'Sex and the City' Q&A: David Eigenberg
As you probably already know from the trailers, David Eigenberg, who played bartender Steve Brady on Sex and the City, is back with Miranda Hobbes for the movie version — ”the reunion tour,” as he calls it. EW.com chatted with the 43-year-old native New Yorker about all things SATC.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What was it like coming back to the Sex and the City universe after being away it for so long?
DAVID EIGENBERG: When Anne Meara [who plays Steve’s Ma] first saw me, she yelled from across the makeup trailer, ”You got old.” That’s how it was. And I yelled back, ”You think I look old, look in the mirror.” It was great to be back…. They always say there’s bickering among the girls, which doesn’t exist. But the guys, we bicker all of the time. Me and Chris [Noth].
Yeah, Chris Noth beat the s— out of me…because my chair was in front of his chair or some s— like that. I got beat up pretty bad.
Did you have any hesitation in reprising the role?
Number one, I never thought they would actually make it. Then I saw the script. I was like, ”Wow, it’s very nice and respectable; it’s a beautiful story for Miranda and Steve.” I guess there’s always a little apprehension.
It must be hard to move on if that’s what you become known for.
In the public eye, I certainly get seen as Steve, and once in a while someone knows my real name. One of the last nights before [my wife and I] made the decision to do it, we were sitting [at our] fifth anniversary dinner. These three women were sitting at this table next to us, and they flipped out. My wife was like, ”David, for that reason alone, you have to do it.”
Have there been any strange fan encounters?
Just recently I was doing a bike tour and I was picking up my number, and a woman came over to me and went, ”David Eigenberg?” I said, ”Yeah.” She goes, ”Oh my God, I can’t believe it’s you.” And she was holding a baby, and I was like, ”Oh, nice to meet you… Who’s this here?” And she goes, ”This is…um… Jane.” I go, ”Oh, hi, Jane.” She goes, ”Oh, no, I mean, her name is Rebecca.” Her baby is like 2 years old, and she forgot her own child’s name!
Speaking of kids… What can we expect from little Brady and his parents in the movie?
We’ll be a happy family at moments, and an unhappy family in others. I can’t reveal [too much]…. They’ll cut off my toes.
Would you say your character has changed from where the series left off? Steve’s personality always sort of revolved around being this big kid who needed to grow up, and dealing with…
Dealing with Miranda’s crap? Uh, yeah. I mean, they go through a series of upheavals in various ways. But part of him is just young, unlike me — I’m just an old man inside. I had to dig deep to find that child.
Do you think Steve helped soften Miranda’s character? She was so harsh the first season…
I couldn’t tell you what happened, because I wasn’t watching [before I came on, in season 2]. But one of my favorite episodes was when he meets her at a bar with all of the other girls and she does something really nasty, and he grabs her, pulls her aside, and says, ”I don’t know what your problem is or why you apparently hate men, but I’m not that guy.” He tells her straight up, without being an a–hole or vindictive or hurtful. He walks outside and it’s raining, and she comes outside and she says, ”Steve.” And they kiss in the rain. That was a wonderful episode.
NEXT: ”I begged them not to do the skid-marks episode. I was like, ‘Please, fans are going to be calling me Skid Marks.”’
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: The Miranda-Steve relationship seemed to be the most realistic on the show. Do you think that’s why people rooted for them?
DAVID EIGENBERG: Yeah. There’s a simplicity to them. They’re a heartwarming couple without the syrup. I know relationships sometimes blow up hard and people do s—ty things, but I’m more interested in the relationships that say, ”Okay, this crap happened, someone made a mistake, and let’s try to move forward with it.”
Have any of the show’s situations helped you recognize something in your own marriage?
If it has, it’s just been in the back of my brain. Honestly, I love the show, but…people quote lines from the show and I don’t even know what they’re talking about.
So, have you kept any props from the show?
I have a Miranda Hobbes business card. That’s about it.
You don’t have, like, one of Brady’s diapers?
Uh… [Laughs] I kept the tampons they stuffed up my nose when Steve got it broken [after walking in on Miranda and Dr. Robert, and then walking into a wall]. In my garage, where my wife makes me put all of my show-business paraphernalia. She won’t allow it in the house, rightfully so.
Any bad memories from your time on Sex and the City?
I begged them not to do the skid-marks episode. I was like, ”Please, fans are going to be calling me Skid Marks.” And that happens once in a while. But I didn’t think the one-ball thing would stick. It comes up quite often. People are like, ”So, is it true? Do you have one or two?” ”I actually have three, and I got one for you right here.”
What have you been up to lately in terms of work?
I’m going down to New Orleans to work on a film with Penelope Ann Miller. It’s called Robosapien Rebooted. It’s about a robot inventor who gets mixed up in a defense contractor scheme, and a young boy finds the robot and has an adventure with him. I did another independent film called See You in September over the summer.
Has the show helped you get more work, or hurt your prospects? Sometimes these things can be a curse too, when the show becomes so big.
Oh, yeah. You never know when your last day gig is, and if you spend your life thinking about it, you’ll drive yourself nuts. But I try not to foster or exhibit any desperation. I’m happy to work when I’ve worked, and you’ve got to take the hard times with the good times. But there are times where I’m not as financially set as one might assume. So you have concerns about, ”Wow, I have this level of notoriety and…I better get a job.” [Laughs] I gotta pay my mortgage.
Sex and the City