Kyle's Career Filmstrip: TV Series and Movies

Dec 31, 2013

How Accurate Is The Wolf of Wall Street?

For The Wolf of Wall Street, his latest collaboration with Leonardo DiCaprio, Martin Scorsese forewent his signature voiceover in favor of direct address: Throughout the movie, DiCaprio, playing the lupine financial huckster Jordan Belfort, looks into the camera and speaks right to the audience. Terence Winter, who wrote the screenplay, explains the use of the technique thusly: “You are being sold the Jordan Belfort story by Jordan Belfort, and he is a very unreliable narrator.”

It’s important to keep that in mind if you decide to dig into the fact and fiction of the film. The Wolf of Wall Street is quite faithful to the book by Belfort that it’s based on—though there are differences; the key ones are enumerated below. But how faithful is that book to reality?
It can be hard to tell, especially since some of its more outlandish tales turn out to be true. Nonetheless, below is an attempt to suss out the true-to-life from the merely true-to-Belfort in the film version of his story.

Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio)
Leonardo DiCaprio, left, as Jordan Belfort, right
Courtesy of Paramount Pictures / Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images
The broad outlines of Belfort’s story are faithfully rendered by the film: A talented but struggling salesman from Long Island, he got a job at venerable investment firm L.F. Rothschild, then was laid off after Black Monday. He went to work at Investors Center, a penny stock house, and a year later opened “a franchise of Stratton Securities, a minor league broker-dealer,” in “a friend’s car dealership in Queens.” He and his partner earned enough to buy out Stratton and form Stratton Oakmont, which he built into one of the largest over-the-counter brokerage firms in the country. (As in the movie, he hired some old friends.) He did an enormous amount of drugs—including, yes, Lemmon 714s—employed the services of countless prostitutes, and eventually went to prison for the pump-and-dump schemes that made him rich.

Much of DiCaprio’s dialogue comes straight from Belfort’s book, as do nearly all of the hard-to-believe misadventures: landing the helicopter on his lawn while stoned, crashing his car while severely high on Quaaludes, insisting that the captain of his massive yacht sail through choppy waters only to have the boat capsize and then get rescued by the Italian navy. Some of these stories are difficult to verify, but, for what it’s worth, the FBI agent who investigated Belfort told the New York Times, “I tracked this guy for ten years, and everything he wrote is true.” (Even the yacht story checks out.) As for the much discussed tossing of little people, shown at the beginning of the movie: Belfort’s second-in-command says “we never abused [or threw] the midgets in the office; we were friendly to them.” That same former exec says there were never any animals in the office, let alone a chimpanzee, and he says that no one called Belfort “the Wolf.” We know, at least, that the nickname was not coined by a Forbes writer. But, for the most part, it’s Belfort’s word against his.

As far as I can tell, Belfort is not a particular advocate of “sell me this pen,” a bit of sales interview role-playing that has been around for years. Another minor but notable difference between movie and reality: Belfort, unlike DiCaprio, is a short man, and multiple acquaintances have suggested that his lust for money, power, and attention are evidence of a Napoleon complex. As for the fidelity of DiCaprio’s portrayal otherwise, there are many videos of Belfort you can watch online, including one or two of Stratton Oakmont company parties.

Danny Porush/Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill)
Jonah Hill in The Wolf of Wall Street, left, and Danny Porush.
Jonah Hill in The Wolf of Wall Street, left, and Danny Porush.
Photo courtesy Mary Cybulski/Paramount Pictures; Photo courtesy
The case of Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill) is more complicated. For one thing, Azoff is a fictional name, and the character is sometimes described as a composite. His story closely matches that of Danny Porush—but Porush himself has disputed some of the details. Here are the basic facts: Porush lived in Belfort’s  building, and he went to work as a trainee under Belfort before Stratton Oakmont. As History vs. Hollywood notes, he did not meet Belfort in a restaurant; they were introduced by Porush’s wife (and yes, she was his cousin; they have since divorced). He has admitted to eating a live goldfish that belonged to a Stratton employee, as depicted in the memoir and the movie, but denies the three-way with Belfort and a teenaged employee.

Porush was indeed a childhood friend of Steve Madden’s, and the initial public offering for that women’s shoe company was the biggest bit of business Stratton Oakmont ever did. Madden, like Porush and Belfort, served time in prison for participating in the Stratton scheme.

Nadine/Naomi (Margot Robbie)
Margot Robbie in The Wolf of Wall Street, left, and Nadine Caridi.
Margot Robbie in The Wolf of Wall Street, left, and Nadine Caridi.
Photo courtesy Mary Cybulski/Paramount Pictures; Home video still/CNN/YouTube
The names of Belfort’s wives were also changed for the film. Belfort divorced Denise Lombardo, called Teresa in the movie, after meeting Nadine Caridi at a Stratton Oakmont party. Caridi, called Naomi and played by Margot Robbie, was a model who had appeared in beer commercials; in the book, Befort calls her “the Miller Lite girl.” (You can see one of her ads below.) In both the book and the movie Belfort calls her the Duchess of Bay Ridge (or just the Duchess, for short), because she was born in England but grew up in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. She really did have an English aunt (named Patricia, not Emma) who smuggled money into Switzerland on Belfort’s behalf, and who died while Belfort’s money was still in Swiss banks. (Belfort also had a drug-dealing friend with Swiss in-laws who did much of the smuggling—and that friend was later arrested after a botched money hand-off with Porush, just as we see in the movie.)

