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Tool Singer Maynard James Keenan: ‘I Just Love Denzel Washington’

Tool's Maynard James Keenan
Gary Miller, Getty Images

Tool, A Perfect Circle and Puscifer frontman Maynard James Keenan has always managed to see a bigger picture than just music, occasionally dabbling in acting and keeping a keen eye on the visual aspects of his bands’ careers. With that in mind, the A.V. Club spoke with Keenan and asked him to mock up a faux film festival that would relate to his artistic output.

One of the first films on his list would be the 1986 David Lynch classic, ‘Blue Velvet.’ Keenan explains, “‘Blue Velvet’ was a game changer for me. It brought out some of the darker sides of my friends. They were more into ‘Porky’s’ and ‘Fast Times at Ridgemont High,’ and then, all of a sudden, they discovered ‘Blue Velvet’ and it really flipped a switch.” Keenan says the movie really opened the door to film for his friends and led to a greater appreciation of what movies can do.

He also cited the 1997 film ‘Gummo’ and the 2004 movie ‘Napoleon Dynamite’ as movie parallels that could also run in his dream festival. He explained, ‘One is in Ohio and the other is in Idaho, but to me, having grown up in Ohio, there’s one side of the tracks where ‘Gummo’ is happening and on the other side of the tracks, ‘Napoleon Dynamite’ is happening.”

Another surprise in his picks is a slot he left open called “Anything with The Denzel.” Keenan states, “I guess I’m a product of American living. Germans love David Hasselhoff and I just love Denzel Washington. I can’t explain it. It’s that guilty pleasure. It’s almost like when you’re a kid and you have your blanket. He’s my comfort blanket.”

As for his own acting, the frontman says he’s not looking to expand his roles. He explains, “If I’m going to act, I need stop everything I’m doing and do it because my skill level for acting is non-existent. I have no experience or natural acting ability, so I would have to stop everything I’m doing to justify being in a film. I’d have to really work at it.”

To see more of Keenan’s movie picks and his explanations, read the full A.V. Club article here.

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