INTERVIEW: Chord Overstreet (Sam Evans) from Glee

October 25th, 2010 by


Everybody who reads this site regularly knows of my love of Glee. Week after week (with maybe one or two exceptions in between), it brings amazing musical numbers and drama to life in a way that’s never really been done before on television. Tomorrow is the big Rocky Horror episode which pays homage to the 1970s movie by putting on a production at McKinley High. I have seen it and will be posting an Advance Review tomorrow but for now I will tell you that it is fantastic. One of the more recent additions to the cast is Sam, a new Glee club member and football teammate of Finn and Puck. I actually love his new potential relationship with Quinn, and the maturity he showed about Kurt’s crush in the last episode. I recently had the chance to chat with Chord Overstreet, who plays newcomer Sam Evans. We talked about his duet with Quinn, his tendency to take off his shirt, and he even did some impressions for me.


How did you originally get the part of Sam? What was the audition process like?
It was like a week long process. I did three or four auditions. I went in the casting office with Robert Ulrich and sang three or four songs. Did the studio test, network test, and I found out the next day and went right into the studio to record “Billionaire.”

What songs did you sing for your audition songs?
I sang one I wrote. I sang “Easy Like Sunday Morning.” And I sang Gavin DeGraw “I Don’t Wanna Be.”

Did you play guitar for them as well?
Yes, I did play guitar.

What has it been like coming into such a tight knit cast on such a huge show?
Surprisingly, they’re all really cool. I mean, not surprisingly, of course they’re cool. We’re all friends, and everybody’s really cool. It’s one of those things where I kind of jumped into the group. It was really cool.

Did you know what to expect because the show is such a big phenomenon?
I didn’t. I didn’t know what to expect. I didn’t know [about] all sorts of publicity and hype the show had. It was definitely new coming into that whole thing.

And would you say you are anything like your character Sam?
Oh yeah, I think I put a little bit of my personality in him. I would say so. I’m such a nice, sweet guy that you don’t even have to act, it’s me. I’m kidding, I’m kidding. I’m not that full of myself.

I bought it!
It’s similar to my personality, I would say. I’m kind of goofy and say stupid things to girls when I’m attracted to them. And when I like them, I say stupid things without thinking like the Avatar stuff, that’s very [much] something I would say.

Quoting some Avatar!
It’s funny, the writers are just awesome and they’ve been writing some good stuff for me. I hope they keep it up!

One thing I really liked is that in the first episode you were in, it looked like “Oh here’s this perfect guy. Great looking and good singer,” and then we find out that you have these nice little nerdy aspects to you.
I’m obviously a big fan of Avatar. I do Matthew McConaughey impressions. [He then proceeds to do the Matthew McConaughey voice] “I think this would be a great opportunity to take my shirt off.”

(laughs) Did they hear that around the set and then write that in for you?
Actually, yeah. I had Brad [Falchuk] call me. He called because he was like “I hear you do impressions. What impressions do you do?” I was like I do George Bush, I do Matthew McConaughey, a couple of other ones. And he was like “Alright, well thanks.” And then next thing I know, I get the next episode and they wrote it in there. I thought that was hilarious. I was just like “YES!” I was so excited to do it, I was like “Yesss!” Matthew McConaughey!! I wonder if he watches the show.

Maybe he watched and saw your impression!
If he watched the show, and saw my impression, God I hope! I hope he’s not going to be mad about my impression, because I don’t want to get in a fight with Matthew.

(laughs) That would be a difficult fight.
He’d be like [in the voice] “I hear you’ve been talking some stuff. Around LA. On national television.”

I really hope he didn’t hear my Matthew McConaughey because that’d be bad.

I’m sure he’d take it all in stride, hopefully. And were you anything like Sam in high school?
Yeah, I guess so. I never really sang. I didn’t do any music or Glee Club. I wouldn’t sing until I was 18. I mean, I sang. I just wouldn’t sing in front of anybody. I was always scared to sing in front of anybody, and then I started doing it and I couldn’t stop.

