Random Roles: Brad Leland on redeeming Buddy Garrity and taking a punch from Walker, Texas Ranger
Welcome to Random Roles, wherein we talk to actors about the characters who defined their careers. The catch: They don’t know beforehand what roles we’ll ask them to talk about.
The actor: By his own admission, Brad Leland continues “to play bad guys, rednecks, and cowboys, and all those sidekick-type characters.” But of all the shit kickers the actor has played, none endures like Buddy Garrity, who begins the TV version of Friday Night Lights as a pushy, nosy high school football booster and ends the series as one of the most sympathetic figures in the fictional West Texas town of Dillon. The drama celebrated its 10th anniversary at this year’s ATX Television Festival, where The A.V. Club spoke with Leland about Buddy’s redemptive arc, the time-killing habit he shares with Paul Rudd, and the surprising audition he gave for Thomas Haden Church.