Actor prefers green hills to green screen
IN case one forgets actor Taylor Kitsch is Canadian, the guy brings you around to that fact quickly by asking, in a phone interview, “Where are you in Winnipeg?” He says he remembers the city well from his days playing Junior A hockey when he was younger. “I actually played against the Selkirk Steelers,” he says. If you didn’t realize he had a Canadian connection, bear in mind Kitsch, 33, bypassed the usual route of doing film and television in Canada. The 33-year-old proceeded immediately into American TV stardom playing alcoholic fullback Tim Riggins in the acclaimed TV series Friday Night Lights before segueing into big-budget movies such as X-Men Origins: Wolverine, John Carter and Battleship. FP: Given that you almost bypassed making Canadian films, did you have a sense of being back in the fold making TK: I think that part of it alone was refreshing. To be on location, especially where we were shooting, it just felt like home and it felt like a no-brainer to be a part of it. You always want to come back as much as you can and I love being Canadian and being a part of it and everything that goes along with it. So it was kind of a full-circle moment.
FP: Given some huge Hollywood productions you’ve done, did making feel more intimate or more grounded? TK: It did. It certainly beats any green screen. I get to work off Brendan Gleeson instead of a pink X on a 150-foot greenscreen wall. I’ll take Brendan any day of the week. He’s so endearing and I haven’t met many actors who care about the material more than he does. He made this movie better on so many levels. He truly carries the film. FP: Were you familiar with the talent in Newfoundland given that, like a lot of Canadians, your exposure to actors such as Mary Walsh, Cathy Jones and Mark Critch might have been through
or going way back, TK: It was probably even less than that. Ironically, it was through hockey. I had played with a couple of Newfies and their verbiage was what I knew of them. That was it. FP: Your character in the movie comes from a milieu that feels kind of Hollywood. He’s a cocaine-abusing plastic surgeon. Did your Hollywood experience in any way inform your grasp of Dr. Lewis? TK: No. But he probably would have been douche-ier if he had come from there.