The scene in which Naomi spreads her legs open and tells Jordan he won’t be getting sex any time soon, only to learn that she is in full view of a security camera, is taken right from the book—as is the fight in which she throws water at her husband repeatedly. Belfort acknowledges hitting his wife in the memoir; he says he kicked her down the stairs. He also threatened to take their daughter away, putting her in the car with him and then crashing it into a pillar on their property. He was high.
Belfort and Caridi have since divorced.

Mark Hanna (Matthew McConaughey)
Mark Hanna
Mark Hanna, left, and Matthew McConaughey as Mark Hanna in The Wolf of Wall Street.
Graphic by Slate. Images courtesy courtesy of YouTube, Paramount Pictures.
The L.F. Rothschild trader who takes Jordan to lunch and tells him that cocaine and masturbation are the keys to success as a stockbroker is based on a real person whose name is not changed in the movie or the book. Mark Hanna has told his own version of the story on YouTube, and he does not seem to dispute the substance of Belfort’s account. (The lunch scene in the film combines two conversations from the memoir, using nearly identical dialogue.) Hanna himself was later convicted of stock fraud. He did not pound his chest and hum rhythmically, as McConaughey does so memorably in the movie; that flourish is based on an acting exercise that McConaughey likes to do, and was, according to the movie’s press notes, incorporated into the film after DiCaprio and Scorsese noticed the actor doing it on set.

Special Agent Gregory Coleman/Patrick Denham (Kyle Chandler)
FBI Special Agent Gregory Coleman, left, and Kyle Chandler in The Wolf of Wall Street.
FBI Special Agent Gregory Coleman, left, and Kyle Chandler in The Wolf of Wall Street
Courtesy courtesy Mary Cybulski/Paramount Pictures
Patrick Denham is another made-up name, but there really was an FBI agent who followed Belfort closely for years: Gregory Coleman. He told CNBC in 2007 that he was struck by the “blatantness” of Belfort’s financial crimes. As far as I can tell, they did not meet on Belfort’s yacht, as the movie suggests; in the book, Belfort first meets Coleman when the FBI arrives to arrest Belfort at his home. (The arrest did not take place while Belfort filmed an infomercial—that’s a bit of poetic license on Scorsese’s part.)

The Aftermath
After his arrest and indictment, Belfort cooperated with the FBI. In the film, Jordan, while wearing a wire, passes a note to Donnie telling him not to incriminate himself. Belfort did not pass such a note to Porush, but, in his second book, Catching the Wolf of Wall Street, he claims to have done just this for his friend Dave Beall. He ultimately served 22 months in prison and was ordered to pay over $100 million in restitution to his victims (which he has apparently failed to do). As the film depicts, he became a motivational speaker after leaving prison; at the seminar in the movie, DiCaprio as Jordan is introduced by the real Jordan Belfort (and, in real life, the actor has filmed a testimonial for Belfort). Belfort is not the only real-life participant to show up in the movie: A private investigator that Belfort employed, Richard “Bo” Dietl, is also in the film; he plays himself.

After ‘The Wolf of Wall Street,’ Kyle Chandler is done playing suits (for now)


Nearly every actor onscreen in “The Wolf of Wall Street” gets to have debauched, hedonistic fun — except for Kyle Chandler. As FBI Agent Patrick Denham, he’s the guy who spends the film trying to bust superbroker Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio).

Not that the role was boring. Chandler says what excited him was getting to know more about government officials, specifically by talking to the real-life agent who took down Belfort. He told Chandler about the strange relationship between the agent and his mark.

“He told me what it’s like to spend so much time with someone. You’re interviewing him. You’re putting a wire on him. You’re eating lunch together. You’re spending time with someone you’re going to put away,” Chandler explains. “He told me it was important to know he has no animosity towards the people he arrests. It’s his job.”

Chandler also gets a few key scenes with DiCaprio, most notably a scene where Denham visits Belfort on his yacht in Downtown Manhattan for a faux-friendly chat that gradually turns into threats through big smiles.

“That was the first scene I shot in the movie,” Chandler reveals. He says he prefers not to do a lot of rehearsal before shooting. “I like going in cold then finding the material as you play it out,” he says. That happened here. He says he spent a chunk of the scene staring at a piece of paper DiCaprio had placed on a table. When DiCaprio, in character, chided him, asking if he was actually going to look at him, Chandler found himself exploding on him. “That really pissed me off. I said, ‘Yeah, give me a chance!’ It was cool because it was part of the confrontation. But at the same time it was fun.”

