To start this off, how would you describe yourself as an actor, and
some of your techniques to bring your characters to life?
I would describe myself as a ‘character’ actor, by that I
mean becoming a certain character on purpose. Creating them in a very
specific way that tells a cohesive story on screen, makes me a
‘screen’ actor. I’m big on hair colour change, weight transformation
and anything I can do to ‘become’ the character.
heard somewhere you actually got into acting via stand-up comedy - so what
made you decide to make the switch to acting, and how did stand-up comedy
prepare you for being an actor? And did you at all take acting classes or
I knew I was born to entertain, actually I started acting very young
at church fete’s with my family. In school I was very unsure of myself
and what I wanted to be as an adult, but as soon as I tried drama class I
came to life. Stand up comedy was one of the things I studied as a young
man, when I was exploring my whole repertoire as an entertainer. During
that process I realised I was better off learning a script rather than
doing it on the fly, which is a much harder thing to do. I have done a
further 10 years of study outside of secondary school, including VCA drama
and various on camera classes and workshops of notability.
Your first movie was, I believe, The
Huntsman - now how did that come about, and what can you tell us about
your experiences on that set?
I had a call from my Taekwondo instructor at the time, asking me if
I could do side splits in a movie he was producing. I had no idea the size
of the production or how important it was in my stepping stones until I
arrived on set. I remember other actors in the film were actually jealous
of me having to perform all the various stunts that followed. I didn’t
realise it was somewhat the ‘beginning’ of my acting career, until
later when it premiered at the cinema.
In The Huntsman you
play a martial artist, and you're actually trained in martial arts - now
do talk about that set of skills of yours for a bit, and to what extent
does it help you book roles?
In the beginning it was imperative. Later I used these skills to
banter my way through film school and managed to get cast in nearly every
student film in second year as a result of my martial arts training. Most
young guys are into action, so I found I could exploit that skill very
easily during that time. As The Huntsman served as somewhat of a showreel
piece, most other filmmakers wanted to be associated with me because of
its success, and it also helped me in auditions that followed.
The same year as The
Huntsman (1993), you also directed your first movie, The Hidden
- now what made you decide to step behind the camera, and what can you
tell us about the movie as such?
I was moreso wanting to direct and had played a smaller role in my
first two films in fact, The Samurai, which is a 30 minute film, I played
the villain, and in The Hidden I did a cameo (my first feature) where I
played a weakling, as I wanted to also show my diversity. It’s funny
looking back now as that’s exactly what I did recently in my latest two
films, in Revenge of the
Gweilo I play a hero and in Colourblind I play a loser.
Let me pick a few of
the movies you've been in rather randomly (and probably also based on
their titles), and please do say a few things about each:
This film I was 100% cast for both my comedic skills and martial
arts which made it the perfect vehicle for me as an artist.
Queen of the Damned?
Queen of the Damned
How to be a Sex Star
Vampire Hooker Hotel
I was the attacking vampire, this one moreso because of my looks,
which I auditioned for. I also doubled for one of the leads who had the
same sizes/stats as me.
How to be a SexStar?
A mockumentary which pretty much follows my character from Radio
Samurai and amalgamates the character from Jasper. In fact Jasper
has been referred to as the fictional version of SexStar.
Purely a renegade, rebellious film I made after the laborious
process of making my rape revenge horror film Tomboys. I really
needed to get back in FRONT of the camera after that experience.
Cast purely based on the fact that at the time I resembled David
Bowie from The Man Who Fell to Earth (which was the casting brief)
coinciding with the fact I was runner up to play an alien opposite Nicolas
Cage in The Knowing.
This one probably based on the fact that I have played the pickup
artist one too many times. Dan Armstrong cast me more for tongue in cheek
comedic value, rather than dramatic integrity.
Vampire Hooker Hotel?
This one believe it or not was by request. The
who is a fan of my work asked me to combine my love of horror and comedy
into one short film for a Grindsploitation compilation for Troma.
You also appeared
on the popular Australian daily soap Neighbours - so how did that
come about, and how does shooting a daily soap compare to making a movie?
It’s completely different. Daytime television is tightly scripted,
no room for error and has a quick turnaround time. I don’t find that
process very creative or fun to be brutally honest. I love genre
filmmaking and creating my own worlds. A lot of soaps are criticised for
‘delivering lines’ as opposed to ‘acting’. When you’re watching
them you never really get sucked into the storyline as much as when
you’re watching a feature, or at least that’s my experience.
film and TV appearances of yours you'd like to mention?
Evil Never Dies was fun, I got to act with Chris Kirby a
second time, after both being in Queen of the Damned, and when I was
in Marshall Law, I remember my father was at home watching TV and he
saw me appear on the screen the night it aired and he got all excited and
rang me about it, so that was rewarding.
future projects you'd like to share?
I, Portrait is the next one to look out for. I play co-lead
alongside Natalie Heslop. It’s technically my 9th feature film and I’m
very excited about it. We are looking at a 2019 release. The Debt
Collector I think too will be a fun one to watch, it’s Richard
Wolstencroft’s seminal work and in it I play a very creepy albino
character. In Cult Girls, which I am the casting director on, Mark
Bakaitis asked me to play a cameo, which was fun, also because I got to
play in a scene with my good friend Jane Badler.
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mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
trying to figure out what my 10th feature film will be about, or moreso
which script I will make next. I’ve always dreamed of having a 10 film
box set on DVD or Blu-ray. I can’t believe it’s now close to becoming a
reality after all these years.