Actor Joel Murray talks about his leading role in 'God Bless America,' and life on the B-List

May 2, 2012

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Actor and Chicago native Joel Murray goes from cubical drone to lecherous loser to badass psycho killer – all in the span of the 90-plus minute dark comedy God Bless America.  Murray stars as Frank in the new film by writer/director/actor Bobcat Goldthwait.  

Though he’s played memorable roles on critically acclaimed television programs like Showtime’s Shameless and AMC’s Mad Men, the ability to make it as someone who’s not technically an “A-lister” has become increasingly more difficult with the onset of reality TV, and larger changes in Hollywood.

Murray joins Wednesday's Afternoon Shift to talk about his life, from growing up in a family of entertainers (including brothers Bill and Brian Doyle Murray), to his career in smaller roles, to this new role as a leading man.

Here's a few of the best moments from the interview:

When asked about taking on the role of Frank, and where he pulls from to play the character, Murray says:

“I found the dark spot in my own life...and you channel that and say the words.”

Later on in the convo, but on a similar topic, Steve asks him about playing these darker types of characters. Specifically, Frank in the film and Freddy Rumsen from Mad Men.

“It just seems to be the roles I'm getting these days – guys on the edge of suicide.”

About working as someone who’s not an A-Lister:

“I'm doing a lot of quality stuff all of a sudden, that's getting recognition, but a lot of it doesn't pay. The part in The Artist was nothing, and Shameless... But, you gotta eek it out… You try to put five lines in the water and hope you catch a fish on one of them.”

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