Daily Archives: April 20, 2015

Closer: Five minutes with #AlexOLoughlin – October 2009

With Henry Budd
14 October 2009

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Question: Where are you?

Alex: I’m sitting under a tree in the Paramount lot drinking a green tea on my lunch break.

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Question: What happened on set today?

Alex: I’ve been running around the intensive care unit looking after patients of mine, a young fellow who’s had a few drug issues and hammered the alcohol.

He’s clean, but he needs a new heart. I’ve found him one, but he’s missing, so there’s panic in the operating room.

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Question: Give us a run-down on the show for anyone who hasn’t heard of it.

Alex: Three Rivers is set in Pittsburgh at a hospital called Three Rivers that specialises in transplant medicine.

I play Andy Yablonski, who is head cardiothoracic surgeon and we tell the stories from three points of view: The donor, the recipient and the medical team.

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Question: How do you get your head around all the medical lingo?

Alex: I’m playing a specialist transplant surgeon, so I knew nothing. I went to Cleveland, where the surgeon who my role is based on, Dr Gonzalo Gonzalez-Stawinski, works.

I followed him around the hospital. I spent many hours shoulder to shoulder with him in the operating theatre.

At night I read medical text books.

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Question: How long have you been working on the show?

Alex: I shot the pilot about four months ago. Then I landed a role in a film called The Back-up Plan with Jennifer Lopez.

I just wrapped that and literally the day after I was back on Three Rivers.

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Question: What was working with Jennifer Lopez like?

Alex: She’s awesome. She’s the best version of a superstar.

When someone is that famous you can’t help but have some preconceived ideas, but she is just cool and really down to earth.

Question: What was your big break?

Alex: Oyster Farmer was the first film I did that got internationally recognised. It got into the Toronto Film Festival, where I met some bigger agents and decided I should move to the States to try my hand.

I was here for over a year before I got my first role in a film called The Invisible. Before that I couldn’t even get arrested.

But from there I got on The Shield and it all sort of rolled on from there.

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Question: Have you had “only in Hollywood” moments?

Alex: When I was working on Moonlight I walked out of my trailer and a Ducati rolls up. The rider takes off his helmet and it’s Brad Pitt.

He asked me if I’d seen Angelina because she was shooting a Clint Eastwood film on the same lot.

I was like, I think you have the wrong trailer.

But that stuff happens all the time here.

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My Thoughts

  • Anybody looking for me today – I will be right here, staring at these pictures of Alex as Dr. Andy


MX - 14 Oct 2009



Filed under Alex O´Loughlin, Dr Andy, Interviews