Category Archives: Dr Andy

Alex O’Loughlin: Three Rivers Soundbites

Alex O’Loughlin – Three Rivers Soundbites.

(Transcript)

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Alex: I play Andy Yablonski, staff surgeon, Cardiothoracic, at Three Rivers hospital, which is a …which is a transplant hospital in Pittsburgh. Some say the best in the world. [Smile]

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Alex: I am kind the head honcho here … Andy is young for his position. But he was … he was sort of ushered up the ranks by people in higher positions than him, who saw the potential … the great potential of the natural gift that he has in medicine. And he’s like … he’s like a race horse in his field. He kind of has to be held back sometimes and disciplined a bit by his superiors, especially Jordan, who we have Alfre Woodard playing. Who is wonderful. And … but … when they let him go, he goes and does his thing and it’s always … you know, he’s the best.

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Alex: We’ve got a fantastic cast. Justina Machado, Kate Moennig, Daniel Henney. You know, Christopher  Mackey. Christopher Hanke? What did I call him? Mackey? – You cut that away. [Laughs]

Christopher Hanke, Alfre Woodard. You know, I mean we’ve got veterans, but this is Christopher’s first, you know, major TV or film thing. He comes from the stage …. and of course we have the other end of the spectrum, there is Alfre, who won more Emmy’s than anyone standing on her head. So we all …. it’s great, we have a very balanced cast. And we all get on really well.

Alex & Alfre - Three Rivers

Alex: This role …. It came about relatively quickly. It sort of came together quite quickly for me, before the pilot. And at first I was  … I was really sort of hesitant, because it’s … I understood …. when I started to read it, I understood the enormity and the importance of a character like this. And I don’t really … I’m not really the sort of actor that phones it  in, in any way. I kind of … I don’t work like that.

But I … this one was … I knew it was going to take a lot and I knew nothing. I mean I knew what you ….what  do you know about transplant surgery and you know, and this level of medicine? And I was put in touch with Dr Gonzo Gonzales-Stawinski – who is my man. You know, he is the guy who my character, Andy Yablonski is based upon. And he is so amazing. I mean he really was the core inspiration for me to do this.

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Alex: It’s a ‘Cyclopaedic Medical Dictionary’.

Question: Are you going to need it that? Do you feel that?.

Alex: Desperately! I am going to need it more than anything. Cause I’ve just come of a film, and I had a day off and I came straight back to the show. And I am just trying to get back into Andy. And get … you know. There is a lot to say in this episode. And a lot of it is coming out of my mouth. I’m fine, as long as I know what I am talking about. And my thing is, if there are procedures that I’m talking about, or conditions of the heart or the lungs or whatever, I need to …. I’m a very visual person. And if I can get some footage or go into an operating room and see a procedure.

Or … you know, in the pilot, everything I talked about – the original pilot – I had seen. I had seen happen. I had witness from the beginning to the end. And so, it made perfect sense. And it’s …. I try to do that, whether it is … regardless of want the show is, you know, you need to know what you are saying. You need to be well-informed and have a world behind your words. But there are so many words. I’m  building little worlds everywhere. And a lot of it is really hard to say. It’s like who … why would you call this, that? You know, what’s wrong with bubble? Like a word like bubble. It’s simple, it’s effective. It feels and sounds like what it is. Why do you have to call it Hypertrophic-cardiomyopathy?

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Alex: This is another world. I mean, I’ve been asked a lot of questions in a lot of interviews recently. You know, “Do you think Moonlight will come back?”. I mean, I don’t … Moonlight is not coming back. And I’m probably never going to play another vampire. And so, all you  fans that only want to see me as a vampire, “Bye!” [Laughs]

Alex O'Loughlin as Mick (crying)

Alex: We are currently in negotiations with “Donate Life”, which is the company … You know one of the big organ donation companies. And working towards and affiliation that can go hand in hand with the show. And to bring awareness. Awareness about the importance of organ donations, you know, to people around the world. So, I’m really, really excited about that.

