“It’s unfortunate and magical. It’s such a blast.”
While unfortunate and magical don’t seem like words that could be used to describe the same thing, they are exactly the right adjectives to describe the Netflix series A Series of Unfortunate Events. And it’s exactly that seemingly contradictory world that drew in Matty Cardarople.
“What drew me to the show?” Cardarople asked. “The world of the show. The sets. It draws you in. Being on set feels like an alternative universe. It pulls you in. Every day is a new adventure and I love it!”
Cardarople plays Orlando, also known as the “Henchperson of Indeterminate Gender,” who is one of the members of series antagonist Count Olaf’s theatre troupe.
“I play one of Count Olaf’s Henchman,” Cardarople said. “He’s a very observant character and likes to point out the truth in things.”
The show is based on the A Series of Unfortunate Events book series by Daniel Handler under the pen name Lemony Snicket. The first season, available now on Netflix, covers the first four books of the series. Two more seasons have been announced, which will cover the other nine books in the series.
Cardarople said he was familiar with the books before he got involved with the show. “I love Daniel Handler’s style of writing,” Cardarople said. “It’s very unique in a great way and it draws you in. The vocabulary in his writing is amazing. It really teaches you, which is cool.”
Translating the world of the books to a TV series can be challenging. However, Cardarople was continually surprised by what they could put together to really create an authentic vision of the world of the books.
Being on set feels like an alternative universe. It pulls you in. Every day is a new adventure and I love it!
“Every day on set, there is some prop or set that blows me away,” Cardarople said. “Barry (Sonnenfeld), the director, knows what he wants and gets it done quickly and I think that’s important in a director.”
Cardarople was also impressed by the great attitude that Neil Patrick Harris brought to the set, both in character as Count Olaf and out.
“All the cast and crew are really sweet,” Cardarople said. “Neil is such a pro. He has to go to set a few hours early to get his makeup on then cut to the end of the day, and he’s dancing and singing. Full of energy.”
The response Cardarople has seen for the show has been greatly positive. “It’s unreal,” Cardarople said. “Everyone loves it and the response has been huge.”
But there are two people whose opinions on the show are even more special to him. “I watched all the episodes of the show with my parents,” Cardarople said. “They were so proud of me that they had a poster of the show on their front door. They are big fans of the show.”
Although the Netflix series has been a more successful departure from the 2004 film adaptation, Cardarople actually has a nice connection to the film and its star.
“I was familiar with the movie,” Cardarople said. “I’m a huge fan of Jim Carrey. He was actually an inspiration of mine to become an actor. It’s a fun movie.When I was a kid, I saw Ace Ventura in theaters and I knew it was what I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to bring joy to other people through acting, especially now more than ever.”
And he has. With a long list of credits in movies and TV, Cardarople has continued to do the thing he’s always wanted to do. One of his experiences that really showed that his dream had come true was getting the chance to be in Jurassic World.
“It was so surreal for me,” Cardarople said. “I saw the first Jurassic Park in theaters with my sister and I read all the books. I was a huge fan of the series and still am. It was a dream come true for me. It made me realize even more that anything can happen and all your dreams can come true if you really work hard and be the best.”
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Photo Credit: Photographer: Birdie Thompson, Grooming: Mandy Perez