MSN Live Chat with Vin Diesel February 2000

Digital Dish Diva says: Welcome to MSN Live! Tonight we are proud to present a very special chat with actor, Vin Diesel who currently stars as stockjock in the New Line Cinema Film, "Boiler Room."

Digital Dish Diva says: Vin, great to meet you! Thanks for being our guest tonight!

Vin Diesel says: Hi! How are you? Thanks for tuning in! I am glad to be here.

Digital Dish Diva says: We're happy to have you here! Our first question tonight comes from rebel who says: Vin, I have managed and setup Phone Rooms for 27 years. Did the cast have to study with an actual phone room?

Vin Diesel says: rebel, we went and visited phone rooms. I used to work as a telemarketer and I made my first feature film through money I earned within eight months time of telemarketing.

Digital Dish Diva says: southernbelle says: Do you relate to your roles?

Vin Diesel says: Belle, I try to find an affinity or some common ground with each role. I try to amplify that. In "Pitch Black" I play a character that succeeds beyond his expectations. I guess we have all identified with that in some point in our lives.

Digital Dish Diva says: Anise says: Mr. Diesel, I saw you short, "Multi-Facial," last night and viewed the interviews. I am of multicultural parentage and the film stirred questions of how I identify myself. Are you of multicultural lineage and how has that affected who you are today?

Vin Diesel says: Anise, absolutely. No one knows that better than you.

Digital Dish Diva says: Vin Fan says: Vin, which film school did you go to and who were your acting coaches?

Vin Diesel says: I started acting when I was seven. I never learned as much as I did when I worked. Work is the best teacher on any level even if it is an off off off Broadway play.

Digital Dish Diva says: Hobtrotter says: Do you feel there is a real moral issue to Boiler Room or is it merely exploiting a would be urban myth. In other words is it a real depiction of a joint?

Vin Diesel says: Hobtrotter, good question. I think that for the most part it does describe a certain adulation or desire to be financially successful by any means necessarily. It was a pretty accurate description of a boiler room. It does describe an overall desire to be rich which is so prevalent in today's society. I hope that answers your questions, Hob.

Vin Diesel says: Thanks a lot for all your great questions! You're great!

Digital Dish Diva says: tommac says: What was it like working with all the other cast members in boiler room?

Vin Diesel says: tommac, we had a lot of fun as you can imagine!

Digital Dish Diva says: Sic Transit Gloria says: Vin, I was wondering, what has been your favorite movie experience thus far?

Vin Diesel says: Sic, each film had it's own rewarding aspects. "Pitch Black" was a fun fun fun film to do. As much as I tried to maintain a serious profile, I like action films like "Mad Max." To be able to pay homage to films like that is very exciting.

Digital Dish Diva says: turbo tax says: Have you seen the film yet?

Vin Diesel says: turbo, I saw the movie at the premiere on Tuesday and snuck into some screenings this weekend. It was great hearing the audience response. I felt like I was sharing it with them. I'll probably be in more theatres this weekend!

Digital Dish Diva says: nikky says: How do you feel about watching yourself in films? Does it make you nervous?

Vin Diesel says: nikky, extremely. Some people are good about watching themselves. Some people are bad. I fall into the latter category. The most enjoyable part of watching my films is watching the audience's reaction and feeling their energy. When I snuck in last weekend and when I sneak in this weekend it will be to get the audience reaction. That is my greatest reward!

Digital Dish Diva says: mylene says: Did you like working with Iron Giant ? Would you like to do more voice acting? There is a strong uprise in Japanese animation and we are even seeing them come the silver screen in America. Would you like to do one of them?

Vin Diesel says: mylene, the Iron Giant experience was so enjoyable. It would be easy to imagine doing that again. As we speak, I am looking for another animation film to be part of.

Digital Dish Diva says: Jeff167 says: How were your eyes done for "Pitch Black"?

Vin Diesel says: Jeff, imagine finding a 1960 Plymouth, popping off the hubcap, painting them a reflective blue and putting them in your eyes. The contacts I wore were prototypes. They had to fly in an eye doctor because we couldn't get them out that first day. They were uncomfortable but I wanted to use them. They added to the character in a realistic fashion. Every now and then they would add special effects. When Riddick asks Fry to come closer, and she requests to see his eyes, that is pretty much the contacts.

Digital Dish Diva says: mysterygirl says: How long did it take Vin to get in shape for Pitch Black ?

Vin Diesel says: girl, I had been training all my life. I was a bouncer for nine years. I have always been in shape. This character called for a different kind of exercise. I did Pilates, which is an exercise which added fluidity I also did Yoga to give the character a more centered feel. This was justified when he was in shackles, blindfolded. He was still calm and composed. You could see this in the opening scene.

Digital Dish Diva says: Lissa says: Hi. Wow this is so cool to ask you this. Where do you get your ideas from? God bless you. I'm 13 and I'm your hugest FAN!

Vin Diesel says: Hi Lissa. Thank you very much. That was very sweet. I think what you have to do, in any business, is try to be as pro-active as you can. We all have ideas. We all come up with original and great ideas but we don't have the confidence to make them a reality. It's really about making your ideas into a reality. Next time you have an idea that you think is impossible, don't think about that. Most people don't think that Riddick was possible, but you know, you plug away and next thing you know, you are Riddick.

Digital Dish Diva says: mysterygirl says: I would like to know what was or is your motivating force?

Vin Diesel says: mystery, to create magic. One of the things I learned from Saving Private Ryan was that here is a guy (Spielberg) who has a lovely wife, family, accolades, more money than God and yet when he embarks on making art, all he wants to do at the end of the day is make a little magic and I identify with that. That is all I really want to do.

