Non-Sport Update spoke with Nicholas Brendon at this year’s Wizard World Philadelphia Comic Con. Brendon got his big break in Fox’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003), a series that garners a huge cult following as well as a large fan base for the actor. Other credits include TV’s Without a Trace (2009) and Private Practice (2010-2011) as well as movie roles in Demon Island (2002) and Charles Busch’s movie satire, Psycho Beach Party (2000). Brendon can currently be seen in a reoccurring role in the hit television series, Criminal Minds (2007-2011).
How did you get started in the business?
Pretty much Buffy did it. Well, my mom was an agent so I was always around it but I got into acting initially because I had a stutter. But I was lucky; I was just terribly lucky; that’s a big part of it.
You’ve been in seen in more than 20 different TV series and movies. Is there a big difference between making a TV show and making a movie?
Well in Buffy, for example, I played that character [Xander Harris] for seven years. When you do a movie it’s not seven years you don’t play the same character for seven years. You have more time to fall in love with your character and define him in TV. The process is really different in that way.
Do you ever feel you are in danger of being typecast because of Buffy?
He’s a lovable loser. I mean, if I’m typecast as that; I love playing that.
What kind of projects are you working on now?
I’m on Criminal Minds, where I play a lovable loser.
Tell me a little about your charity.
I do The Stuttering Foundation of America—I had a stutter growing up and was really kind of challenged with it. They approached me about 10 years ago and I’ve kinda been their spokesperson…for people who stutter…to give them a VOICE!
You do a lot of these shows. I remember I saw you at New York’s Wizard World about a year and a half ago.
Yeah, this is about my fifth one for Wizard.
Have you signed up for the Wizard World Tour?
I have about four more to do this year.
Isn’t there a big Buffy event coming?
Yeah, in Chicago.
Who’s going to be there?
Ahh…crap, I don’t know. You’ve got me, James [Marsters], I think my twin brother [Kelly Donovan] is going to be there…I think Charisma [Carpenter] maybe.
That’s Kelly your evil twin brother, right?
Our magazine is about trading cards and collectables. You’ve been on a whole slew of trading cards, signed autographs for Inkworks, done costume cards and such. How does it feel when you see your image on a trading card or an action figure?
I guess I’ve just become use to it. The weirdest thing that I ever had was signing my first autograph. That was weird. The first show had just aired on Wednesday and the next day somebody asked me for my autograph and my hand was shaking. Then the other stuff just came with the territory.
How do you like interacting with the fans?
I love it!
Do you get a lot of off-the-wall questions or is it mostly just Buffy-Buffy-Buffy?
Not really. It’s just fans, you know.
What other roles have left you with a really good memory?
I did a show called Kitchen Confidential (2005-2006) for Fox that I loved where I was a baker. And I love Kevin Lynch on Criminal Minds that I play. It’s all been fun.
We thank Nicky very much for taking the time to speak with us for this short interview. Updates about him, his upcoming projects, work with various charities, and more can be found at nickbrendon.com. You can follow Nicholas on Twitter at @NicholasBrendon and “like” him on Facebook at facebook.com/nicholasbrendon.