Mat Fraser Guest Stars in Streaming Series, “Exceptionally Prepared” Says Producer Phillip Cordell
Mat Fraser has made it very clear his retirement was only from competitive CrossFit, as he’s now working more than ever. The five-time Fittest Man on Earth made time in his schedule to play the role of “Personal Trainer with a Unique Philosophy” in the newest episode of the streaming series, Nashville Dad’s Club.
Co-creator of the show, Phillip Cordell and his wife Shannon have been doing CrossFit for 11 years. To say they were excited when Mat Fraser agreed to act in Phillip’s newest project is quite the understatement.
Breaking into Film
In February 2020, Phillip left his job as VP of a tech firm to pursue his dream of working in the film industry. Looking back, he shares “it probably wasn’t the best time to make a move. Who knew?” Now a full time writer/producer/actor, Cordell and his partners Rashad Rayford and Danny Dones created the Nashville Dad’s Club series about three men encountering different dad scenarios, or as Phillip puts it “livin that #dadlife in Music City”.
Cordell decided to write a CrossFit episode for the show to highlight his current gym, CrossFit Rising Sun in East Nashville. As he and Dones (the show’s director and co-writer) worked on the script, they began discussing actors for each role. When it came to the role of “personal trainer with a unique philosophy,” Cordell told Dones he had a guy in mind, “but it’s probably impossible.”
Reaching out to talent with offer letters is nothing new for Cordell, but this particular one got the Nashville native pretty excited. “My wife and I have watched the (CrossFit) Games every year for the past 10, so we were geeking out a little,” he said.
“(Mat and I) didn’t know each other prior,” said Cordell, but that didn’t stop him from taking a long shot. “I thought Mat had a great sense of humor based on some of his social media stuff…I sent the script to him thinking, ‘No way he’ll do it’. But he loved it and a month later he came down to Nashville (to shoot).”
Working with the Champ
In describing his newest actor on set, Cordell said, “Mat is very down to earth, and, of course, exceptionally prepared. He was super funny, throwing in a few ad libs that made the final cut, and he absolutely crushed the role.”
One of Fraser’s personal touches comes in a scene with Phillip’s wife, Shannon. “He ad libbed that line, ‘Hey Shannon, how you doin’ girl’ which scored me major brownie points,” said Phillip, adding: “He was more prepared with dialogue than actual cast at times.”
Regarding Fraser’s potential for an acting career, Cordell says “The TV/Film industry can take a lot of time, effort, and hard work to break in, but something tells me he can handle it. I truly think he could have a career in acting if he wanted it.”
Nashville Dad’s Club is in its second season on YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook. Cordell said they are currently looking for partners, and hope to develop the show into a 30-minute comedy for TV or streaming platform.
In the meantime, Cordell, Dones, and Rayford are preparing to shoot a feature film this fall 2022.
Watch the full episode titled “Mutant Conditioning”, featuring Mat Fraser, below: