If Tyler Christopher were a gambling man, he would be enjoying quite a lucky streak right about now. Since leaving his GENERAL HOSPITAL, role of Nikolas Cassadine in June of 1999, he has been betting on himself taking on increasingly challenging roles in a never-ending quest to explore his own abilities. After back-to-back stage performances opposite former GH co-star Vanessa Marcil (ex-Brenda) and Patty McCormack, and a supporting role in last year's Florida and Worldfest Houston International Film Festival winner, Catfish In Black Bean Sauce, he went on to appear on such hit primetime shows as CHARMED, FAMILY LAW, ANGEL, and THE PRETENDER. This year, he's anxiously anticipating the release of his latest two indie films, Face The Music and Out Of The Black, in which he played the leading man.
Face The Music, which wrapped production early last summer, had its first screening January 4, and Soaps In Depth was there! The film, a romantic comedy about a struggling rocker who fakes his own death to boost record sales, then goes on to find new success -- and love -- while playing his female "cousin," features Christopher as you never seen him!
The Feminine Touch
"I probably didn't make the greatest-looking woman, but for this particular genre, I don't think it mattered," he admits sheepishly. "If we'd had more money tomake this film, we could have gotten a better wig and prsthetics to cover my incredibly finite jaw line." Instead, the actor had tomake de, relying on great make-up and a convincing falsetto voice. With only eight days to prepare, Christopher dove right in and used his imagination to create his female alter ego, all the while portraying his character's "inappropriate" chemistry with a female rock journalist played by USA HIGH's Elena Lyons. "Given that she's incredibly beautiful, it wasn't that difficult to act attracted to her," he confides, adding, "Whenever I do on-screen relationships, I believe it's cool to develop a chemistry off-screen so you have an air of familiarity with each other."
The reviews Are In
Having just seen the finished project himself, the feel-good movie left Christopher in high spirits. "I was really happy with it -- and I don't say that all the time. It was different than anything I've ever done before and I was overwhelmed by the genuine response I received." /Mags01-02/sid3.20.01tylerandjj.jpg" This spring, Christopher is looking forward to seeing the finished version of Out Of The Black, the suspense movie he made last August in which he stars opposite Sally Kirkland, Miles O'Keefe and Jacqueline Aries as a coal miner's son who struggles to uncover the truth behind the accident that killed his father and bankrupted the town. "The movie is all drama, and it was more strenuous to film because it was longer and shot far from home," he reveals. "But I felt pretty good about my performance in it as well." Although satisfied with the creativity afforded him by indies, Christopher says that lower-budget films do have their drawbacks. "You don't have the luxury of ding take after take on a scene if you aren't pleased with something," he explains. "If I hadn't had my daytime experience, I might not have been able to work like that."
Ready To Rumble
As he waits to hear the fate of his two new films, Christopher is making the most of his down time. "I just finished my first screenplay, titled Play Of The Game and am currently distributing it to people and getting their thoughts," he reveals. The slice-of-life story, about a Bronx boxer who comes to appreciate the fruits of his success only after he's lost them, took him the better part of two years to complete. "I didn't really conceive the idea," he offers. "It was more like I sat down and it found me." With so much on his plate, the busy actor is focused happily on the road ahead -- and not anticipating a return to the soap genre that gave him his start. Nevertheless, he remains grateful to the folks at GH who worked to erase the stigma previously associated with daytimers. I'm so grateful to people like Tony Geary (Luke), Genie Francis (Laura), Maurice Benard (Sonny), Vanessa Marcil and Jonathan Jackson (ex-Lucky) who fought hard to break the stereotype by making daytime drama as real and honest as possible," he offers, adding that he still carries with him the lessons they shared. "Even 20 or 30 years from now, I hope there's always something I can learn from somebody else or from my own work -- always!" --Kelli M. Larson
SOAPS IN DEPTH - at the movies
Billed as Tootsie meets The Player , the romantic comedy Face The Music has something for everyone. Despite having the predictability often associated with popular teen films, the story of a struggling rock star who, on the brink of turning 30, faces the reality of the brass ring slipping away appeals to an older audience. Shot on location in L.A., the film captures locale's edge and incorporates an original soundtrack so integral to the story, it's almost a character! The cast, including Sharon Leal (BOSTON PUBLIC; ex-Dahlia, GUIDING LIGHT), Ted McGinley (MARRIED...WITH CHILDREN) and veteran actress Gloria LeRoy (ex-Ruth, PASSIONS) brought much to the canvas, but it was leading man Tyler Christopher's believable performance that brought the film to life. "Tyler has such warmth -- he completely carried this movie," enthuses producer Laura A. Caulfield. "We were really happy with his performance."
Soaps in Depth -- March 6, 2001 issue