Ab­so­lute thrill for Betts

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - MOVIES -

CHRIS Betts is one of a cast of sup­port ac­tors who worked on Ab­so­lute De­cep­tion, the ac­tion thriller that bought Amer­i­can ac­tor Cuba Good­ing Jr to work on the Gold Coast.

‘‘I haven’t seen it, but I look foward to it,’’ says Betts. ‘‘It’s not ev­ery­one who can say they worked along­side an Os­car-win­ning ac­tor.’’

Betts, from Bris­bane, is a Queens­land theatre favourite who has per­formed in more than 100 pro­fes­sional plays and has a CV that in­cludes films Crooked Busi­ness and Bait 3D, TV se­ries Medi­vac and the re­cent Gold Coast filmed US drama Terra Nova and Granville train disas­ter tele­movie Day of the Roses.

Tele­vi­sion view­ers, how­ever, know him best as the star of the Bud­get ads. You know the ones. A young French­woman sings ‘‘Boo-jay, boo­jay’’. Betts an­swers with his best Aussie twang: ‘‘That’s Bud­get, love.’’

‘‘We’ve been re­placed by aliens re­cently, but you can’t blame them (the ad-mak­ers). It makes peo­ple look,’’ Betts laughs.

‘‘Those ads have been run­ning for three years. They just kept rolling out. I’d have been sur­prised if they’d gone on as they were for a fourth.’’

And such an end­ing is not so bad in the scheme of things, says Betts.

‘‘I’ve played a a few char­ac­ters re­cently who meet gru­some ends,’’ he says.

‘‘A di­nosaur got me on Terra Nova – that’s par for the course for any­one who does some­thing a bit sus – they’re all eaten by rap­tors.’’

‘‘A shark ate me in early Bait 3D. I was shot in the head in (Gold Coast lawyer) Chris Nyst’s Crooked Busi­ness. I played the mob boss.

Betts won’t tell us how it ends for his char­ac­ter in Ab­so­lute De­cep­tion. He doesn’t want to spoil view­ers’ fun.

It went straight to DVD in the US, but Aus­tralian crit­ics haven’t been too quick to pan it. Most like the twists and turns it serves up.

Ab­so­lute De­cep­tion,

Ab­so­lute De­cep­tion was di­rected by Brian Tren­chardSmith ( BMX Ban­dits) – who also helms the John Cu­sack film Hard Drive on the Gold Coast – and filmed on lo­ca­tions that in­clude Main Beach, Surfers Par­adise and Sanc­tu­ary Cove.

Betts had just three days of film­ing on the movie but dur­ing that time was able to work along­side both film’s stars Good­ing Jr and Em­manuelle Vaugier.

‘‘The name of the char­ac­ter es­capes me, but talk­ing about it now, it sounds like I play the part of supreme vil­lain,’’ Betts quips of his char­ac­ter.

‘‘He was a so­ciopath, a psy­chopath, a multi­bil­lion­aire un­der house ar­rest in a sen­sa­tional re­treat up in the moun­tains. ‘‘He’s ac­cused of cer­tain things, and ac­cuses Cuba’s char­ac­ter, in turn, of try­ing to pin stuff on him. He says: ‘look mate, you’re bat­ting above you pay grade, this is be­tween me and the gover­ment men. If you think you’ve nailed me, you’re liv­ing in Dream­land’.

‘‘I su­pose there was a hint of An­thony Hop­kins Si­lence of the Lambs’ char­ac­ter about him.

‘‘He loved to play with peo­ple’s minds. That’s what at­tracted me to the role.’’

Ab­so­lute De­cep­tion fol­lows a wid­owed re­porter (Vaugier) who en­lists the help of an FBI agent (Good­ing Jr) to in­ves­ti­gate her late hus­band’s se­crets, but two be­come the tar­get of at­tack­ers.

Betts en­joyed im­pro­vised scenes with Good­ing Jr, who won an Os­car for his role as loud-mouthed Rod Tid­well in 1996 hit Jerry Maguire.

The pair played with the scene ahead of film­ing. Betts laughs when he says the Amer­i­can con­ceded at the end of the scene: ‘‘Bas­tard, you got the last line in.’’

‘‘He was ter­rific to work with, ter­rific . . . a whole lot of fun.’’

Ab­so­lute De­cep­tion screens ex­clu­sively at Nerang Cine­plex from tonight.

– LISA SIM­MONS

Bris­bane ac­tor Chris Betts and Cana­dian ac­tress Em­manuelle Vaugier in a scene from lo­cally filmed drama which premieres on the Gold Coast tonight.

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