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  • Actor of the Day: Nick Mundy

    Today’s featured actor is Nick Mundy! Learn more about this talented guy below!

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    THE PERSONAL:

    1. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background? 

    I’m from Spring, Texas, just outside of Houston, and I wear khaki shorts a lot.

    2. Tell us about your acting/writing career so far

    I co-founded the sketch comedy group Team Tiger Awesome; we have done work for Comedy Central, ABC, College Humor, Funny or Die, etc. We’re currently re-writing a feature script written by the creators of How I Met your Mother. As far as acting, I recur on Conan and recently did a pilot for Disney.

    3. What is your dream job/role/project? 

    Become General Manager of the Houston Astros.

    4. Who inspires you most in your field?

    Jesus. Jesus Estrada, dude I met in City of Industry. Great dude.

    THE PROJECT:

    1. Who do you play in Jewvangelist? Tell us about him.

    Guy who opens door then yells at people then closes the door.

    2. Which aspect of your character’s personality is closest to your own? Which is the furthest? 

    …the yelling.

    3. What drew you to Jewvangelist?

    All the quality people attached to the project. Also, all the paper they were slinging my way.

    4. Tell us a story about something that happened on set. 

    I asked a grip if I could have a triscuit cracker and he said sure. (I was there for an hour.)

    5. What makes Jewvangelist a must-see?

    I haven’t seen it. So I must see it.

    THE WILD CARD:

    What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?

    I bought Hulk Hogan a beer when I was 14.

  • Featured Core Team Member of the Day: Kaitlin Walsh

    Today’s featured Jewvangelist is our lovely Executive Producer, Kaitlin Walsh. Keep reading to find out all kinds of neat things about Kaitlin!

    THE PERSONAL:

    1. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background? 

    I grew up in Connecticut and in the theater world. As a kid, I thought I wanted to be an actress – until my mother (with much love) eventually convinced me that I might be better behind the scenes. Thank goodness for her, as she was absolutely right. At Connecticut College, I designed my own major (a combination of Theater, Film Studies and Creative Writing Courses) to focus on Television. While there, one of my film professors suggested that, unlike most other Film students, it seemed my interests leaned more toward producing than directing. Because of this conversation, I then went to Chapman University to get my MFA in Film & Television Producing. That’s where I met Becky – she was in my thesis film! 

    2. Tell us about your producing career so far. 

    I spent a little while bouncing around in post production and reality TV, until I landed a dream gig as an NBC Page. From there, I got one network job in current television and then another one in television development, where I remain. I’m a very lucky girl – I get to do what I love every single day. 

    3. What is your dream job/project? 

    To continue along the path I’m on. I want to keep growing in the TV development world and to continue working closely with writers to create stories that people will want to follow and characters that people will want to invite into their living rooms. 

    4. Who inspires you most in your field?

    Jason Katims (the EP behind FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS and PARENTHOOD), hands down. I am so inspired by his ability to create characters I truly love. FNL and PARENTHOOD are two of my favorite TV shows – I think they are some of the most beautiful shows out there. Working with Jason Katims is one of my biggest career goals. 

    THE PROJECT:

    1. Who do you play in Jewvangelist? Tell us about him or her.

    I don’t! I am one of the EPs – the “mom” behind the project, if you will. As the “mom,” I have had to be both the nurturing parent and the disciplinarian. ;) It’s been a lot of work, but it’s been even more fun. 

    2. Which aspect of your character’s personality is closest to your own? Which is the furthest?
     
    Closest: As the producer, I had to be the boss. Fortunately, as an oldest child, I’m pretty used to being bossy. :) Furthest? Well, it’s nice to be getting some sleep again! I was working on just a few hours a night during production. Does that count? 

    3. What drew you to Jewvangelist?

    Becky. When Becky told me her idea for a story, I was immediately interested. Also, as her friend, I am really invested in seeing her succeed as an actress – and I knew this was the best way for her to showcase her talents. When I (almost immediately!) got Christian to come on board to write it, I realized we had something really special on our hands. Jewvangelist was a no-brainer for me. 

