The Mac is back! New Kids On The Block’s Joey McIntyre stars in Pop TV’s newest comedy Return Of The Mac, which makes its series premiere tonight at 8:30 PM ET/PT.
In the show, McIntyre plays an exaggerated version of himself looking to transition from touring with NKOTB to a serious acting job. Initially looking for a role as a hardened crime detective, McIntyre finds himself being talked into hosting a talk show instead by his agent Alex (played by Adam Ray) and long-time friend Donnie (Donnie Wahlberg). Joining McIntyre on screen are his real life wife and children, who also play versions of themselves.
CBS Local’s Matt Weiss caught up with Joey McIntyre this morning to discuss his newest project.
MW- Good morning Joe, let’s jump right into things here. You star in Return Of The Mac alongside your real life wife and children, was there any struggle to convince them to buy into the project and what was it like once you all actually started filming?
JM- Well it was a little nerve wracking at times to think about having my family involved with the show because I had to keep my producer hat on and also not be a schmuck of a husband (laughs). So it wasn’t easy, it was stressful but I knew she [wife, Barrett Williams] would be great. She really stepped up for us and was amazing. Then the kids, I didn’t want them to be taken out of their schedules or out of school and that worked out too, so it was great. At the end of the day it was wonderful to share the journey with them and have them involved.
MW- It’s almost like a home movie you can look back on one day, that’s being broadcast to the entire country.
JM- Yea! That is a nice way to look at it. Partially it’s going through all the things I’ve gone through in my career and sharing it with my family. It’s kind of a nice photo album.
MW- Now the show is scripted but, as the show’s creator and being a writer as well as the star of the show, how much of your real life comes through as someone who has actually made the transition from being a music star to an actor, like your character is trying to do in the show?
JM- Playing this character I did have to put my ego aside and just do what’s right for the script. So sometimes I’d be like, ah I wouldn’t necessarily do that or I don’t want people to think I would do that. But some of it is slightly exaggerated and some of it is not so exaggerated because everybody has crazy stories from being in this business or any business. In any office setting people’s lives can be weirder than fiction.
MW- Speaking of putting your ego to the side, it seems like you’re not afraid to make yourself the butt of the joke. From clips I’ve seen you compete in a dance-off at one point, I’ve even heard rumors you might be making an appearance in a speedo during one scene. Were there any scenes you wrote out and then once you actually got to set you say to yourself, “Oh man, I have to actually do this now?”
JM- Oh yea, pretty much! That speedo scene was, in theory you think it’s funny and then you actually have to do it. You walk out and have to take the robe off and there you are in a leopard print speedo and uhhh I don’t want to do that again (laughs). But it was fun. It’s nice to kind of hide within that character you know? Even though I’m playing a version of myself it’s really a show and like you said it’s scripted and you get to do things with a certain amount of support and know it’s all for a good time.
MW- Now for everyone excited about the premiere tonight, how would you describe the vibe of the show? Is there anything you would compare it to?
JM- I guess I would say it’s Curb Your Enthusiasm meets Parenthood meets Episodes.
MW- That’s not a bad three.
JM- Yea, it’s a good mix right there.
MW- So last but not least, for all the Joey McIntyre fans out there, what’s next for The Mac now that you’ve finished filming?
JM- Well, I’m excited that the show is finally going to be out and I’m probably going to be live tweeting the episode, so I’ll be busy doing that. But then the New Kids On The Block have a tour this May, June and July. We’re going out with Boyz II Men and Paula Abdul so we’re looking forward to putting that tour together and giving our fans another night to remember.
MW- Great stuff. Well good luck and I’ll be tuning in tonight at 8:30 for sure!
JM- Thank you so much!
Return Of The Mac premieres tonight at 8:30 PM ET/PT on Pop TV. Check your local listings for more information.