The other main attraction, of course, is working for director Martin Scorsese. You obviously don’t hesitate when Scorsese asks you to audition for his latest project. But being in a Scorsese film so filled with montages means you’re not always prepared for how he’ll use you. Chandler recalls getting excited when, seeing the film in a private screening in Texas for only him and his wife, there came a shot where he walks into the offices of Belfort’s firm, dozens of agents behind him, finally ready to bust.

“When I was watching it and that song comes up and I come walking through that door, I wanted to go find Martin Scorsese and kiss him right on the mouth. Man, what a shot that is,” he gushes. “If I could get that on a loop and play it as I’m brushing my teeth, I’m set.”

This is far from the first time Chandler has played an authority figure, from his long stint as the football coach on “Friday Night Lights” to a single father cop in “Super 8” to suits in “Argo,” “Zero Dark Thirty” and now this. How did he come to play these roles?

“Man, I haven’t figured that out. That people want to hire me as a source of authority just boggles my mind,” he replies. He says this will probably be the last suit he plays for awhile, and not only for fear of being pigeonholed. “I remember when I was in college my buddy and I wanted to be actors because we didn’t want to ever have to wear a suit and tie. That’s all I do now. What an idiot I am.”

From bad to best: 2013 at the theater

Movies both delighted, disappointed this year

Dec. 31, 2013 @ 05:00 AM

Still, certainly all is not lost for original storytelling, not as long as Alexander Payne, Spike Jonze, Alfonso Cuarón and Woody Allen are around.

As with every year, the year in film was full of good and bad. But whether one “likes” a movie is largely defined by expectations. It's why movies that seemingly came out of nowhere like “Fruitvale Station” and “The Spectacular Now” are regarded with heightened fondness in retrospect, while middling movies like “Star Trek: Into Darkness,” “World War Z,” and “Elysium” seem even more woeful in the critical rearview mirror.

With that in mind, here's my compilation of the best, worst, pleasantly surprising and disappointing for 2013.

Top 10 Films

Best Film of 2013: “12 Years a Slave”— It's everything that Quentin Tarantino claimed “Django Unchained” to be. But, it's far more than shock cinema. Director Steve McQueen’s adaptation of Solomon Northup’s eponymous 1853 autobiography is at once both straightforward and layered, unsightly and gorgeous, disheartening and uplifting. It's an extraordinary illumination of America's “peculiar institution.”
2. “The Wolf of Wall Street”— Director Martin Scorsese does Scorsese 2.0

3. “American Hustle”— Director David O. Russell does Scorsese 1.0

4. “All is Lost”— Robert Redford’s sailboat is damaged by a floating shipping container full of sneakers. No, this isn’t a documentary.

5. “Only God Forgives”— Nicolas Winding Refn apes Kubrick, including the old ultra-violence, plus Kristin Scott Thomas as a lewd potty mouth? Sign me up.

6. “Her”— Joaquin Phoenix plays a man who falls for the female voice of his computerized personal assistant. I like to imagine this as an unofficial sequel to “The Master.”

7. “Captain Phillips”/“A Hijacking”— A dual entry — one an American film, the other Danish — with similar subject matter. This ain’t “Pirates of the Caribbean.”

8. “Gravity”— Director Alfonso Cuarón does “2001: A Space Odyssey.” Sandra Bullock does Ellen Ripley. And George Clooney does “Ocean’s Apollo 13.”
9. “The Spectacular Now”— From the writers of “(500) Days of Summer.” Kyle Chandler has appeared in four of my Top 10 films between this year and last. Maybe I oughta start remembering his name.

10. “Fruitvale Station”— A first-time feature filmmaker and a cast of knowns and extras shed light on a real-life incident horrible police brutality.

10a. “The Unknown Known”— Call director Errol Morris’s latest talking-head doc “The Fog of Rumsfeld.” Also call it utterly engrossing.
The Best of the Rest (alphabetical)
“Dallas Buyers Club,” “Fast & Furious 6,” “Inside Llewyn Davis,” “Man of Steel” [yeah, I said it], “Monsters University,” “Nebraska,” “Rush,” “Stoker,” “The World's End,” “You're Next”

Dec 28, 2013

Kyle Chandler's First Interview with Martin Scorsese Was 'Interesting'

(Jim Wright/Corbis Outline)

The Emmy winner, 48, plays an FBI agent in Martin Scorsese’s film The Wolf of Wall Street.

Did you meet the real agent who brought down Leonardo DiCaprio’s character?

We met at FBI headquarters in New York. He told me, “Anyone I go after, it’s not personal. I don’t have animosities toward people. It’s my job.” That was interesting.

How did you get Scorsese to cast you?

Same way I always get a job: I send a big check and say, “Please can I have an audition?” [Laughs] No, I met Martin at a hotel, and the fire alarms went off, so that was interesting to begin with. It was a quick interview; some people you just get along with really easily.

Do fans still recognize you from Friday Night Lights?

People say, “Hey, Coach! How you doing?”

What made you leave L.A. for Austin with your wife and daughters?

