As a huge Moonlight fan, it was a top mission of mine (ever since Hollywood The Write Way was created) to interview Australian born actor, Alex O’Loughlin. After CBS cancelled Moonlight earlier this year, thousands of fans were left wondering what that meant for Alex O’Loughlin. How soon would it be until we saw him as a lead on the small screen? This past August, fans got their answer – well sort of. Keep reading to see what our favorite vampire has to say about his upcoming projects, Moonlight, and more.
Question: Tell us about the one year deal you recently signed with CBS.
Alex: Moonlight came to an end, which was very sad and then I just went away for a couple of weeks to Mexico. When I came home, there were a few offers from different studios and networks. The deal that sat the best for me was what CBS was offering. They were open to negotiation points that I wanted to bring in, which was great and I discussed where I would like to go with my career.
Since then, I have been developing an original series with executive producer and head writer on Criminal Minds, Simon Mirren that we have been putting together under Mark Gordon. It is an original concept that we are in the middle of pitching at the moment. It will be a one hour drama that I will be producing and starring in. It is a story of redemption but from a very different point of view.
Question: What is the plot for your next film, Whiteout and explain your character?
Alex: It is based on a graphic novel. I play an Australian pilot living on a base with a group of people. I am an ambiguous character, I am not quite a cheeky guy, who is up to a little more than we know. It is directed by Dominic Sena, produced by Joel Silver, and I worked with such a great group of people. It is a thriller set in Antarctica. I am very excited to see it, I actually have seen very little of it so far.
Question: Do you remember the day that you found out you got the role for Moonlight?
Alex: Yes, I do! I was in Montreal and I got a call from Joel Silver. He said that he needed me to get on a plane and come to NY immediately. I think it was 5pm and the stores were closing at 5:30pm so I had to race into town and get a suit. I had to book a flight in about 45 minutes, get on a plane to NY and then as I got to NY I was told that the cast from the Pilot had been let go. You know what, I am talking about when I found out the show got picked up, not when I found out that I got the role.
Question: That is okay, you can talk about whatever you want.
Alex: (laughs) So I didn’t have a cast! I also found out that they were no longer calling it Twilight, they would be calling it Moonlight and there were a few changes in the script. Then I found myself standing on stage at Carnegie Hall and the police did not know who we were or what we were doing … and that was the beginning of Moonlight.
Question: Walk us through the last day of filming Moonlight.
Alex: I kind of blocked it from my memory a bit. The last few days kind of string together for me. They were very busy and we were shooting like mad, finishing at all hours of the morning. The sun would come up and we had been there for 18, 19, 20 hours. The end of the last day everyone was kind of dragging themselves to their cars and leaving to go home and get some sleep. I wish I could tell you it was a little more poetic but we believed that we were coming back. It was sad.
Question: What characteristics did you bring towards your character that were not displayed in the script?
Alex: I tried to bring a sense of humor and a sense of irony. People around him did not understand the irony in situation. I tried to bring more of a passion to him. All of that being said, this was very well written. The writers and original creators were amazing. There were so many different avenues that I could have gone with my character but their writing, it made my job easy so I have to thank them a lot.
Question: Tell me what you would have liked to see happen, not what you think would have happened if there was a Season 2 of Moonlight as far as the Mick, Beth, Coraline love triangle.
Alex: I would have liked to have seen Mick & Beth start exploring a relationship together and see where that goes. Also throw Coraline in to spice things up and put an obstacle in Mick & Beth’s way for dramatic purposes. Coraline wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon and there was a lot to explore there. I also would have to explore whether Mick’s true nature as a vampire, as an immortal creature that lives on human blood would ever come to the surface and if Beth would mind being in more danger than if she was not with Mick.
Question: Do you have a favorite quote from Moonlight?
Alex: I do, Lola says “Remember darling, half the world is night.” (Episode: B.C.) I love it! I write it on some photos when people ask for autographs. (laughs) I love it!
Question: Can you tell us your favorite episode of filming, The Shield on FX?
Alex: The last one because I didn’t want to leave that whole experience. The Shield is so well written and all of the writers are so smart! To be able to kick doors open, work with guns, arrest people, have car chases … it is all so much fun. The dialogue was just as much fun because the writers are incredible. I really can’t pinpoint my favorite episode we shot because the entire experience was amazing. Every episode I did just got better and better.
Question: Tell me about filming the movies, The Invisible and August Rush.
Alex: The Invisible was shot in Vancouver and I was a lead but I was not the main lead. So I had a bunch of time off in Vancouver at such a beautiful time of the year when winter was approaching. My character worked out a lot since he had a lot of time on his hands so I ran 10-12 miles a day for 5 days a week, and shaved my head for the role. It was very physical but that was fun.
There is one part in the film where Margarita Levieva’s character, Annie has me at gunpoint on the edge. When she kicks me off the small edge, she actually did that! I had a wire on me. The take that they used was actually when I almost lost my balance, so that was fun.
August Rush was a wonderful experience for me. I read the script all the way through while I was shooting The Invisible and I loved it and I read it again. I knew I had to be part of that film. I put down 2 tests at a studio in Vancouver. I played guitar and sang a couple of songs and did a few dialogue scenes. That was all actually for the lead role that Jonathan Rhys Meyers ended up playing.
I spoke to the director, Kirsten Sheridan and she said that they needed a known name for the role but she would love to give me the role of Marshall. She re-wrote the character, she pumped that role up because it was a much smaller role in the beginning. We all lived together in NY and I had never lived in NY before so it was one of the greatest times of my life.
Question: What is the most important thing that you have learned about yourself coming from Australia and making your way into Hollywood?
Alex: I have learned to be able to back yourself up and give yourself what you need. It is such a cut throat industry where you get knocked down so much and get rejected so much. If you do not back yourself up, no one else is going to so you really need to learn to get up, shake the sand off your chest and keep going.
Do not take yourself so seriously. All of this stuff is really wonderful if it all crumbles tomorrow, it is okay. I can go home and do something else. Not that I want to do that but it is about keeping the right perspective.
- I wonder if the project Alex and Simon were working on, was just that one hour of Vincent on Criminal Minds that we saw, or if it was a whole series that they were working on? Maybe the fans that were around in those days can shed light on it. I seems from his comment here in the interview, that it was a new series that they wanted to pitch and produce. If so, I am sad that it did not work out 😦 .