Reno Wilson Interview: "Mike & Molly" Star on His Breakout duty as Carl

Written by Melissa Parker, posted in Actors


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Actor and voice artist Reno Wilson is recognized by audiences these days together Officer Carlton “Carl” McMillan, Mike’s (Billy Gardell) fast-talking partner and also best girlfriend on the hit CBS present Mike & Molly. The collection also stars Melissa McCarthy that took home an Emmy compensation for outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy collection in 2011.

You are watching: Who plays carl on mike and molly

Born Roy Wilson top top January 20, 1970, the comedian’s an initial television function was top top the legend NBC sitcom The Cosby Show wherein he had a recurring role, illustrating Howard, during Seasons 5 and also 6 the the series.

"I think we’re discovering this second season so much more about Carl. In the beginning, that just showed up he was among those solitary guys who was just out there full of machismo and male bravado and also bustin’ his friend’s balls. But, when he met Christina, we gained to see a much more sensitive side."

Wilson’s many recent film roles were the of Orlando in Crank: High Voltage (2009), together the voices the Frenzy, Mudflap and Brains in the Transformers movie series, and the voice that Sazh Katzroy in Final Fantasy XIII. The functional artist likewise appeared on television in Prison Break, Scrubs, Heist, Las Vegas, Blind Justice, Touched by an Angel, NYPD Blue, Cybill, Martin, Coach, and currently is the voice the Killer punishment in the anime Naruto Shippuden.

On march 24, 2012, CBS put in order Mike & Molly because that a 3rd season.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Reno, exactly how is her day going?

Reno Wilson: mine son simply didn’t desire to walk to college this morning. How can he have actually an perspective at 7:30 in the morning? We have a ten-year-old daughter and also a seven-year-old son, and they were just battling this morning. Sometimes, ns look in ~ my wife and also go, “What the hell were us thinking? Why did us think this to be a an excellent idea?”

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): many thanks for speaking v me on such a hectic morning (laughs).

Reno Wilson: room you kidding me? that is my pure pleasure. Now, where space you? ns hear your regionalism. It is a southern state (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): the is Birmingham, Alabama.

Reno Wilson: Oh, okay. That’s interesting due to the fact that my father’s household is from Birmingham. I’ve never been there. Mine dad died when i was four years old. He was a blues organist and singer. His family members is native Birmingham. This summer might be my Alex Haley Roots summer, therefore I’m acquisition the family to mine mom’s side, i beg your pardon is the West Indies Antigua, and also then I want to acquire to mine dad’s side, i beg your pardon is Birmingham.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You have actually my call number. Fine be glad to show you approximately the area.

Reno Wilson: I got it, and also I will certainly take you increase on that.


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Reno Wilson (CBS/Monty Brinton)


Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): There have to be a story behind the surname Reno.

Reno Wilson: My an initial name is Roy. Reno is my center name, and also my dad provided me that name. I have three larger sisters. Mine mom had actually me when she was 41 and, obviously, they were trying because that a boy. She ultimately had one, and also mom stated dad ran up and down the hallway, screaming, “We finally did it!”

My dad stated that he always wanted to name his son Reno. Ns don’t know if that way he went to Reno and also gambled top top the surname or what. But, he passed away, so ns don’t really understand why he named me that. Mine family constantly called me Reno. When I relocated to Los Angeles, I made decision to just use that as my expert name together a tribute to mine dad and because it sound cool (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): an extremely cool. Ns a large fan the Mike & Molly, and also I think you hilarious.

Reno Wilson: Oh, thank you for this reason much. Ns think the love is palpable. We really love each other and also enjoy being v each other, and also I think you deserve to feel that once you clock the show.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You and also Billy to be friends prior to Mike & Molly. Is that how you got the role?

Reno Wilson: Actually, that would more than likely be the reverse. I’ve recognized Billy for around eight years. We did a show called Heist together top top NBC, and we played partners on that show. Us played detectives and also did around seven episodes. While us were top top Heist, anyone would always say, “Gosh, you men are so great together. You need your own show!”

We finished up law an illustration of Las Vegas, and we played ideal friends who won a lottery. We saw the casino in Las Vegas, and also the whole episode was around us play a $2 million game of tag. So, us were just smacking the shit the end of each other the entirety episode. Everyone on that collection said, “You men need your own show!” So, rapid forward to 2 years ago. It was pilot season, and also I obtained the script for Mike & Molly. I read the an initial ten pages, Melissa, and I stopped and also said, “Holy crap!” ns picked increase the phone and also called Billy. Ns think he remained in Cincinnati. I asked him, “Have you review Mike & Molly?” that didn’t know what ns was talking about.

I said, “Dude, this is our show. This is it.” ns think the was collection up to perform a present somewhere else, yet I said, “Get this script. Check out it. It’s ours show.” rapid forward to a pair of mainly later. I had auditioned once for lining Lorre and Mark Roberts, and also then at the final audition, i walked in and there the was. We had gone through the whole procedure with all the other people in Hollywood, and also they steam it under to whereby it was simply Billy and I. Together they say, the rest is history. So, actually, he sort of owes it come me (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Sounds like it to be destiny.

Reno Wilson: It’s for this reason rare the you obtain to work-related with one of your finest friends, and also then to have it be successful … we space constantly pinching ourselves before every show, going, “Can you think this?”

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): The two of girlfriend have great chemistry.

Reno Wilson: Oh, yeah. We’d be busting each other’s balls even if the cameras no on us.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Carl is kind of a facility guy. Walk he simply need the love of a great woman?

Reno Wilson: i think we’re finding out this 2nd season so much much more about Carl. In the beginning, it just appeared he was one of those single guys that was simply out there full of machismo and also male bravado and also bustin’ his friend’s balls. But, as soon as he met Christina, we acquired to view a much more sensitive side. I mean, you see the kind of bromance between Mike and also Carl, for this reason we recognize that Carl has actually a soft side simply by the method he cares about his ideal friend. But, through Christina, we (and he) obtained to see the kind of male he can be.

We obtained to learn about his abandonment issues with his parental leaving him when he was younger and why he has never connected with a woman. He ultimately gets somebody who makes him look at himself. Ns think it is a pretty an easy human feeling, simply wanting to uncover somebody to connect with. She bring that the end of him.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Holly Robinson Peete as Christina compliments Carl very well.

Reno Wilson: i hit the jackpot through that one (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Yes, and I to be upset once she left The Talk.

Reno Wilson: Yeah, a ton of people were. But, she’s such a beautiful person, a professional, a great mom and wife. Our households play together. All of our family members play together. She just fit ideal in prefer she had always been on the show. I’m yes, really fortunate and also thankful.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Carl on regular basis slams Mike with fat jokes. Execute you ever before hear indigenous fans that don’t care for that banter?

Reno Wilson: weird enough, no. Ns think it’s because we love every other. He makes just as lot fun of me around my stupid selections in women, the stupid points I do and the stupid advice I offer him. But, ns think when the teasing comes from somebody friend love … it’s favor your finest friend. Only I deserve to make funny of you. Nobody else can make funny of you. Just I have the right to make these jokes with you due to the fact that we have actually that love.

If anybody else provides fun of you, they need to watch out. One of my favorite things about Carl and Mike is that once Mike goes to Nana’s house, he is the prince. He gets pure, unabashed, unadulterated love, and also Carl “gets it” at grandma’s residence (laughs). Mike have the right to do no wrong at grandma’s house. It is my favorite.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): i love that, too. Ns didn’t realize once I observed Cleo’s age that she …

Reno Wilson: Was only seven years older 보다 me? correct (laughs). But, when she throws on the wig, climate it’s Carlton (in grandma’s voice). She states she’s channeling her mommy when she walk that. But, she’s so talented. I really think these room the ideal words ~ above TV, and we have the finest ensemble.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): The season finale is may 14, and also that will certainly be the wedding.

Reno Wilson: we hope therefore (laughs). Let me tell you this, Melissa. We shot the two-part finale episode, and I swear, I’ve never ever been a component of something therefore funny. It is a classic sitcom episode for the ages. It feels favor a classic James Burrows directed show. He has done Cheers, Friends, Will & Grace, yet this episode will be up their with the best! us were crying in ~ the table read from laughing for this reason hard. As soon as you acquire Molly’s family and Mike’s family together, it’s simply not walk to it is in right.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Mike’s father will present up because that the wedding.

Reno Wilson: It simply ain’t going to be ideal (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): hopefully Carl won’t lose the ring. That just needs to do something crazy.

Reno Wilson: Oh, ns can’t even tell you those going come happen, yet I guarantee you the you might want come be close to a bathroom due to the fact that you could pee in your pants. It’s therefore funny.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Reno, girlfriend learned comedy from invoice Cosby, a comic genius.