It came out of Friday Night Lights. I lived in Georgia growing up and I was excited to get back to a rural area. You can think a little bit more.

Dec 26, 2013

Who's That Guy In 'Wolf Of Wall Street'? A Beginner's Guide

Because trust us, seeing 'Growing Pains' will enhance your enjoyment of 'The Wolf of Wall Street.'

It's Christmas. You're watching "The Wolf of Wall Street" with your family (awkward), friends (probably just as awkward) or by yourself (easily the most awkward; get right outta there). You notice the screen (because you're at the movies, and that's what you are there to do): "Hey, it's that guy," you say to yourself. "I recognize him. But from where?"

That's Leonardo DiCaprio, dude. He's pretty famous. Why are you seeing "The Wolf of Wall Street" if you don't know Leonardo DiCaprio?

Luckily, your friends here at MTV News were put on this earth to enrich your cultural experience. If you're sitting there going, "Hey, I like that guy I saw orchestrating a massive, coke-fueled orgy! What else can I see him in?" then brother or sister, you are in luck. Like, yes, we know you've seen The DiCaprio himself in "Titanic" already, but let's dig a little deeper, shall we? Read on for the annotated CVs of the major players in Martin Scorsese's latest opus, along with our recommendations for further viewing.

Leonardo DiCapprio

Resumé: "Titanic" (1997); "Catch Me if You Can" (2002); "Gangs of New York" (2002); "The Aviator" (2004); "Blood Diamond" (2006); "The Departed" (2006); Being a Handsome Person (1975-present); Awkward, Somehow-Platonic Relationship with Kate Winslet (1997-present); Anti-aging Gland Inside Body (1975-present); Sexual Relations with Whatever Model He Pleases (1997-present); Best Actor to Never Win an Oscar Title (2007-present)

If you like him in "The Wolf of Wall Street," you'll love him in: Probably everything, but most notably "Growing Pains," (1991-1992)

Jonah Hill
Resumé: "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" (2005); "Knocked Up" (2007); "Superbad" (2007); "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" (2008); "Moneyball" (2011); "21 Jump Street" (2012); Being the Third (?) Most Likely Guy From His Crew to Become an Oscar-Nominated Actor (2011); Funniest Performance in "40-Year-Old Virgin" Award (2005); Was a Rapper at One Point (? - ?); Judd Apatow Discovery (2005); Probably Will Do No More Movies Like "Grandma's Boy" Anymore (2011-present)

If you like him in "The Wolf of Wall Street," You'll love him in:: "Accepted" (2006)

Matthew McConaughey
Resumé: "Dazed and Confused" (1993); "A Time To Kill" (1996); "Amistad" (1997); "EdTV" (1999); "Mud" (2012); "Dallas Buyers Club" (2013); Finder, Various Reasons to Take off Shirt (1990-present); Winner, "Guy Who You'd Fear Leaving Your Wife Around" Award (1994-present); Legitimate Acting Chops (sporadically for whole career, but certainly 2011-present); De Facto University of Texas First Fan (2005-present); Hard-to-Spell Last Name (1969-present)

If you like him in "The Wolf of Wall Street," you'll love him in: "The Wedding Planner" (2001)

Margot Robbie
Resumé: "Neighbours" (2008-2011); "Pan Am" (2011-2012); "About Time" (2013); Extremely Captivating IMDb Photo (2013-present); Father Probably Fears Seeing "The Wolf of Wall Street" (2013); Winner, "She's Probably About to Be Really Famous" Award (2013); Adding an Australian Accent to This Person Is Probably Unfair (1990-present); Likely Can't Google Image Her at Work Without Getting in Trouble (2010-present)

If you like her in "The Wolf of Wall Street," you'll love her in: "ICU" (2009)

Kyle Chandler
Resumé: "Mulholland Falls" (1996); "Early Edition" (1996-2000); "King Kong" (2005); "The Kingdom" (2007); "The Day the Earth Stood Still" (2008); "Friday Night Lights" (2006-2011); Probably Will Be Called "Coach Taylor" by Strangers for the Rest of His Life (2006-present); Seems Incredibly Approachable, Probably to His Detriment (1968-present); Won Emmy Over Steve Buscemi, Jon Hamm (2011); Was in Both "Argo" and "Zero Dark Thirty" — Nice (2012); Likely Tired of People Telling Him He's Underrated (2006-present)

If you like him in "The Wolf of Wall Street," you'll love him in: "Convict Cowboy" (1995)

Cristin Milioti
Resumé: "The Sopranos" (2006); "The Good Wife" (2010); "30 Rock" (2011); "Nurse Jackie" (2011); "Sleepwalk With Me" (2012); "How I Met Your Mother" (2013); From New Jersey (1985-present); Definitely Looks Like She's from New Jersey (1985-present); Is "the Mother" on "How I Met Your Mother" (2013-present); Probably Too Good For Ted in "How I Met Your Mother" (2013); Has Extremely Memorable Line in "The Sopranos" (2006)

