Michel Chinn is a seasoned and accomplished actor, having appeared in numerous feature films and commercials.  (See Chinn above, left, with co-star Dalton O’Dell) His latest feature film project, “Pickin’ & Grinnin'”, tore up the festival circuit and is currently poised to release.  Michael was kind enough to discuss the project and its recent Los Angeles premier with our writers:


Q: How did you end up with a role in “Pickin’ & Grinnin'”?

Chinn:  From what I understand, Jon (Jon Gries) , Johnny (Johnny Dowers) and Garret (Garret Mathany) had tweaked the script a few times and added some new characters for more depth. Jon then called me and offerered me the role.

Q: What were your thoughts after the first read of the script, which was co-penned by your co-stars Johnny Dower and Garret Mathany?

Chinn:  So many comedies that I see are predictable and much of the dialogue is forced. This script was funny and you connected with all the characters much like you did with Napoleon Dymamite.

Q: How was it working with Jon Gries as your director?

Chinn:  Jon and I have been friends for many years (See Michael and Jon pictured left) but I have never worked on any project that he has directed. I was a little nervous at first because Jon knows exactly what he wants but in the end that was a good thing because he brings out the best in you. I hope to work with him again on another project. (See Jon directing below, foreground)

Q: How did your scenes go, where were they shot?

Chinn:  We shot my scenes up in a little town named Hanford, its a few hours north of L.A.,  and it was Hot!. We filmed that day in a mini mart and because of sound we needed to keep the air conditioners off during filming. I kept running in the beer cooler to stay dry, it was a long day.

Q: Any good stories from your time on set?

Chinn:  There was a lot of laughing on the set, especially during my scenes with Dalton, the actor that played my son Bucky. Jon had changed up some of the dialogue during filming and between seeing the crew laughing behind camera and looking at Bucky, it was really hard to keep a straight face.

Q: How did the Los Angeles theatrical premier of “Pickin’ & Grinnin'” go?

Chinn:  Very well, it was a great turnout and the audience seemed to really like the film. I know that Jon and the rest of the cast and crew felt very proud, many of them were seeing the film for the first time.

Q: What’s Michael Chinn up to next?

Chinn:  I am always looking for new projects. I just finished a short that we are hoping to festival soon, and currently I am reading a script for a pilot thats shooting sometime later this year.


“Pickin’ & Grinnin'” was produced by Port Magee Pictures via Producers Peter J. Clark, Dan Riley, and Jon Gries.  Distribution is being handled by House Lights Media (theatrical) and Blackrock Films (all other media).

Michael Chinn resides in Chicago, but also frequently works in Los Angeles.  Michael is currently repped by Shirley Hamilton Talent.


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