Joel McHale fans are used to seeing the host of “The Soup” bring the laughs on his E! show and on his NBC hit comedy, “Community.” However, the funnyman is dropping the humor for a decidedly darker role on FX’s biker drama “Sons of Anarchy.”
“This is straight drama,” Joel told AccessHollywood.com’s Laura Saltman of his “SOA” guest role, during an interview on the set of “Community” in Los Angeles on Tuesday. “[It was] incredible. I was really excited because I get to do a lot of fun stuff that I can’t tell you [about].”
Joel, whose character, Warren, gets to be “really bad” on the FX series, said he worked alongside Jimmy Smits and series star Katey Sagal for his two-episode arc, but wouldn’t come clean on whether his character sheds any blood during his short time on the show.
“I’m not going to say [if I kill anyone], because Kurt Sutter, the [show’s] creator, will — it’ll be like a cartoon in that it’ll be like, ‘I can say this,’ and then I’ll turn around and he’ll be standing right there ready to punch me in the face,” he said with a laugh. “No, I got to work with the lovely and beautiful Katey Sagal — most of my scenes were with her, but I did get to work with Jimmy Smits a couple of times and he’s pretty fantastic. I had a ball of a time doing it.”
The actor also praised the “SOA” crew for their smooth efficiency.
“That operation was incredible over there,” he said. “The amount of stunts and locations that they’re doing in one day and on location is amazing… it is impressive.”
Funny enough, the “SOA” gig came about after the cast made an appearance on Joel’s E! show.
“They came on ‘The Soup’ and then Kurt said, ‘Would you wanna come on sometime?’” he explained. “I’m like, ‘Yes!’ — and that’s how I said it too — and so it worked out.”
Beyond biker talk, Joel had a laugh over a repurposed “Community” publicity photo currently circulating online, which shows Prince Harry’s face photoshopped onto Joel’s naked body draped over a pool table as the cast looks on.
“That’s the most press ‘Community’ has gotten in the UK ever and I’m flattered frankly,” Joel said, adding that he’d like to join Prince Harry’s security detail as the person in charge of “the royal black light.”
“Community” returns with new episodes on October 19 at 8:30/7:30c on NBC. “Sons of Anarchy” Season 5 premieres on September 11 at 10/9c on FX.
-- Erin O’Sullivan
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