Mike O’Malley pulling double duty acting on ‘Glee,’ writing for ‘Shameless’ [Video]

Most television viewers currently know Mike O’Malley from his Emmy-nominated role as Burt Hummel on “Glee,” but he has been pulling double duty this past season as a producer and writer for the drama series “Shameless.”

In a video chat with Gold Derby, O’Malley said, “It’s really different work. To work as a writer on a show is extremely lonely sometimes because you’re there at your desk trying to figure it out, although you have other writers supporting you so you don’t get any writer’s block.”


O’Malley wrote two of the Showtime program’s second season episodes, “Summer Loving” and “Parenthood.” That latter installment, which will be on the Emmys ballot for writing, featured Oscar winner Louise Fletcher (“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”) as the cancer-stricken mother of Frank Gallagher (William H. Macy). Said O’Malley, “It was a very, very compelling performance by her, and I have to give all credit to her. She approaches her work with real authenticity and real focus. She inhabits that character in a way that she’s not really performing anything.”

O’Malley also continues to play the father of Chris Colfer‘s character Kurt Hummel, a gay high school student and glee club member. He received his first Emmy Award nomination in 2010 as Best Comedy Guest Actor, ultimately losing to Neil Patrick Harris (also from “Glee”), who praised O’Malley during his acceptance speech. He was then on the ballot last year as a supporting actor but will once again be eligible as a guest star this summer.

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Regarding his role on the Fox comedy, he said, “They’ve just done a really, really great job of writing that character. When material is really well-written, as an actor you just have to get out of the way. To act opposite Cory Monteith and Chris Colfer and Matthew Morrison, these three guys who I have most of my scenes with, they’re really locked in as actors. Specifically Cory and Chris, where a lot of our scenes have been very emotional scenes, they have a real presence when you’re acting opposite them.”

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