"Nothing in my career has come easy": 'Seal Team's' AJ Buckley talks acting, fitness and charity

Buckley shares his experience of being a part on 'Seal Team', his upcoming show and his life as an entrepreneur in this exclusive interview with MEAWW.

                            "Nothing in my career has come easy": 'Seal Team's' AJ Buckley talks acting, fitness and charity

Season two of CBS's 'Seal Team' continues to impress fans, and AJ Buckley who stars as Sony Quinn has garnered constant applause for his tough role of a navy seal. Buckley stars alongside David Boreanaz, who plays Jason Hayes, in the series which follows the lives of US navy seals.

The star has played all sorts of roles in his career, be it in comedy or romance; he has aced it whether playing a nerd or a tough guy as in 'Seal Team,' and will soon be seen starring in an upcoming series 'Pure' in 2019.

However, Buckley is not just known for his acting talent. He is a master of all trades and if given a chance he would love to "be an entrepreneur of taking an idea and building a company out of it" and calls it "the American dream."

Buckley shares his experience of being a part on 'Seal Team', his upcoming show and his life as an entrepreneur in this exclusive interview with MEAWW. Here are some excerpts from the interview.  

You have starred in diverse roles so far and now you're playing an elite Navy SEAL on 'SEAL Team'. What attracted you this role?

This is a role of a lifetime for me that I get to play a character like this and truly an honor to play a Navy Seal. When I read the pilot script that Ben Cavell wrote, it created these human moments in extraordinary situations. I’ve worked with Ben in the past and jumped at the opportunity to work with him again. 

The life of a soldier is filled with challenges and it is never easy to play a soldier on screen. How did you prepare for this role?

Well first and foremost, we are very fortunate to be surrounded by Veterans every day on our set. This show has surrounded us with Veterans every day and they share their own experiences and self-sacrifices with us actors so we can we can portray those in the armed forces as accurately as possible. 


You are also playing the role of a misfit cop in an upcoming series ‘Pure’. Do you think there are any similarities between the two characters?  

100% No! Bronco Novak, the character that I play in 'Pure' is an overweight degenerate cop with a handle bar mustache who drives a 1985 red Mustang... I’ll leave it at that. 

You started your career with ‘The Disappearance of Vonnie’ where you played the character of Robbie. Tell us more about your journey as an actor since.

It’s been a long hard road. Nothing in my career has come easy. I spent a solid year and a half living out of my car. When I booked CSY:NY, I had $32.95 in my bank account. However, looking back I wouldn’t trade this journey for anything as it has made me the artist that I am today. 

You also co-founded ‘Paperclip’, which is an innovative line of high-end diaper bags. How did this idea strike you? Does being a parent yourself act as a motivator?

The idea for Paperclip came to mind when I came to the realization that there were no changing tables in men’s restrooms. My business partner Artie Baxter and I were both new dads in the game and we saw a gap in the market place for diaper bags that both moms and dads could carry. At that time, most of the diaper bags in the market were mainly geared toward moms. We wanted to create a diaper bag that the moms would buy knowing that their husbands would feel cool carrying it as well. The diaper bag is fashionable and functional with a built-in changing station and can complement any outfit from the parents on Wall Street to Main Street.

You are a partner in ‘The Pipeline Poke House’ restaurant in Florida. How is that going? Are you a foodie yourself?

Pipeline Poke House is doing phenomenal and we are franchising throughout Florida. In addition, I recently launched my new company called “Juiced Up” (Website: https://juicedup.life) with Lil’ Jon & Jeremy McCassy, which appeals to my healthy diet and lifestyle. `

Photo courtesy: James Dimmock
Photo courtesy: James Dimmock

Being fit is a major part of an actor’s life. How do you make time for fitness when you’re doing so many things? How important is physical fitness in your day-to-day life?

You just have to make it a priority and realize that sleep is not necessary. As for physical fitness, it is part of who I’ve become and it’s more of a state of mind. You have to put in the extra work when everyone else has gone to bed. I get most of my inspiration from Dwayne Johnson’s Instagram because if he can find time to work out with his busy schedule, then I have no excuse. 

Being a part of men’s cancer charity and children’s welfare project, what would you like to inform your fans about social responsibility?

The social responsibility of doing charity is using your platform to help bring awareness to individuals or organizations who are in need of some wind in their sail. Lately, I’ve become very involved with various veteran organizations such as the Boot Campaign (Website: https://www.bootcampaign.org) and the Gary Sinise Foundation (Website: https://www.garysinisefoundation.org). Both of these foundations go above and beyond for the men and women who have served our country and helped them acclimate back to society after returning from war. 

What are the other projects you are working on?

I’ve optioned a few books that I am turning into a television series. Aside from that, there’s nothing more important in my life than spending time with my beautiful daughter, 8-month-old twin boys & beautiful wife.