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On the Rise: Adam Scott of “Piranha 3D”

On the Rise: Adam Scott of "Piranha 3D"

Considering his first film credit dates back to 1994 (long ago, I know), you’d be forgiven for thinking that Adam Scott, 37, is no up and comer. But ask the Average Joe on the street and you’d likely be hard pressed to find someone who knows the actor by name – not by face. He’s the type of thespian that pops up in seemingly everything to reassure the audience that they’re in good hands, without drawing focus away from the principals on hand. Scott’s not a scene stealer, just a darn fine actor.

The scruffily handsome California native can soon be caught rescuing mangled dames from the ocean in Alexandre Ajas’s “Piranha 3D” (out this Friday). Over the course of his eccentric career, Scott’s worked with everyone from Martin Scorsese to Will Ferrell, and appeared alongside Amy Adams in the rom-com “Leap Year” just earlier this year. Scott credits working with the first two as professional milestones in his career.

For Scorsese, Scott appeared alongside acting stalwarts Cate Blanchett and Leonardo DiCaprio in “The Aviator.” “Every little interaction I had with Scorsese is forever tattooed on my brain,” he told the A.V. Club. “It’s just a special experience, special moment in my life, let alone in my career. Talk about a pretentious douchebag. Tell me to stop talking.”

In “Step Brothers,” Scott played Ferrell’s dick of a biological brother, Derek Huff. The hilarious turn earned him a whole new comedy fan base that likely aided him in landing a lead role on the Starz comedy series “Party Down,” for which he received an Emmy nomination in 2009. “”Step Brothers” itself, when I did it, I don’t know if I had any idea that it would become a defining moment in my career and life like it has, and I’m really happy that that’s the one that ended up being that for me,” Scott told A.V. “There have lots of moments where I thought maybe something would be that, and it just didn’t happen, and I’m happy that it didn’t, because those things ended up being really lame.”

Riding on the comedy wave, Scott can also be seen earning guffaws in NBC’s “Parks and Recreation” (which happens to star previously profiled Aubrey Plaza), and in the soon to be released feature comedy “My Idiot Brother,” starring Elizabeth Banks, Paul Rudd and Zooey Deschanel.

As for what you won’t see Scott in? “Probably one of those romantic movies on the Hallmark channel,” he told New York Magazine’s Vulture blog. “I see them at the mall, like the posters for them. Who’s that country singer? LeAnn Rimes. It’s always like a guy and her. Jerry O’Connell did one of them and he told me that in every scene they tried to get him to take his shirt off. Like, it was a dinner scene at night and they’re like, ‘You should probably have your shirt off for this scene.’ First of all, I think that would be an unpleasant experience for the viewers. But then also, I would hate it.”

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