    4. Tell us a story about something that happened on set. 

    I think people have covered most of the fun stories at this point… but one thing that comes to mind is that one Sunday at 6:15am, on my way to Arcadia for set, one of my tires blew – it didn’t just pop, it BLEW – on the freeway. I had to pull over into a nice Pasadena neighborhood, call AAA, and direct people on how to get into the location from miles away. Fortunately, the crew was a pretty well-oiled machine at this point, so I’m pretty sure all people were really missing was the food in my car!

    5. What makes Jewvangelist a must-see?

    The heart in it. Jewvangelist is a story about a passionate character, created and told by passionate people. It is so clear how much love and work went into this project. Leah Levy and her eclectic group are all so much fun and so loveable – you won’t be able to help but get swept up in their oddball mission. 

    THE WILD CARD:

    What do you look for in a significant other?

    Curly hair, warm brown eyes, and a hell of an evil laugh. [Relevant Note: Kaitlin is dating Michael Saltzman, who plays Asher in the series.]
  • Actor of the Day: Becky Kramer

    Becky Kramer is “Jewvangelist”’s creator and lead actress. Learn more about Becky below!

    THE PERSONAL:

    1. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background? 

    I was born in Atlanta, Georgia and raised in St. Petersburg, Florida. I began performing in musical theater at the age of six, and continued doing so throughout my college years at Emory University. I never planned nor did I ever imagine that I would pursue a career in acting; it was always something that I did just for fun. However, after trying a bunch of different things in my early twenties (I worked in publishing in Manhattan, joined the Peace Corps, was an author’s research assistant, and lived in Paris), I realized that perhaps the career happiness that I was looking for but hadn’t yet found lay in acting. I moved back to New York City and began studying the Meisner Technique at the William Esper Studio. In 2006, I took an Acting for Film class and fell in love with the medium. I knew that Los Angeles was the place I needed to be (both to work in film and tv and to escape the freezing New York winters!), and I moved here in 2007.

    2. Tell us about your acting career so far. 

    When I moved to LA from NYC, I had very little on-camera experience, so my initial goal was simply to gain that experience; I started out by auditioning primarily for student films, which I figured would be a great way to practice auditioning and, when I booked one, to learn about the film-making process in an environment where everyone else was learning too. I built my resume and reel this way, and also ended up meeting Kaitlin Walsh, “Jewvangelist”’s producer, who cast me in her thesis film at Chapman University in 2008. 

    I joined the union in 2010, and in the years that followed, grew tired of waiting around for someone to cast me in a really great role. I decided that I wanted to create that role for myself. I first came up with the idea for “Jewvangelist” a few years ago, but put it on the back burner after receiving feedback that I should stay away from religion in my work. However, I could not get the character of Leah Levy out of my head, and last February, when I told my friend Kaitlin my idea, she immediately embraced it, telling me that if I wanted to make it, she would help me get it done - and she did!

    3. What is your dream job/role/project? 

    I would love to be a series regular in a successful, long-running television show. I just love the idea of getting to inhabit the same role over a period of years and getting to really live that character’s life day in and day out. 

    4. Who inspires you the most in your field?

    I’m inspired by female comedic actors like Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Amy Poelher, and Tina Fey, women who lead shows, create their own work, and are funny and smart.

    THE PROJECT:

    1. Who do you play in Jewvangelist? Tell us about him or her.

    I play Rabbi Leah Levy, the young-ish leader of Temple Beth Shalom, a congregation that is fading fast. Leah inherited the temple from her father, she loves being a Rabbi, and she desperately wants to be successful, but she’s having a difficult time doing so. Faced with an ultimatum to increase the size of the congregation or lose her synagogue forever, she decides to boldly go where no Jew has gone before….to convert people! As she seeks out different experts to teach her how to evangelize, she meets all kinds of interesting characters and has many comedic misadventures.

