Best Of

Busiest New York Actor


Born in Washington, D.C., and raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts, character actor Max Casella could nonetheless convince you that he’s lived in Brooklyn all his life. This year saw him take a turn as an a&r honcho in the record-biz drama Vinyl, then a brief but crucial role in the gritty miniseries The Night Of. More recently, we’ve seen him portray a patient barber tasked with giving Woody Allen a James Dean ‘do in the upcoming Amazon series Crisis in Six Scenes. All the while, Casella has demonstrated a rigorous work ethic and wide range while retaining a New York flavor. Vinyl, in particular, features Casella at the height of his talents, exhibiting ample control in a show that requires its characters to speak mostly in drug-laced outbursts. He’s not exempt from the shouting matches, but his discipline shines through in the subtlety of his facial tics. Even his own hair seems to be more authentic than the Seventies cosplay surrounding him. One can picture him sliding seamlessly from one New York gig to the next with nothing to prove.