Digital Dish Diva says: Blake says: Did you feel any pressure when preparing for you're amazing death scene in Saving Private Ryan, especially in front of Steven Spielberg?

Vin Diesel says: Blake, I don't know how much pressure I felt. Granted, it was my first big commercial film. I laid on  y back for five days while a simulated rain machine rained on me which felt like 12 ounce Evian bottles filling my eyes and throat, choking me. You forget about the pressures and you begin to assimilate what it would be like to slowly die.

Digital Dish Diva says: cradle says: What are your favorite kind of movies to do?

Vin Diesel says: cradle, hmmm. That is a tricky question. I like so many. I like action films. I love them. I also like character driven films that teach us something about ourselves. I have taken my love for this and incorporated them in other films I do. So, if I do a film like "Pitch Black" which is Sci-Fi on paper, I try to incorporate some character driven things. I like "Pitch Black" because it examines our humanity, our breaking points. I like how the people you think will be heroes, aren't and those you write off, actually may surprise you. I know, that was a long one, guys!

Digital Dish Diva says: prettygirl says: I can t wait to see you in Boiler Room. Do you play the market? I had to ask.

Vin Diesel says: prettygirl, I am horrible at the market! I am the guy who hears my friends are making money and I am the last one in. I wish I was better at playing the market, but you can't do anything.

Digital Dish Diva says: player says: Did you get to keep your clothes from "Boiler Room"?

Vin Diesel says: player, no, I am still pissed off about that. Oh, God, they were nice. You know who I can talk to about that? I like the way you think. I should have you negotiate in the future.

Digital Dish Diva says: Armani?

Vin Diesel says: Hugo Boss.

Vin Diesel says: Hugo Boss made up for it.

Digital Dish Diva says: Well, you looked incredible in "Boiler Room." Definitely stay with Hugo Boss.

Digital Dish Diva says: Corazon says: Vin, love your new films. What do you get the most satisfaction from: Acting, Writing, Directing or a combo of all three? ~Cory

Vin Diesel says: Cory, acting is more therapeutic. I have been acting the longest. Film making, writing and directing is an opportunity for me to tell a story and that is challenging for me in a very, very, good way and I like that.

Digital Dish Diva says: dramaactor says: As you can see, I'm an actor too, and I'm looking for an agent, how do you go about doing that? I live in an extremely small town.

Vin Diesel says: Do what you can where you are. Perform in your small town. Start doing theatrical productions, even if you and your friends all chip in. That is my best advice. That goes back to being proactive.

Digital Dish Diva says: amber_lynn says: I want to know what do you like to do on your free time?

Vin Diesel says: amber, on line chats for MSN Live! (laughs)

Vin Diesel says: What free time?

Digital Dish Diva says: rebel says: To be a telemarketer takes a special type of personality. How long did it take the casting crew to find the right people to play these parts?

Vin Diesel says: rebel, I actually don't know. I was the last person signed on. I waited till the last minute because I was in Australia. I don't know how long it actually took.

Digital Dish Diva says: Bunny-girl says: Will he be making any appearances on an any upcoming talkshows and the like? All of us drooling fangirls want to know!

Vin Diesel says: Bunny, I know that they are talking about Conan and Leno this week. I don't know when though. In fact you should ask both those shows and push them along.

Digital Dish Diva says: caroline says: Do you have a website?

Vin Diesel says: caroline, I am working on right now. It will be

Vin Diesel says: It should be up next week.

Digital Dish Diva says: bobbyp says: I heard Vin wrote, produced, directed and acted in Strays. Is that true? How was he able to do that?

Vin Diesel says: bobbyp, yes, it is true. Strays was a very exciting period in my life. I went to NY with my friend John Sale and we earned $47,000 and I had directed "Multi-Facial. After I put it in the can, I had a hard time getting the funds for postproduction. I got completely lucky. In '97, at Sundance Strays was in Dramatic Competition and I was able to get the finishing funds. You will be able to get it later this year on DVD or at the video store.

Digital Dish Diva says: meric says: Is One Race Productions your company?

Vin Diesel says: Yes.

Digital Dish Diva says: Desdemona says: Do you have any future projects of your own coming up?

Vin Diesel says: Desdemona, I have another film called "Knockaround Guys" coming out in September. It is a gangster/Western written and directed by Brian Koppleman and David Levine. They did Rounders. It has a good cast, John Malkovich, Dennis Hopper, Seth Green, and Barry Pepper.

Digital Dish Diva says: browser says: Vin, did you dislocate your shoulders in actuality or if that was just special FX?

Digital Dish Diva says: browser, that is a very good question. I walked on the set and they had a rig that would incorporate special FX. I did the maneuver and everyone dropped their jaws. Ultimately, the handcuffs were just so close together. About 80% of that maneuver was mine.

Digital Dish Diva says: cuteguy says: I have a good question for Vin. What did you do to prepare in your role for your new films?

Vin Diesel says: cuteguy, I talked about yoga and Pilates. I approached this character the same way I would a dramatic film. At different times I did different things. When I did the Vampirical, I would listen to Classical music. When he is comedic, I would take a different approach. I tried to explore the character as much as possible to make him come to life. You also need to find references to your own life. You think about Riddick being vilified. He was being misrepresented. The other thing is, I examined predators in the wild and their movements and mannerisms and tried to incorporate that to some degree.

Digital Dish Diva says: And it shows. Vin, this has been an extraordinary hour! Thank you for spending tonight with us!

Vin Diesel says: Good night! Thank you all for joining me. We will talk again and I look forward to coming back!

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