Ru­pert Reid

Herald Sun - Switched On - - ON THE COUCH - COLIN VICK­ERY TV WRITER

Aussie TV view­ers would have had one of those “I know that face” mo­ments when they watched Win­ners & Losers in the past fort­night.

Ru­pert Reid, best known as De­clan on Heart­break High and Con­sta­ble Jack Law­son on Blue Heel­ers, has a guest role on the Chan­nel 7 drama. Reid plays school co-or­di­na­tor and phys­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion teacher Robert Hill, whose life in­ter­twines with Sam MacKen­zie (Kather­ine Hicks) and Jenny Gross (Melissa Ber­g­land).

It seems like you dropped off the map. What have you been up to? That is a good ques­tion. I went to Los An­ge­les for about five years and spent time over there try­ing to break through into the film and tele­vi­sion in­dus­try. I did a few odd jobs and a lot of work on my craft as well as a con­tin­ual on­slaught of au­di­tions. I got a cou­ple of things. One was a guest role on NCIS. But then I de­cided I was ready to come home.

What was the hard­est thing about try­ing to break into the Amer­i­can mar­ket? There is a lot of love in that town (LA). There is a lot of re­ally amaz­ing and in­cred­i­bly tal­ented peo­ple. If that love could only trans­late to work, it would be the ideal place.

How long have you been back in Aus­tralia? I got back in 2013 and worked on the pi­lot of a Chan­nel 7 show called Hart­man’s So­lu­tion which had Erik Thom­son as the lead. Un­for­tu­nately that didn’t go to se­ries.

What’s your take on Robert Hill? He’s an ex-mil­i­tary guy who has a quiet, yet strong view of the world and what is right and wrong. He’s not as ex­pres­sive or spon­ta­neous as some of the other char­ac­ters on the show. He comes across as ‘proper’. That was my take on him when I read the script. I liked the sub­tle com­edy of some­one who takes him­self a bit too se­ri­ously.

The first date be­tween Robert and Sam cer­tainly went hor­ri­bly wrong. I think Rob ul­ti­mately has a good heart. He is look­ing for a part­ner — a wife, even­tu­ally. He pur­sues that through online dat­ing. There are the in­evitable pit­falls.

Your scenes with Kather­ine run the gamut of emo­tions. What was it like work­ing op­po­site her? Kather­ine is a bril­liant ac­tor. She is so fast and funny. It made it re­ally easy for me. In in­ti­mate scenes, you have to have an el­e­ment of trust and calm with who­ever you’re work­ing with. She gets a twin­kle in her eye where you know you’re in good hands.

Has work­ing on Win­ners & Losers whet­ted your ap­petite for more TV roles? I love Aussie TV. We have such great sto­ry­tellers, ac­tors, crews, and writ­ers. I’m putting my hat in the ring, ab­so­lutely. I would love to di­rect Aus­tralian tele­vi­sion, too. WIN­NERS & LOSERS, CHAN­NEL 7, TUES­DAY, 9PM

Ru­pert Reid is back on Aus­tralian TV in Win­ners & Losers.

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