“Surviving Sam” is an upcoming dramedy with familiar faces. It is going to be the first original series for Tvtibi, which is exciting as well. The show is centered around a divorced couple who still live together under the same roof with their children. Ben and Sam Gallo are also dealing with having feelings for one another, which makes things more complicated. On Dec. 28 the Chicago TV Examiner was granted an email interview with Rob Magnotti. He is the male lead in “Surviving Sam,” and a pretty funny guy. If anyone should play Ben Gallo, it is definitely Magnotti.
After reading the script, it is usually pretty clear whether or not you will want to take the role. When asked what appealed to him about the “Surviving Sam” character, Rob Magnotti replied; “Ben’s humor, creativity, and quirkiness appealed to me as an actor. Also, Ben’s wittiness and propensity for physical comedy appealed to me as a comedian.” Besides being appealing, it helps if you can relate to a character you will be playing. When asked about whether or not he could relate to Ben Gallo, Magnotti said; “I relate to so much of who Ben is. For instance, being a neat, organized, busy, creative guy who’s in love with a beautiful woman. However, being afraid of dogs? No way, I’m an animal lover, so that takes some imagination on my part. I can definitely relate to the scenario between an ex-husband and ex-wife trying to make the best of living together, while getting on each other’s nerves. My parents were divorced and lived under the same roof for a while when I was young.”
Working with the other actors is a huge part of the process as well. The “Surviving Sam” cast seems to be easy going, which probably makes filming a little more fun rather than just strictly a “job.” When asked about whether or not Rob Magnotti had a favorite moment while filming with the cast, he mentioned; “I enjoy working with everyone in the cast, and each scene had a special moment for me. However, Alicia Minshew and I doing the late night romantic scene, as well as our dramatic scene in the hallway of the courthouse, post-divorce, are definitely two of my favorites. Working with Alicia is awesome! She’s so beautiful, an accomplished and generous actress and so much fun to work with!” There were also a few more favorites that topped Magnotti’s list which included “I also have the opportunity to work with Richie Minervini, veteran comedian/actor and mentor to many comics. He plays the role of Judge Mel Schmidt who hands down the divorce decree. It was fun working off Richie in the courtroom, as Samantha and I were pleading our cases.” and “To top it off, I really enjoyed dancing to the song “ Friendzoned” by Drop the Act! a new, hot, up and coming pop/punk band. It was a great release for my character and really fit the scene well. Props to Gerry Plinio for choosing such an awesome song!”
As a show goes on, viewers invest in the characters. With “Surviving Sam,” that is going to be easy. Defining moments are important in the development and likeability factor. When asked about a defining moment in his character’s life that he was able to relate to, Rob Magnotti said; “When Ben realizes he’s really divorced from Sam in the hallway of the courthouse.”
Taping for “Surviving Sam” is ongoing and the tentative release is February of 2015. The cast and crew have been sharing photos on Facebook and Twitter. It looks like a lot of fun and seems to take things back to simplicity with the dramedy background. There is already a growing fan base for the show! Keep checking back for more updates. You can follow Rob Magnotti on both Facebook and Twitter as well.