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By Jon Warech
It's been 12 long years since Jason Biggs and Shannon Elizabeth first showed the world how (not) to use a web cam, since Alyson Hannigan explained the fun stuff that can happen at band camp, and since Eddie Kaye Thomas went cougar-hunting with Stifler's mom in "American Pie." During that time, a lot has changed for Thomas, who currently stars in HBO's "How to Make It in America."
"Everyone has grown up," he tells Wonderwall of the star-studded cast, who recently reunited to film "American Reunion." "Jason Biggs and I are very good friends, but otherwise, I don't really see much of those guys at all, so I was really excited to see everybody."
These days, Thomas is more focused on white-collar crime and a collapsing Wall Street -- hardly the slice of American pie that fans are used to seeing -- as he tackles the role of hedge fund manager David Kaplan in "How to Make It in America." In the show's second season, which premieres Oct. 2, the actor says things will get complicated.
"Everyone's situations are a bit more serious," he said. "And you get to see some dirtier sides of everyone. We find out what Kid Cudi is doing besides just hanging out all the time, love lives are getting more interesting, and there's a little bit of a grittier look at New York. As the season goes on, [my character] gets himself into pretty bad stuff."
Remember when life was simple -- when all that mattered was making sure you didn't go to college a virgin? Well, Thomas got to relive those days while filming "American Reunion," set to hit theaters in the spring.
"We had a really wonderful time," said Thomas, who was tight-lipped about the movie. "We all click and have a very unique relationship and share a really special thing."
A triple threat this summer, Thomas filmed "How to Make It" and "Reunion" back to back and is currently starring in an Off-Broadway production called "The Submission" until Oct. 22. His only break was a few days at Lollapalooza, where he reconnected with the music scene.
"It was amazing," he said of the music festival. "There's a lot of great new music happening. That's kind of my yearly catch-up, to not listen to the same old [stuff] over and over again. I go to Lollapalooza or Coachella and find out what I should be listening to. After Lollapalooza, I discovered Foster the People, who are really starting to blow up; My Morning Jacket gave an incredible show and there was a great local [Chicago] band named Kids These Days that might have been my favorite show there. It's a pretty eclectic group that I listen to, but I just try to go for the stuff that tickles me."
With just a few days off between gigs, Thomas has been a busy guy, but switching gears hasn't been a problem for him, mainly because he hasn't had time to worry about it.
"I'm pretty blessed this year to just jump right in it, and you kind of don't have a chance to think," he said. "I just show up for work and do the best I can."
While fans will be seeing a lot of Thomas in the near future, he's probably the only thing that his characters have in common.
"They've definitely got the same actor playing the role," he said. "I don't see ['American Pie' character] Finch in that ['How to Make It in America'] world, but I think I'm probably the least objective person to ask that question to. I'm sure there is some similarity because it's definitely me doing it, but it's definitely different universes. It will be interesting to see what people think."
"How to Make It in America" premieres Oct. 2 on HBO and "The Submission" opens tonight and runs at the MCC Theater in New York City until Oct. 22.
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