Did your family encourage singing?
Yeah. My dad’s been doing it. That’s all he’s done for the last 30 years. That’s what he does for a living. And I grew up surrounded by it. And it was always something that I did, I just never did it in front of anybody. I had knee surgery from football and had to sit on my couch for a few months. I couldn’t really do anything. And my dad was like “Hey, start writing.” So I started writing and I could play guitar after that. So one thing lead to another.

That’s good that you decided you wanted to sing in front of other people, look where it lead.
Yes, yes. I love it now. It’s so fun. It’s weird seeing yourself sing on screen but I love it.

Is there any other character besides Sam that you were like in high school?
I would say he’s pretty close to me in high school. I was definitely always goofing around. I was always trying to crack jokes. I was always saying stupid things without really thinking about them. (laughs) So I definitely think they have the same type of personality. I definitely was a little awkward like Finn’s character, kind of funny, a little awkward. That’s one of the things I love about Cory’s character, he’s just a lovable guy. He’s not very smart, but he’s funny and kind of quirky and everybody loves him. That was kind of me in high school.

Last week’s episode, one of my favorite moments was Quinn and Sam’s duet. I thought that was great. Are we going to see more of Quinn and Sam in the future?
Yes! I think so. I hope that they — like I said, the writers keep writing for me. But yeah, definitely. I think there’s more to come from that. There’s definitely a spark between them. Coming from her, she’s kind of hesitant because [of] what she went through last year. She’s already had a bunch of stuff happen to her that she’s kind of hesitant about getting into any relationship and I think that’s the way it would be with any girl that gets pregnant in high school and has to give up her kid. They’re really hesitant jumping into another relationship because they’re kind of emotionally really vulnerable and kind of damaged. So you kind of get to see that side of Quinn. She’s vulnerable and at the same time, she’s head cheerleader and she’s has that kind of cool, confidence that Dianna displays.

I was happy to see more scenes with her. And more scenes with both of you together.
Yeah. She’s so talented. She’s so great, and she can pull out the emotion like that. And it’s so easy to work with somebody who’s as talented as her because she just gives so much when you’re doing a scene with her. Basically, it’s just fun, you don’t even think about it. But I really love the scene she did last [week] when she started to break down a little bit. It definitely showed her thought process and her thinking about all the stuff that had happened last year, and almost a little bit of regret when she was thinking about giving up her kid. It added a lot of depth to the scene, which I really liked.

Yeah, I think it definitely showed that she’s so strong and so on top of it, but at the same time, she’s incredibly vulnerable, and still understandably upset about what happened to her.
She’s such a lovable character.

Yeah, definitely. And what do you want to see with Sam going forward?
I mean I would definitely like to see him pursue the thing with Quinn, just because Dianna’s just so fun to work with and so good. I think we have really good chemistry. But I’d like to see some more revealing stuff with them and I think the writers have everything down to what’s going to be best for the show, so I think it’s going to be good. I think there’s some funny stuff to come in the future with them, so I really think the last episode was a good kickoff for the start of their relationship.

Yeah. And do you have a dream song you’d like to sing on the show?
Yeah, I do. I would like to sing one of my own songs, just because I think the younger girls would love it. But I think I could do a John Mayer type song. Or a Coldplay song. I would love to do a Coldplay song.

That would be good.
That would be fun. But I think what might be a fun one to do is, especially for Sam, is the John Mayer song “My Stupid Mouth” is a fun song. And I have a big mouth, big lips, all that stuff everybody kind of teases me about. That’dbe kind of a funny song. [He sings] “My stupid mouth got me in trouble. I said too much again.” It’s very me. It would be a very fun song to do, that would be kind of my genre type stuff.

Definitely. What about a dream duet?
I like the song “When You Say Nothing At All” that Alison Krauss did after Keith Whitley passed away, and they kind of re-mixed it into a duet which was great. I’d like to do that. That’d be a fun duet.

That’s an interesting choice. And what have you found so far has been the biggest challenge for you?
I would say would just be catching up with everybody on the dance numbers, because they know what to expect. A lot of them have been dancing for a while. But I’m catching up with them and I’m starting to get it and it’s starting to become second nature. And I’m starting to really become more confident and learn the way my body moves a lot more. It’s getting a lot better and you’ll see me in Rocky Horror dancing, breaking it down.