Reno Wilson: You room absolutely right! that was my first television job and also what one auspicious means to acquire into the industry! i was going to a conservatory for acting, he pulled me the end of school, and also I ended up doing two seasons (recurring) top top The Cosby Show play Howard who was Theo’s best friend in college. Ns a TV kid, therefore I thrived up city hall a totality lot the sitcoms, yet to it is in in prior of invoice Cosby and also make him laugh … I used to sit in his office, and also he would certainly talk to me about timing and also breaking my script down. He’s responsible because that my career.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): invoice Cosby hand picked you because that the role.

Reno Wilson: he did. Ns auditioned, however he gave me that an initial gig. I was wet behind the ear and fully green. I remember every conversation I ever had v that man. I’m filled v gratitude the I got to begin with invoice Cosby. Now, i’m working with some other masters the the game – chuck Lorre, note Roberts and also Jim Burrows. That’s choose Phil Jackson and also the Chicago Bulls!

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Talk around television royalty.

Reno Wilson: it’s the top of the food chain right here.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You pointed out that her dad to be a pianist. Your mom was a singer. Ns guess girlfriend were always ready because that a show business career!

Reno Wilson: Yeah. Our whole family is very musical and an extremely talented. Us all prospered up act plays and shows, see my mommy go to auditions and also watching her sing at the urban Opera. We always thought it to be The Jacksons, The Osmonds and also us (laughs). Like, “Doesn’t everybody have actually a drum collection in your living room?” i come indigenous an entertain family.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): where were you born?

Reno Wilson: i was born and bred in Brooklyn, new York. I checked out a performing arts high school and graduated through Jennifer Aniston, the most renowned of ours class.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): you’ve done rather a bit of voice job-related for video clip games. Are you a gamer?

Reno Wilson: I’ve constantly done a lot of voices, and also I love cartoons and all that stuff. So, ns was fortunate enough to gain a voice end agent and start booking part jobs. That a very little world to get into, therefore if girlfriend can obtain that work you’re very thankful.

I used to beat a lot of video games, but now that I’m a dad, ns don’t have actually the time and I don’t want to anymore. But, i love watching people play video games, and also I love act the voices because that them. My youngsters play the games. Once they’re playing games, I obtain to go execute something choose take a nap (laughs). But, I provided to it is in a gamer ago in the day.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): What is the status on Bolden, the louis Armstrong film?

Reno Wilson: You understand what? it is a good question. The exciting thing about that movie is that I have actually been functioning on a one-man show around Louis Armstrong for about eight years, and also then I obtained the manuscript for Bolden. Ns said, “Wow, this never happens!” The luigi Armstrong personality is in the script and I’m, in ~ this point, one of the solid authorities top top his life. I have been examining it for this reason much. Ns think he has actually been modifying the movie for around three years.

I’ve seen parts of it, and also it is a beautiful movie. Ns hope it come out, but I open minded don’t understand when the will. However, I have actually pulled the end my display again. The present is referred to as “Pops,” and also it’s a one-man show around the life that Louis Armstrong, so it’ll be something live the you can see. I’m playing the horn and every one of that.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): will you be traveling v the show?

Reno Wilson: due to the fact that we carry out Mike & Molly nine months the end of the year, I’d be happy to perform it eight weeks someplace, hopefully in Vegas.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Or Reno (laughs).

Reno Wilson: Or Reno! I like that idea. It is a great idea.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): call me something around yourself that civilization would it is in surprised come know.

Reno Wilson: i’m a classically trained pianist. I have actually perfect pitch, and I’ve been playing piano since I was four years old. That’s type of my hobby.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): miscellaneous you choose to do as soon as you’re no working?

Reno Wilson: Yeah. My youngsters are researching piano and singing, and also my wife plays guitar, so we’re keeping that tradition going. We’re at the home playing drums, guitar, piano and also recording. My wife’s a record engineer. That’s what I favor to do. I choose to beat music when I’m not working.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Anything rather coming up for you throughout the show’s hiatus?

Reno Wilson: I’m reading some scripts and also would love to do a movie, therefore we’ll view if we deserve to make miscellaneous happen. I’ll be playing the horn this summer together well, keeping my chops up.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): i’m thrilled Mike & Molly has actually been renewed because that a third season.

Reno Wilson: Me, too. Thank you so much. Ns so happy to be doing it.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): thanks for talk to me. Perhaps your work will obtain a small better.

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Reno Wilson: thank you, Melissa. He is in institution now, and also I’m drink my coffee and also talking come you. Every is well.