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For those who were enchanted by ITV series Mr Selfridge you may well remember star of the show, American actor and producer Jeremy Piven.
The 55 year old star, whose credits include Entourage, Serendipity and Smokin’ Aces, fronted the show from 2013 until its final, poignant episode on 11 March 2016.
But where is the actor now, and what has he been doing since his Mr Selfridge days? Well, the star recently featured as the lead role in new movie ‘Last Call’ which sees real estate developer Mick return to his old Philadelphia neighbourhood and decide to erase or resurrect the family bar.
Jeremy Piven was the lead role in hit ITV series Mr Selfridge
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As well, the talented star has embarked on a career in comedy and is currently on a new tour which will, Covid dependant, bring him to the UK later this year.
In a candid chat, the Emmy award-winning star spoke exclusively to OK! Online about his recent achievements. Here’s what we found out…
The actor spoke to OK! about the projects he’s working on in a candid chat
Mr Selfridge was loved by many over in the UK, do you ever miss being over here?
The one regret that I have while I was [in the UK] is that I kind of felt the pressure of carrying this one hour drama so I didn’t really go out and I didn’t go to the pubs and I laid very low, and I feel like I missed a lot when I was in London, so I’d love to go over there and experience the stuff that I missed out on.
The Brits hold it as a badge of honour to be able to plough through while hungover and I didn’t fully embrace that lifestyle and it’s a bit of a regret!
You’ve recently embarked on a new career in comedy, what was the transition from actor to comedian like?
It’s been amazing. There’s a great quote that people would literally rather be thrown out of a plane without a parachute than to try comedy, and I think it’s a little different for me because I was lucky to spend a lot of time in the UK, and everyone has a great sense of humour.
People aren’t shy about their sense of humour and I really appreciate that and so it’s been incredible to make that transition and people do ask if it’s a lot of pressure because people already know me from my work so the bar is set very high, but for me just getting out there and making people laugh is an honour and I’ve just been loving it.
The 55 year old has embarked on a career in comedy and is currently on tour
Do you have plans to come to the UK with the comedy tour?
I’ll be coming over to the UK, probably starting in some smaller theatres in Soho in October and people can go to Instagram and Twitter to find dates, and I can’t wait because everyone in the UK takes their comedy so seriously, so I can’t wait to have fun with you guys.
What are you most excited for when you bring the tour to the UK?
Americans can be a little too earnest sometimes and get slightly offended when you guys are just taking the p*ss, and I really appreciate that. I hope to embrace that humour when I come over there. The fun thing for me is because I lived over there while playing Mr Selfridge I was immersed in the culture and as an American I can really see how different our cultures are and yet they’re the same, and we speak the same languages differently and I just have some really funny stories about all that, so I can’t wait. It’s been a few years but I miss you guys and I want to do more stuff over there.
The star regrets ‘laying low’ during his time filming Mr Selfridge in the UK
You’ve just starred in a new film, Last Call, could you tell us a little about your character?
Mick is a guy that has always wanted to get out of the neighbourhood and really believes that, ultimately, success will define him. He wants to break generational failures in his mind so he’s a bit of a slave to his ambition.
Ultimately – I don’t want to give away too much – but he’s coming to terms with who you are in this life, what means the most to you and how important family is.
What drew you to the movie?
One of the things that drew me to this movie is the chance to work with guys like Bruce Dern, a total legend, and Taryn Manning is a friend and she’s really great in the movie as well.
I grew up watching Raging Bull and I think every actor is in the same boat, so Cathy Moriarty is an absolute legend and so the cast is incredible. It’s a movie that’s an example to me in a way of where we’re heading. It’s a movie by the people for the people. It’s a bit difficult to get projects going because of Covid and so we’ve all had to adapt and adjust and this is an example of that and I’m very proud of it.
Piven has starred as the lead role in new movie Last Call
(Image: Last Call)
The actor says the film provides the ‘good laugh we all need right now’
(Image: Last Call)
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What was it like to star alongside Orange Is The New Black star Taryn Manning?
It was very easy. We’ve known each other throughout the years and we have mutual friends, and I also have been admiring her work from a far and I’m also a fan of Orange Is The New Black.
I’m really proud of her and we first noticed her in Hustle and Flow which is a brilliant movie, and I highly suggest people go and see that, and she’s nothing like that. She’s a very sweet, pleasant, down to earth girl and nothing like the part she plays in OITNB! It was a pleasure to work with her and it was very easy. In terms of the chemistry, it was there and it was a pleasure to work with her.
Jeremy acts alongside Orange Is The New Black star Taryn Manning in the new movie
Does your childhood share any similarities to Mick’s?
I didn’t grow up in the pub culture like Mick did. Mick’s family runs a pub, but for me being from a theatre family we all had a very strong bond and supported each other and there was a real sense of community. There are a lot of parallels there, and where I grew up in the Piven theatre we were artists. Most of the people were on scholarships and so we didn’t have a business sense and so I think there are a lot of similarities. We kind of don’t know what we’re doing and I don’t think Coach – played by Bruce Dern – has paid his tab in thirty years and so yeah, there probably are a lot of similarities.
I think we all need a good laugh right now and that’s what this movie provides, and it’s also very true to the authenticity of the neighbourhood, and the people and the language and the way they speak and as I said, it’s not very politically correct but that’s how some of these people speak, and we all need a good, raunchy laugh right now.
Last Call is available on major Digital Download platforms now and can be found on iTunes here