David Milchard is a man of action. While unlikely and perhaps unintended, his connection to the DC Comics Universe is solid – having taken The Dark Archer’s ARROW through the chest, only later to be resurrected as someone else on THE FLASH. Jumping into an entirely different fandom altogether, he also found himself working alongside Jensen Ackles’ Dean Winchester for a pair of SUPERNATURAL adventures, and will soon face the unexplained once more in PARANORMAL SOLUTIONS, INC., a new series that’s being touted as “THE X-FILES meets IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA meets THE STATE meets BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER but waaaaaay better.” In many ways, Milchard is living what many kids dream of – the opportunity to play dress-up and make-believe on a daily basis, a continuously-busy and hard-working actor deeply embedded in Vancouver’s non-stop creative scene. But David doesn’t just do the auditions and wait for projects to arise – he often chooses his own adventures, making them happen with a regular crew of collaborators and co-conspirators. If you’ve seen him on-screen before, there’s a good chance that it was in the massively-viral CONVOS WITH MY 2-YEAR OLD (since updated to CONVOS WITH MY 4-YEAR OLD). While there’s much to be said about being a Producer/Director/Writer of a webseries that’s already logged more than 61 million+ views, it’s Milchard who stars as Coco, the titular child at the center of the series. Now, David goes even bigger with a leading role as Nate Ferraro in RUSSELL MADNESS, a new film from AIR BUD Entertainment and 20th Century Fox. I recently had a chance to speak with David – an interview that eventually became a series of… convos with my 2-year old and 5-year old.
In RUSSELL MADNESS, Milchard plays the Dad – heir to the Ferraro family wrestling legacy. Back in the 80s, the Ferraro’s had a successful Wrestling Federation complete with it’s own arena, but much like the set-up to a MUPPETS movie, the theatre/arena has seen better days, and it’s up to a new generation to raise the torch, climb to the top of the ropes, and restore glory to what once was. In this case, it’s a dog with some serious skills that becomes known as “Russell Maniac” (voiced by THE GOLDBERGS’ Sean Giambrone) leading the charge under the guidance of his trainer – a monkey named Hunk (voiced by Will Sasso).
“Strangely, this whole experience reminded me of a time when I was younger,” recalls Milchard when discussing the high-flying wrestling antics of the film. “I lived in Northern Ontario, and we had to come up with our own entertainment, because we only had two channels, and one of them was French. I loved wrestling, so my friends and I built these ‘snow rings’ by digging down four-feet deep and building snow walls to form the corners of the ring. We proceeded to have our own Wrestling Federation – wrestling in the dead of winter and throwing each other into the snow – it was ridiculous. We even made our own wooden belt and soldered-in some silver, and burnt-in some writing.”
While the movie serves-up canine-centric moves like “The Hair of the Dog” and “The Russell Tussle,” it’s a more traditional move that Milchard favors. “The suplex,” he declares. “It’s so dramatic, and just so high.”
Pictured right: David follows the real-life Coco on the set of CONVOS…
Switching gears to CONVOS WITH MY 2-YEAR OLD, I tell David that he provides a somewhat disturbingly accurate portrayal of a child. My own curiosity piqued, I ask if it comes from observation or natural instinct…
“I think it’s a bit of both,” he says. “I think I’m more of a child than I realize, and I think my wife and close friends would agree. When I don’t get what I want, I tend to push the boundaries. I was also an Uncle at eight-years old, so that’s probably part of it, too. I was watching kids from a young age, but I’m also an improviser. I work at the Vancouver TheatreSports League, and I’ve worked with and taught kids on-stage. I’ve had a lot of time to deal with kids and their craziness – because kids are crazy, there’s no doubt about that.”
Having already shared the screen with the aforementioned ARROW and FLASH, I had to inquire about any other comic book heroes that Milchard would like to team-up with…
“I think I’d rather be a super villain,” he states, pondering who he’d want to go head-to-head with, a target quickly placed with a familiar name from the MARVEL Universe – WOLVERINE. “He’s just too cool, and someone has to put him in his place. Cigars and Adamantium claws? Come on. He’d poke himself in the face every time he’d try to get a smoke in, no? Someone needs to put him in his place, and I’d want to be the villain who does that. I’m not quite sure how I would, but I’d want to make him look like a fool.”
Knowing that David has done some musical comedy in the past, we started discussing music and bands, and just as we were starting to discuss OASIS (Milchard’s favorite band, and one of mine as well), Finley and Adalyn decided they’d had enough of daddy doing work. It was already late in the day, but Finn and Addie were about to reveal that they’re far better interviewers than me, and have far more entertaining questions and commentary than I ever will. It was time for The Rock Daughters to conduct their first interview…
https://instagram.com/p/zVofMmR-gS/” style=” color:#000; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; font-style:normal; font-weight:normal; line-height:17px; text-decoration:none; word-wrap:break-word;” target=”_top”>Addie and Finn just interviewed David Milchard, star of @russellmadnessofficial and @convos2yrold. My work here is done #TheRockDaughters #RussellMadness #AirdBud
Finn (Age 2½): Lalaloopsy mermaids, and horsies, and ballerinas.
David Milchard: I’m pretty sure there’s only one answer, and that’s YES.
Finn: Uh, David, I would like Lalaloopsy horsies and Lalaloopsy mermaids, and Lalaloopsy ballerinas.
Addie (Age 5½): And mermaids.
David: I don’t want to put you in a difficult position [James], but I think you have to provide all of those things. That’s YES.
James: Addie, do you have a question for David?
Addie: Hi David! I’m standing on a chair.
David: You’re standing on a chair? Well, just be careful!
Addie: I’m gonna go play!
Finn: Hi David!
Finn: Why are you laughing at me?
David: Oh, I’m not laughing at you – I’m laughing with you. ‘Cause it’s so cute, you saying ‘hi’ to me.
Finn: Sorry I laugh at you.
David: You don’t have to apologize.
Finn: Your movies are Whiz-Bang!
David: My movies are interesting? That’s great coming from a 2½ year old.
Addie: My sister actually said ‘your movies are ‘Whiz-Bang!’
David: Oh, you’ve gotta put that in – ‘CONVOS WITH MY 2-YEAR OLD and RUSSELL MADNESS – anything David is in is Whiz-Bang!’ I’m gonna write that down.
[Note: It’s later revealed that “Whiz-Bang!” is a phrase of approval from Aunt Tilly (voiced by Bonnie Hunt) on Disney Junior’s SOFIA THE FIRST]
And just as quickly as they popped-up to take over the interview, The Rock Daughters disappeared to “go get some baby dolls.”
See David Milchard in RUSSELL MADNESS, available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD now (you could also win a copy!). For more great family entertainment, subscribe to CONVOS WITH MY 4-YEAR OLD and AIR BUD TV on YouTube.