    2. Which aspect of your character’s personality is closest to your own? Which is the furthest? 

    I think Leah and I share the same passion for the things that we love and the same desire to succeed. I hope I’m a bit less naive than she is.

    3. What drew you to Jewvangelist?

    The chance to create and star in my own project was too good to pass up. Kaitlin built an amazing team, we cast wonderful actors, and it was really just a joy to take the series from inception to completion with so many talented people.

    4. Tell us a story about something that happened on set. 

    The day we filmed at the Santa Anita Church (our stand-in for Pastor Price’s church, which you will see in Episode Four) was the same day as the Santa Anita Breeder’s Cup, the biggest horse racing event of the year at the Santa Anita Race Track in Arcadia. Arcadia is typically a pretty quiet place, but on this day, with the huge race in town, helicopters were flying back and forth, music was blasting from the track, voices were blaring over the loudspeakers…and did I mention that the church and the race track are barely a mile apart? And that we had exterior shots that we needed to get? It was kind of a nightmare. Terrence (Pastor Price) and I and the crew would get ready to shoot, we would wait and wait and wait until it seemed like there was a break in the cacophony of noise coming from the race track, Aaron would yell action, we would start the scene, and we’d immediately get drowned out again by the noise. What a day!

    5. What makes Jewvangelist a must-see?

    Christian Ayers’ writing is brilliant and so funny. We have actors of all ages who do phenomenal work. The story is completely unique. I promise you that this series is unlike anything you’ve ever seen!

    THE WILD CARD:

    What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?

    That would have to be traveling around Cote d'Ivoire, West Africa, by myself.
  • Actor of the Day: Alex Trugman

    Today’s Featured Actor is Alex Trugman. Learn more about Jewvangelist’s resident American Idol below.

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    THE PERSONAL:

    1. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background? 

    I was born and raised in Los Angeles. A rare local. My background is mainly Eastern European, but there is some German in there as well. Well, if you want to be accurate, I think my ancestors came over while it was still Prussia, since it was before the Franco-Prussian War. So, Prussian and Russian. Or, technically, Belarusian. My father’s side all came from Minsk, which is currently in Belarus, but at the time was in Russia, or maybe in the USSR? No, they definitely came over before the Soviet Union came into play. Oh! Also, I think I’m a quarter English… Wait, is this not what you meant by “background?” Oh.

    2. Tell us about your acting career so far. 

    I started acting in high school to get babes. I kept acting because I liked acting, which distracted from the disappointment regarding the babes. 

    I also sing, studied music in college, was on American Idol, and put out a CD with an indie label. That was fun too.

    3. What is your dream job/role/project? 

    The Chronicles of Special Agent Magnum Explosionberg:  he’s a hard-nosed detective who fights crime and laughs in the face of danger. He is married to Jennifer Lawrence and his sidekick is Shaq. I’m pitching it to HBO in 2014. In a perfect world, I’d play Special Agent Magnum, but if they went with Chris Evans, I’d get it.

    4. Who inspires you most in your field?

    Tripp Hopley. His passion, tenacity, and optimism inspire me on a daily basis. If I discovered that I was to be portrayed in a hit web series by Jayme Bell, I’d be devastated. How could I hope to go on with my life, always being compared to the glorious, handsome, beast-of-a-man that is Jayme Bell? I couldn’t. But Tripp Hopley took it in stride. He said, “sure, I’ll never be Hollywood mega-hunk Jayme Bell, but I’m Tripp Hopley, and I guess that’s okay too.” God bless you, Tripp Hopley. God bless you.

    THE PROJECT:

    1. Who do you play in Jewvangelist? Tell us about him.

    I play Jay, the cantor at Beth Shalom who has much bigger dreams of making it as a pop star. Much like his idol, R. Kelly, Jay believes it is his duty to spray his gift all over the music world. While Jay describes his voice as “Streisand-esque,” others are not as enthusiastic, and tend to be turned off by his “lack of any discernible skill.” But I think they’re just being petty.

