Q&A: Alumnus, ‘House’ star Michael Weston remembers Northwestern

Alexandra Finkel

Those who watch the television series “House” know Michael Weston as Dr. Cuddy’s boyfriend. But 15 years ago he was just another theater major at Northwestern. Weston (Communication ’95) talks about life on Ridge and Noyes, why House and Cuddy belong together and the NU Mafia. (Yes, it does exist.) The Daily: What were you like at NU?

Weston: I did a bunch of plays. Off campus? I mostly just ran around and tried to stay out of trouble after getting drunk my whole freshman year.

The Daily: What are some of your favorite memories from NU?

Weston: I remember they were the coldest winters I’ve ever spent anywhere in my entire life. I had this little apartment off Ridge and Noyes. I remember I had this little old Honda Accord that was on its last leg. In order to make it work, I would get up at 4 a.m. and go sit in it and warm it up. One time, it was 85 below with the windchill and if your skin was exposed, it was going to fall off. And I’m like, “Oh my god, where have I landed?” But part of what I love about NU during those winter months is that there was something really cozy about the place.

The Daily: Was acting always the plan?

Weston: I actually didn’t know what the hell I wanted to do. I wanted to play baseball, and then I wasn’t good enough to play on the team because I had thrown my arm out. They made us declare what we wanted to do as freshmen. But you really don’t know, you have all sorts of ideas and ambitions, but it was pretty intense to arrive at college and then the next day be like, “OK, I am an acting major.” But what was great was that it thrust me right into it before I knew what I was doing. I was auditioning for plays and enrolled in the program and it ended up fitting like a glove.

The Daily: What are you working on now?

Weston: I’m about to go do a play in New York. It’s an Off-Broadway show called “Extinction,” which will be really cool. I’ve also written a script that I want to direct which is going the rounds. Now I’m in the throes of pilot season, which is the crazy time from January through March where you just run around like a chicken with your head cut off and go from audition to audition for all the new TV shows.

The Daily: So, you think you’ll be staying on “House” for much longer?

Weston: My character was a weird insertion into the show, which was really fun, but I also feel like they’re running out of ideas for where he fits in. I can’t imagine me and Cuddy together forever.

The Daily: Because it has to be House and Cuddy eventually, right?

Weston: It’s gotta be.

The Daily: Do you still keep in touch with people from NU?

Weston: There’s a big conglomerate of us out here. There’s a total Northwestern mafia. I’m friends with a larger number of NU people now than I was at college. Usually if you meet someone for the first time, we shoot the (bull) about NU. It does give you a really nice starting point and a bit of warmth and familiarity.

The Daily: How has NU influenced your career?

Weston: I guess more than anything, it created a work ethic-a love of working on something with passion. I learned how to take a moment of inspiration and plug it into writing a script or something. It had a lot to do with the people that I met while I was there. They have been huge pillars in my life. NU taught me the intangible stuff-stuff that actually brings the best out of you.[email protected]