Like a Rock

Sam Rockwell has checked into the Samuel J. Friedman Theater to play Eddie in the Broadway debut of Pulitzer Prize-winner Sam Shepard’s Fool for Love. NY1 Theater Reporter Frank DiLella caught up with Rockwell to discuss his return to The Main Stem.

You and Tony-winner Nina Arianda are reprising your roles in Fool for Love for Broadway after doing the show at The Williamstown Theater Festival in 2014. How does it feel? 
A little terrifying… but I’m excited to play a great role again and to explore the character for a longer period of time. And Nina is incredible—the real deal. She made me cry today in rehearsal doing her monologue.

What are some of the challenges and joys of performing Shepard’s text? 
[He has] great words, like Arthur Miller or Martin McDonagh. Fool for Love is arguably one of his best plays, along with Buried Child and True West.

Were you familiar with the piece? 
I knew the play; I worked on it in acting class years ago. In fact, when I shot The Assassination of Jesse James with Shepard, I told him I’d love to do the play one day. And here we are.

You’ve spent your life in both NYC and California. Do you prefer old New York or new New York?
Scorsese’s New York, when the peep shows were real. Nowadays you can still go to a peep show—but it’s Mickey Mouse.

You made your Broadway debut opposite Christopher Walken and company in Martin McDonagh’s A Behanding in Spokanein 2010. What’s the best thing about being a part of the New York theater community? 
It’s sexy. It’s like being part of a sexy tribe. The camaraderie, the teamwork—nothing beats it.

You just filmed a movie with Anna Kendrick called Mr. Right. In your mind, what makes Mr. Right? 
Always knowing when to admit you’re an asshole

And speaking of Anna Kendrick—aka a Broadway musical theater baby—do you have any desire to perform in a musical?
I’d love to do Guys and Dolls—either part.

Through Dec. 6, tickets from $70, 261 W. 47th St.