The Three Rivers Team

Alex: Yes, just wrapped ‘The Back-up Plan’ with Jennifer Lopez. It was great, I think. I’m still sort of shaking it off. It was great. There was a lot of work. And I think it’s going to be a funny, a real funny move. Kate Angelo wrote a really well balanced and funny script. It’s a  … I mean, it’s  … I don’t see it as a “romantic comedy”. I see Romantic Comedies as kind of chick flicks, which I am not really that interested in, watching. But I go, because I have to, or my girlfriend would break up with me – if I have one at the time, whatever, you know. So it has elements of that for sure.

Alex & J.Lo filming The Back-up Plan

Alex: She’s a pro. You know, I mean, she’s been doing it for years. She’s … she’s a super mega, super-duper star. And, but you wouldn’t guess it. You know, she comes on set, she’s prepared, she’s professional. She brings a great light energy and humour and warmth to the set with her. And a family now, she brings to the set with her. Which is lovely. So, it was so lovely having babies on set, you know like that. Because it is a rarity. I know you don’t often see cutting takes because one of the kids are screaming. Oh, there’s babies here.

Video:

We would like to take this opportunity to thank Mary, from the closed down site Alex O’Loughlin.org, for sharing some of her great collection of pictures of Alex with us.  It is always great to know how much his long time fans still adore him and are also still prepared to share what they have of him with others.

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Alex O’Loughlin on “The Doctors” – Oct 2009

Let’s continue with our subject for the week ……..

Alex O’Loughlin with his research adviser for ‘Three Rivers’,  Dr Gonzo Gonzales-Stawinski, on the TV Show ‘The Doctors’.

– Presenters: Dr Travis Stork, Dr Andrew Ordon, Dr Lisa Masterson and Dr Jim Sears.

– 2 October 2009.

(Transcript of the video)

Dr Stork: Admit it a lot of what you learn when it comes to medicine, you see in movies and on TV, right. Well that was a clip from the new CBS show, Three Rivers. It is an extremely realistic look into the world of organ transplants. Dr Gonzo is the inspiration for the show, and joining us now is the star of the show, Alex O’Loughlin. Come on out Alex.

Alex & Dr Travis Stork on set of Three Rivers

[Cheers, greetings and hugs all around]

Dr Masterson: Oh it is fabulous having you here and I also do think I need a heart doctor, with all these handsome men. I am having heart palpitations.

Dr Ordon: You forgot your white coat.

Alex: I did. You know, I didn’t know what to wear. I thought I’d … I was going to bring.  I thought I should wear a suit.

Dr Stork: We talked about it, because I was on the set and said, “Well you know, you could wear scrubs”. But I like it.

Alex: Well thanks buddy.

Dr Masterson: Are you starting to feel more comfortable in scrubs.

Dr Ordon: He looks gorgeous just like that, doesn’t he?

Dr Masterson: I know.

Alex & Kate

[Cheers and clapping ]

Dr Masterson: As a matter of interest, did you have to do a lot to prepare for this role?

Alex: This is the man who helped me with the majority of my …. All of my research actually. I was talking to Gonzo yesterday; it wasn’t until I spoke to you on the phone that I thought I could do this role. I mean I read the script and I was like, “I can’t do this. I don’t know anything about being a doctor, or medicine”, or … you know and I spoke to Gonzo and I realised, you guys are people too.

[Laughs all around]

Dr Ordon: You’re the doctor, but you got a shot at being the actor as well, didn’t you?

Dr Gonzo: You know what, I did and I think it was two days ago that I was n set and Alex and I have a scene together. In which he’s … he’s in a bind, so he’s asking me for a favour to go procure a heart for him. And it was actually fun, but let me tell you something. Acting is a bear. Operating on people and doing heart transplants – slice of cake. My heart rate would be lower, my blood pressure is lower. This whole acting business, camera’s and people watching you. Forget about it. I mean that is tough stuff.