Well that’s good to hear!
That’s one of the harder things. The other thing I would say is not knowing what you’re going to be doing until a few days before you shoot. So kind of not knowing really what the storyline is and having to prep last minute.

And is there a character that you would like to have a scene with that you maybe haven’t had a scene with yet?
Yeah, I think it would be fun to do a scene with Dot or Jane. I’d like to do a scene with John Stamos, he’d be fun to work with. I’ve met John and talked withhim a lot. And Gwyneth Paltrow, and I don’t really know who they are bringing on later in the show to guest star. Who knows. I would really like to work with anybody, just to say I’ve worked with them.

I’d like to see a scene with you and John.
I think it would be funny, yeah. I really like John’s take on the dentist for the Britney episode, I think he was great in that. He’s so fun to watch.

The next episode is The Rocky Horror Episode. What was that like to film? It’s very different from anything we’ve seen on TV before.
Yeah, yeah (laughs) It is. I have my shirt off yet again in this episode. They have a lot of funny stuff written in the episode. I read it and I was like dying laughing. It’s one of those things where as soon as I read it, I was like “This is going to be crazy, I can’t believe I’m going to say this.” It’s that funny.

Were you familiar with Rocky Horror before you filmed the show?
I actually wasn’t. When I found out we were doing it, I watched it to see it. I hadn’t seen it before. And it’s actually a funny movie, I have to say. Tim Curry is great. He’s hilarious.

Do you have a favorite moment from filming the episode that you can share?
I’d have to say walking around in those tiny gold shorts in front of everybody. Everybody just kind of laughed at me. It was a good, fun, lighthearted laugh. I didn’t have to wear my costume until like the last day so I was just kind of loving everyone’s costumes and was like “this is great, this is great,” and I get in my trailer and there’s those gold shorts just lighting up and glowing from my hanger. And I was like “Okay, gotta do this today.”

Gotta face the music. Literally, I guess. (laughs)
Gotta face the music in the gold bikini style shorts.

I know you can’t spoil too much, but can you give us a little teaser of what’s coming up for Sam in the next few episodes?
Well, I take my shirt off in the Rocky Horror episode. I take my shirt off in the sixth episode. I don’t take it off in the 7th. Maybe in the 8th episode I’ll take it off, I don’t know.

Who knows? Maybe!
I’m hoping. I’m kind of getting used to it now.

Yeah, you’re kind of getting used to the lack of clothing.
I’ve started taking my shirt off in every scene accidentally. Oh, I’m not supposed to take it off here? Oh, I was getting mixed up, I thought I was supposed to take it off here. Sorry.

I don’t know what the deal is.

Oops! Oh well!
Did my shirt just come off? What? What?

How did that happen?
I’m sorry I can’t help it.

It sort of just happens now.
But yeah, there’s a lot of good stuff coming up. You guys will be very happy with it.

That’s good to hear. Will we see some Puck jealousy over the Sam and Quinn relationship?
I don’t know. I think Puck might be in the closet and I’ve seen him eyeing me with my shirt off, who knows. He might be jealous of Quinn.

(laughs) Starting the rumors! [Ed Note: Chord and Mark are not dating.]
No, it’s funny, me and Mark [Salling] have tweeting wars back and forth, joking around. Goofing around on set with these tweets. And I think it was Kevin McHale who said “You guys should come up with one of those couple names.” And people started saying Salling Street and started saying that we were dating. And I thought it was hilarious.

I like Salling street. That’s a good name.
We’re not actually dating. He asked me and I said no.

You probably broke his heart.
He’s not my type. I don’t like the mohawks, I like them clean cut.

So if he got rid of the mohawk, you’d give him a chance? (laughs)
No, I’m kidding. We’re good friends. He’s a funny guy.

I know your character is fairly new but have you gotten any interesting fan reaction?
I’ve gotten a lot of reaction. I’m sure everybody likes my shirt being off.

You seem to like your shirt being off.
I was born in the nude, and I kind of got used that. Why put clothes on and constrict myself? I’m totally kidding. I love clothes.

Be sure to tune in tomorrow night for The Rocky Horror Glee Show at 8 pm on FOX.


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