Heroes Star Masi Oka Opens Up To Wired


In the fresh May issue of Wired Magazine Heroes star and one of my favorite Geek of the Week contenders Masi Oka opened up about being a geek in real life and on screen.

The interview was actually just a slice Behind the Scenes With Heroes Creator Tim Kring and "Hiro," Masi Oka, which details the story of how the Crossing Jordan and Chicago Hope creator came up with the idea for the show. For those of you that haven't been watching, Heroes has quickly garnered cred from the mainstream press and viewers as well as the usual sci-fi cult fans.

According to Wired, Oka, who plays time traveler Hiro Nakamura, said he bases Hiro's wide-eyed innocence on an anime character from Dragonball Z.

He also said he "wants Heroes to include more geeky references." "Sometimes I try to sneak one in there," he told the magazine.

Here are some highlights from the story:

  • Masi Oka, who plays salaryman Hiro Nakamura on Heroes, is scarfing down baked chicken in the back of a strip club in Van Nuys, California, on a break from filming the April 30 episode. "Tim's a great barometer for people who are not into comics," Oka says. "If Tim understands it, the whole world will. The writers might geek out and come up with some time- traveling, mind-bending fifth-dimensional thing. Tim says, 'Whoa, what does that mean?'"

For additional highlights, read more

  • On the show, Oka's character is an office worker who lacks fashion sense, loves comics and videogames, and quotes Star Trek. But in a cheeky conceit, the chubby nebbish Hiro is the central hero of Heroes. And it's his geekiness that gives him an edge. Because Hiro is so well versed in the myth and lore of superheroes, he's the one with the clearest sense of what to do with his powers.
  • Oka himself is a geek made good. Before he pursued acting, he was a CG artist at Industrial Light & Magic, crafting f/x for films like War of the Worlds and Revenge of the Sith. (He still does occasional work for the company - no one else knows how to use the programs he coded.) His endearing performance on Heroes earned him a Golden Globe nomination for supporting actor. And for today's shoot, he's ditched his standard nerdy wardrobe for the much cooler "Future Hiro" outfit - a black tunic, soul patch, and badass samurai sword.
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