Actor David Faustino sit down to talk about his new film, National Lampoon's Pucked, as well as growing up on the set of "Married with Children"
Ranked #48 in VH1's list of 100 Greatest Kid Stars, David Faustino has long since shed that image. While his inimitable portrayal of Bud Bundy on the long running "family" sit-com, Married With Children has made him a permanent fixture in the land of television syndication, this is an actor that certainly has broken free of the role that established him. With stints on shows like Nash Bridges and The Bernie Mac Show, Faustino has continued to work steadily since Married With Children went off the air in 1997.
An actor since the age of 6, Faustino recently took some time to talk with us about the upcoming DVD release of his new film, National Lampoon's Pucked. This film sees Faustino co-starring with Jon Bon Jovi in the tale of a loser who uses 200 credit cards to finance a woman's hockey league.
Could you tell us about the character of Carl that you play in National Lampoon's Pucked?
Yes, I play Carl, the best friend of Frank (Jon Bon Jovi) and Carl is sort've an unassuming kind of guy, who lives life very safe. It is not until Frank convinces Carl that his vision of the WWWHF (women's world wide hockey federation) actually can be a success, that Carl steps outside his little world and begins to live...
What was it like working with Jon Bon Jovi? Had you been a fan from way back in the 1980s? What about working with a director like Arthur Hiller? The man is an industry veteran are you fan of his films?
Working with Jon was a trip. I mean the guy is truly a rock star! The real deal... I thought TV fame was hip... well, that was because I hadn't experienced rock star fame yet... anyway, Jon was great to me and we had a good time working together, and I think he would say the same... (I hope) As far as being a fan oh his from back in the 80's, well... I may have memorized a line or two from some of his songs... I'll cop to that, however, I had a steady dose of his music in my ear due to the fact that I have an older sister, who was basically infatuated with him... Arthur Hiller was very sweet to me. He is a kind man who has a great eye, and who obviously has directed some classic films, so it is very exciting to get to say that I worked with him.
Other than Pucked, if you could be in one other National Lampoon film which one would it be?
Probably European Vacation, just so I could've gone to Europe on location...
Over the course of your career, you seem to have done a lot of comedic roles, have you always had a knack for comedic material? Would you like to do more dramatic roles?
I didn't really discover that I had a knack for comedy until I landed "Married w/ children." Up until that point (I have been working since literally 3 months old) I had always done the tear jerker roles... you know, the abandoned child, the orphan, the abused, the molested... you name the tragedy, I probably experienced it in a role as a child actor. Obviously that all changed when "Married" started. I absolutely love doing comedy, however, of course as an actor, I would love the opportunity to do more dramatic roles... which I get a chance to do more so on the live stage.
What's it like being ranked #48 in VH1's list of "100 Greatest Kid Stars"?
Number 48? Ahhh, fuck them.... No, I'm kidding, in all actuality, they promised me if I came in and did the interview, they would guarantee me a spot in the top 20... I refused, they made me # 48. True Story. That's how they roll over @ VH1...
Speaking of TV, do you keep in touch with the "Married with Children" cast at all?
Christina mostly, and Ed and Katey occasionally. I love them all dearly though.
Looking at the current TV landscape, do you see any shows that are like "Married With Children"? Why do you think that show was so popular and ran for 10 years?
I think the key to success for "Married" was that people knew that when they tuned in for that half hour, they didn't have to learn any lesson, or morals to any story, they just got to laugh their asses off, and perhaps, look in on the life of a family a little more pathetic than their own.
As an actor, and being with a show like "Married With Children" for so long, what are 2 or 3 three things (or life lessons) you took away from the show that are applied in the work you do today? Any specifically you used in Pucked?
1. Be genuine and Real, treat people with respect (who deserve it) No one wants to work with an asshole, there's no reason for it and God knows there's enough of them in this business.
2. Be professional. Have your work prepared and stand confident in your choices.
3. Enjoy life... that's what we're here for.
Looking over your IMDB resume it seems like a "Greatest Hits" list of popular 1980s and 1990s TV shows... is there one role or show that you wish you would have gotten or been on that you weren't?
Not really, however, I was moments away from landing the lead in a shitty little show that was on in the eighties called "Small Wonder." At the last minute they hired another kid for the role. I cried for days and days... Two weeks later, I landed Married... with Children, which, had I gotten the role in "small wonder" I absolutely would not have been available to play Bud Bundy. I guess that's the 3rd lesson... we don't know what the universe has in store for us, so try to trust the process.
What's next for you?
Right now I am working on a lot of projects, on and off camera... I have formed a company with the actor Corin Nemec and a few others and we are in the process of developing entertainment in various genres. It's a lot of fun and creative hands on work! Other than that, I am living in the Hollywood Hills with my wife Andrea and my dog and cat, and just enjoying life one day at a time. Thanks for the interview!
National Lampoon's Pucked is in limited theaters nationwide right now.