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Interview: Robert Piper

Robert Piper: What inspires you in life?

Bailey Chase: It’s not any one specific thing, it’s like watching a movie and then, all of a sudden, there’s a compelled moment that resonates and I’m inspired to try and do the same. In my work, it could just be something I see on the street, whether it’s somebody giving a homeless guy a dollar or a child and a parent. I get inspired all the time.

RP: How do you stay healthy?

BC: I am pretty diligent with my fitness routine. I am not like a crazy workout-holic, but I stay active. In my downtime, I play a lot of golf with my dog. I pretty much eat whatever I want, but I don’t go crazy all the time, either. Just got to do things in moderation.

RP: How did you start acting?

BC: In 1995, I graduated from Duke and loaded up my truck with my yellow lab. I put my diploma away somewhere, and I started waiting tables. I got into acting class and first started working in commercials. Just started studying and doing plays and working hard.

RP: What type of research goes into preparing for a role?

BC: That’s a good question. Everybody has their own approach. I don’t adhere to any one philosophy. I learn a lot from life and people-watching and other people watching. I was a psychology major. I think that definitely helps in general life; I enjoy trying to figure out why people are the way they are.

In terms of my work, I use my imagination a lot. Just imagine what it would be like to be this person in these circumstances, and justify their attitude and behaviors. Whether that’s good, bad, a little bit of both. Then just go from there.

RP: Any new projects coming up?

BC: I just finished a little work on Chicago P.D. Chicago is a cool city; it’s where I am from originally. I get to see my aunts and both cousins. That was great. I have one daughter. She just turned six months, so [it was] a huge deal seeing her cousins for the first time. I just finished doing a movie with Zack Snyder. It will probably be out in a year, maybe early 2016. That was really cool too. I’ve never worked on anything of that scale.

I did a movie this summer right after Longmire, season three: No Beast So Fierce. That was a really different experience for me. I shaved my head and I had tattoos all over my body, like a guy who was getting out of prison. It was my first lead in a movie. I really relished just the challenge, the opportunity, and the responsibility and everything that comes with being a number one.

Bailey Chase stars as a hunky deputy with political motives on A&E’s contemporary crime thriller Longmire and as a DEA agent on Chicago P.D. He also stars opposite Selma Blair in the dramatic feature Sex, Death, and Bowling and leads the cast of the drama No Beast So Fierce.

PHOTO: RICHARD REINSDORF

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