Your new movie The
Second Age of Aquarius - in a few words, what is it about, and
what can you tell us about your character in it?
Second Age of Aquarius is about a sweet, nerdy programmer who accidentally
brings a dead rockstar from the 70s back to life through coding. FAR OUT!
did you draw upon to bring Russell Aquarius to life, and how much Michael
Ursu can we find in him?
studied a lot of late 60s/early 70s interviews on YouTube, listening to
the way people spoke. It's very melodic and almost soft-spoken, kinda like
poetry. I then took that and added a level of arrogance that usually comes
with being a rockstar. I was in a band in my mid-20s, so I definitely
lived that life! And as for the amount of Michael Ursu in him... I'd say
I'm all there, sans the casual misogyny my character has trouble with.
How did you get attached to the
project in the first place, and what drew you to it?
usually book all my own jobs, and I saw this ad on Backstage. I knew
immediately that this role was for me - sometimes when you read roles on
casting sites, you just know and you try even harder to get it. But you
can't try too hard, because then that reeks of desperation! Like I said
above, I lived a rockstar life and have the stories to tell, so I was
really drawn to this character. Plus I actually play music and sing, I
don't act it!
Quite honestly, if you could, which
deceased rockstar would you bring back to life?
was 5, visiting family in Romania, when my uncle changed the channel to
MTV (back when, you know, they actually played music videos). I saw this
longhaired dude in a sweater rocking out so hard! He was thrashing about
with what I came to learn was a guitar. I picked up the closest thing near
me, a tennis racket, and started mimicking him, strumming like a madman.
Turns out that long haired dude was Kurt Cobain, and he was really my main
inspiration to start playing guitar. So I'd have to bring him back. I'm
sure he'd have a kick with what's going on in the world of streaming and
you tell us about The
Second Age of Aquarius' director Staci Layne Wilson [Staci
Layne Wilson interview - click here], and what was
your collaboration like?
great and very easy to work with. I had a lot of creative freedom with the
character, and the collaboration definitely felt like a two-way street.
Do talk about the shoot as
such, and the on-set atmosphere?
gonna lie, it was a challenging shoot. We shot this film in 6 days. That's
like, 12-14 pages a day. That's A LOT. We only had time for 1-2 takes.
That's fine with me, I like doing things in as few takes as possible. I
remember Christina Calph [Christina
Jacquelyn Calph interview - click here] wanting more, but she still did such a great job with
her character. There was a minor incident with a DP, but Richard (our
sound guy) stepped up and took over. I have immense respect for everyone
who made this film possible.
Any future projects
you'd like to share?
recently booked an exciting animated pilot being pitched to Adult Swim. I
also have a big film shoot coming up this summer, taking place on a boat
for the entire movie. I don't get motion sick so I should be good! I
As far as I know, you've gotten
into acting via making music - now how did that happen, and what can you
tell us about your musical career?
when I was in the band, my two bandmates convinced me to try acting. I
found an extras gig on Craigslist, it paid $60 for 6ish hours plus lunch.
When I got there, I couldn't believe it - I just have to sit here and
pretend laugh, and you PAY ME? And FEED ME? I knew immediately that this
was what I wanted to do. 5 years later, I'm now a full-time actor and
voice-over artists, VO work being my main source of income. I'm living the
What can you tell us
about your training as an actor?
first two years of acting was all over the place. I finally got into a
class and refined my talent. My first real teacher was Bernard Hiller, who
really gave me some well-needed inspiration. Through him, I worked with
Dimiter Marinov (Green Book), who is just such a force of nature.
Originally from Bulgaria, he's got this Eastern-European 'mystic' school
of thought when it comes to acting, which I really resonate with since my
family is from Transylvania. Plus he's such a funny and inspirational guy.
Commercially, I worked with Mike Pointer, who is THE man. It's because of
him I kick so much ass in the commercial world. He's very succinct and
no-nonsense, just tells it like it is.
What can you tell us
about your filmwork prior to The
Second Age of Aquarius?
had a lot of supporting and principal roles in other productions, but The
Second Age of Aquarius was my first serious lead role.
How would you describe
yourself as an actor, and some of your techniques to bring your characters
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
am natural, authentic, and charming. I use techniques I've learned through
my teachers, as well as studying acting favorites like Chubbuck. My
favorite techniques are "What's happening in this scene
beforehand?" and the art of substitution. When I first started
acting, I always thought it was about being a good liar. That couldn't be
farther from the truth. These emotions we feel, they are real. We bring
them back from the past. Maybe I've never had a loved one die in a tragic
way in my life, but if I think about how my girlfriend's dog Harley passed
away at 12, all alone in his house, perhaps confused about what's
happening, and how no was there to comfort him...[Michael
Ursu interview - click here][Michael
Ursu interview - click here] yeah, the waterworks get
flowing. That's just one example.
Actors, musicians, whoever else who inspire
Pattinson in Good Time was a BEAST. Big fan of Cody Fern in American
Horror Story: Apocalypse. Tom Hardy in Venom was a wild ride too, love that guy.
Honestly I could write pages about my inspirations. Musically, I think
John Mayer is one of the best. I'm also really into this band Spiritbox right
now, but that might be too heavy for some.
Your favourite movies?
Place Beyond The Pines, Good Time, The Wolf of Wall Street. Those are top
... and of
course, films you really deplore?
don't really hate on movies, but I did remember when I was 16, I wanted to
walk out of the first Twilight movie.
Your website, social
media, whatever else?
on Instagram my handle is @makumusic, and on TikTok you can find me under @michael.ursu
Anything else you're dying to
mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
out the film!!