If you like her in "The Wolf of Wall Street," you'll love her in: "Year of the Carnivore" (2009)

Rob Reiner
Resumé: "All in the Family" (1971-1978); "This Is Spinal Tap" (1984); "Throw Momma From the Train" (1987); "Sleepless in Seattle" (1993); "Primary Colors" (1998); Director, Countless Number of Memorable Movies (1984-present); Likely Really Fun to Sit Next to on a Plane (1947-present); Trademark Beard (? - present); Makes Valid Points on Bill Maher's Show (2010-2013); Probably Never in a Bad Mood (1947-present); Was in the Room When Jack Nicholson Told Us We Couldn't Handle the Truth (1992)

If you like him in "The Wolf of Wall Street," you'll love him in: "Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star (2003)


Note:  They failed to mention Kyle's roles as dreamboat Jeff Metcalf on TV Series 'Homefront' and as dads in the films 'Super 8' and 'The Spectacular Now.'  Also his Emmy nominated role as the ill fated bomb squad leader, Dylan Young, on TVs 'Grey's Anatomy.'

Dec 24, 2013

Interview: Kyle Chandler on ‘Wolf of Wall Street’

Kyle Chandler poses in the photo room at the 63rd annual Primetime Emmy Awards at the Nokia Theatre. -- Photo by Dan MacMedan
Dan MacMedan/USA Today
The Republic | Tue Dec 24, 2013 10:57 AM

Almost everything about “The Wolf of Wall Street” is over the top.

Except Kyle Chandler.

The actor plays an FBI agent investigating the rich-but-crooked investor played by Leonardo DiCaprio, and he is a kind of calm in the center of the storm.

Chandler, 48, talked about the role and making a Martin Scorsese movie, as well as a certain football-themed television show he used to star in.

Question: You’re the one actor in the movie who doesn’t get to go over the top.

Answer: I’m the only adult.

Q: Your character’s first meeting with DiCaprio’s is a good show of restraint on your part.

A: Well, I am the FBI, and I do have the federal government behind me, so I am in a power position. So if he’s going to sit there and run his mouth off and do something as stupid as that, who am I to stop him? It is a funny movie.

Q: It’s certainly an interesting story.

A: What I find interesting about this is that it’s a true story. To not follow the truth of it would not only do it injustice, but people might not follow along because they’d smell something was wrong. That they got this one made, truthfully as it is, that’s something else.

Q: Did it feel different while you were making it? Bigger than a normal film?

A: No. You have to understand, my presence is felt throughout the film, but my character’s not on screen very much at all, really. So I wasn’t really part of those moments of just over the top. But when I was doing the scene with the helicopter, when we arrest him making the commercial, that gave me an indication of the tone of what was happening. But there’s no way that I could have guessed the film would have been so smart, so funny and yet, I don’t know the final word for the movie. It’s just so damn enjoyable to watch.

Q: Well, it is Scorsese.

A: For the people who are interested in what it’s like for an actor to be on a set of a Scorsese film, and be around stars like Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill, my answer to you would be it’s one of the most creative and collaborative and safe places I’ve ever felt while I’m working. That allows the actors to do their thing. That’s just highly important, as well.

Q: Were you intimidated by Scorsese?

A: It was intimidating the first three seconds, before you shake hands and you look at him. My pop used to say us Chandlers were people people. I believe that. He’s just one of those people I felt comfortable with pretty much immediately. But I went in there with high anxiety, thinking that he’s going to question me on the history of film or something. My worst fears were at the forefront. But it was a really great experience. It’s just nice to work with a gentleman who’s at the top of his businesses.

Q: You’ve had a good year. “The Spectacular Now” was also good, and your character (the protagonist’s irresponsible father) was different for you.

A: Yeah, that one scared the hell out of me.

Q: Why?

A: Because there was nothing there to do, really. It was all the creation of a back character. Throughout the whole film, if that doesn’t work, it’s like the center tent pole. Without the center tent pole the whole thing caves in. And then on top of that, it’s was guerrilla shooting. It was real fast. I just didn’t want to screw it up, that’s why. … I didn’t know till the film came out that I pulled it off. I was worried about it up to the last minute.

Q: I have to ask you about “Friday Night Lights.” Was that has to be a highlight for you?

A: It is. There’s no doubt. One of the highlights that, it’s like, when we did that, the style of shooting and everything, I learned so much from that. And I learned so much from (series creator) Pete Berg. Pete Berg is a very giving director. He’s a very physical, very outspoken, lovable person who is very, very talented. … If he didn’t have filmmaking, I’m sure he’d be in jail, but he uses all his energy in such a giving way. Probably if I hadn’t done “Friday Night Lights,” a lot of skills that I bring to my roles after that, I wouldn’t have found, because that was like acting class No. One.

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Dec 23, 2013

Kyle Chandler on 'Wolf of Wall Street,' Overwhelming Anxiety, and Playing the Perfect Authority Figure

kyle chandler wolf of wall streetEvan Agostini/Invision/AP

Kyle Chandler is one of those actors whose mere presence in a movie elevates it a few degrees.

