My CP piece up today is on Keir Gilchrist, the young lad from Toronto who landed a plum role on the Showtime drama United States of Tara. You can read the entire story here.
Gilchrist is an impressive 16-year-old who has already survived one U.S. series experience, working on Rob Corddry’s short-lived Fox sitcom The Winner. He’s guested on several Toronto and Vancouver-shot shows before, and shot a pilot for CBC that didn’t get picked up called The Altar Boy Gang. Would love to have seen how that turned out. (UPDATE: Jeff Keay at CBC emailed to remind me that The Altar Boy Gang aired as a one-off a couple of summers ago at CBC–and was immediately crucified by various church groups. Guess it didn’t have a prayer.)
He looks younger, but talking to him, Gilchrist seems older than his years. He responded cautiously when I suggested that most critics seem to love United States of Tara. “People are always going to hate your show,” he said with a shrug. “Maybe Freaks and Geeks didn’t get hated.” He did agree that “it’s great being on a show you love.”
And he was right about the uneven Tara reviews. More and more critics I spoke with at press tour had reservations about the series. Some thought the premise felt contrived, that the main characters multiple personality disorder was just an elaborate excuse for Toni Collette to leap in and out of the skin of several characters. Others thought it was ridiculous how the rest of her family just accepted her condition.
Me, I thought both of those things were pretty cool. Viewers seem able to look past the premise, too; United States of Tara drew HBO-like numbers for its debut on Showtime last Monday. It airs Monday nights in Canada on The Movie Network/Movie Central.

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