But you know Alex …. Alex and I had a really good experience. You know we met …. We initially spoke over the telephone and discussed his role, and what he was going to be able to do, and who was Gonzo. And what was the character going to be like. So he came over to the Cleveland clinic and we hung out. And it was a blast. I mean …

Alex: It was great.

Dr Gonzo: What you don’t know about Alex, is that he is a human sponge. He absorbs everything. So I only wish you extreme success with this show.

Alex: Thanks Gonz.

Dr Stork: Well recently I was also invited to go behind the scenes of Three Rivers, to check it out the set and meet the cast AND play a doctor.

Alex O'Loughlin as Dr Andy Yablonski - Three Rivers

[Clip of Dr Stork on the set of Three Rivers]

Dialogue from the clip:

Alex: Hey man.

Dr Stork: Hi Alex, Travis. Good to meet you.

Alex: Good to meet you.

Dr Stork: Have you learned some operating skills?

Alex: Dude I could fix that heart. If anyone breaks it, you come to me man.

Dr Stork: Would you let this guy operate on you?

Alex: These are honest eyes.

Dr Stork: You got to teach me. I don’t know how to do this.

Alex: Evidently the student is ready, because the master is here. So, you know, let’s go in.

Dr Stork: Lead the way.

Alex O'Loughlin & Dr Travis Stork

[Insert of then shooting the scene for Three Rivers]

Dr Stork: This guy is a good coach

Alex: [Laughs]

Dr Stork: Thanks a lot for having me.

Alex: Pleasure man. Thanks for coming.

Dr Stork: So the scrubs are fun, but it’s time to out on my light blue scrubs.

Alex & Dr Travis Stork - Three Rivers

[Cheers and clapping back in the studio]

Dr Sears: The patient is dying?

Dr Stork: I’m with Gonzo. I have to admit. I’m on set. I am nervous. I don’t know how.

Dr Ordon: It took you three takes?

Dr Sears: Probably more than that.

Alex: You were hiding behind a mask. It’s easy when you’ve got the mask on. Isn’t it crazy, you’re …. You’ve got all the stuff. And we want to make it real as actors. We’re covered in blood, doing whatever we’re doing and they’re like, your thumb …….

Dr Gonzo: Fake blood.

Alex: Yeah, fake blood. Of course.

[Laughs]

Alex: Your thumb is not in the right place. It’s like, we spend most of the morning finding where to put Travis’s [Thumb]

Dr Stork: Yeah, five takes of, “A little higher. A little lower”.

Alex: Sorry, that’s crazy.

Dr Stork: You are a great coach. And one of the things that I love about this show, is that it does highlight a very important cause. Something we talked about on the show, organ transplantation. I know you’re wearing a green band for a reason, right?

Alex as Dr Andy Yablonski - Three Rivers

Alex: I am. This is the Donate Life or Done Vida bracelet from Donate Life America. An incredible organization. I am now almost an ambassador for them. For which I’m …. I’m honoured to be a part of. And … I realised the opportunity …. myself and CBS and Gonzo, for some community service you know. And to be able to give back. I think it’s so important to ….. whenever we have a chance to give back, to do that. So, Donate Life has come on board with us. It’s terrific.

Dr Stork: [to Alex] We welcome you to our family of doctors. I think you do a great job. And you bring energy to the show. [to Gonzo] And certainly, you’re  an inspiration Dr Gonzo. You inspire all of us. Thank you for all your great work.

Dr Gonzo: Thank you.

Dr Stork: So a big thank you to Alex O’Loughlin and the entire cast of Three Rivers. And as I said, especially Dr Gonzo and the Cleveland clinic

 

The Video:

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#AlexOLoughlin on WJZ – Oct 2009 (Transcript)

Alex with Marty Bass & Don Scott on WJZ in 2009 – Talking about Three Rivers.

