EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Ethan Daniel Corbett on 'Youthful Daze' and Playing Tommy Dinato

Ethan Daniel Corbett plays Tommy Dinato in Youthful Daze.
Ethan Daniel Corbett is at the forefront of an exciting and groundbreaking story as Tommy Dinato on teen soap opera Youthful Daze. Tommy has entered Drew's (Bryan James, who created the series) life at just the right time. He's been romantic, caring, and loving. And Drew needs it! Serial Scoop recently had the chance to speak to Corbett about Tommy and Drew, how he was cast in Youthful Daze, and why this love story needed to be told.  Read our exclusive interview below:

SERIAL SCOOP: Hi Ethan, welcome to Youthful Daze! You've been sensational as Tommy and your story has just started! Is this your first major acting role?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: Yes,this is my first major role in a TV show and I couldn’t be more excited! I have played a few small roles in other projects and when Bryan came up and asked me to be a part of Youthful Daze, I was totally stoked!

SERIAL SCOOP: It's a really popular show and Tommy is such an important part of upcoming story. What was the casting process like?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: It all sorta happened by chance, actually. About two and a half years ago I was in need of some head shots so I asked my dear friend from high school, Easton Schirra, to take some photos of me. Not only is he a photographer but he also is an actor on Youthful Daze; playing the role of Oliver Cardin. On the day of the photo shoot, Bryan just so happened to be at Easton’s house and that's when I met him. After we took a few photos, Bryan asked me for my information because he wanted to talk to me about a project. A few weeks later he asked me to be a part of Youthful Daze, although I was not originally going to play Tommy.

SERIAL SCOOP: I can't imagine anyone else in the role. You weren't going to be playing Tommy at first?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: Another actor had that role. It was not until a year later when we were having our first read through of the script where he had me read for both my original role and the role of Tommy. A few weeks later, Bryan came up to me and offered me the role of Tommy. I could not have been more excited!

SERIAL SCOOP: Bryan chose correctly. [laughs] Are you ready for the attention you will receive playing Tommy?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: I don't really know how to answer that other than… yes?
But really, I think this role in general will bring attention to the fact that this is not just a “Gay” love story but a true love story. It is only a matter of time before the world will not segregate the two love stories and combine them into simply a “love story.”

Ethan Daniel Corbett as Tommy with Bryan James as Drew.
SERIAL SCOOP: Hopefully we are getting to that point. It is such an important message to send. I also like how romantic Tommy has been, bringing flowers to Drew, singing a love song about him. Is Tommy fully aware of Drew's past?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: Tommy is well aware of the circumstances that surround Drew. I mean, Tommy plants drugs on a woman just to get Drew back at school. He is aware of the risks. The whole reason Tommy even came back for Drew is because he knew everything that has happened to him. I think that love kinda numbs Tommy to the feeling of being shocked around Drew.

SERIAL SCOOP: The first kiss that Tommy and Drew share is pivotal. How did you prepare for the intensity of emotion that needed to be expressed? Any nerves?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: Other than being extremely nervous to kiss on screen for the first time, I was not actually nervous to DO it, you know? Over the past few years, Bryan and I have created a creative connection to telling the story. We couldn't tell the story without that pivotal scene.

SERIAL SCOOP: I really believed that these two characters were longing for each other. Not everyone is going to be so happy though. Do you think that the obsessive Vanessa (Heather Johansen) will target Tommy at some point?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: I think that Tommy is a huge target in general, whether it be from Vanessa, Oliver, Ms. Loomis or anyone else that has beef with Drew. He jumped into the passenger seat of Drew's crazy life and there is no doubt that he is there for the ride.

SERIAL SCOOP: Drew could certainly use someone to help protect him from his many enemies.[laughs] Tommy and Drew have such a great connection. With this story working so well, what impact do you think it may have?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: In the near future, I can see more and more love stories between same sex couples becoming the norm and shows like Youthful Daze are the first step to achieving that goal of love equality.

SERIAL SCOOP: That's great. I hope to see that! Ultimately, why do you think it's important that this story be told?
ETHAN DANIEL CORBETT: I think that this is a very important story to be told in our present day. Aside from the fact that it is a love story between two men, this story shows two human beings getting over the obstacles of life (although the obstacles in Drew’s life are monumental) through love and compassion.

SERIAL SCOOP: I don't think you could have said that any better.

Thank you to Ethan Daniel Corbett, and keep checking back for more of our exclusive interviews in the coming days with the cast of Youthful Daze.

Youthful Daze is available at http://www.youthfuldaze.com/  Look for a brand new episode every sunday night!

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Michael Goldberg is a freelance writer, producer and actor from Chicago. He regularly contributes television and web series features to Serial Scoop

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