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THE DEAD HATE THE LIVING’S “DOC” NEWMAN PDF Print E-mail
Written by By Mitch Persons   
Jul 05, 2004 at 02:00 AM
Former football player André “Doc” Newman is taking a dinner break from his role as Maggot, one of the zombies in Full Moon Pictures’ THE DEAD HATE THE LIVING. He is seated at a table in a small room in Los Angeles' Loma Linda Hospital, a once-busy facility that is now deserted and used only as a location for motion pictures such as this one.  Newman is quite a sight. From out of a doglike muzzle protrude huge, perfectly-formed nutria teeth. Across his massive chest is a foot-long, bloody scar, held together by some very realistic-looking staples. When he briefly turns around to chat with somebody behind him, a bile-green spine is clearly exposed.
“This makeup took five and a half hours to apply,” says Newman, who gives lie to a fearsome appearance by being friendly and polite, “but heck, I’m a thespian. All for my craft.
“I got into the craft after being in pro football. I played for the Raiders, and The Buffalo Bills. I thought it was going to be hard making that transition, but actually it was kind of easy. The first thing I did was FIRST ATTEMPT, a football series on HBO, and I was still playing football while I did that. A lot of players, when they’re in the off-season, come in and become extras on shows like that. I remember, I came in, and there was a script there for a defensive back with a real attitude, which was really the way that I played the game. So I asked Jonathan Devon, one of the producers of the show, how come he didn’t let me read for it? I was just joking with him, and he said, ‘Well, if you want to read for it, go for it.’ I say, ‘Okay, fine. Can I use a prop?’ Devon says yeah, so I grabbed him, threw him up against the wall, said my line, and then dropped him. He says, ‘You got the part!’”
Seemingly unaware that he has just told a rather frightening story of brutality, Newman casually goes on. “That was the start of my acting career. I’m like, ‘this acting thing is easy. I get to play a football player, but I get paid more.’ That’s basically the way it started. That was about eleven years ago. Then after football, I just kept it up. It’s been doing pretty good.
“My next role, I’m up for an Ice Cube movie, and I think I’m going to be playing another villain in that, just minus all this makeup. There are also some commercials coming along."
“The bulk of my parts have been bad guys, and I’m always being asked if I like playing them. To that, I would have to answer yes and no. The reason I say yes and no is because in Hollywood you don’t want to get stereotyped as bad. I’m 6’3”, I’m 260 pounds, muscular frame, so automatically that’s bad guy material. I can play the bad guy, but I like stretching it a little bit more as well. I like for people to see that I’m very versatile, so I like playing the lawyer, the policeman, the doctor, and I’ve done all three of those as well. But for some reason I just get the bad guy.
“I also have the reputation of being kind of funny, although I don’t try to be. I’ve done some TV sitcoms, where I play things completely straight, but because of my size, and because of the situation, then things turn out funny. Like, somebody will come up, and they’ll say something about, ‘Who’s driving this Volkswagen? Whoever is driving this little Volkswagen I’m gonna knock him in the mouth.’ He’s taking the driver to be a midget. Then I stand up. I’m really not being all that funny, but the situation makes it so.
“Since I seem to get laughs when I do stuff like that, I’m also asked if I’ve ever done any standup comedy. I tell people, ‘Yeah. I do standup comedy -- every time I go home. I have to deal with my kids. That’s the biggest comedy act you’ve ever seen in your life.”

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