You've probably seen David Walton on TV before… but not for very long.
Despite his charming on-screen presence, Walton has had rotten luck with his TV projects so far. His NBC sitcoms "Perfect Couples" and "Bent" didn't see a second season, and his stint as Jess's doctor love interest on "New Girl" ended abruptly when she hooked up with loftmate Nick last season.
But he's about to get his best shot at a hit yet: NBC's "About a Boy," a fresh take on the 2002 Hugh Grant film with some big names behind it. Emmy-winning writer Jason Katims ("Friday Night Lights," "Parenthood") is the showrunner, and "Iron Man's" Jon Favreau directed the pilot. As Walton puts it, "If my other shows were good, solid racehorses, this one felt like Secretariat."
Walton stars as Will, a confirmed bachelor ("basically just a very horny, very free, very carnivorous man," Walton says) who strikes up an unlikely friendship with the 11-year-old boy next door (Benjamin Stockham). Walton remembers seeing the film version of "About a Boy" when it came out, but avoided seeing it again once he was cast because "I didn't want to be accused of stealing Hugh Grant's moves."
No worries there: Walton's got plenty of moves of his own. The role of Will fits him like a glove; in fact, he always seems to play the ladies' man who refuses to grow up. (He mastered it on "Bent," an unsung gem that really deserved more than the six episodes it got.) And he says he's just reflecting a larger societal trend: "I honestly think there are so many man-children now, it's like this epidemic… I'm representing that segment of America."
Get a sneak peek at NBC's "About a Boy" right here:
But in real life, Walton is all grown up. He's married to actress Majandra Delfino ("Roswell"), and is the father of two young kids. (He jokes, "I'm tired of people asking me if I'm really like that, so I fired out two kids.") And with Delfino starring in her own TV show (CBS's upcoming "Friends With Better Lives"), family time is at a premium these days. "I'll put it this way: Our kids' first language is Spanish," Walton cracks.
We wanted to get to know Walton even better, so we put him through a lightning-round version of our POPsessions questionnaire. Read on to learn about Walton's pop-culture obsessions, both expected (the Rolling Stones) and unexpected (the Real Housewives?!).
1. What movie do you absolutely always stop and watch if you see it on cable? "The Shawshank Redemption" and "Major League."
2. How many times have you seen "Major League"? Probably 50.
3. What movie makes you cry? The first movie that made me cry was "Dead Poets Society." That one gets me. "O Captain! My Captain!" That moment kills me.
4. What's your TV guilty pleasure? "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills." My wife is going to be flabbergasted: I actively say I hate it, but I really like it.
5. What was your first concert? Peter, Paul and Mary. Oh, no, no, no: Vanilla Ice! I swear to God, a friend on my hockey team, his father owned [Boston radio station] Kiss 108, and we had front-row tickets. I met Vanilla Ice. He was super tired. He'd been dancing!
6. What is your karaoke song? "Under Pressure." Bowie and Freddie Mercury. But I have to have a partner. I have a friend, and that's what we go do. I lived in Koreatown for five years, and I lived blocks away from about seven karaoke bars.
7. The Beatles or Rolling Stones? Stones. They're just more… I mean, I respect the Beatles, but the Stones.
8. What website do you visit when no one is watching? Oh boy, that's a horrible question.
You want to plead the fifth on that one? No, let's see… when no one's watching? There's really only one… yeah, there's no way I can answer that.
9. Did you have a poster of a celeb on your wall as a kid or teen? Yeah, [Boston Bruins defenseman] Ray Bourque. Number 77.
"About a Boy" premieres Feb. 22 after the Olympics on NBC.
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