Journalists

October 6, 2011
 

Dragon Con 2011: Sam Huntington: A Casual Conversation

Conversation Conducted by Aaron Nicewonger

The nicest guy

Sam Huntington is the nicest, most down to earth, unassuming guy you’d ever meet. He’s a regular Joe that understands the fans and generally just, well, gets it. You know?  Here’s a perfect example as to what I mean. So, I’d been running around like crazy trying to get this interview set up. I’d already spent the last few hours with Sam, chit-chatting and shooting the breeze, trying to get an interview room and set up a time that was good for everyone. And I told him, that this was my first interview, and in fact basically my first real big assignment, and apologized in advance for the fact that I’d be pretty nervous and talking fast and so on. He told me not to worry, and to try to think of anything that would make me less nervous. I suggested that I set up the mics and camera between us and just ignore them, and have a casual conversation, no formal interview type stuff. And that maybe it’d be easier on us all. He loved the idea. So, that’s what you get. A casual conversation with Sam Huntington (Superman Returns, Dylan Dog: Dead of Night, Being Human).

Below is a link to the video posted on Comic Attack’s Official YouTube Channel.
***Also featured is a transcript of the conversation.
**The first minute or so of the interview is missing from the video, because of a technical error, but included in the transcript.

***Transcript (for missing video)***

Aaron Nicewonger: So, you were born in Peterburrough (New Hampshire)?

Sam Huntington: Peterborough! Yeah yeah!

AN: And your Great Uncle was Ralph Bellamy and your mother owned the Black Box Theater.

SH: Yeah. She was a – . It was a children’s theater that she um, she started when I was a little guy. And so I would just kind of sit in on the classes. And yeah, my Great Uncle was an actor named Ralph Bellamy. And he was a pretty wonderful guy.

AN: Pretty awesome! He received an Academy Award and a SAG Award.

SH: Yes. Yeah, he was no slouch.

AN: So, was acting something you always wanted to do? Because of that? Since it was in your family, growing up?

SH: Since I was real little, yeah. Since I was very little, I always knew that I wanted to do it. That’s the reason I got started so young.

AN: Yeah. You got started with Harvest of Fire in ’96. Made for TV movie. Then Jungle 2 Jungle in ’97.

SH: I did an independent movie called Boys with Wynona Ryder and Lucas Haas. That was actually my first movie.

AN: And that was when you were 13.

SH: Yeah, that was when I was 13. I was actually cut out of that movie.

AN: Oh?! That’s probably why I couldn’t find it before the others.

SH: I don’t even know if it’s on my resume. But anyway, yeah. The whole character was like an afterthought. It was shot a year after the movie was completed. It was laced throughout the film, to kind of add depth, and they ended up cutting it out [laughs]. But I also had started in theater before that when I was 9.

AN: And you’ve been in a lot since then. Fifteen movies, four of ‘em in one year, and nine TV shows!

*technical difficulties with camera*

AN: .…sorry about that.

SH: That’s alright.

*difficulties resolved*

Now! Here’s a link to the video for the rest of the interview. The transcript continues below for those that might need it to follow along. Since this was a no-guidelines chit-chat and not a formal interview, there’s a lot of muttering and talking over each other.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkxK3Aim_1k

***Transcript*** (from video)

AN: So, what do you do when you’re not constantly busy? Like, what do you do on your downtime for fun?

SH: I write. I have a writing partner and we write pretty consistently. And I’ve got a family. I’ve got a young son.

AN: Charlie?

SH: Yep yep. Charlie.

AN: And one on the way.

SH: One on the way.

AN: Fantastic!

SH: Yup yup!

AN: Boy or girl? Do you know yet?

SH: Don’t know yet.

AN: Any names picked out?

SH: Uh, thoughts. But we don’t know the sex yet. So, it’s kinda premature. Not to use that word. [both chuckle]

AN: And since I do work for Comic Attack, I’ve got to get to the nerdier questions like Superman Returns, Dylan Dog. Comic Book stuff.

SH: Great!! Yeah!

AN: Both of those are comic book movies. Both of those you worked with Brandon Routh. How was that?

SH: He’s one of my best friends! We developed a really strong friendship during Superman, and his wife is one of our close friends as well; as a couple, we were very, very tight. And, uh, so when Dylan Dog came around, he was attached.  I had actually been out for it before he was attached. Then he became attached, and it became our focus to get it made together. He was integral in my getting that job.

AN: I’d like to say you were amazing as Jimmy Olson. You were so fun in that role.

SH: Thank you! Thank you!

AN: And you stole the show in Dylan Dog. You were my favorite part!

SH: Thank you, man! Thank you so much. Thanks for watching it!

AN: I loved it!

SH: Well I’m very glad.

AN: So, were there deleted scenes, ‘cause it seemed like the whole Zombie help group…it seemed like there should have been a lot more.

SH: I haven’t seen the DVD. From what I understand there aren’t a lot of extras on the DVD. But yeah. You know. In some iteration, everything we shot is in the movie I think. There’s a couple things that weren’t in the movie that we shot. But primarily, what you see is what you get.