While most will probably remember him from his two beloved TV ventures (CBS's supernatural-y drama "Early Edition," where he played a man gifted with a rundown of the next day's events, and "Friday Night Lights," as a high school football coach in small town Texas), but in the last couple of years, he's had an amazing string of big screen performances. Last year he starred in two Best Picture Oscar nominees, one of which ("Argo") ended up taking home the top prize.

And this year the streak has continued, first as a politician who is murdered for his honesty in thriller "Broken City," then as an alcoholic father in the festival favorite "The Spectacular Now" and now, spectacularly, as a dogged FBI agent who is hot on the heels of Leonard DiCaprio's white collar criminal in Martin Scorsese's latest masterpiece, "The Wolf of Wall Street."

We got to chat with Chandler to talk about how he got the role, why he was overcome with anxiety on his first day of filming, and what makes him such a convincing authority figure.

Moviefone: How did this project come to you? Did you get summoned?

Kyle Chandler: Summoned to the lair of Martin Scorsese....


Actually, that's how it happened.

Oh, really? Tell me about that.

I went out for a meeting with him and he described what the project was and what the character was that he was interested in me looking at. And we talked for a while. As an actor you always want to go, "Well, do I have the part or what?" So I walked out the door and I don't know when it was that I found out the part... But it went on from there.

Was it always a dream to work with him?

Yeah, on my top ten list of directors to work with, my top four lines are Martin Scorsese. I don't know what to say about it. Do you expect me to say what a lousy experience and what a hack the guy is?

Scorsese is an amazing film historian, too.

Yes. Martin Scorsese is a great storyteller. He loves to hear a story as much as he loves to tell a story. He is so knowledgeable. I was afraid, him being the cinephile that he is, that I was going to get questions on films and I would have to put my tail between my legs. But his stories are incredible and his reasoning for setting up the camera and if you ask a question, you'll get an answer unlike anything you've known before. He's so knowledgeable. I'm sorry. I talked way too long. You can't put any of that in. You're my last interview, so I'm pacing back and forth.

It'll be okay.

All right.

So, you're in one of the most memorable sequences in the movie, which is when you go visit Leo on his yacht. What was it like shooting that?

We rehearsed a little bit the day before and the day of we went out there early, got on the boat. And it's my first day shooting. So I'm sitting on the boat, talking to Martin Scorsese, meeting the crew, figuring out what I'm doing and I've got my wardrobe on and all of that. And I'm waiting for Leonardo DiCaprio, who I had never met and didn't know to come along, so I can shoot my first scene in a Martin Scorsese. And you know how I felt?

No. How did you feel?

Like I wanted to jump off that boat and drown myself, I was so nervous. I mean wow.

But then things got better, I hope.

Truth be told, Martin and Leo and the whole crew, it was such a relaxing set. Obviously, I joke about being tense and, of course, I was -- if you're not nervous something is wrong. But once we started working, it was so much fun. You're playing. It's like the first day of rehearsal of a play. Everyone knows their character and knows the material and now you're going to work that material and see how much fun you can have and what you can create. And that was all there -- it was, Let's see what we can build today. And it was just a ride; it was fun. There was no pressure. It was nothing but -- let's bring out all your skills, and let's play with them. It was incredible.

There's been a lot of talk about how Scorsese had to wrangle an even longer cut into this version. Was there anything from your character that he had to cut that you wish had been included?

Actually, there's a scene with me and a bullet and no clothes on. I can't go into any further detail, but I wish it was in the movie.

Is that true?

No! Of course not!

How do you interpret the last sequence with your character?

That is so strange. I get that question all day long. And I never expected. You know, when you come to do these press junkets, I get nervous because I never know what they're going to ask me. And they started asking me that question. So I've started saying, "Well, what do you think that he's thinking?" And I've gotten every different answer on the spectrum. So I'll be damned if I'm going to give you any answer at all.

You've been a football coach and a CIA guy and now an FBI agent. What makes you a perfect figure of authority?

I think it has something to do with the intensity of my brown eyes, mixed in with my arched eyebrows and a good, strong chin. After that, rounded out with a wonderful physique and a voice that could purr the hair off of a kitty cat. No. I don't know.

"The Wolf of Wall Street" opens Christmas day.

Dec 22, 2013

Press Conference Interview With The Cast, Director, Writer And Producers Of The Wolf Of Wall Street

The day that Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese started working together is a day that should be commemorated by some type of holiday, if you ask me. Over the years they’ve delivered amazing productions such as Gangs Of New York, The Aviator, and The Departed, but this year the duo are trying to one-up themselves yet again. A tall task indeed, but Leo has been extremely passionate about playing real-life schemer Jordan Belfort ever since reading his tell-all book, and that passion translates into some incredibly entertaining cinema that stands out against the year’s best films. A lot of people are loving The Wolf Of Wall Street, including myself, because it’s impossible to deny the amazing meeting of minds between Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio.

