Sweet geek Zachary Levi tackles Broadway in ‘Blind Date’

Sweet geek Zachary Levi tackles Broadway in ‘Blind Date’

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In “First Date,” Levi pairs up with Krysta Rodriguez, who’s additionally perhaps perhaps maybe not Jewish. (Joan Marcus)

In “First Date,” Levi pairs up with Krysta Rodriguez, who’s additionally perhaps maybe maybe not Jewish. ( )

Those that enjoyed the sweetly lead that is nerdy of “Chuck” will undoubtedly be pleased to find its celebrity, Zachary Levi, on Broadway, doing exactly exactly exactly what he does most readily useful: singing, dancing . . . cringing.

In “First Date,” opening in a few days, Levi plays Aaron — as awkwardly earnest as Chuck, but as bearded and bespectacled as a yeshiva child, as well. Cue the cringing whenever Aaron discovers that his date that is hot — the comely Krysta Rodriguez (“Smash”) — is not Jewish.

Then again, neither is Levi.

“Nope, maybe maybe not really a Jew!” he says with a grin. “But if individuals desire to lump me personally in with God’s plumped for, I’ll go on it!”

Backstage in the Longacre Theatre — backpack by their part, their 6-foot-4 frame closing in black colored Converse sneakers — the set that is 32-year-old record right, their discussion peppered with all the words “journey,” “amazing” and “blessed.”

He had been created Zachary Levi Pugh — that Welsh surname’s pronounced “pewww!” — which resulted in no final end of “brutal responses” in boyhood and beyond. Their representative recommended the young star might only want to alter their title.

It wasn’t a decision that is easy.

“I’d made a guideline that i’dn’t alter or fold for Hollywood,” claims the star, whom spent my youth in Southern Ca, when you look at the shadow of Disneyland. But about it long and hard,” he decided to simply lose the Pugh after he“prayed.

That, Levi states, resulted in another trouble: “I’ve had casting directors call my representative and state, ‘Yeah, you know — he’s a tad too Jewish.’ ”

In terms of the creators of “First Date” had been concerned, Levi ended up being perfectly.

“Zachary’s such as a version that is better-looking of — the me I’ve always wished to be,” says Austin Winsberg, the show’s bespectacled book journalist. While composing for “Gossip woman,” which shared workplaces in the Warner Brothers lot with “Chuck,” Winsberg saw in Levi exactly what he calls “the sweet spot — a person who could sing, party, become funny and have fun with the intimate main character, the main one ladies desire to be with additionally the dudes root for. ”

Since it took place, Levi ended up being free, and Broadway ended up being on their bucket list. He’d been singing and dancing in local movie movie movie theater since he had been 6 (“I became a ham”), in which he along with his “Tangled” co-star Mandy Moore sang a duet together during the Oscars.

His only doubt: getting typecast as a nerd, also if he views himself like that in actual life. He and buddy run a company he describes as “Nike for Nerds” — the Nerd Machine, which produces duds and gizmos for sci-fi fans and gamers like Levi himself, whom place his supply by way of a light fixture whilst hitting an overhead smash within a Wii game of tennis.

“ we think in making use of the working platform you’ve got for good,” says Levi, whom calls their company transactions capitalism that is“conscientious have a money, provide a buck.” He’s an enthusiastic supporter of procedure Smile along with other charities, and arranged for per week off at “First Date,” just after previews began, to honor their dedication to appear at Geek Central, a k a Comic-Con.

And their love life?

“That we won’t go into,” he claims, pleasantly. Despite a breakup that is well-publicized singer Caitlin Crosby, he’s was able to keep their personal life regarding the down low.

“I’m maybe maybe maybe not a dater that is big really,” he claims. “I’m a kind that is go-with-the-flow of . . .

I’d rather hang away with somebody in a bunch and find out then we’ll get on a romantic date. when they check these different containers beside me before we venture out together — get acquainted with one another extremely casually and coolly, if there’s chemistry,”

Judging through the ecstatic applause Levi’s drawing in “First Date,” a complete lot of individuals will be really very happy to understand him better.

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