Artist Spotlight: Rainn Wilson

By Daley Wilhelm

Most of Ball State has plans for tonight, since THE Rainn Wilson will be gracing Emen’s Auditorium this evening.

Rainn Wilson is namely known for his role as Dwight Schrute from The Office, a character that certainly leaves an impression with his intense attitude and superiority complex, in spite of his general gullibility. Memorable for his mustard-colored shirts, Dwight is perhaps the most iconic character from the American series of The Office. Before playing Dwight, Wilson appeared, often as an extra, in a number of shows, including CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. He also impressed audiences with brief, but interesting characters in Charmed and Entourage. His first regular role came in 2003 as Arthur Martin, another eccentric character, in the HBO series Six Feet Under. While playing Dwight from 2005 until 2013, Wilson took on several parts in movies from cameos in Juno and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen to the main character in the 2008 comedy The Rocker.

Wilson has also shined in voice acting roles, voicing the villain in the animated feature Monsters vs. Aliens alongside a star-studded cast that included names like Seth Rogen and Paul Rudd. Fan favorite cartoon Adventure Time featured his voice in a few episodes last year, adding some more quotable lines to his name.

On Monday, Wilson will be speaking on his media company SoulPancake. SoulPancake explores life in creative ways, encouraging people to “Chew on Life’s Big Questions.” The SoulPancake website, which launched officially in 2010, was thought up in 2008 by Wilson and his friends Devon Gundry and Joshua Homnick when they began a food-themed video series called “Metaphysical Milkshake.” This series, where Wilson lures celebrities into his van and interviews them about profound topics, can be found on SoulPancake’s site or their YouTube channel. The YouTube channel, started in 2012, boasts nearly one and a half million subscribers and nearly two billion views. The channel serves as a home to many viral videos such as Kid President. The SoulPancake Street Team has also created several social experiment videos that challenge strangers to spread a little joy.

SoulPancake is “our brain batter of art, culture, philosophy, spirituality, and humor designed to open your mind, challenge your friends, and make you feel damn good.” Wilson released a book aimed to accomplish those goals, entitled SoulPancake: Chew on Life’s Big Questions which is filled with just that: big questions and activities that challenge one to think. The website posts new content daily, all focused on, again, life’s big questions.

The Reel Deal will be asking Rainn Wilson some big questions of our own in our exclusive interview with him on Monday. We’ll be asking questions that our viewers on social media sent in. The video of the interview, along with credit for the questions, will be posted soon after.