'Veronica Mars' season 4 star Frank Gallego memorized his lines when he learned that NBA champ Kareem Abdul Jabbar was writing them
'Veronica Mars', one of the most iconic cult classics of all time, is returning on popular demand and like its predecessors, the upcoming season four also promises to be engaging, entertaining and most importantly, smart. To the relief of all the OG fans of the series, most of our favorite cast members are returning to reprise their roles, but it will also see the arrival of new faces at Neptune.
Among the new faces is Dodie, a hitman for a Mexican cartel played by actor Frank Gallegos, who describes his character as someone who would rather keep his head down and follow orders. "He doesn’t overthink things and he tends to handle problems in a straight forward, simple sort of way. He doesn't regret his life choices but he also worries about the future," Gallegos tells MEA WorldWide (MEAWW).
Elaborating on his character, Gallegos says how coming to Neptune triggers a change within him. "Neptune is so different from the world that he comes from that he feels like he landed on another planet and he just doesn't really understand life there," he reveals, adding how as time goes on, Neptune starts to change him and affect what he wants out of life.
"You could say that he starts to look past the reality he knows and starts to imagine a new life for him living in Neptune, hanging at the beach and maybe…being happy?" ponders Gallegos, who credits 'Veronica Mars' creator Rob Thomas and the team of writers for beautifully portraying the subtlety, humo, and realism of his character.
"So much of my character was right there on the page. It just all made sense to me and I would find myself doing things a certain way, talking a certain way and delivering lines in a unique way that didn’t come from me or my personality, but was coming directly from the script," he says, adding how it is not always the norm.
He continues, "It is rare to have that sort of connection with the script and writing staff. As the season went on and Rob and the other writers got a chance to see some of the work I was doing, they were adjusting the scripts even more to fit me and that just made them even better." He even tried to memorize all his lines and not rely on improvisation as soon as he learned that NBA Hall of Famer Kareen Abdul Jabber was on the writing staff. "You can’t argue with a champion like Kareem!"
Gallegos also goes on to gush about his co-star Clifton Collins Jr., "a subtle, deep and truthful actor who brings a lifetime of experience to every expression, gaze, and the line he delivers." Collins Jr., who plays a fellow cartel hitman, and Gallegos went to high school together back in the day, which the actor claims helped bring about the ease between the screen partners.
"We went to a Catholic school and more than a few times we'd be filming some violent cold-blooded scene and Clifton would turn to me and laugh, 'Do you think Fr. Bennett would be proud of us?'!" shares Gallegos, who reveals that they spent many a long conversation discussing their characters.
"We would get together every day before shooting started and go over the script and talk about what was going on, what we were doing, thinking, etc. and really just created two very real characters in real situations with an excellent rapport between them," he says. You can watch Gallegos embody Dodie when season 4 of 'Veronica Mars' premieres on July 26 on Hulu.