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Ten Minutes With Paul Dano

Actor Paul Dano speaks with Wilton Magazine



Paul Dano

Since graduating from Wilton High School, actor Paul Dano has appeared in movies that include Little Miss Sunshine, The Girl Next Door, There Will Be Blood, and Being Flynn. Later this year, he’ll star in For Ellen, Looper, and Ruby Sparks. Now in his late 20s and living in Brooklyn, he still returns to Wilton to visit his parents. He also performs with his band Mook, formed with high-school buddies.   

When did you realize you wanted to be an actor? 
I’ve acted my whole life. I started at a young age doing community and school theater. Once I was in college, on my own, and trying to be more of an adult, I decided to pursue acting as a profession. Although I knew much earlier, I tried to fight that urge. 
 
Did you act at Wilton High School?  
I did one musical, but by then, I was already acting, doing some gigs, including theater in New York. For me, high school was more about hanging with friends, playing sports. It was time away from acting. 

Do you have a favorite role? 
My part in There Will Be Blood. It was also one of the more important experiences I’ve had. It was an extremely challenging role and I worked with several people who I really admire. That said, I like all the characters I play. I fall in love with them as I’m researching, preparing and acting each role.

Your take on Hollywood? 
There are a lot of Hollywood horror stories about bad experiences, crazy circumstances, and egotistical people, but for the most part, I have had great experiences. 

Ruby Sparks opens July 25. 
It’s a love story about a writer struggling to follow-up on his hit first novel. His only friend is his brother, his only partner is his dog, so he begins to write about a girl. He falls in love with the character. One day he wakes up, and she’s in his house. The film takes off from there. It is funny, romantic, and has a big heart. 

How did you prepare for the role? 
Acting is a mysterious craft; the preparation is different for every role. If the script and character are well written, the words tell you how to prepare. For Ruby Sparks, I also read about writers, their routines, writers block. I learned to type well on a typewriter. I thought about fear of failure, control, love, success – what these mean to me and to Calvin, the character I play. I filled in Calvin’s history, with himself and the other characters, and worked with the words. And I daydreamed. 

Any advice for young actors? 
I remember after college when everybody went through the job-interview process. Most people go through a period where they have job interviews and that’s a stressful time. Acting is like having a job interview every week. It’s a very inconsistent line of work, which is actually one thing that I like about it, but I think some people have a hard time with. It requires a lot of perseverance and hard work. So I would say if you really like acting, keep at it. 

 

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January 2019

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Cost: Free

Where:
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One Museum Drive
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Sponsor: Bruce Museum
Telephone: 203-869-0376
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More information

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Cost: Free

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Cost: Free

Where:
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Cost: Free

Where:
Bruce Museum
One Museum Drive
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View map »


Sponsor: Bruce Museum
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Cost: Members free, Non-member adults $10/ kids $5.

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
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View map »

More information

The Maritime Garage Gallery’s latest exhibit features works inspired by art in public places. “Street Level ” brings to life the notion that public art can transforms...

Cost: Free

Where:
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11 North Water Street
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View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
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View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: 203-801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
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The Bruce Museum is organizing an exhibition of small artworks created entirely by the public for the public. We invite art lovers of all ages, interests, and abilities to submit a depiction of...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bruce Museum
One Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Sponsor: Bruce Museum
Telephone: 203-869-0376
Website »

More information

The much anticipated Great Trains Holiday Exhibit at the Wilton Historical Society opens the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, November 23, with Santa visiting on December 8! Decorated for the...

Cost: Members free, Non-member adults $10/ kids $5.

Where:
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View map »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
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View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Artis pleased to present “Jae Ko: 漂流 Drift,” the artist’s first solo exhibition at the gallery.   In addition to showcasing...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
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Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: 203-801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

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Cost: Members free, Non-member adults $10/ kids $5.

Where:
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224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT  06897
View map »

More information

The Bruce Museum is organizing an exhibition of small artworks created entirely by the public for the public. We invite art lovers of all ages, interests, and abilities to submit a depiction of...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bruce Museum
One Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Sponsor: Bruce Museum
Telephone: 203-869-0376
Website »

More information

The Maritime Garage Gallery’s latest exhibit features works inspired by art in public places. “Street Level ” brings to life the notion that public art can transforms...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Artis pleased to present “Jae Ko: 漂流 Drift,” the artist’s first solo exhibition at the gallery.   In addition to showcasing...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
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Cost: $12 in advance online, $14 at the door, $10 Senior/Military one day pass

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Telephone: 860-767-2645
Contact Name: Kathleen Burns
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More information

The Bruce Museum is organizing an exhibition of small artworks created entirely by the public for the public. We invite art lovers of all ages, interests, and abilities to submit a depiction of...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bruce Museum
One Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Sponsor: Bruce Museum
Telephone: 203-869-0376
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Artis pleased to present “Jae Ko: 漂流 Drift,” the artist’s first solo exhibition at the gallery.   In addition to showcasing...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
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View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: 203-801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

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Cost: Members free, Non-member adults $10/ kids $5.

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224 Danbury Road
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