In “Dope,” actor Blake Anderson, best know for his hilarious role on the TV show “Workaholics,” plays Will, a computer hacker/“motivated stoner” who helps the film’s three main characters — all of whom are obsessed with 90s hip-hop culture — set up a drug operation online where purchases can be made using bitcoins.
During an interview with me this past week, Anderson talked about what he was doing in the 90s, whether “Dope” has something complex to say about race in America today, and what popular movie franchise he hopes to land a role in soon.
This film focus a lot of the 90s culture. What were you doing in the 90s as a young man?
I was watching a lot of Nickelodeon — “Rugrats,” “Doug,” “All Real Monsters,” you name it. Nickelodeon was basically on TV nonstop.
It’s not like that at your house today?
I don’t know if it has the same programming as I remember back then. They might have a throwback channel. If they did, I’d probably still be “stuck on the dial” as they used to say.
Your character gets a bit controversial because he wants to say the N word in the film. How did you handle that part of your role?
I didn’t think too much about it. I don’t use that word in my everyday use. I listen to a lot of hip-hop, so I’m not afraid of the word. I just don’t personally use it.
When the word is used in hip-hop, do you just consider it part of the culture?
Yeah, I rock that stuff, for sure. You just know not to say it as a white dude. I’m not trying to get slapped in the face as you can see in the movie. That’s why I don’t use the word.
Do you think a film like “Dope” has a message about race it’s trying to convey to audiences?
I feel like I’m getting my Barack Obama on tackling race issues over here. There will always be race issues in the United States of America. But I think the important thing is that we’re all here doing our thing. We might as well get along. Our differences are what make us awesome. USA all the way! Get along, damn it!
“Dope” is an independent film, so I would say it’s pretty courageous to come out during the summer against some of these major blockbusters. What would you tell moviegoers to get them to go see “Dope” and not “Jurassic World” for the tenth time?
Well, “Dope” is a good movie. It’s a fun adventure. And there is a message that is very important. It’s a human message. It’s not a reptilian message. Dinosaurs are dead. Get. Over. It. OK? We’re living here and now. Come on!
You do great work on the TV show “Workaholics.” Is film something you’d like to do more of or is TV where you want to be right now?
I had a lot of fun on this movie. I can only hope to do more. It would be great to have more fun. It’s a different pace working in movies. But it is cool when you get the right project. I’m glad that I started with “Dope.” It’s a great jumping off point. I really hope to do more in the future.
Going back to hip-hop really quick, you’re a big fan of rapper Lil B, right?
Yeah, I am.
Do you really think he thinks he can put curses on people?
I mean, you saw what happen to [the] Houston [Rockets], man [during the 2015 NBA Playoffs]. Just acknowledge that you’re doing the “cooking dance.” Lil B all the way, man. BasedGod. That’s what’s up.
Are you an NBA fan? Do you follow one of the California teams?
Absolutely. I grew up on the East Bay. The fact that the [Golden State] Warriors won [the NBA Championship] last night is why I’m still drunk talking to you right now.
Were you running in the streets? Flipping over cars?
(Laughs) I tried to flip a car, but living in L.A. I didn’t have a lot of people helping me. Trust me. I tried to flip some neighbors’ cars.
I’m talking to you from San Antonio, so even though we’re depressed we didn’t repeat this year, we’re happy for Golden State because of Steve Kerr.
He acknowledged that. I didn’t realize how many legendary coaches Steve Kerr got to play with. Phil Jackson. [Gregg] Popovich. It’s pretty cool. The Spurs are a hell of a dynasty. They’re a great team. It’s too bad the [L.A.] Clippers didn’t make it farther after they beat them. That was a big mountain to climb for them.
Do you think the Warriors have what it takes to keep this run going for a few more years?
They could! They’re young. If they stay together and keep up with that energy, it could happen. I believe it. They’re deep. That’s what’s cool about them. The whole team deserved that win last night. For the Cavs, it was just basically LeBron.
“Dope” is going to be at the theater at the same time as your “Workaholics” co-star Adam DeVine’s movie “Pitch Perfect 2.” Have you started trash talking yet?
Man, it’s going down. “Dope” is about to beat “Pitch Perfect 2” at the box office. So, watch me man! Yeah, I don’t know if that is possible. They have like a “Twilight” following. You can’t beat a cappella movies! It’s impossible!
Maybe you should start working on your singing voice.
Yeah, I’m trying to get into “Pitch Perfect 3.” (Singing) Pa pa pa pa pa, pa pa pa!
Fat Amy (actress Rebel Wilson’s character) could possibly use another love interest for Part 3, so maybe you can fill that role.
Absolutely. I’m down to eat a bunch of bagels and be Fat Blake. I’ll do it. I’ll put on weight for a role. Trust me. I’ll eat Reuben sandwiches…at night.