(Transcript)

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Marty: Last year we had a show called Moonlight. Here it is right there. [Show article about cancellation of Moonlight] And it never went quite anywhere, but the star Alex O’Loughlin. really got a lot of great press. You know the vampire thing is pretty big still.

Female reporter: Yeah, it is.

Marty: He got enough press and CBS decided to give him another show. And this is a real interesting hospital, type show. It’s about a transplant hospital. And it stars a former vampire. Take it away ….

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Marty: Ladies and gentleman welcome Alex O’Loughlin, Dr Andy Yablonski, to the morning addition. How are you?

Alex: Good morning.

Marty: How’s life today in Los Angeles?

Alex: Life is lovely in Los Angeles. It’s very early here. I don’t think the sun is up yet, but I think it’s going to be another glorious day, because every day in Los Angeles is glorious.

Don: So I hear.

Marty: So, show business is treating you well. It’s like wait a minute, I’m a star of a CBS show, I’m a movie star and they run my rear end out of bed at 4:30 am pacific.

Alex: That’s [laughs]… There’s nothing glamorous about what I do mate. That’s the most common misconception about being an actor, is that …. It’s very rarely glamorous. It’s often just red eyes and Starbucks, tumbling into some weird little studio somewhere to do this.

wjz-glamorous

 

Don: So is local news, I can tell you.

Alex: There you go. [Laughs]

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Marty: Hey listen; let’s talk Three Rivers here for a second. This is it a real interesting concept on the old medical theme – a transplant hospital. It’s pretty current. Or is it too much ahead of the curve?

Alex: Absolutely not. I think it’s  ….. I don’t think it is ahead of the curve at all. I mean it’s something that going on for a long …. for a long time. I mean transplant medicine is not a new thing. It’s actually … It’s actually so advanced now, it’s almost easier than auto mechanics. You know, I’ve never seen a show that is based …. That’s based in organ transplant …. where transplant, is the core of the show. And it is the core of our show.

We also have …. The great thing about this is that we also have the sort of technology of for instance a CSI, but in this hospital. This New Age hospital in Pittsburgh, where the show is set. So I’m very, very excited to see how this show is … is received by America.3r iv leather 5

Marty: I’m you know … I understand about the transplant technology. I mean Baltimore is home to Johns Hopkins and the University of Maryland hospital, which have pioneered a lot of the technic and or treatments before and after, but I mean ….

Don: And the multiple ones, the ones that lead to another, that leads to another, that leads to another …

Marty: ….. but I was just curious, about when it comes to a TV series. Did you ever think yourself, when your agent came to you, that, “Wow, are we here on TV series yet?

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Alex: As the actor in the show, it’s not my …. The artistic vision does not necessarily belong to me. I have to … I have to give a certain amount of faith to the showrunner, you know, to the producer. To know that they have a vision for the future. But I saw ….. it was very clear to me that there were many, many stories to be told in this script that I read for Three Rivers, for the pilot.

Because it’s told from … and it’s also different, because we tell it from three points of view. The donor, the recipient and the medical team. And I’ve never seen a medical show told like this before. And so … yeah.

Don: As an actor changing roles, does it seem ironic at all to you, you are going from being a vampire, a very famous vampire, to being somebody now who saves lives?

Alex: I was going to say, “Yeah, and also I go from someone who drinks buckets of blood to someone who sort of paddles around and plays around in blood”.

Marty: You guys are burning too many brain cells on this.

Alex: Some kind of blood in my contract.

Don: No, it is kind of ironic.

Marty: I just want you to know…

Alex: [Laughs]

Don: I did not expect to get into all that blood.

Marty: …. did you stay up late last night to dream up that question?

Don: No, I get it. It’s quite a different role.

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Alex: No, in all seriousness it is a different role and …. And that’s …. As an actor that’s all I can hope for is to do roles that are as different from one to the next as possible. I mean, my dream career is to just constantly play roles that are antithetical to one another and bounce back and forth and be as diverse and as sort of transformational as I can be.

