James Lafferty Talks ‘Everyone Is Doing Great’ and Its View of Hollywood, Plus His Life After ‘One Tree Hill’

James Lafferty is no longer Nathan Scott – but he’s very thankful for him. The actor, 32, joined the Watch With Us podcast at the ATX TV Festival on June 8, to promote his new show, Everyone Is Doing Great, that he cowrote and stars in with his former One Tree Hill costar Stephen Colletti.

“This show is a fun little show to escape your reality and go laugh at some guys,” Lafferty tells Us of the pilot, which they’re working to get picked up with the help of an Indiegogo campaign, which runs until July 20. “We want to this to be a slice of cake for somebody when they’re done for dinner.”

Listen to the full podcast above and get the highlights below:

On collaborating with Stephen Colletti:
We’ve known each other for years through One Tree Hill, we really bonded on that show. Despite how close we got, we didn’t really get to work together that often so that was really a goal of ours. We’re like, ‘Post One Tree Hill, what are we gonna do together? How are we going to create together?’ We took our time, we didn’t want to force it … The idea struck us because of the timing. We were five years from One Tree Hill.

On his own struggles after One Tree Hill:
I’ll hear through my reps that a casting director said, ‘We’re not seeing CW actors.’ That’s just something that some people say. They’ll just stop you at the gate. On top of that, I 100 percent had a hard time getting back into competing for roles again and auditioning. I had gotten so comfortable in this bubble of One Tree Hill.

On the perks of filming in One Tree Hill in North Carolina over L.A.:
I have no doubt in my mind that spending my formative adult years in Wilmington, North Carolina, saved me a lot of trouble. I think that if we had shot One Tree Hill in Los Angeles or New York, I think I would have gotten myself into a lot more trouble … When you’re a kid, if you don’t have your feet underneath you, and if you’re not grounded in the right things, then you’ll get swept away with it. We see it happen all the time. We see it happen every year. I could have easily been a causality of that.

James Lafferty
James Lafferty

On the show taking on Hollywood – and if it would take on #MeToo:
Not at the moment because we’ve put a lot of time and effort into developing our first season. We have the scripts written and they’re really mapped out. Everything happens in a really organic way. Nothing is forced. We want the show to feel like things are happening as life happens, you’re surprised from moment to moment. You’re just trying to figure out all this stuff that’s going on as you walk down the street. We want the show to feel like that. If there’s a way to work that in, in a way that feels organic, then absolutely. And were always going to be looking for ways to layer things in that are important topically, in the moment. But at the same time, I think overall or show is about good people trying to be their best selves and failing sometimes … it’s really about starting over and trying to figure out life with the people that are the most important to you, even if you’re gonna hurt each other sometimes. It’s family.

On fans continuing to ask for a One Tree Hill reunion:
I don’t know the plausibility of that ever happening. I also don’t know if any of the cast would ever say no to it. It’s just nobody’s ever brought it up in a real, practical way.

James-Lafferty
James Lafferty, Alex Park, and Stephen Colletti Annie Winsett/ATX TV Festival

On what he’d tell himself if he had to go back to day one on One Tree Hill:
I got a lot of really good advice from my family and then some select castmates, Craig Sheffer, who played Keith Scott. I’ll never forget when I was about 18 or 19, we were sitting at a bar and he was just talking about the evolution of his career and giving me advice about what it was about to go through and what to expect after. He told me specifically, ‘Save your money because you have no idea what’s going to happen to the show.’ I really took advice like that for my older castmates. I think I would tell myself to work a little bit harder while your eon the show, to make sure you can still do what you love afterward in the way that you want to do it. I never wanted to, or had any desire to be the biggest movie star in the world but I do love being on set. I do love directing, writing and creating.

Learn more about Everyone Is Doing Great and help the campaign here.

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!