Bobby Cannavale on 'Vinyl' and Martin Scorsese

PHOTO: Bobby Cannavale and Martin Scorsese attend the New York Premiere of "Vinyl" at Ziegfeld Theatre, Jan.15, 2016, in New York.PlayRob Kim/Getty Images
WATCH Bobby Cannavale on 'Vinyl' and Scorsese

Bobby Cannavale is living the dream as the star of the new HBO rock and roll drama "Vinyl." But it's not just the character he plays that has him on cloud nine. It's the creative team that sought out Cannavale for the role. The show was conceived two decades ago by rock legend Mick Jagger, who has since partnered with the likes of Terence Winter, Rich Cohen and director Martin Scorsese.

  • Bobby Cannavale appears on Popcorn with Peter Travers to talk about his new HBO series Vinyl.

"Marty, that’s the dream. You want to be directed by him," Cannavale told ABC News. "The thing that was surprising to me was that I would have shown up and just gone and done whatever he told me to do. Be here. Do this. Do that. And I would have said great. But for about three months before we started shooting, the guy just put me in his pocket and kept me there."

Cannavale stars as Richie Finestra, a record executive at the fictional American Century Records in the 1970s. He said Scorsese slowly guided him into the role.

"He would have me over to the house. We’d talk about the show. We’d talk about the era. We’d talk about music," Cannavale said. "Sometimes he wouldn’t talk about the show at all. But he just made me feel really comfortable with him."

Cannavale, 45, told Peter Travers that Scorsese had a unique approach to working with the cast.

"We’d have these rehearsals where he and I would get together at a hotel. And it was like a schedule. And every hour different actors would come in and we’d rehearse the scenes," said Cannavale. "We’d talk about the scenes first. Then we’d take a read. Then he’d say let’s do it again but do it with your own words. Then we’d talk a little bit more. That was all to get everybody used to being around him. Because I think that there’s that sense when you’re with Marty, you’ve gotta get over the fact that you’re sitting with Martin Scorcese. And I just think he knows that. And he wants you to be really comfortable with him. And by the time we started shooting, I felt like I had the guy."

The 10-episode "Vinyl" series can be seen on HBO.