With four million viewers and a ‘Best Web Series’ award under its belt, comedy series ‘Where The Bears Are’ is going from strength to strength. George Unda, who play’s the show’s brawny detective, tells Robert O’Connor why Season 3 is the hottest yet and how he’s enjoying his 15 minutes of super-gay fame.
How’s it going, George! This is your debut acting role but you seem like a natural. Have you had any formal training?
Thank you for the complement! Actually, it’s not my debut acting role. I co-stared in a short film called The Rookie And The Runner a few years back. It was a non-speaking role. The film did the independent film circuit, reaching Outfest and other film festivals in the country and in Europe. That was a lot of fun, but not as fun as Where The Bears Are.
Do you think ‘Hot Toddy’, played by Ian Parks, was scared when you arrived in Season 2? You’re some stiff competition.
Ha ha! No, I’m sure he was fine. I’ve known Ian for years before this show was created. We get along fine. Part of why this cast is so great is the fact that we all know each other well from the community of bears here in Los Angeles.
The actress/stand-up comedian Margaret Cho has guest starred in the show in the past, which is pretty cool. Who else would you like to see make an appearance?
I was so excited to hear about Margaret Cho joining the cast in Season 2! Unfortunately my shoot dates didn’t coincide with hers so I didn’t get to meet her. Oh, man I would love for a gay-friendly bearish straight dude – who people say talks like me – to make a cameo, that man being Seth Rogen.
You guys had to fundraise to make the second and third seasons of Where The Bears Are. What do you feel is the motivation behind making a show like this, when it isn’t a case of ‘just showing up’?
Great question. Well, before we began the Kickstarter campaign to launch a third season, Ben, Rick, Joe and the rest of us got together to discuss the how’s and why’s to fundraising. Many guys who see the show think that we must be making money hand-over-fist from previous season sales and merchandise, which couldn’t be farther from the truth.
All the money that was made went right back into funding the next season’s project, and filming, as you can imagine, is not cheap. So this time around, the guys proposed a reasonable budget to actually make the project happen, so that everyone could be compensated for their hard work, and the quality of our show can be that much better for the audience. We’re incredibly grateful with the outcome that we received from everyone – fans and supporters alike. They say that bears haven’t been inclusive with one another in recent years, but they sure know how to bring it home when it comes to helping each other out in things like this that matter to all of us. That warms my heart.
You play a ridiculously hot cop called Detective Martinez in the show, and you’re a bodyguard in real life. Do you think that helped in playing the role?
The roles of Detective Martinez and Detective Winters are totally all about the slapstick Heckle & Jeckle pair-off that works as a fun plot device for the main characters to bounce off. There is absolutely nothing relevant in that regard, but its fun, and hot! And there’s lots of on and off-screen smooches.
Clearly you have been to the gym once or twice, what are your top tips for our readers who want to look as stacked as you?
I’m flattered that you said stacked! Well the quick answer is, don’t give up! Don’t be lazy. Hard work and dedication, as cliché as they sound, make all the difference. Make sure you do proper form a the gym, eat well, eat a lot, and keep lifting heavier for increasing mass. Also, get a good gym buddy – that is crucial.
Have you got the acting bug now?
I’m considering possibly working with other friends on a new short film or separate film project. It’s still in discussion, but basically I would like to create a dark comedy of sorts, not as slapsticky as Where The Bears Are but definitely up that line of humour.
Can you give us any teasers about what’s going to happen in Season 3?
Oh, man! yes, if you follow Noodles & Beef on Tumblr, you’ll discover that someone makes a very ‘shocking’ cameo. Also we got an airplane in Season 3, plus a plethora of hot, new scantly clad bears ripping their clothes off this season is the hottest one yet!
Have you found you are receiving a lot more attention since being on the show? Your entrance wasn’t exactly subtle what with that speedo and all…
Yes! Every time I go to a gay establishment, regardless of what city I’m in, people recognise me. I officially know what the 15 minutes feel like. It’s very interesting. I found out I have fans in Japan, Russia and other countries. It makes me excited to travel abroad and use my 15 minutes of fame card while its still valid!
The third season of Where The Bears Are airs in August on its website. Watch the fur-filled trailer below. Stay tuned for details on a Dublin Bears presented Where The Bears Are themed night coming soon.
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