A long time ago (OK, a month or so), in a galaxy far, far away (Fine, West London), I arrived at the Showmasters London Film and Comic Con at the Kensington Olympia. Here I witnessed a clash of lifestyles and ideals not seen since the Jedi and the Sith, Aliens and Predators, or Donald Trump's hair and basic physics.
You see, there was a wedding fair going on at the same venue, and watching the two queues merge and various parties from each faction wandering into the wrong event was a series of fish-out-of-water delights. Maybe some found true love, a new appreciation for science fiction, or at the very least some brides-to-be got scared half to death by a guy cosplaying as Admiral Ackbar.
Funnily enough I was actually there to meet with the man of my dreams, or at least the man I dream of being. Mostly because he's a man who manages to be a Hero, a Master of Sex and an X Wing Pilot despite being a certified geek. There is hope! The man I speak of is American actor and producer Greg Grunberg, who is even wonderfully alliterative with those four G's to his name ** Note: Standing next to Greg will not improve your phone signal **.
He's known as JJ Abram's lucky charm which stems from the fact they were childhood buddies and since then JJ has given Greg roles in most of his projects, albeit his lesser known works - Lost, Star Trek, Star Wars. Nope, never heard of them. But Greg is an established actor in his own right (Heroes, Master of Sex, Alias and Felicity), and come the summer he'll be able to add author and TV host to a CV that makes me jealous just typing about it. In June he'll be releasing his debut graphic novel 'DreamJumper' and later in the summer he'll be co-hosting new AMC chat show 'Geeking Out' with director Kevin Smith.
We set up for the interview in the green room area of the convention surrounded by cola, crisps and Chewbacca (or at least the man within the Wookie - Peter Mayhew). Like all good celebrities Greg was more than happy talking about his own body of work, but actually he would rather that YOU did the talking. Greg's son lives with epilepsy, which inspired him to start the 'Talk About It!' foundation: "Theres a ton of people here, everywhere, you'd never know they had epilepsy or seizure condition unless they had a seizure, so they are living perfectly normal lives but theres a stigma attached". In the UK alone more than 500,000 people have epilepsy, which is almost one in every 100 people, and globally around 65 million people have the condition, yet it's still widely misunderstood. "It just encourages people to talk about epilepsy and seizures. but its a good a place to see your favourite celebrity and then you'll learn a little something about seizures, it's talkaboutit.org".
Not stopping there, he's also set up a charity rock group called 'Band From TV': "I thought, how do I raise money, what do I do? I got asked to play with a bunch of rock and roll guys and there was so much attention played to me because they were waiting for me to fall flat on my face, and I was like wait a minute, let me start a band and maybe this could work! All the money goes to charity". 10 years later and 6 million dollars raised for charity the band is still going and features a rotating lineup of his pals from the tellybox; including the likes of James Denton, Hugh Laurie and Terri Hatcher. And in case you were wondering, Greg plays drums in the band. Yes that's right he's the drummer of a rock and roll band. Yet another really cool job title for that CV. Whoever said men can't multi-task was wrong cause Greg's got me multi-tasking with my emotions here, leaving me both loving and hating on the man!!!
No no, it's all love, for as us geeks know - hate is a path to the dark side and, around 4G, I felt strong. In fact I left the interview believing that I myself could be a Hero, an X Wing Pilot and a Master of Sex. And what do you know, a month later and I've rescued a cat from a tree, flown economy and got two matches on Tinder.
I was speaking to Greg for BBC 5 Live but you can see a separate bit of youtube chat we had here:
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