Aldis Hodge Goes From 'Lights' to 'Leverage'

Today's cuppa: diet cola at the Fox Party

Before I hit the sack, I wanted to share some fun stuff I received today from Aldis Hodge, who played high-school quarterback Ray "Voodoo" Tatum on the first season of NBC's "Friday Night Lights."

Aldishodge_leverage_240 Now Hodge is all grown up and starring on the action dramedy "Leverage," airing Tuesdays on TNT. He plays cool computer geek Alec Hardison, who offers high-tech support to the team of former ne'er-do-wells led by a former insurance investigator (Timothy Hutton) that helps people victimized by the powerful and unscrupulous.

I posed some email questions to Hodge, and he fired back some answers. Here we go:

Q: Have you noticed that your "Friday Night Lights" fans are finding you on "Leverage"?

A: I have, and it's been great. People tell me about how it's funny to see me go from such a mean and serious character on "FNL" to such a playful and light character on "Leverage" -- but they like both characters. People have been very supportive, and I'd like to thank them all for it.

Q: How do the two work experiences compare?

A: It's hard to compare, because they are so different from one another, but I love both. I enjoy being able to stretch my acting legs and play such a tarnished character like "Voodoo." It's fun to play the bad guy, I'll admit. But with "Leverage," I get to tap into my comedic side at times and come out on top -- people want to see us win, and that's a great feeling. Above all, neither of these characters is average or boring -- that's AWESOME!

Q: What's been the most fun and the most hard work about shooting the show?

A: The work hasn't been hard. Work does get long sometimes, but I envelope that, because I enjoy those four months out of the year when I don't have to hunt for next month's mortgage. The most fun part about the show is that this character is mine to mold.

I get to be this guy for, hopefully, many seasons to come, and, unlike a guest star, where my space to create is limited, I get to play with all kinds of ideas to make him as interesting as possible.

Q: Tell me some of your favorite things.

A: DESIGN -- I love to design. I make blueprints for fun (for my future house one day). I design watches; anything that can be designed, I'm doing it. I also love martial arts (yay, southern shaolin kung fu!), painting, and I love writing (scripts, poetry, etc...).

Q:  Books?

A: "The Alchemist," "Angels & Demons," "The Wasp Factory." I'm currently reading "The Road to Wealth" by Suze Orman.

Q: Movies?

A: "Crash," "Seven Pounds," "The Professional," "Tropic Thunder" (Downey Jr. and Jack Black were surprisingly hilarious) and,, I have to watch more movies.

Q: TV shows (and what's on your DVR)?

A: "Leverage," "Entourage," "The L Word," "Leverage," "Arrested Development," "Extras," "The Office," "Leverage," "Martin," "Family Guy," "Friday Night Lights" ... and did I mention, "Leverage"?

Q: Gadgets?

A: My MacBook Pro -- I just converted from HP, and I'm digging it.

Q: Ways to spend your time off?

A: I design in my spare time. I'm building a portfolio on my watches.

Q: Where do you see yourself a decade from now?

A: Sitting in my New York office answering calls about the movie I wrote and am producing that is in post-production, then signing off on a new design on my watch company before I head to casting for the new TV series I just wrote and plan on directing.

Then at the end of the day, I go home to reside in the house I designed and built to discuss the family vacation with my mom, sister and brother about our European tour. Yup, that's the plan...Actually, I plan on knocking down some of these goals in the next couple of years.

Rockin' answers, Mr. Hodge! Thanks for sharing, and good luck with all your plans -- and, did I mention, "Leverage"?