Last night was the premiere of ABC’s Don’t Trust The B– In Apartment 23. We’ve already discusses our fascination with James Van Der Beek playing a meta version of himself. But the former Dawson’s Creek star isn’t the only one playing a tripped out version of himself on the show. Tate Ellington shows up on the first episode as the fiance of June (Dreama Walker), the nice Midwestern girl who ends up in the apartment of the titular “B.” In real life, Tate is actually getting married next month.
You may recognize Tate as the best friend from the Robert Pattinson movie Remember Me. He’s also appeared on The Good Wife and Rescue Me, but his stint on The B In Apartment 23 is the very first time he had to simulate having sex on a birthday cake. We caught up with Tate to talk about James Van Der Memes and his hip thrusting on ABC last night. Enjoy!
How often does James Van Der Beek cry on set?
Almost all the time. He would look at you directly in the eyes for five, sometimes ten minutes without saying a word. Then he would turn away gazing reflectively off into space, as if he were viewing some glorious sunset. Suddenly the tears would just fall. He would stand there, unflinching as they streamed down his face and whisper “This is why.”
Ha. So are there any similarities between real life James Van Der Beek and James VDB on the show?
The only similarity is the name. James is a wonderful guy! Nice as can be and completely down to earth. He, Dreama and I had lunch on my first day of shooting. I am always intimidated, I get intimidated going to the gas station, but James put me right at ease. You want to give him a hug…then you want him to hug you back, which he will do.
You are engaged in real life. Was it surreal being a terrible fiance for the show?
Truthfully, it was very surreal. From what I have been told I am quite a good fiance. I have always tried my best to do everything I can to make my lady happy. I tend to screw that up, but my track record is not awful. I love her to death and can’t live without her. Through her guidance I have learned to love such things as the farmer’s market (gotta say the produce really does taste amazingly better), House Hunters and House Hunters International (can you believe some of those deals!?), and I let her Notebook me (what a stupid movie…no, I’m not crying I just have allergies and the sun is in my eyes!).
You’re also friends with Dreama Walker in real life (and she’s going to be in your wedding next month, right?). Was it strange being her fiance on the show?
Yep, she’s in the bridal party! Dreama is a dear friend and one of the sweetest people in the world so it was very hard being mean to her. My character comes back in a future episode and I had to say one of the meanest things I have ever said to anyone. It killed me! And while she is super-sweet, Dreama has a hidden tough side, she can take it. In fact, if someone said what I said to her in real life she would lay them out flat and take their lunch money.
Did you end up with birthday cake in any weird places after filming your sex scene in Don’t Trust The B– In Apt 23?I was fortunately cake and icing free after shooting those scenes. Krysten, however, was not so lucky. I am sure she never wants to see a cake again. I was very sticky though from all of the fake champagne that was dumped on me. I also had a few welts from where she was hitting me with roses. She’s got a powerful swing! That was actually a dangerous day of shooting. For that whole montage we were rolling around on the floor, throwing each other on top of things, falling off couches—Krysten was a champ! The funniest part for me was when I was told to “tone down the hip thrusting.” That’s not something you hear everyday.
Would you ever have sex on a birthday cake in real life?
No. Cake is a sacred thing. I have a huge sweet tooth. In fact, we had about six extra cakes to use for the scene. When we weren’t filming I would stand by the prop table and just stare at them, longingly. It broke my heart every time we destroyed one. All I could think was, “I would have eaten that!”
What if your fiance asked really nicely?
It’s a tough call. To quote Meatloaf “I would do anything for love, but I won’t do that!” (I just showed how old I am) Maybe if she was dressed like a cake? She actually hates sweets. However, she would probably be into doing it in a bowl of seven layer bean dip. That’s my kinda gal!