It just seemed like you were having so much fun making those videos with your full-on moustache.
I miss the moustache.
What was it like just being a part of UCB given that it spurred so many great talents?
Well, those videos we did weren’t UCB—that’s Derek Waters. But I really liked UCB. There’s a group of UCB guys that are really committed and work their asses off, so I feel like a frog to say that I am one of them 'cause I have always been lazy in terms of the live performances.
I did a two-man show called “The Midwesterners," which failed. [Laughs.] It was not a big success. But me and my buddy Oliver Ralli, from the band Pass Kontrol, did a two-man show that Bill Bungeroth, who now directs The Second City mainstage, directed and was an actor in. This was all when we were like 19, 20 and coming up. We performed at UCB and we traveled the country with it but then we dissolved. So, that was the group I came from.
I love UCB, but I can’t quite say I’m a full-on UCB-er. The videos were awesome. I got to work with Derek Waters on the “Road Trip" videos with the full moustache and they were directed by Nick Jasenovec. Then Nick asked me to play him in Paper Heart and two days before we got started, he made me shave off my moustache. So, if you print this, “F' you, Nick Jasenovec!” [Laughs.] I'm still mad at him because of that. If I had that moustache in that movie, maybe old Nick Miller can have a moustache.
That’s what I was gonna say. You can just shave down that beard you have right now.
Maybe I have a secret plan.
For the second season?
[Laughs.] Maybe I have a secret plan. Maybe I’ll bring the 'stache back. Welcome back, 'stache!
[Laughs.] I mean, the mustache goes along with your new heartthrob persona.
[Laughs.] Oh yeah, exactly. You know like every woman says, "Every great heartthrob has a full mustache."
Burt Reynolds has a mustache and he was a huge heartthrob!
That’s what I say. He's handsome as can be, sharp as a tack, strong as a bull, with a mustache that doesn’t quit. Here’s what I really think about mustaches, and I mean this seriously. I’ve been accused of being a hipster by the Internet people. They’re not directly saying it to me but it's because of the projects that I’ve done. The reality is, if they knew me, I’m not one. What pisses me off about it is hipsters ruined the mustache! [Laughs.]
Hey, I grew a mustache for very clear reasons: My dad had one, all my uncles had them. I’m from the Chicago area, and every man who sold cars in commercials had them. Bill Buckner had one, Michael Jordan kind of had one, and they’re awesome.
When I met my wife, my girlfriend at the time, I had a moustache. It was 2003. This was was before My Name is Earl had a damn mustache. How did I look with it, you ask? Great. How was my moustache, you ask? Perfect. How’s my beard realistically? Not great. It’s patchy, it’s a bit red, not working. How’s my moustache?! Perfect. Then, this is a true story, I had a moustache for years—wasn’t getting a cent of work. I was working at a casino, I was a caterer, I was a bartender. I have the ugliest headshots in the world.
Were they the same ones you still have on the UCB website?
[Laughs.] No, those were the good ones. The others were me in an old Bears sweatshirt and me in a leather jacket doing a cop pose. Those did not result in any work. Then all of a sudden, I get in a couple of commercials and I start to work with the mustache and, I’m not saying I started it, but I’m on Hollywood Boulevard and every ass in tight pants is rockin' a moustache! I shaved it off and so I have anger.
What do I wish would happen? If you’re in a band, you don’t get a moustache. If you are really tall and skinny and in a band, you don’t have them. That's so a guy like me, who tries to be a damn heartthrob on TV, can have a mustache and no one has to go “Funny moustache!” They'd say, "That's a really handsome guy with chest hair, a moustache, who's just strong as a bull."
How do you think your fans that love Nick would respond?
[Laughs.] I think they would hate it. I’m in a tough spot, because I think there are a lot of young female fans that react to Nick. You know what I’m gonna ask them to do? Grow with him. Because when these young girls become women, they'll realize that real men have mustaches. [Laughs.]
There you go! That's perfect.
[Laughs.] And the problem with these young women is that the only moustaches they’ve ever seen were from hipster guys. That’s dead wrong. Moustaches belong on cops, on firemen, on soldiers. You know, men! Nick Miller.
[Laughs.] And Fox will never allow it.
Interview by Tara Aquino (@t_akino)