“I ride motorcycles” – Marc Kudisch (Dr. Gus in Billions)

“Know what you have to say and why you uniquely need to say it, know that it’s all about the audience, that it’s about engaging them in a conversation” Is the motto he lives by throughout his whole career which started in 1968 in the show ‘One life to live’ as Steve Lasko. He has many nominations and has won the Helen Hayes Award in 2008.

Being in the industry for so long, he has a unique answer to what he thinks is the highlight of his career. “I’ve been fortunate, I’ve had quite a few, and very varied between Broadway musicals and plays, TV, opera… it’s a bigger picture for me. The highlight for me is the WHOLE of my career.” 

As time has passed by the whole entertainment industry has been changing. “As I’ve gotten older I’ve become more focused on what drives me, the tonality of the kind of projects that I feel connected to.” He recounts when he began in New York City, “When I started my career in NYC, music theater could financially afford to be a riskier terrain, and so there was that kind of material both on and off Broadway on a yearly basis….as time and the bottom line have progressed, there has been less of that on Broadway….but interestingly with the development of cable and independent networks there has been a boon of that material on television. Particularly in NYC. And so my good fortune.” He also comments on how Opera has changed. “I find it most interesting that Opera seems to be picking up the mantle of new, politically charged music theater. Stories steeped in tension. The modern operatic movement in America is amazing.”

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Marc Kudisch will be on Billions.

Changing towards television more he has had plenty of guest roles. “Well right now is pretty awesome. Along with being a part of this season on Billions I also have a recurring guest role on David Fincher’s new Netflix series Mindhunter. I’m REALLY looking forward to seeing that show role out soon. Fincher is an incredible artist, the scripts are incredible in their detail, and the character is deeply unnerving. I really enjoyed shooting on that. I also had a great experience guesting on Blue Bloods.”

He adds on how being a guest role can be like but the cast made him feel very un-guestly. “Everything about the way that show is run is fantastic, from the leads to the producers to the crew. Being a guest can be really hard because you’re exactly that, a guest. There’s little time to get comfortable or feel a part of the family. They made me feel incredibly welcome.”

Remember the new doctor that comes in with all his might and energy. Marc explains his role.

“I play Dr. Gus, I am Wendy’s replacement at Axe Cap. Gus is A LOT. A lot of everything, almost the antithesis of how Wendy handled the traders. He’s fun to say the least! And I gotta say, the show has the BEST CAST ON TELEVISION. Hands down. I mean, the lead cast is amazing, but the supporting recurring cast is not to be believed. A huge honor to be a part of that group.” 

If you don’t watch the show you should begin instantly. Marc has the same reasoning as to why the show is unique as any fan might. It’s fast, insanely funny, incredibly smart and never lacks tension….David Mamet meets Larry David at times.  Every episode pulls the rug out from underneath its characters, and hence the audience as well. It’s a roller coaster ride unlike any other show.”

 

One of the reasons why we ask usually ask a cast for an interview is to gain some insight on the next episodes and what happens next. “Expect nothing but the unexpected” is all he had to say making me a bit more excited to see what happens next on the show.

I for one think he fits the role perfectly, and it all happened when, “I auditioned. I was the first actor to audition for the role, and was wound up because I had a plane I had to catch. So the minute I got into the room I was like, “I gotta go…” I’m sure that extra energy played into my audition. It was a really fun audition by the way. Brian Koppelman and David Levein are great guys to work for.”

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Dr. Gus portrayed by Marc Kudisch.

Speaking about his future, he hopes to see a new surprise everyday. “Mindhunter is next to air, and then we’ll see….This business is one where every day can be a surprise.” He answered out question while on break. “As it is, I’m answering these questions on my lunch break from The New Prince, a new opera premiering at The Dutch National Opera in Amsterdam; A month ago I had no idea I’d be out here….”

To end he has very special words for everyone. “I ride motorcycles. BECAUSE, unlike a car, where you set a destination and drive in a closed container with the sole focus of getting to said destination, on a motorcycle the minute you throw your leg over the seat, the vacation begins. Don’t over-plan; sometimes the journey is more exciting, surprising and unforgettable than the destination…..”


Billions airs Sundays at 10pm on Showtime.

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