Zachary Quinto Talks About “The Chair,” Mentoring & Being a Jack of All Trades

I was lucky enough to be able to interview Zachary Quinto earlier this week about the new Starz docu-series he will be co-producing, The Chair. It has a really interesting premise, where two first-time directors are given the opportunity to direct separate films adapted from one original screenplay. Zach serves as a mentor for both directors, Anna Martemucci and Shane Dawson.

Photo by Chiun-Kai Shih

Zach is one of my absolute favorite actors (hello, I traveled to NYC to see him on Broadway last year), so I was really excited to have this opportunity. I especially loved that he listed J.J. Abrams and Leonard Nimoy as his inspirations during the interview. Hell, I’m not in the film industry, and Abrams is one of my inspirations! He also touched on his amazing Instagram bromance with James Franco (c’mon, you know you had a hard time breathing with some of those photos, ladies). As usual, I can’t wait to support Zach yet again on this new venture.

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On “The Chair,” you will be serving as mentor for the up and coming directors. After years of looking up to others and their craft, how does it feel to have the tables turned and have others seeking your advice and knowledge? 

I really love the opportunity to share the experiences that I’ve had with other people. It’s an incredibly gratifying position to be in and I want to utilize it to the fullest as I continue to grow my life and my career as an actor, a producer and film maker. Bringing people to a point that they otherwise would not have reached is something that I feel really good about – I feel really humbled by, and I’d like to continue it. I like to reach out to people that have ambition and are dreaming of a different level of experience than the one they might be having now.

With producing, Broadway, TV and movies under your belt, along with expressing the desire to direct, do you feel like you gravitate more towards one than the others?

I always consider myself an actor first and I feel like my experience reflects that. I’ve been acting since I was 10 years old and I hope that that will be the thing that I do forever, but as I continue to expand I want to inhabit that expansion. I want to diversify. The industry has changed so much that diversity is key in a way that it didn’t used to be, and I can see that. I also have an interest in cultivating a keen business mind, so I’m trying to navigate these waters from a number of different perspectives. Creativity is the foundation and the thing that I always want to come back to, but within that, I want to give myself opportunities to do other stuff and have other experiences. That’s why I started my company, that’s why I produce things and try to look at things from the business side as well, because that is also fascinating, but I would say that my gravitation is always towards acting and creating in that way.

Make sure to check out The Chair, premiering on Starz on September 6th at 11pm.
Wanna see more? Check out the trailer!

Special thanks to Gotham News for giving me this opportunity!