Luke Goss is back on the big screen this week in his new movie Interview With A Hitman, which marks the directorial debut of Perry Bhandal.
I caught up with Luke while he was in London to chat about his new movie as well as the movie and TV projects that he has on the horizon.
- You will be back on the big screen later this week with your new movie Interview With A Hitman so can you tell me a little bit about the film?
It is a British movie, it's an independent movie and it is a story about a young boy who started his life in Romania and grew up in an abusive family; his father was abusive towards his mother and him.
He was taken under the wing of a mob boss and he finds that he is very very good at what he does - he ends up being a hitman for that family.
On that journey of his life he finds himself head to head with love as he is very reluctantly in love with someone and the ramifications to that as his past life and what he has done is following him continuously.
He is trying to clean things up so he can at least attempt a life without that. So it is a very complicated story and there are a couple of twists at the end that I don't think most people will see coming.
- Well you have touched on my next question really I don't want to give too much away but what did you think then you got to the end of the script and the great twist was revealed?
So I am guessing that you liked the twist too?
- Yeah I didn't see that coming at all.
Me to, I didn't see it coming. I knew something was coming and I thought maybe because it was an independent that it would fizzle out but I was really quite shocked. I was actually kind of disappointed, in a good way; I was just like 'oh, I didn't expect that'.
And then you are left to digest that and you have to digest that because you can't get out of it. At that point I was like 'I think I want to do this' they sent it to me asking if I wanted to do. The very next day I called the director and told him that I wanted to do it.
- You take on the role of Viktor in the film so what was it about this character that intrigued you because he is an interesting guy?
When I was reading the script I was in the house drinking a glass of wine and I was quite refreshed by it and I enjoyed the melancholy of the character. I loved the fact that it is a character study rather than being about fast cars and all that stuff, there is nothing wrong with that, but I was refreshed that it was a character piece.
When you see that it is about a hitman you think it's going to be about bangs and whistles but this is quite melancholy and I saw his loneliness.
I thought that the one thing that snaps him out of this is love and you never really see that in the context of a hitman film. That epiphany that he has is because of a woman, it is not a temptress it's genuine love and emotion.
Then there is betrayal from his best friend and all that and I just thought 'if I can find a way to make him isolated and lonely rather than just simply stoic then there is a challenge there and I would really like to see if I can pull it off' - and people seem to like it. I am quite happy I guess.
- Perry Bhandal. is in the director's chair making his debut for the film so how did you find working with him? And how collaborative a filmmaker is he?
He is collaborative. I had the luxury of him wanting me to play the role so I think he at least wanted to be porous to my ideas - and I certainly had a few things in particular that I was thinking about.
I have done a bunch of pictures and I realised that he has written this movie, producing this movie and he is directing it so he is massively invested in it, as he should be, I was always aware of how important this was to him and how attached to his vision he was.
And even with that passion he had he allowed me... I guess I wanted to make sure that the character wasn't too robotic and I wanted to keep the human element in.
I think there may have been some concerns from people at the front end but when we started making the movie and he saw what I was doing I was like 'we can't make him just like a robot, that is not going to work for me. There have got to be moments of vulnerability and humanity and baggage that all of us have'.
And because of his collaborative capability we just got on and made this movie in eighteen shoot days, which is unbelievably quick.
- You have just mentioned how quick you shot the movie so do you like working under such tight time constraints? Do you find that it brings the best out of you?
The one thing about shooting quickly you have to assemble a crew of people, it was an amazing crew of people that I worked with, that are lovers of film.
They know what they are getting in to as they are working long days and long hours and would like more money to build and extra set or buy and extra thing for someone to wear.
So there is limited time and limited funds and we have to make a movie with those restrictions but with people who are really committed to film, as this crew was, it becomes not a challenge but an adventure and something that we all want to do.
You don't get that with studio movies as much but with these kinds of movies you get that beautiful camaraderie that you only get in independent film.
- Well again you have touched on my next question this is an independent film so how much do you like working in this area of the industry? And does an independent give you a little bit more creative freedom than perhaps a big studio project does?
Absolutely it does. I am doing a TV show for ABC and there are executives everywhere and when you are doing a $100 million movie like Hellboy again every single decision is a committee - that was slightly different because it was headed by Guillermo Del Toro and he has a huge vision and no one really questions him.
But with an independent movie for sure you get that... if you have experience you get given some credit for that. People muck in together and it is definitely more of a collaborative experience.
I would say it' more like circus folk working on an independent movie as everyone is mucking in and making a film and working long hours. I am really intoxicated by independent film because it really is about camaraderie and mucking in and making it happen.
- Throughout you acting career you have worked in bigger blockbuster films as well as smaller projects and TV so what do you look for now in a script not that is perhaps different to when you were starting out?
I guess now I am looking for characters that are… I guess you get to a point where you start to acquire some sort of fan base and I have been told that people expect me to be immersed in a character. So I think you have got to find a screenplay that has a character that you can a least dig in to.
I kind of avoid action just for action, lots of action is fine as long as it is a ramification to the story and what is going on and not the other way around.
Also I like characters with issues and something going on so that there is a reason for their behaviour and a reason for the dramatic twists that happen during that story - I want there to be a reason for that I don’t just want it to be gratuitous.
I think, like you said, at the front end of your career you don’t really have choice you just have to try and get movies. But only now am I getting to a point where I can genuinely say… in the last year and a half I can be choosey.
From this point onwards and the next four films that I have got coming out I am happy with all of them. So I think I am just at that point where they may not be the best movies in the world but I am happy with them. So I am just hoping that things are going to get better from here.
- Finally what's coming up for you?
I have a movie called Drop Dead Sugarcane, which I am filming in Mexico in about a week, which is a great story about an undercover operation in Mexico involving the drug cartel. It’s a revenge movie it’s really cool and a great story.
Then I have a movie called Inside coming out and that is a supernatural thriller which is very dark. It’s set within a prison and is based around a demon that has existed for the last two thousand years; we don’t mention the name of that demon. But it is spooky and very cleverly done - it has an Alien feel but set in a prison.
Then I have Death Race 3, which comes out in January, and then I am doing a TV show in August for ABC. It’s a brand new show that will air in January 2013 called Red Widow for primetime.
Interview With A Hitman is released 20th July
FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw