Interview: Poison's Bret Michaels Talks Book of Love
Tue, 22 Dec 2009 14:02:51
Poison's Bret Michaels knows "love" better than anyone.
Not only has he fronted Poison for almost 25 years, but he's been the subject of VH1's hilarious hit reality show, Rock of Love since 2007. He even wrote "Every Rose has Its Thorns," which undeniably makes him something of an expert on love. So it's only fitting that he makes a cameo in American Pie Presents: The Book of Love, igniting big laughs in the series' latest installment.
Bret Michaels sat down with ARTISTdirect.com editor and Dolor author Rick Florino to discuss American Pie Presents: The Book of Love, his acting skills, a heartwarming Christmas memory and the merits of peanut butter.
Pick up Book of Love on DVD now!
Do you feel like the American Pie franchise is pretty "rock 'n' roll?"
Very rock 'n' roll…we're talking from the beginning on through to Book of Love. Obviously with having Rock of Love and then Book of Love, I say this openly, my acting skills are limited [Laughs]. My reality skills aren't too bad. Throw me in a reality situation and I'm okay, but acting is another story [Laughs]. Everyone was really good about it though. They were like, "We'll do this in one big take. Have fun, be who you are and be funny." I said, "Okay, you got it!" The franchise itself is completely rock 'n' roll to me! It's very young, hip and off-the-wall, but it's very funny. That sense of humor is what makes it great. I think this is going to be fantastic.
It seems like the Book of Love could've been written be you or any of your musical contemporaries.
[Laughs] Yes! I think we could add some additional chapters. We've written a few books of love ourselves and adding some additional chapters wouldn't be a stretch. I was laughing at the part in the movie about peanut butter. It's kind of a win-win for me. It's delicious, healthy and sexual, so you can't lose with peanut butter [Laughs]. I don't think you can catch anything that I've heard of from it either [Laughs].
Was that your favorite moment in the film?
That was pretty much it [Laughs]. They saw my acting skills and said, "Bret, great, thanks!" You know when they get you out of there quickly? They were like, "Bret you were great, goodbye!" Then they moved on to the real acting [Laughs].
Were you fan of the series since the original film?
Yeah! Obviously, I saw the first two in the theaters. I watched them all though. Having Eugene Levy back in the film and some other appearances were awesome. C. Thomas Howell is a great guy! I saw him up there in Vancouver. When they asked me to come up and do the film, it got down to the last day because I was out on the road touring solo before the Def Leppard and Poison tour kicked off in the summer. I was doing two nights in Tacoma, and we shot in Vancouver. When we got into the hotel in Vancouver, I got the feeling that I knew it was going to be a good day. It felt like everyone was in an "up" mood. It wasn't that end-of-the-show we're all burnt out feeling. C. Thomas Howell was hilarious! He and the other people I met up there were great to work with.
Do you want to do more acting after this experience?
Let me say this, wanting and getting are two different things [Laughs]. We've got to wait and see how it turns out [Laughs]. I get to go back and do my own show for VH1. Acting is great! To be a really good actor—and I mean this—takes a lot of talent. Knowing that, for me, going out and doing cameos as myself is pretty fun. I've done other stuff that I've written and produced like A Letter from Death Row or No Code of Conduct which I acted in too. I think I was better behind the camera than in front of it.
How similar are being on-camera and being on stage?
When I'm on stage and I'm making music, that is extremely real to me and I'm in the moment. When you're acting and someone tells you what you have to be, I have the toughest time separating reality from what I'm supposed to be, yet a good actor can do that. That's just my own two cents on it. I think an actor can take a script and turn it into something. Here's your other name, here's who you are. When I'm doing reality TV or performing on stage musically, I find that I'm living in the moment. That's me being me, and that's how I would be in that particular moment. If someone says, "You've got to be something different. Here's who you are. Here's what happened to you," all of a sudden you've got to put yourself in that space. I honestly think comedy is much tougher to shoot than something serious. Actors have to be funny for 252 takes in a row, and everyone on the set is tired of hearing the joke. Here these guys have to deliver the same funniness 20 takes later…I wouldn't be able to do that. My funniness is limited as it is [Laughs]. Forget about trying to act it out. After the third one, I'd be like, "That was my best, I'm done [Laughs]."
Do you have a favorite Christmas memory?
I have two daughters—Raine and Georgia. My best memory ever is when I became a dad. During Raine's first Christmas, I got to play the role of my father. I reversed roles. I realized that I had become my dad at that point, and that was probably my best memory.
What kinds of movies are you typically into?
I love action with a good storyline the most! For me, it's something like Saving Private Ryan. There's action involved but you've got a storyline you're following. I don't know if you've ever had this happen. I'll be watching a movie and something will bump me out of it—maybe the acting seems too forced or something like that. I dig good action with a plot. I like comedy and stuff in the vein of Adam Sandler or Will Ferrell too though. The Hangover was great! I can watch that 24/7. I watched The Hangover a lot this summer.
What's up musically?
I mix up doing Poison and solo shows, but it looks like most of 2010 is going to be solo. Next year is going to be Poison's 25th anniversary. We've been out pretty consistently, so I think there will be a little bit of a break this year. For the 25th, I think we'll go out the whole year, blow it out and go have fun!
Check out Rick Florino's new novel Dolor available now for FREE here…