Interview Barry Bostwick, and you can be guaranteed one thing: a warm reception.
The veteran actor was in the green room Friday evening at the second annual Magic City Comic Con at the Miami Airport Convention Center popping a can of beer.
“I have a good job, don’t I?” Bostwick announced rhetorically, offering a reporter an adult beverage. “Cheers!”
The 70-year-old was in a good mood because: a) He’s a working actor, and b) He actually enjoys attending these type of fan conventions, where he was speaking on a panel, interacting with attendees and sitting at a booth taking questions and selling photos through Sunday. Other blasts from the past at Comic Con included Brent Spiner (aka Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation); Helen Slater (Supergirl); and John Wesley Shipp (The Flash).
“Maybe it’s a cliché, but it’s not every day you get to talk to people who have seen your work,” said Bostwick. “I mean, OK, maybe at the Piggly Wiggly, but you kind of have to get your groceries and get out.”
Besides being super gregarious, the California native is taller than he appears on screen, and his hair has gone all white; there’s a shock of it high atop his head, adding at least another inch.
He has literally dozens of projects on his résumé, but Bostwick’s obituary will lead with one part: as nerd Brad in 1975’s The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The interest in the campy musical — in which he and his new wife, Janet (Susan Sarandon), stumble upon a transvestite’s castle — still astounds him.
“It’s amazing — it always goes back to Rocky Horror. I’d like to say that’s why I did it,” the former Spin City star says of the midnight movie classic that Fox is reportedly making into a TV show. “If only I were a seer; I’m not. But I do think we all knew we were doing something interesting and special.”
Though he is proud of many roles — the lead in the 1984 CBS miniseries George Washington comes to mind — Bostwick has no issue with being forever tagged as Brad.
“Now that there’s some distance you can see that Rocky Horror is really affecting,” he said. “People have come up to me and told me they got married in the back row of the theater. Others have told me it saved their life — that they found acceptance and the essence of who they are in this world. It’s an honor to be a part of.”
OK, so Bostwick does have a few other, disparate followers.
“I invariably get the 9-year-old who liked me in Teen Beach Movie,” he chuckled. “But other stuff is more random. [1982’s sci-fi flick] Megaforce is a big one for me. I was this cheesy sort of superhero, but I guess it still has this buzz. A lot of guys saw it with their fathers, and they’re in their 40s now and tell me personal stories about how it was a bonding experience for them. I like that.”