Charlie Todd is making it up as he goes along-one quirky stunt at a time.
Charlie Todd is making it up as he goes along - one quirky stunt at a time.When Charlie Todd first arrived in New York, he was your typical struggling actor: crappy day job, frustrating auditions. One night a few years ago, inspired by impish curiosity, he and two friends decided to see what would happen if they improvised a bit of undercover theater in a downtown bar. Todd would play musician Ben Folds; his buddies would play awestruck fans. Everyone else, they hoped, would get pulled into the act.Incredibly, it worked. Todd was soon signing autographs and posing for photos. He never broke character. "That night, I realized I had tackled a pretty difficult acting job and it was really fun to do," says Todd, 27. "Not only did my friends and I have a great time,everyone at that bar had a great time, and they got a great story to take home."This benevolent impulse is still at the heart of Improv Everywhere, the group Todd founded in 2001. IE "missions," carried out by "agents," often have a spooky, dreamlike quality, but they never intend harm. That's what separates them from standard prank fare like Jackass and Punk'd. "The goal of those shows is to humiliate, embarrass, or frustrate someone," says Todd. "Our goal is to make people laugh, smile, or at least have an interesting or unusual experience."
|Our goal is to make people laugh, smile, or at least have an interesting or unusual experience.|