Hollywood 411 Alex with Madison Michele (TV Guide) – 2009
Madison: Here with Alex O’Loughlin, star of the new drama, Three Rivers. Great to have you here, Alex.
Alex: Thank you. Good to be here.
Madison: Absolutely. There are a lot of medical dramas on television as we all know, but I’m so excited about your show. Because you focus on the area of organ transplants. Can you tell us a little bit about that? Sort of the built-in drama that entails.
Alex: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, with organ transplant you have a recipient, but you also have a donor. And so for someone to donate an organ, there is a death involved. So straight away the stakes are very high.
Madison: And you really dove into your research for your role, playing the character that you do. Can you talk a little bit about that? And I understand you spend hours actually in the operating room as well.
Alex: I did. My character is based on a real guy called Gonzo Gonzalez Stawinski, who is a doctor in Cleveland and he …. He’s actually one of the reasons I took the role.
I read the script, it was very good, but I spoke to him and he’s such …… he’s such an inspirational figure. You know, somebody, when you speak to them, they sort of fill you with life and excitement.
And he’s so passionate about what he does and I went up to Cleveland. And I studied with him and I spend a lot of time in the operating room, watching what he does, shoulder to shoulder with him. And yeah, it changed my life.
Madison: How was that?
Alex: It was incredible.
Madison: You must have seen some pretty …. There must have been some pretty tense moments.
Alex: Yeah. I mean the first time…. I was worried that, cause you don’t know if you are a fainter or not. And that was a big …. How do I know if I’m going to faint …?
Madison: With a chest wide open, looking at the beating heart.
Alex: You see all this stuff. But you just … you go in and you have a look, and you either faint or you don’t. And I didn’t. I was actually fascinated .
Madison: You held fast.
Alex: I held fast.
Madison: And he’s going to be up in an episode, right? He’s going to make an appearance on the show?
Alex: Episode 5 I think, yeah but he, as himself. I’m struggling with a case and I need to get somebody to do something involving a heart somewhere in the country. And I say, get Gonzo on the phone. And he comes up on the …. On the screen while I’m in the operating room. And we have a dialogue
Madison: That great. It must be extra special for you.
Alex: So much fun. I actually got to … Christine Moore directed the episode, but I got to direct … she let me kind of direct Gonzo in his scene. So …
Madison: And he wasn’t a fainter on camera?
Alex: He wasn’t a fainter. He was actually really good. He was better than me at that. He’s better than me at everything.
Madison: Now he’s going to give you a run for your money in the acting area as well.
You’re not only walking the walk here, not just playing this part. You actually have been an organ donor since you were a teen. And now you are involved in Donate life. Can you talk a little bit about that? You work as an ambassador.
Alex: Yeah, I was a donor from a young age, cause I thought it was the right thing to do. You know, I didn’t have a reason not to be. Since I’ve become involved at this level with the show and stuff, I’ve learned that with organ donation you know, people can step in and stop process after you’ve .. after you’ve passed. I don’t want that to happen.
So I’ve actually locked everything in; so they can take whatever they need. And my family can’t … you know, no one can come in and change that. Which is important for me.
Also Donate Life America, is the main sort of organ donation organisation in the states. And I’ve become a spokesperson and an ambassador for them. I’m doing as much as I can on top of the show.
Alex: As far as shooting PSA’s and go to charity events and make appearances. And raising money. And my fans have been very supportive too. They have raised a bunch of money and awareness already you know, and so …
Madison: Great cause , I want to mention it, Donate Life.net if you are interested in finding out more information about that. Switching gears, not only can we see you in this intense drama about organ donation, but you also have a new romantic comedy coming out, with Miss Jennifer Lopez, The Back-Up Plan. What’s it like working with JLo? And what can we expect from the film?
Alex: She’s great. I mean she just a …. It’s very easy to forget that she’s a giant star, when you work with her, cause she’s so kind of grounded and cool. And funny and all that stuff.
But the film … I think the film is going to be funny. I haven’t seen it yet. I always …. When I’m in something, I’m always; I don’t want to see it. I can’t imagine what it is going to be like. But everyone is all … everyone who has seen it, the producers and the director are very happy, so…
Madison: Be waiting to see your comic turn here.
Alex: Or not. Fingers crossed.
Madison: Sure you will be good. Alex O’Loughlin. Thank you so much for coming in.
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