And as I get older, and as I get better at what I do, hopefully, that will happen more and more. And I don’t ever want to play the same thing over and over again.

Marty: Hey listen, very good.

Alex: Yeah.

Marty: You know what’s been great? We have been battling this like 2-second satellite delay, and we …. the three of us proved that we’re television geniuses pulling this off. So congratulations. That’s the truth.

Alex: Congratulations gentleman, you’ve done very well.

Marty: You have too. Listen, good luck on the series.

Alex: Thank you.

Marty: And Sunday 9 o’clock here on WJZ CBS, Three Rivers.  As we would say here in Baltimore, “You’re an alright guy”. You passed the audition. You’re back any time you’re on a bird.

Alex: Thank you.

Marty: See you later.

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Three Rivers – You Ask They Tell: #AlexOLoughlin 2009

We are thinking of running themes and focus on a subject every week, for the weeks we still have left during hiatus. Not sure if it will work that way, because we both got kind of busy lately. But let’s try at least.

With all the talk about transplants, I thought it might be a good idea to start with the angelic Dr Andy Yablonski. I know not many like posts about Three Rivers and they are normally some of the lesser shared or liked articles.

It is however important for me to see how enthusiastic Alex was to be part if such a ‘real’ show and a subject like organ donation, that can be of such great value to so many people around the world. He really poured his heart into this one.

Alex O’Loughlin tells us about CBS’s new show ‘Three Rivers’

on ‘You Ask, They Tell’.

Transcript 

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Question: Can you describe your character on Three Rivers?

Alex: My character, his name is Andy Yablonski, and he’s a cardiothoracic surgeon at a hospital in Pittsburgh called Three Rivers. And he specializes, as does the hospital, in transplant medicine and transplant …. organ transplantation. And it’s … he is based on a real-life character called Gonzo Gonzales-Stawinski out of Cleveland.

The Cleveland Clinic, which is where I did my studying and research for this role and … with Gonzo. And the show …. the show we tell from three different points of view. We tell it from the point of view of the donor, the recipient, and … my character and the medical team at Three Rivers. And so it is a medical show that I believe we haven’t seen before.

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Question: What makes Three Rivers stand out from other television shows?

Alex: The fact that the core of the show, the heart, of the show if you will, is based in organ transplantation. It’s not something that has been done on TV before. We may have seen glimpses of it, but really not the way we are doing it.

We’re doing it with the utmost integrity, remaining intact at all times, for the truth of ….. of this field of medicine. And of …. you know, the other thing that we desperately try to do is dispel all the misconceptions and myths around organ donation. And you know one of the main ones is  …. you know, people are scared to become donors, because they have heard that …  if anything ever does happen to them, doctors in hospitals won’t try to save them, because their organs are … are available. Which is absolutely not true.

And I’m a spokesperson and ambassador now for Donate Life America, which is a great pleasure and a great privilege. And they are an incredible organization. And so, they have a website, Donatelife.net, which you can jump on and find all sorts of information about the truth about organ donation. About how important it is. About how many lives you can affect. You can actually save up to 8 lives and affect up to 50, by being an organ donor. And so …. yeah, and I am. I am an organ donor.

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Question: How did you prepare for this role?

Alex: The clinic was a huge … the Cleveland Clinic was a huge part of my preparation. And my time with Gonzo …. I spend a lot of time with Gonzo on the phone before I got to Cleveland. I went to Cleveland a number of times and spend blocks of time there, staying at the hotel which is connected to the hospital. Which is funny because in the story my character lives in the hotel connected to the hospital, because he is separated from his wife. He’s in a transition phase of his life.

But my preparation for this …. I …. from the minute I made the decision and said yes to the job, I went into my research and preparation like a bull at a gate. And I didn’t stop. I actually still haven’t stopped, because it is such a massive thing.

