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Best known as his character Fez on “That 70’s Show,” Wilmer Valderrama will take on a very different role this season as Detective Vega, on NBC’S new thriller “Awake.”
The thriller premieres this Thursday, March 1 at 10 pm.
“I’ve never played a cop before,” the actor told FOX News Latino. “I do a lot of stunts on the show and there is a lot of action that requires me to be very physical.”
“Awake” follows detective Michael Britten (Jason Isaacs) who finds himself awake in two separate realities: one where his teen son, Rex (Dylan Minnette, "Saving Grace,") died in a car crash and his wife, Hannah (Laura Allen, "Terriers") survived, and another where Hannah has perished, leaving Michael and Rex to pick up the pieces. In order to keep both of his loved ones alive, Michael begins living in two dueling realities.
In the one-hour network drama, the Venezuelan actor plays two roles.
“In one reality I’m his partner as Detective Vega,” Valderrama said. “In the other world I play an LAPD officer.”
Valderrama said “to be able to play dual realities and have a character that’s alive in two different worlds,” has “proven to be one of the most fun and challenging characters I’ve played in my career.”
The actor continued, “in every episode we solve two cases that intertwine with both realities,” “watching the episodes reminds of the feeling that I got when I first saw the X-Files.”
From playing a foreign exchange student in “That 70’s Show” to voicing an animated character in “Handy Manny” and hosting “Yo Momma” on MTV, Valderrama’s versatility cannot be denied.
For Valderrama shared with FOX News Latino his secret for surviving the movie-making industry.
“I came to America to work, I didn’t come to ask anybody for anything," Valderrama said. "I came here to earn it.”
“I’ve been given an opportunity to go out there and prove that I definitely belong in this industry," he added.
"I’ve been around it for many years [and] as long as I’m having a good time with it then people will buy it.”
Aside from acting, Valderrama has also created his own production company, WV Enterprises, whose main mission is to produce programming for both cable and network television.
His most recent producing project will premiere on MTV3 in March. The show, called the Ricardo Laguna project, focuses around a Mexican BMX biker who comes to the States in search of the American Dream.
Valderrama keeps in constant contact with his fan base through his twitter handle @WillyVille.
“I’m flattered that people follow me on twitter," said Valderrama. "It’s important to keep a direct line with your fans.”
Valderrama continues to be tight-lipped when it comes to his relationship status, only saying, “wouldn’t they like to know,” when pressed on the issue.
“It’s very sweet when they [the public] care about it," Valderramam said. "The sense of mystery of whether it’s a yes or a no is so much more fun than actually confirming it.”
"It’s more fun when people don’t know," he continued. "I guess you’ll see[and] you’ll find out.”
While his love life remains a mystery, fans can tune in and help Valderrama solve a mystery of his own with the new drama, “Awake.”
Naibe Reynoso is a freelance reporter in Los Angeles, California.