Michael B. Jordan might be best known today for starring in big budget films such as Creed, Black Panther, and Without Remorse, but he initially made a new for himself through supporting roles in TV dramas.
After landing a recurring role in the HBO crime drama The Wire, Jordan went on to star in Friday Night Lights. On the show he plays Vince Howard, the star quarterback of East Dillon high school.
The role did a lot to help Jordan move forward in his acting career, but few people know how far Jordan had to go in order to secure the role. According to him, he tackled Friday Night Lights director Pete Berg during his audition just to convince him he was for real.
Michael B. Jordan tackled Pete Berg during his ‘Friday Night Lights’ audition
Jordan looked back on the outrageous audition moment during a resurfaced 2018 interview with Hot Ones.
“That was inside the audition room. … I was auditioning for Vince, and he had me improv,” Jordan said. “He was talking me through how to get my team hyped. … ‘You’re the QB, talk to your guys in the huddle, etcetera, etcetera, and he was playing the defensive player.”
As they improvised the scene, Berg started shouting across the line of scrimmage as players in real football games do. Jordan realized that no matter what he said, the best way he could make an impression was to tackle Berg to the ground.
“He was talking sh*t across the line, he started ad libbing and going off on a little tangent or whatever, and he got me so fired up that in my mind, I’m like, ‘You know what? I’m just gonna tackle this dude.’ I’m just like, ‘Just go ahead and just go for it.’ What they gon’ do? I’m not gonna get the role, I guess? … I had nothing to lose.”
He thinks tackling Pete Berg secured his ‘Friday Night Lights’ role
In hindsight, Jordan thinks knocking Berg to the floor is what actually secured his role on Friday Night Lights.
“He really dug it, and I think that was one of the key decisions in me actually getting the role, was the fact that I took it to that level and went over and tackled him,” Jordan said.
Michael B. Jordan really practiced football so his performance would be more authentic
While Jordan was filming Friday Night Lights, he would practice like a football player to better get into character. This woud often include going up to the University of Texas and do real workouts.
“The whole football thing, I would put the time in,” Jordan said. “I would work out. … Go over to UT, get out on the field, get some reps in. I wanted to kind of look like a real football player.”
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