Es­cape to victory

Prison Break star Do­minic Pur­cell can’t be­lieve how highly the show is rated, writes Erin McWhirter

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Front Page -

NOTH­ING grates more on Do­minic Pur­cell than Hol­ly­wood’s ob­ses­sion with celebrity. Six years af­ter mov­ing from Aus­tralia to Los An­ge­les, Pur­cell says his best mates aren’t ac­tors but construction work­ers.

‘‘One owns a con­crete busi­ness, an­other is a plumber and the other is a painter,’’ says the 38-year-old who plays Lin­coln Bur­rows in Prison Break.

‘‘We all surf to­gether. That’s the crowd. That’s the crew I hang out with.’’

With a fiery as­sertive­ness, not much fazes this English-born, Aus­tralian-raised ac­tor who this year is mak­ing the US his of­fi­cial adopted home by be­com­ing a ci­ti­zen.

Pur­cell moved to Aus­tralia at the age of two and says he lived a care­free ex­is­tence be­fore even­tu­ally get­ting bored with his job as a land­scaper. He headed to drama school.

‘‘There is a beau­ti­ful, un­cen­sored way of life in Aus­tralia,’’ he says.

‘‘Aus­tralians don’t cen­sor them­selves so much. It was a huge cul­ture shock for me (when he moved to LA). I’m be­com­ing a bit more po­lit­i­cally cor­rect.

‘‘I’m get­ting some good guid­ance (from my agent). I need that be­cause I have a healthy ego and I’m a proud guy.’’

Pur­cell’s new ca­reer path has paid off re­mark­ably well. Prison Break was con­sid­ered a ground­break­ing drama when it started in 2005 and his por­trayal of death-row in­mate Bur­rows has been equally well re­ceived.

The premise of a group of jail­birds, led by Bur­rows’ brother Michael Scofield (Went­worth Miller), break­ing free of Fox River Pen­i­ten­tiary was la­belled cut­ting-edge.

Though rat­ings have waned in the US and lo­cally, Pur­cell says the fan­fare in coun­tries such as France and Spain is so ex­treme that on trips there he’s con­fined to his ho­tel suite.

In Ja­pan, Prison Break is the high­est-sell­ing DVD of all time, he says.

‘‘In­ter­na­tion­ally, I can’t go out any­where. I got to this big fancy ho­tel in Paris about six months ago and there was all this com­mo­tion out­side. There were lit­er­ally 500 peo­ple out­side the ho­tel and what seemed like 1000 pho­tog­ra­phers. I in­no­cently said, ‘What’s go­ing on out there?’ I thought Bono was in the build­ing and they were like, ‘This is for you’. That kind of thing hap­pens all the time. In Spain I couldn’t leave my ho­tel room. That’s just part of the deal be­ing in one of the big­gest shows in the world,’’ he says.

Chan­nel 7 is screen­ing sea­son four in Aus­tralia, a sea­son that has re­vealed a darker side of Pur­cell’s char­ac­ter.

‘‘Play­ing a more ex­plo­sive, volatile char­ac­ter is fun for me. Lin­coln just gets an­grier and an­grier. He is kind of tired and fed up with what is go­ing on in his life. I’m good at it. There are cer­tainly bits and pieces of me in Lin­coln.’’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.