Mark, your acting career spans both live-action and animated projects, from "Web of
Lies" to voicing Norman Price in "Fireman Sam: Set for Action!" How do you approach the different challenges presented by these roles, and is there a particular type of character you enjoy portraying the most?
The great part is I have equally as much fun doing both animated and live action! Storytelling through performance is my passion through and through, so getting the chance to do it in different ways is what I hope to continue to keep doing for a long time. I never took a voice over class in my life. But I sure did practice character impressions at random times throughout my days. Norman Price was one of my favorite characters to play because he’s always finding himself in trouble and is just such a little brat.
With appearances in documentaries, animated movies, and television shows like
"The Boys," you've made a pretty successful transition from YouTube to mainstream
media. How can one effectively maneuver through the dynamic terrain of digital content creation and its convergence with traditional media?
I’m very lucky that I was born in the generation I was in because I have a passion for content creation, which really is what my day to day looks like. Who knows how I’d be spending most of my time if not for that. Traditional media provides opportunities in spurts so you really need something else to be your main focus, and YouTube has been that for me. I just treat everything I do with the same amount of high effort, otherwise it’s not fun for me!
How did you start making content, and what motivated you to run not only Six Side Studios but your own Youtube channel, Movie Man Mark?
With my own channel, I needed a creative outlet and so I started making videos with friends at age 13, and just never stopped. I enjoyed it so much. I would be in English class writing scripts for my movie reviews on my blackberry instead of paying attention. With Six Side, it was a very gradual switch from acting for hire to producing. I was cast off of a casting call Cameron Dodd put out and once we got to movie number three, I started co-writing, and then helping with every department. It came to me naturally and I just loved it to the point where I plan to continue producing and co-writing some of the original projects I act in from now on.
In 2020, you became the first teenager to have a stand-up comedy special with "The
Teenage Special" on Amazon Prime. What motivated you to venture into stand-up
comedy, and how does this form of expression complement your work in acting and content creation?
I was definitely always a little entertainer at family events. If you were visiting my family’s house, I would dress up in the costumes I owned and re-enact my favorite movie scenes. If I was visiting your house, I would use anything I could find lying around and make up my own character (blankets became capes, shoehorns became walking sticks). All you had to do was sit back and witness the mayhem. So I guess stand up comedy was bound to fall into my lap at some point. It’s a canvas for me, the same way acting and content creation is. I get to play and express myself.
Could you give us some details about how Rich's character was developed for "Gen
V"? How did you go about giving this role depth, and which aspects of the character spoke to you personally?
They told me what his powers were meant to be before his additional scene was cut pre-filming and it made me giddy to imagine but kinda bummed! But in terms of personality, I didn’t know much about him, so I sort of had to make up my own backstory for him. He’s very much a hothead with a heart of gold. He’s got a soft spot for his peers. Even with a short appearance, I got to play some layers and hopefully that comes across to the audience of the show.
It takes teamwork to work on a show like "Gen V" with a diverse cast and crew.
What standout moments or takeaways did you gain from collaborating with the other actors and the production crew?
Well on my first take on what was supposed to be a very upsetting scene for my character, the director told me I looked far too happy for the circumstances of the scene. I apologized and told her I guess I was just so happy to be there. I learned that when acting on a superhero show that is set in a universe you were dying to be a part of, you might not have such good control of hiding your extreme joy on take one!
In “Gen V,” Did you ever find anything difficult about playing Rich, and what aspects of the role did you enjoy playing as an actor?
What was difficult was not getting to dive into him much! So I hope that door is still open for the future because I want to find out what happened to Rich after SPOILERS escaping The Woods. I mean technically we left it ambiguous on that group of Supes, but we know The Woods was let out. As long as Rich didn’t get any of Andy’s viral load, he’s okay. And from what I put into Rich as a character, I know he has the tenacity to survive and escape.
"The Boys" has a devoted and enthusiastic fan following. Does the series' current fan
base affect how you play your part in "Gen V," and what do you think fans will like best about this latest installment?
It really does have every aspect that fans have come to expect from “The Boys.” The same great storytelling that hooks you, the humor, the gross shock value. And you need to watch it to fully understand “The Boys” season 4, so it’s essential viewing! I think they’ll appreciate this on its own, but also as something to hold them over until season 4 of “The Boys.”
On a more recent note, "Spiderman: Final Swing" released on Six Side Studios'
YouTube channel on Dec. 22. What can viewers take away from this project and what was the process like for you being involved in it?
This series of movies became such a passion project for me creatively over the years. It will be bittersweet for us to release the final and fifth one.
Lastly, what would you consider to be the most significant milestone or moment that has shaped your trajectory as an actor and content creator?
Without a doubt, it’s “Gen V.” What makes it extra special is that I went so long playing a superhero on the series of fan films for Six Side. We built a strong fanbase there that grew up watching those and now they get to see me make the jump to “The Boys” universe. It’s been very “pinch me” and I do not take it for granted. It feels as though it was meant to happen this way and I’m very grateful.