Chris Demetral is a former actor who has lent his talent to numerous TV shows and movies. Some of his most memorable parts include those in the TV shows Dream On and The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne, along with the Disney film Blank Check.
Q: First off, may we dispel the rumor that you are in fact me?
CD: What fun would that be? People have obviously enjoyed pairing the two of us. I think in fact it's given you a bit of "street cred." Just kidding. I'm not sure what, if anything, being associated with me brings to your credibility. Hell, it may even be a negative.
Q: How did this rumor even start?
CD: Like all "fantastically accurate" rumors, on the internet. I believe it originates with a fan of mine somehow connecting the dots between us and then it spun off from there. In all honesty, it's been hilarious for both of us, so no harm no foul. People love spinning together theories. I think it helps combat the doldrums of ordinary life.
Q: So what have you been up to? It appears you just fell off the map.
CD: Isn't that remarkable that people always assume the worst of actors when we "disappear"? Maybe there have been too many bad E! specials or tragic news reports, but not all actors burn out in flames. Some of us choose to leave on good terms. Some of us prefer a quiet ending. There was no need to hold a "retirement press conference," as if I were a star athlete who sadly lost his stuff (acting ability does not atrophy, nor does it worsen with age). I was ready for new challenges and new pursuits. The draining and frankly toxic environment of L.A. had also worn thin.
Q: The industry can be brutal. A not so well known is the fact that you lost two friends in the business to tragic events.
CD: Chris Pettiet and Jonathan Brandis. I was deeply saddened by their deaths.
Chris was so easy going and one of the most truly genuine and humble actors I've ever met. I think about him often and miss him very much.
Jonathan was truly a free spirit. He was an amazingly funny and a very daring guy. He spoke his mind and made you laugh every time he did. I remember seeing him shortly before he passed and he seemed at such peace. His ending was so horrific, it defies words. I couldn't help but think that he was another shocking example of Hollywood devouring and then spitting out a truly talented person.
My heart and prayers go out to both of their families.
Q: So where are you working at now? I had read you wanted to head into directing or writing.
CD: If I were to reveal my profession, it would squelch all those neat rumors that I'm a P.E. Coach, or Call Center Manager, or bull rider, etc. That's no fun for anyone, plus IMDB would have revealed if I was directing. You might need to research your interviews better next time.
Q: Of all the work that you've done, what do people most often recognize you from?
CD: I'm not sure if I'm recognized the most for it, but it does seem everyone under the age of thirty has seen the movie Blank Check. For such an appallingly written and horribly acted (yes, I'll say my performance too) movie, it's amazing how popular it's become. When did it become mandatory viewing for all youngsters and who is the diabolical crafter of such a plan - Mengele? Stalin? Vlad the Impaler? Michael Bay?
Q: I hear that you're quite the Lakers fan. If you were the GM of your beloved franchise for a day, what changes would you make?
CD: Trading Odom for Ron Artest would be a start. I'm not sure if Sacramento would even be willing to help out their hated So-Cal counterparts (even if it did mean dumping Kenny Thomas' bloated contract in the process).
I'll give you another one that might shock you: trade Kobe. He did everything in the Finals to dispel the thought that he could even whiff at Michael Jordan's greatness and frankly, he has too much mileage on his legs. I would look to trade him for another young and talented wing (Durant, Wade, Roy) with draft picks, naturally. Then I could watch as the next generation of Lakers coast their way in to continued greatness. Bynum, Gasol, and the new star could help L.A. stay at optimum levels for the next 5-8 years. But then again, Kobe has a "no trade," clause, so none of this will happen; unless they resign him to a new deal minus the "no trade."
Q: I've read that religion plays a big part in your life and you donate time to your church. Care to share what a spiritual life has meant to you?
CD: Is there anything more boring than hearing "celebrities" talk about their causes, political beliefs, etc? Yes, I'm blessed and fortunate to be a Christian. It's an honor and it has made a tremendous impact in all I do. I wish everyone the opportunity to experience the difference Christ can make in their lives; and now it's time to step down from the soapbox I never even wanted to stand on.
Q: If you could give aspiring actors and actresses one tip, what would it be?
CD: Always pursue your dreams, but be realistic with your timeframe. Too many aspiring actors have allowed themselves to live at borderline poverty levels while they wait for the role that will make them big. Sadly, if you haven't "made it" after a few years, your chances of success take a precipitous dip. For every "made it big after 10 years of trying," story, there are hundreds of "waiting tables at Jerry's Famous Deli while I eat Ramen noodles every night."
Q: Are there any parts that you turned down that you wished you hadn't?
CD: I know I had an excellent chance to be Doogie Howser, M.D and that might have radically changed my career in both good and bad ways (I could have been typecast, but it certainly didn't hurt Neil's career). I was already lucky enough to be on Dream On and I couldn't make the final round of casting because of scheduling difficulties. I have zero regrets. Everything has worked out wonderfully.
Q: We end all interviews with word association. I say wombat and you say...
CD: Incredibly funny inside joke that only people who know me would get.