood.
[Photo Credit: Darren Tieste]