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    Michael Rosenbaum’s ‘Inside of You’ podcast goes live in L.A. with Zachary Levi
    • October 6, 2023

    Michael Rosenbaum is thrilled to finally be doing a live taping of his podcast “Inside of You with Michael Rosenbaum” at the Regent Theater in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Oct. 11.

    The actor, musician and host says it’s been years in the making; the show had first been expected to make its live debut in Austin with “Shazam!” actor Zachary Levi but the COVID-19 pandemic shut down that in-person Texas gathering.

    “I really hadn’t looked into it since, but finally I was like ‘Why not?’” Rosenbaum said during a recent Zoom interview from his home in Los Angeles. “My biggest fear was that no one is going to show up, no one cares and I didn’t want to put myself out there. Then I was like, Let’s just do it. Let’s have fun and who cares who doesn’t show up. I love the podcast and it’s a big part of my life. I know it means a lot to other people too, so I wanted to do this and try it out and Zach Levi is going to be my guest again.”

    In 2018, after a couple of television shows he’d been working on had been canceled, Rosenbaum, who is best known for portraying Lex Luthor on seven seasons of the TV superhero drama “Smallville,” decided to start a podcast. He launched “Inside of You with Michael Rosenbaum” and brought on some pretty big-name guests, including his “Smallville” co-star Tom Welling, but it wasn’t catching on at first.

    “I realized this is hard. No one was listening and I wasn’t making any money, but I was working really hard at it,” he said. “I wanted to quit a million times, but I just stayed with it and I realized the more vulnerable, the more upfront and honest, the more real you are with the questions you ask and you’re genuine and not trying to be like everyone else … that was key. I’m just a dude who is interested in other people and that’s it. I think that’s why it’s become successful.”

    Rosenbaum said hosting a podcast didn’t come easy, but he soon figured out that it had to be about more than just two actors sitting around talking about actor stuff. He records the podcast at home for various platforms and YouTube, which he said creates a comfortable setting for guests to have more free-flowing conversations. In recent years, the talk has gravitated toward topics of self-care and mental health.

    “I greet them at the door, ‘You want a cup of coffee? Are you hungry? Would you like a sandwich?’ and you have like a five-minute warm-up,” he said. “Then you start and you hope you can get to a place where the audience is listening and goes, ‘Hey, this is a really candid, open conversation and not just two actors talking.’”

    “I want to talk about what makes you tick. What do you do when facing adversity? How do you deal with loss and your mental health? What do you do for anxiety? Do you go to a therapist? You work your way into those things if they present themselves.”

    Rosenbaum said he’s had surprising moments with just about every guest as they open up and share their real-life experiences with one another. He credits Levi with helping him get into therapy and admits to still being hesitant at times to share too much of himself as deeper topics are explored.

    “It’s still hard for me because some things happened to me when I was younger and I was surrounded by a lot of dysfunction,” he said. “I try to be as open as much as I can without hurting the people that I love. I try to speak the truth, I really do, but I can’t always be as forthcoming as I want to be, but I’m pretty damn upfront.”

    That sort of vulnerability, coupled with the openness of his guests, like “Arrow” star Stephen Amell, who allowed Rosenbaum to air the panic attack he suffered as the duo were taping an episode three years ago, has really hit home with the listeners.

    “The audience has become like a family,” he said, noting that on Patreon fans are able to communicate with one another, with Rosenbaum directly and submit questions they’d like to ask certain guests. “People come up to me on the street now and I’m like, ‘Wait, you’re not coming up to me about ‘Smallville’?’ and they’re like, ‘No, we love the podcast.’ It’s just been incredible, but a very slow roll.”

    His guests have ranged from James Gunn and Andrew McCarthy to Paula Abdul and Jim Gaffigan and many more. With each episode, he said he’s taken away something profound. He said actor Crispin Glover was delightful (and Rosenbaum does a pretty spot-on impression of Glover in his role as George McFly in “Back to the Future”); he was thrilled to have Emmy award-winning actor and comedian Bob Odenkirk on – though that booking came about in an unusual way.

    “He offered me a role in a movie and then he had to call me and say, ‘Hey, I’m sorry I have to tell you I can’t offer you the movie now because the producer got this other actor to do it, which is Will Arnett,’” he said with a laugh. “So I emailed him and said, ‘Hey, since I didn’t get in your movie, will you do my podcast?’ He laughed and said, ‘Sure.’ I was a little nervous because I loved his performance in ‘Breaking Bad’ and ‘Better Call Saul’ and I just learned so much more information about him that I didn’t know. It was fantastic.”

    A few years ago, Rosenbaum said he took a break from acting because he wasn’t enjoying the process. “The No. 1 ingredient for me to do something is the element of fun, and my therapist agreed,” he said.

    So he dove into the podcast and wrote music with his band Sun Spin. He’s also written a children’s book that will be out next year and taped a series with his longtime friend Jon Heder (Rosenbaum does another great impression of Heder in his lead role in “Napoleon Dynamite”).

    “I wanted to do a reality show because we love horror movies. We’ll go to the scariest places on Earth and call it ‘Scared with Michael Rosenbaum and Jon Heder.’ He and I are just good friends and I could sense that people would want to watch that,” he said. “You have to do things that make you smile and do things that give you energy. Yeah, people have to work hard for a living and work at jobs they don’t like, but if you can do something on the side that you like, whether it makes you money or not, do it. Because it will save your mental health.”

    For the live show, he expects that there will be a lot of energy and he’s ready to rip through some ’80s and ’90s tunes and fire T-shirts out into the audience with a T-shirt launcher.

    “I just want everyone to have a good time,” he said. “We’re doing a meet and greet with Zach, too. Maybe we’ll belt out a song. I don’t know. We’re still figuring that out, but honestly, if you said ‘We’re going on now’ I could wing it because I think it’s all about being spontaneous and being fun, engaging the audience and everyone just enjoying it. I’m like a kid in a candy store. I enjoy these things.”

    Michael Rosenbaum’s “Inside of You” Live Podcast with Zachary Levi

    When: 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 11

    Where: Regent Theater, 448 S. Main Street, Los Angeles

    Tickets: $45-$150 at

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