Medicine is …it’s like law, or science. It’s another language, it’s another world away. These people train for 15 years before they can, you know, do what these guys do. And so, it’s taking a lot. And there’s a lot of … I live in textbooks …. in medical textbooks and encyclopedias. And on the phone to my ….. my friends who are surgeons and doctors. And just …. I’m forever learning, and there’s just so much to learn. And so, I’m doing my best.

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Question: What will you take away from playing a role like this?

Alex: I find it very interesting. I find …. I’m fascinated with medicine. And I’m borderline obsessed with this stuff. I mean the thing is there’s … medicine at this level, you know, surgeons…. I just ….. what they do is incredible. It’s so fascinating to me. I’ve spent a lot of time in the OR as well. Like shoulder to shoulder with my man there, watching two feet away ….. at somebody’s open chest and heart pumping and lungs breathing. And watching them go on bypass and then the surgeon comes in and does all his stuff.

I mean it’s …. It really changes …. It’s really changed my perspective on life. It really like … I mean it really shifts the way you view life. To see how resilient we are on the inside as well as on the outside of our bodies. And I mean, it makes you question faith, and religion and whether this is in fact a second chance that we think we’re going to get after this life. I mean it’s pretty … it opens up a whole bunch of philosophical debates.

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Alex O’Loughlin: “Very, Very Proud” to Be an Organ Donor – 2009

Celebrity Charities: Three Rivers‘ Alex O’Loughlin “Very, Very Proud” to Be an Organ Donor

TV Guide

by Joyce Eng

2 October 2009

Sunday’s series premiere of  Three Rivers (CBS, 9/8c) marks Alex O’Loughlin’s return to TV, and the Aussie hunk hopes his Moonlight fans will follow him to the medical drama not just to support him, but to support organ donation. Rivers explores the lives of organ donors, recipients and a team of transplant surgeons led by O’Loughlin’s Dr. Andy Yablonski. Since scrubbing into the role, the actor has become a Donate Life America spokesperson and ambassador to raise awareness, while CBS and Donate Life have partnered in a joint initiative to encourage people to donate their organs once they die.

We caught up with O’Loughlin to learn about his passionate new roles on- and off-screen for our new Celebrity Charities feature, which highlights stars’ favorite causes.

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TVGuide.com: You’ve been an organ donor since your teens. Why did you decide to become one?

Alex: Yeah, I sort of stamped it on my license way back when. That was more about kind of doing the right thing and having an open mind as a young person in the cool group. It wasn’t about what it is about for me now. I wasn’t sure before, but now I’ve been officially confirmed as a donor. I have the card saying I’m an organ and tissue donor. I’m like, “You take it all.” God forbid anything ever happens.

When I first read the script, one of the initial things that came to me was the obvious potential for community service, and this sort of philanthropic idea of maybe being involved with Donate Life America or any company that would come onboard with us.

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TVGuide.com: And you’ve become a spokesperson for Donate Life.

Alex: I am now officially a spokesperson and an ambassador. I’ve done my ambassador training, which is great. I’m very, very proud and I feel very privileged to be a part of an organization like Donate Life because it’s just so important. They save so many lives every day. The way they operate — they do it with such integrity on a mass scale. I’m only one person, but hopefully I’ll bring more awareness to more people.

TVGuide.com: Can you give us an idea of what you’ll be doing with them?

Alex: Before we even started shooting, I approached CBS and said, “Listen, this is my plan of attack. If we do this script, I want you guys to sign on with me now and be in agreement that you will help me get this up and running. What I’ve been doing with Donate Life, in conjunction with the show, is PSAs for TV. I’ve gone to a couple charity events. I’ve written some testaments for them. I’ve done a lot of press about the organization on the red carpet and stuff like that. Every opportunity I get.

I went on The Bonnie Hunt Show and I forgot to wear my pin. I was so mad at myself. I take my pin everywhere. People ask about it and I tell them about it. Whenever people ask me about it like you’re talking to me now, I will talk about Donate Life.

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TVGuide.com: Do you get input from them? How accurate are the procedures and the storylines in the show?