It takes more than two people to produce such a fantastic film though, and that was obvious during the press day I attended for The Wolf Of Wall Street. Not only were Leonadro DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese present, but much of the surrounding team were there to weigh in as well. Fellow actors Kyle Chandler and Rob Reiner were on hand, writer Terence Winter was there to explain the writing process, and producers Emma Tillinger Koskoff, Riza Aziz, and Joey McFarland all were there to talk about the film’s financial journey. Sure, journalists wanted to talk to Leo and Marty most of all, but everyone stayed involved in what was a fun discussion – especially when Rob Reiner dropped some comedic relief.

Check it out below, and enjoy!

Dec 21, 2013

Is Kyle Chandler Hollywood’s biggest DILF?

There is simply no denying that Kyle Chandler is a DILF. When the term was created, surely Chandler’s brooding eyes, tousled coif and rugged voice came to mind. When he opens his mouth to speak, you hope it’s for a lecture about something you need to be punished for — or at least a motivational pick-me-up.

Chandler won an Emmy in 2011 for his role as Eric Traylor on NBC’s “Friday Night Lights.”Photo: Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage

“I think out of all the awards and accolades that I have received out of my 22 to 24 years of work on screen and stage, that no greater thing has touched the cockles of my heart than to be called one of the biggest DILFs in America,” he tells The Post, grinning. “Thank you.”

That knowing charm has launched Chandler, 48, from University of Georgia drama major to “Friday Night Lights” leading man to bona fide movie star. For his latest role, as an FBI agent in “The Wolf of Wall Street” (in theaters Christmas Day), Chandler attempts to nail down crooked stockbroker Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio).

To play the part, Chandler worked with Greg Coleman, the real-life 20-year FBI veteran who spent six years chasing Belfort.

“The biggest key for me into this role was [when Coleman] said to me, ‘Listen, I’ve got no animosity, no ill will toward any of these people that I arrest,’ ” says Chandler. “ ‘Speaking of Belfort, I don’t hate him. I’m not angry with him. In that sense, I’m just doing my job.’ ”

That nuance shows in Chandler’s performance, but it’s nothing new for him. He’s been covertly stealing the spotlight with rounded characters for more than two decades.

Chandler gives an arresting performance as an FBI agent in “The Wolf of Wall Street.”Photo: Olivier/Splash News

Born in Buffalo and raised primarily in rural Georgia, Chandler first started appearing in TV movies in 1988. After a number of shows, including leading roles in “Homefront” and “Early Edition” and a splashy guest gig on “Grey’s Anatomy,” Chandler finally became a household name as coach Eric Taylor on “Friday Night Lights” in 2006.

The show, which also starred Connie Britton and Taylor Kitsch, was a cult hit with a rabid fan base. When NBC considered canceling the show, fans started a campaign to save it. One fan site claimed to have raised enough money to send 13,700 footballs to the network to get its attention.

“I’ve turned down quite a bit because ‘Friday Night Lights’ was a curse,” says Chandler, “because that show allowed the actors and everyone to have such ownership of their work. You don’t want to step backward.”

But Chandler’s kept it moving forward, carving out a new niche with scene-stealing supporting roles in critical film hits such as “Argo,” “Zero Dark Thirty” and “The Spectacular Now.”
Chandler’s other TV roles include “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Homefront” and “Early Edition.”Photo: Michael Muller/AP/NBC

“The roles you’re talking about are roles that are smaller, so there’s not much meat to them,” he says. “You’re asked to create a lot that goes into them. So like ‘Spectacular Now’ [in which Chandler plays a neglectful father], I was horrified of that part because there’s nothing there. But at the same time, it’s the linchpin of the whole film. That’ll cause you to stay up late at night.”

After years in LA, Chandler, like “FNL” co-star Kitsch, now calls the Austin area home with his wife, Kathryn, and their daughters, Sydney, 18, and Sawyer, 12.

So what does the successful father have planned for his family this Christmas?

“Going to Disneyland,” he says.

Oh neat, for real?

“No,” he says, laughing. “I’m not going to tell you what I’m doing for Christmas. This is my life. I already gave you the DILF line.”

Year in Review: 13 Unforgettable Performances That Oscar Will Overlook

Kyle Chandler - The Spectacular Now

Kyle Chandler

Right behind Dennis Quaid, The Spectacular Now is the best example of subverting expectations when it comes to casting. Friday Night Lights built up an image of Kyle Chandler being that father you’ve always wanted, while The Spectacular Now has him playing the father you never wanted. It’s a nifty idea of casting Chandler, but more than that, it’s a transformation for Chandler done in small and effective ways. This is the type of role that could’ve been done with a bunch of easy tics and such, but it’s an effortlessly natural performance.