    2. Which aspect of your character’s personality is closest to your own? Which is the furthest? 

    Both Jay and I are known for our breathtaking talent, muscular physique, perfect hair, and overall humility. The only real difference between the two of us is that he wears a necklace.

    3. What drew you to Jewvangelist?
    The money. You would not believe how much they pay us. I mean holy smokes! I looked at the script and went “I don’t know,” but then they showed me how much I’d be making each day and I said “Sign me up!” Wait… what? We’re not? Deferred? Oh…well in that case I GUESS it would have to be the strong script, great cast, professional crew, and amazing people involved on the project. That was good as well, I guess.

    4. Tell us a story about something that happened on set. 

    While filming a scene, I sprained my right buttock. I would explain further, but I want to leave this up to your imagination. For the rest of the day, we rewrote a few scenes so that I could be sitting and allow my sprained buttock time to heal. To this day, my buttock still hurts when rain is coming. 

    5. What makes Jewvangelist a must-see?

    If you watch it, you get the chance to be the guy at your Emmy watch party who goes, “Psh, yeah I guess Jim Parsons was alright, but that award definitely should have gone to Alex.” How can you say no to that?

    THE WILD CARD:

    Do you ever feel like the universe might be telling you something? If so, what?

    Yes, I do. In fact I hear it right now. Let me translate… “Alex, tell the people reading this that if they don’t watch “Jewvangelist” and share it with all their friends, I will put a curse on them and their lives will be filled with misfortune and suffering.” Woah! Universe, that sounds really severe. I mean, yes, we can all agree that “Jewvangelist” is a great show that people should watch and share, but I don’t think we need to resort to threatening our — what is that? Really? We do? Dang. Sorry guys, its mind is made up. My hands are tied. So… watch “Jewvangelist”, or else, I guess.
  • Actor of the Day: Michael Saltzman

    Today’s Featured Actor is Michael Saltzman! Keep reading to learn more about Michael.

    THE PERSONAL:

    1. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background? 

    I was born and raised in Washington DC. I’m a proud graduate of both the Duke Ellington School of the Arts and the University of Maryland Theatre Department.

    2. Tell us about your acting/ writing/ directing career so far. 

    I’ve been acting since I was very young. I was mostly doing theatre in the DC area until 2012, when I moved to Los Angeles. I’m a founding member of the Flying V theatre company and an artistic associate with the Pointless Theatre company (they’re both amazing and you should check them out if you’re ever in DC). I’ve directed a few shows as well, done sound design for several plays, dabbled in writing, and I also produced hip hop instrumentals for Phatal Records as DJ Awkward Silence.

    I arrived in LA just over a year ago, and Jewvangelist is definitely the biggest project I’ve been a part of so far. That said, I recently got to play a giant chip in a commercial for Hulu, which was surprisingly awesome. I’ve also done some voice acting and improvisation in the area.

    3. What is your dream job/ role/ project?

    I had a dream where I was a time detective from the future who had been framed for trying to overthrow the government. That was a pretty cool dream job.

    I’d love for my career to be some kind of hybrid of Seth Rogen and Paul Giamatti. I get compared to Rogen by a lot by people, and I think the kinds of roles he plays are hilarious and would completely embrace that. With Giamatti, I love that he started out doing character acting, but found his place as a lead in movies like American Splendor (one of my favorite films) by staying true to himself and his craft. It allows him to play really versatile roles, from loveable and neurotic leads to conniving and manipulative villains.

    At some point in the distant future, in my dreamland I’d help found an artists collective of some sort where we would develop projects for both the stage and screen. We would work in repertory, so we’d rotate roles and positions on different projects. There would be a strong educational component as well (either classes taught through a program or it would be associated with a school) and there would be community outreach programs as well (I’m particularly interested in working with inmates and with prison reform groups). 

