Thursday, January 1, 2009

The Mind of Mark Wahlburg

In the last ten years, the name Mark Wahlburg has become synonymous with outstanding movie performances. From his outstanding work in Boogie nights to the other hit movies he has been associated with including I Heart Huckabees and The Departed, Wahlberg has shown that he not only knows what he is doing in front of the camera, he is a savvy businessman who knows the Hollywood system and knows how to get the roles he wants.

This is why it was such a victory for HBO when they signed Mark Wahlberg as executive producer of their next breakout series, Entourage. Entourage is a perfect fit to Wahlberg because in many ways the career path the lead character Vincent Chase is a fictionalized version of Wahlberg himself. Chase is a handsome and successful movie star who is sustaining his strong sense of connection to his private world of family and friends all the while conquering Hollywood with his charm, good looks and talent. That sounds like a resume of Mark Wahlberg for sure.

As the executive producer of Entourage, Wahlberg brings a merger of several unique traits that very much influence the feel of the show and its direction. And it is safe to say that his imprint on Entourage is one of the many reasons along with the great talent of the actors on the show for the early and long lasting success of the show. First of all Wahlberg knows Hollywood. While lots of other producers are aware of how Hollywood works, Wahlberg has walked in the shoes of Vincent Chase as he has navigated the sometimes uncharted and changing waters of the Hollywood star system. This brings an authenticity to Entourage that gives the fans that feeling that we are being let in on the secrets of Hollywood. In many ways, that is exactly what Entourage is putting on display to the delight of critics and viewers alike.

But Wahlberg also knows how to tell a good story. His diversity and depth of his movie experience has taught him well how to construct a good story line and tell it on film. He has a keen eye for character and personality and how to make everything about the show become a showcase for Vincent, Johnnie, Turtle, Eric, and that powerful personality of Ari Gold, Vincent's manager. As an actor and now producer in Hollywood, you can bet that Mark Wahlberg has met his share of Ari Golds so he knows how to portray that unique personality on screen beautifully.

You can find a fascinating glimpse into the mind of Mark Wahlberg in an interview that is at your disposal on the HBO web site at If you are a fan of Entourage, there is no question that it is one of those classic television comedies that will endure long after they finally turn the cameras off. But there is so much more to the show and you can see that Wahlberg's unique objectives for Entourage is one reason that the comedy of the show fits into that vision to give us a fresh approach to television and a show that easily captivates an audience and brings them back for more.

It is Wahlberg's unique perspective that even more than just funny dialog and situations, for Entourage to become a great show, it had to be about personalities and relationships. And even though the scripts of Entourage are hilarious, you really to feel the depth of those relationships which only continue to grow together and grow on the audience from week to week. This is a formula for success that we are privileged to have Mark Wahlberg's guidance on and the quality entertainment that Entourage gives us is a reflection of yet another great performance by the versatile Mark Wahlberg.

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