Dec 20, 2013

9 Best Series Finales

"Friday Night Lights"
How do you end something as earnest, funny and heartbreaking as "Friday Night Lights"? With a whole lot of Explosions In The Sky (the band responsible for the theme song), a fight for Tami Taylor's career and a pilgrimage away from Dillon, Texas. — Jessica Goodman

Dec 18, 2013

Kyle Chandler Dishes On Working With Martin Scorsese & Leonardo DiCaprio In The Wolf Of Wall Street

Kyle Chandler chats with Access' Michelle Beadle about working with director Martin Scorsese in their new film, "The Wolf of Wall Street." Also, he tells Michelle how Leonardo DiCaprio can make his character, Jordan Belfort, likable.

Kyle Chandler Takes On 'The Wolf Of Wall Street'

Fantastic interview:

Kyle Chandler laughs with Michelle Beadle over his character, Patrick Denham, being the only adult in "The Wolf of Wall Street." Also, he discusses how he researched for his role in director Martin Scorsese's new film.

Kyle Chandler: NY Premiere of The Wolf of Wall Street - Red Carpet Arrivals

US Premiere of The Wolf of Wall Street - Red Carpet Arrivals

Kyle Chandler

US Premiere of The Wolf of Wall Street - Red Carpet Arrivals
Photo credit: Ivan Nikolov / WENN

Dec 12, 2013

Kyle Chandler's 'The Vatican' Pilot Dead at Showtime

The drama pilot hailed from "House's" Paul Attanasio and was Ridley Scott's first TV directing gig.

Paul Attanasio - P 2013
Getty Images
Paul Attanasio
The drama pilot that starred Friday Night Lights favorite Kyle Chandler will not move forward at the premium cable network, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. The news confirms what sources told THR for a recent piece on Sony Pictures co-chairman Amy Pascal that the drama pilot, which started with her original idea, saw showrunner Paul Attanasio exit after the pilot -- and reshoots -- came back with problems.

The Vatican, a contemporary thriller about spirituality, power and politics, was set against the modern-day political machinations within the Catholic Church. The drama would have explored the relationships and rivalries, in addition to the mysteries and miracles behind the institution. House's Attanasio penned the script for the Sony Pictures Television vehicle. Ridley Scott directed the pilot, marking his first television-helming gig. Attanasio, Scott and David Zucker executive produced.

STORY: Showtime Orders 'Vatican' Drama Pilot, Ridley Scott to Direct

Sources tell THR that the pricey drama didn't turn out well and that showrunner Attanasio was difficult, failing to meet deadlines and clashing with numerous people behind-the-scenes.

Chandler, who has been among the most sought-after actors since his five-season run on NBC's Friday Night Lights, starred as Cardinal Thomas Duffy with Downfall's Bruno Ganz portraying Pope Sixtus VI. Anna Friel, Sebastian Koch, Matthew Goode and Ewen Bremner co-starred. The drama marked a reunion for Showtime entertainment president David Nevins with Chandler, who previously teamed on NBC's Friday Night Lights, which the former produced. Chandler's casting came after Nevins is said to have pursued the Emmy winner to play Brody on Homeland.

STORY: Kyle Chandler to Star in Showtime's 'The Vatican' Pilot

For Showtime, The Vatican was one of three pilots in the works. The network also has marriage drama The Affair starring Fringe's Joshua Jackson and Philip Seymour Hoffman comedy Happyish (formerly known as Trending Down) in the works. The net, which already has its original scripted lineup set for 2014, also recently began production on horror drama series Penny Dreadful.

Dec 6, 2013

Leonardo DiCaprio Gets Collared By Kyle Chandler On Wolf Of Wall Street Set

Author: Kristy Puchko 

Back in 2002, when Leonardo DiCaprio was still working to forge a reputation outside of dreamboat in the wake of Titanic, who would have guessed that Gangs of New York would make him Martin Scorsese's next macho muse. After The Aviator, The Departed and Shutter Island, Scorsese's 2013 release The Wolf of Wall Street marks the pair's fifth collaboration. DiCaprio stars as Jordan Belfort, a New York stockbroker who made a mint in the 1980s founding one of the first major chop shop brokerage firms. However, by 1994, he'd gone from the top of his game to exile, being banned for life from the securities business. Based on Belfort's memoir of the same name, The Wolf of Wall Street aims to tell his incredible story, loaded with decadence and corruption.

The film has been in production in New York for a few weeks now, and today EW has a look at DiCaprio in action. The image below appears to have the hot shot being carted off by authorities, and in the background you can spot Kyle Chandler as Patrick Denham, the FBI agent who brought Belfort down.

Paramount has already committed to distribute The Wolf of Wall Street, which seems an easy decision considering Scorsese and DiCaprio's last collaboration, Shutter Island, pulled in a healthy $128 million domestically. Of course, this venture has plenty more going for it, boasting a sensational cast that includes Academy Award-nominee Jonah Hill, Academy Award-winner Jean Dujardin, and Matthew McConaughey, the early frontrunner for the 2013 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Basically, the prospects for The Wolf of Wall Street look great.

Dec 3, 2013

Best 7 Speeches Ever on Television

Coach Taylor's speech from the Pilot episode made it, although the author has no idea what the speech was about.  It would have ranked higher if she had.  Still ... Congratulations Friday Night Lights/Coach Taylor for making the cut!!