If you love to laugh then you need to watch Luke Guldan’s comedic performance as his character Chris on Season 2 of NBC’s The Good Place as the new soul mate of Eleanor (Kristen Bell), after Michael (Ted Danson) erased her memory.
The show airs this Fall. But it’s his performance in The Broken Ones, which follows two troubled strangers who meet one night and help each other overcome personal fears and tragedies.
Trent Kelly (Luke Guldan) is the brother of Andy (Cece King), and has taken on the role of holding the family together after the loss of their father on 9/11. The film premiered June 15, 2017, at the opening night of the SOHO International Film Festival in New York City.
We got a chance for a little Q&A with the hot actor about some of his latest projects and happenings.
What drew you to the film The Broken Ones?
Being a New Yorker and growing up in the city, I had an immediate connection with the events of the script about the World Trade Center. It’s a powerful story from a personal perspective that I felt compelled to be a part of and help tell and share.
What was the audition process for this film like?
The audition process was pretty smooth. The material just registered with me and so I felt immediately familiar reading with Cece King (who plays Andrea, and wrote and produced the film).
How do you prepare to work with such emotional material? Do you find it difficult to leave that head space when you finish work at the end of the day?
Preparation for me is always changing but specifically, with The Broken Ones, being based on true occurrences, I had a personal connection and felt a personal responsibility to the people directly involved. It all depends on the script and what’s happening in my own life at the time. However I saw an interview with Jack Lemmon where he discussed his struggle with character detachment in Days of Wine and Rose and how that can be an issue, so I try to be aware of that and separate myself.
Did you meet with any of the survivors from 9/11 to help prepare for the role? What research did you do?
I did not meet with any survivors from 9/11 but I was in New York City during the attacks and my uncle, Charles Taibi, was a merchant marine and a first responder. The experiences he shared with me were extremely impactful and gave me some understanding for a starting point with the work.
What do you prefer more: comedic roles or dramatic roles? Why?
I can’t choose — I enjoy working on both. I try to incorporate some comedic with the drama and vise versa.
What method do you use to learn your lines?
I don’t have a specific method set in stone, but a teacher I worked with shared a thought with me which was “to learn your lines by heart.”
What inspired you to pursue acting?
When I was in junior high school I begrudgingly saw an Off-Broadway production of De La Guarda. I was randomly grabbed out of the audience to be involved in the actual performance and it blew me away. It was an experience I won’t soon forget and that definitely piqued my interest in performance.
You have appeared in multiple plays including The Graduate where you received rave reviews in the lead role of Benjamin Braddock. How do you think the theater has helped your acting for film and TV?
I feel like both film and theater inform the other, but theater really has taught me to “expect the unexpected!”
What do you like to do in your spare time when you aren’t acting or working?
I recently started listening to podcasts specifically about war and the value of life. I’d say it’s beyond an interest, but more of a fascination with the quality of the men and women who serve the country and give their lives to preserve/secure our everyday freedoms. Check out the Jocko Podcast whenever you get a chance.
What one actor or actress would you really love to work with and why?
Al Pacino, because “he’s got the whole cake!”
Luke Guldan is an alumnus of The University of Florida and an accomplished athlete, nationally recognized for his achievements in health and fitness. His IMDb credits include “Broad City”, “Law & Order: SVU”, “Blue Bloods”, “Gossip Girl”, “The Colbert Report”, “The Tailor’s Apprentice”, “ADDicted”, “The Watermen” and more.