Alex: They’re very accurate. We have an incredible writing staff, who are not only talented but very meticulous and professional. None of them will deliver, I can say in faith, something to be shot without all the possible research done. We have a large team of medical technicians and consultants.

Donate Life, when I approached them, they were hesitant for very good reasons. Until this point, other people’s storytelling around these issues has been so inaccurate that they have not wanted any involvement. They found it made their lives more difficult. This is a non-profit organization that saves people’s lives everyday, so why would you not want to get it right? Forgive me for searching for the specify here, but really, it’s so important.

TVGuide.com: How did you get them to come onboard?

Alex: At first, we convinced them the integrity of the organization was of utmost importance and that we wanted to tell the truth of how it is for everyone — donor, recipient and medical group. We wanted to tell real stories about what’s really happening to real people right now. Once they read some scripts, they’re like, “Oh my God, this is exactly how it is.” I met with one of the heads of the organization.

He came down to set and I showed him around and we sat down and I said I really want to be involved. If enough people see the show and know my face and who I am, then hopefully we can make a difference, or at the very least get a few more people to realize the importance of being a donor and giving the gift of life.

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TVGuide.com: What’s the most important thing people need to know about organ donation? What are the myths that need to be dispelled?

Alex: It’s not true that a doctor will not try to save you if you’re a donor. It’s not true that the medical staff of whatever medical institution you’re in will put less of an effort toward you if you’re going to allow your organs to be procured post-mortem. A lot of people I’ve spoken to have said they’re not an organ donor for that reason. That’s an absolute fallacy. Also, the hospital doesn’t have access to the records the procurement organization has to see if you’re a donor.

TVGuide.com: I imagine the response from within the community has been great.


Alex:
You wouldn’t believe me if I told you how many stories I’ve heard. There are some amazing people working on the show who have had life experience with organ donation. One of our guest stars in our earlier episodes about a heart transplant took the role because she had not yet dealt with the fact that her father died as a result of a failed heart transplant. One of our background ladies — her son died in a car accident when he was 17 and his organs saved five people’s lives. One of those people is a young woman who’s now in her life as her sort-of surrogate daughter. This thing brings people together and this show has proven cathartic for a lot of people already.

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TVGuide.com: How did you go about preparing for the role?

Alex: My character is based on a real doctor called Gonzo Gonzalez Stawinski and he’s a cardiothoracic surgeon in Cleveland who specializes in transplant. He was amazing. I spent a bunch of time with him in the hospital. I’d go in for all the post-op rounds and pre-op rounds and all sorts of things. I saw about nine different operations. To see the process from beginning to end with people who were very sick — a lot of whom had congenital issues — to surviving long-term is from the generosity from the donors.

It’s the gift of life. There’s a whole process you have to go through and you never know if it will happen. A lot of people don’t make it, but when it does work, it’s magic. It’s the most wonderful thing in the world. I realized when I read the script that I’ll move into this world and I researched — like I do with any role — and realized the actuality of this world.

TVGuide.com: Since the stories on the show are told from three perspectives and someone needs to die for a transplant to occur, can or will the format ever change?

Alex: No. There are variations on the theme, of course, but it’s always, someone dies. Do we get the organs? We get the organs and someone lives and there’s the medical team. It’s about recipient, donor and medical team. But there are other storylines that will come along.

I think it’s important since there have been so many medical shows that I think everything’s been done, but this hasn’t. Characters are really distinctive and we fall in love with characters. … We fall in love, with, like McDreamy or Tony Soprano, because he’s amazing. It’s the characters in the piece and our characters are becoming more defined as we go deeper into the storyline.

Andy — there’s more to him. He’s got some history and you’ll find out. But the core of the story is something unique and something that hasn’t been explored before, and that’s the meat and potatoes of our show. And that’s what’s going to give us a longer shelf life.

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My Thoughts

  • I think the pictures Paula got for us of the ‘angelic’ Dr Andy for this post, are absolutely gorgeous!

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