    4. Who inspires you most in your field?

    That’s a tough question; I draw inspiration from a lot of people (family, friends, and teachers, of course). In terms of artists who inspire me, Anna Deavere Smith has been a huge influence since high school, not just as an actress but as an embodiment of a serious artist. I couldn’t begin to list all of the filmmakers, actors, and artists that have influenced me though.

    THE PROJECT:

    1. Who do you play in Jewvangelist? Tell us about him.

    I play Asher, an undercover FBI agent investigating human trafficking and a drug ring operating within the Orthodox community. He’s a complicated man, and no one understands him but his bubbe.

    Actually, Asher is Leah’s twin brother. He’s the younger twin, and for most of his life he’s been reminded in one way or another that he’s number 2. Even though it’s not really her fault, Asher has long held a grudge against his sister for making him second fiddle. When his father chose to leave his congregation in Leah’s hands, rather than Asher’s, it was the last straw.

    Asher has a pretty unhealthy obsession with proving that he’s better than his sister. Which, by the way, he is.

    2. Which aspect of your character’s personality is closest to your own? Which is the furthest? 

    Loud, inappropriate laughter. I also think Asher is lost a little bit in his own fantasy about what the world is like, and I definitely feel that way myself sometimes.

    3. What drew you to Jewvangelist?

    The people. I’ve been a part of the project since almost day one because I’m extremely close with everyone involved. When a group of really smart, talented, driven people get together to make something, you want to be a part of it.

    4. Tell us a story about something that happened on set. 

    I’m a pretty big fan of the show Community, and they hum this song called Daybreak all the time on that show (beware looking it up, it WILL get stuck in your head). I came to set with it stuck on repeat in my head one day, and I just started humming it both to help exorcise it from my brain, but also to see who would recognize the reference. Before long, pretty much every single person on set was humming “Daybreak” every time there was any kind of lull on set or they were setting up a shot. It was fantastic.

    5. What makes Jewvangelist a must-see?

    I don’t really think there are any series (web or otherwise) that are out right now that tackle the same kind of themes and stories we do with Jewvangelist. I think religion is a tough topic to tackle, especially in a comedy, and it’s rare to see someone do it without being drippingly sarcastic or critical. I think we take a much warmer, welcoming approach with this show.

    THE WILD CARD:

    1) What do you look for in a significant other?

    Sense of humor. Passion. Talent. Intelligence. Kindness. Someone who will call me out when I need it and help me stay true to myself.
  • Actor of the Day: Willem Van der Vegt

    Today’s featured actor is Willem Van der Vegt! Read more about Will below.

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    THE PERSONAL:

    1. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background?

    I’m originally from the Netherlands; my whole family is too, except for some Spanish on my mother’s side (hence my obvious dark features). I grew up in Hong Kong and Hungary, so I feel more like a mutt than anything else. It’s definitely been something that has helped shape my personality, since when you’re exposed to so many different people from different origins you become very open minded, always a good thing to have I believe.

    2. Tell us about your acting career so far.

    It’s been going well. At the moment I have been enjoying focusing more on comedy and improv then anything else. I perform monthly with a group I study with and it’s a great way to learn to be lightning quick on your feet in front of an audience. 

    3. What is your dream job/role/project?

    Probably something in the action genre; as much as I love drama and comedy, I would like to just run around with a big gun while things blow up around me. You can’t really do that in the theater.

    4. Who inspires you most in your field?

    Gary Oldman. The way he has changed from role to role throughout his whole career is something that keeps me wanting to constantly better myself. He has always been for me a standard to strive for.

    THE PROJECT:

    1. Who do you play in Jewvangelist? Tell us about him.

    I play Perry Lovejoy, a big ol’ hunk with a heart of gold who has to hide the fact that he is gay from his deeply religious family and community. He enjoys doing squats and lunges and has a deep bond with Jay from the second they first meet. 

    2. Which aspect of your character’s personality is closest to your own? Which is the furthest?

    Closest I would say I’m a pretty sweet guy (just don’t ask my ex; she might not be so kind). Furthest, well I tend to believe men should never wear capri pants.

