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Celebrity Spotlight: Justin Stiver
Tell me a bit about yourself and career.
I’m a Midwestern boy turned New Yorker. I moved here about eight years ago to pursue film and TV, having always done theatre growing up in Ohio. I did some modeling for a while and had some amazing features in Luomo Vogue and Max Magazine. I was fortunate to join SAG a few years ago and have had some really fun gigs the past couple of years. I’ve played sexy abe Lincoln multiple times for “The Stephen Colbert Show,” and before the pandemic hit I had a fun role on HBO’s “The Deuce.” I’m making a lot of great relationships and working towards booking that coveted series regular on a fantastic show!
How would you describe Wicked?
Did you know there are good Fairies and evil Fairies?
Jennifer Armentrout weaves an awesome story about a girl (Ivy) who lives in New Orleans and protects the humans from the Fae (evil Fairies) that spillover from the underworld. Little does she know just how bad things are about to get!
What attracted you to the role?
I have ALWAYS wanted to work on a sci-fi project or play a vampire/baddie of some kind. I grew up with Buffy, but the truth is I kind of always liked the bad guys better. When I booked Roman, it was literally a bucket list check from when I was younger.
In what ways do you relate to your character?
Roman is a take-charge kind of guy. He answers to some pretty serious dudes, so I think he keeps things a little lighter and is grounded in getting the job done. I identify a lot with how good he is at his job, and he is always a couple of steps ahead!
What was it like working with such a great cast?
It was so much fun! It was definitely an adjustment to other sets as it was my first time on a set with all the covid protocols in place. It was very weird at first, but once you learned how to navigate everything, it felt like riding a bike. The cast is really talented; Anna was so much fun to work with. She and I got to have some pretty fun stunts to work through together, and she was always down to get the job done. She never misses a beat. Everyone really brought their A-game, and Taryn O’Neill (our director) was so good at collaborating with us!
What were some challenges of playing the role?
It was my first time doing some pretty extensive stunts; you know, the baddies always get thrown around in these movies.
We had a whole amazing team of stunt coordinators and stunt doubles that made it extremely safe and professional.
What are some of your favorite memories from working on set?
Haha, I’m copying the question before, I’ve never gotten to do quite the level of stunts I got to do on Wicked, and those were such fun days on set. I was so excited and always asking the director to get punched or kicked or thrown against a wall just one more time.
What else are you working on?
It’s been a year of a lot of reflection and adjustment to everything happening in the world. I did get to play Cupid with anger management issues for an exciting pilot project. Next up, fingers crossed, for a few guest star opportunities on major New York shows!
Tell me a fun fact about yourself.
I grew up on a horse farm in Ohio. Yes I had a pony, and not in the cool way. I had to clean its stall, feed it and bail hay!
What are you watching on TV these days?
During the pandemic, I’ve watched more films and TV than ever before. Some highlights were definitely watching the whole Marvel cannon in chronological order and then leading into Wandavision.
Wandavision was so different from a lot of Marvel content prior, and I loved it. Elizabeth Olsen is next level, and the storytelling is just unbelievable. I also watched and loved the Queen’s Gambit, Behind Her Eyes (I’m a HUGE Tom Bateman fan), Nurse Jackie (I know it’s been around forever, but I just binged the whole series for the first time). Also, I’m obsessed with What we do in the Shadows and Shrill; they are both hilarious!
Anything else you want to share?
So I used to be a gamer growing up; I’m talking Everquest, command and conquer, the world of warcraft, you name it. But in the pandemic, I found myself back gaming again. I’m currently a little obsessed with Magic The Gathering app on my phone. Have you played? Is this a thing? Should I find a dungeon master?