    3. What drew you to Jewvangelist?

    Before I knew anyone? It was the hilarious writing of Chris Ayers. Any time you read something and it makes you laugh out loud more then once you know you’re on to something.

    4. Tell us a story about something that happened on set.

    Well I don’t want to get into too much detail but on the first day of filming, a certain someone and I may have eaten half of the catering for everyone on set before the cameras started to roll…

    5. What makes Jewvangelist a must-see?

    The energy of the cast and crew. Everyone involved in this project was crazy committed, giving up way too much of their free time. It was an incredibly fun set and I think that definitely will show in the final product.

    THE WILD CARD:

    What is your spirit animal?

    Probably a bear. I like to sleep a lot, especially during the winter time. So perhaps it’s a bear mixed with a lion because I always feel the need to be fearless and excel and better myself in whatever areas of life. I guess if lions were humans I feel that might be traits of theirs, but then again I never have spoken to one.
  • Actor of the Day: Jayme Bell

    Today’s “Jewvangelist” Featured Actor is Jayme Bell! Keep reading to find out all kinds of cool stuff about Jayme.

    THE PERSONAL:

    1. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background? 

    I am from the suburbs of Maryland (Montgomery County) and I have been acting (a fool) and writing comedy since I was a kid. 

    2. Tell us about your acting career so far. 

    I have acted in all the school plays that ever were, then I kept right on chugging and went on through to the University of Maryland where I received my BA in Theatre. My time there was strongly defined by my active involvement in UMD’s premier sketch comedy group, Sketchup. Before moving out, I started acting onstage and on-camera in the Washington DC scene for a couple years. I filmed the independent feature film, Rise of the Fellowship (available on Netflix now!) and I even went on a brief, mini-tour with the Impressionable Players’ production of Romeo & Juliet: Choose Your Own Ending, a show where we the actors had to memorize eight different endings and be prepared to perform any of them at the drop of a hat, which was one of the most rewarding experiences I have had to this date. Since I’ve moved to Los Angeles, I now do a lot more on-camera work. You may have seen me in a Rocksmith video game commercial this fall, as well as a commercial for Toronja Sol soda on Univision. I also regularly write/produce/perform in comedic sketches on my YouTube channel, DinotopiaComedy. 

    3. What is your dream job/role/project? 

    My dream project would probably be….a leading role in a Judd Apatow-esque tv show or movie where I play a character who is absolutely insane.

    4. Who inspires you most in your field?

    Michael Saltzman.
    And Steve Carell. But mostly Michael Saltzman.

    THE PROJECT:

    1. Who do you play in Jewvangelist? Tell us about him.

    I play Tripp Hopley, an enthusiastic Mormon missionary-to-be, who can’t wait to get out in the world and spread the word of Mormonism, but just can’t get anyone to hear him out!

    2. Which aspect of your character’s personality is closest to your own? Which is the furthest? 

    The part of Tripp that is most like me is his optimism and sheer, blind energy. And the parts of him that are the furthest from me are his innocence and naivete. 

    3. What drew you to Jewvangelist?

    I was first approached by Kaitlin Walsh (our lovely executive producer) to audition, but what really drew me to the project was the professionalism and the passion everyone seemed to share for the project. And anything that was written by Christian Ayers can’t be all bad.

    4. Tell us a story about something that happened on set. 

    One day on set we all got in a circle and started giving each other back massages. Things can get a little stressful, so it was really nice to see everyone willing to help out and get a little hands-on. It was definitely some much appreciated and much needed cast/crew love. 

    5. What makes Jewvangelist a must-see?

    I think the thing that makes Jewvangelist a must-see is the awesome characters and how well they play off each other! Everybody in the cast did an amazing job committing to their parts and we had so much fun acting out these scenes with each other. And it really shows.

    THE WILD CARD:

    What is your spirit animal?

    My spirit animal is definitely a pug. Weird face, big eyes, full of energy, very affectionate, usually being too loud, but very playful.