AN: Well I’m glad I didn’t miss out on too much, ‘cause I really enjoyed it. And when you were in Superman Returns, since you grew up with acting; it’s in your family; it’s in your blood….

SH: Yes. Yeah….

AN: You went in and there was Frank Langella and Kevin Spacey. Were you freakin’ out?

SH: Oh my gosh I was so like “Oh my Gosh!!” Getting that role was perhaps one of the best moments of my life. Yeah, it was a dream come true. Literally a dream come true. From childhood, if I could have picked a movie to be in when I was an adult…to have it be that…that would be it. So, it was a real honor. And it continues to be, you know, just being a part of that legacy. It’s part of who I am, and always will be. And I’m just so honored. And getting to work with some of my heroes. Kevin Spacey and Bryan Singer, who I think is a genius.

AN: So, as far as the comics and all that, do you have a favorite hero, or even villain?

SH: Superman!

AN: Oh really?

SH: Oh yeah! Superman! No doubt!

AN: And you’re not just sayin’ that ‘cause you were in the movie?

SH: No no no. Superman! By far and away! Since, literally, I was nothing. And, hence the reason it was such an important thing for me to do, and such a huge honor for me to be in it. But yeah, I love Spider-Man. I love Batman.

AN: What’s not to love?

SH: What’s not to love? But basically the DC characters I’m very very into.

AN: So more DC than Marvel?

SH: So far, but Marvel is making some awesome movies!

AN: You should try and get in some of those.

SH: Yeah! I know, right! I don’t know if I could do that. I think Ryan Reynolds is like the only one. Oh! I guess Chris Evans! Chris Evans did Fantastic Four and Captain America.

AN: And you’ve got a bunch of actors now who’ll be in this movie and in this one, too.

SH: Yeah. And Ryan Reynolds though did Blade….

AN: Blade Trinity, then Deadpool, then Green Lantern.

SH: He was great as Deadpool, too! He’s hilarious! And then badass at the end. Super badass!

AN: And he can do the more serious stuff, too, like Buried.

SH: Yeah! He’s great! He’s fantastic. I love Ryan Reynolds.

AN: So as far as real life heroes. People you look up to, admire….

SH: My wife! Uh, yeah. As far as personally. She makes me a better man. So, I’m very fortunate to have her in my life. My parents are, have, and continue to be an inspiration to me. And as far as professionally, I draw inspiration from anyone who inspires me in the moment. So, it ranges from people from my childhood, to films that I loved in my childhood. To people of my ilk and my generation that I watch, that kind of inspire me or blow my mind. So, it’d be really hard to just pick a few people. Because it’s such a range; it’s always changing.

AN: Right. And you’re currently doing…it was renewed…Being Human.

SH: Second Season! So, we’re in the midst of shooting the second season of all of that.

AN: Right now? Well, not today of course, but.…

SH: No no. But starting again on Tuesday.

AN: Fantastic! So, you’re jumpin’ right back into it.

SH: Yeah! Episode 6 and 7 I think we start on Tuesday.

AN: I’d like to say that you are awesome in that show!

SH: Yeah yeah. It’s really good, man. We’re all really proud of it. Feeling very blessed to be a part of it. We love each other so much.

AN: You’ve got that great chemistry. You’re almost a family already.

SH: I mean really, very! The shorthand is like beyond friends!

AN: I don’t mean to say anything disparaging toward them, ‘cause they’re great, too, but… [whispers and nudges] “You’re the best part.” [chuckles]

SH: THANKS Man! Thank you. I don’t believe you. Or agree, but thank you very much! I appreciate that.

AN: Do you have anything else on the slate, upcoming projects?

SH: No. I mean, it takes six months to shoot a season. So, it really consumes most of the year. The holidays are a kind of a dead period as far as auditioning is concerned, and we don’t wrap until December. So, then it’s dead for auditioning for a while. And then it gets into a lot of other TV stuff, in the beginning of the year. So, it’s actually a hard time to try and get work. Unless you can get involved in a movie before we wrap. And also with my family, I kinda needed the time. We moved. And I just wanted to be there, with them. I spend so much time away from them, when I’m shooting.

AN: That’s gotta be hard.

SH: It is! They’re a very important part of who I am, and my life. So I wanna be there when I can be.

AN: What do you like more? TV or movies? Is it about the same kind of experience, or do you enjoy one more than the other?

SH: You know, they are similar but different. I enjoy TV, simply because I get to immerse myself in this character for six months. So, you can really really figure out who he is, and what the material you’re working on is. Whereas with a movie, you have to be there on day one; you have to have done all the thinking, all the planning you get to do for the film ahead of time. And you do it for a couple months, and then it’s done. Also, the character develops. That’s what it is. The character has an evolution. So you get to grow along with the character. It’s different in that regard. And shooting-wise, I would say TV is more challenging. You have less time to do more material. You really have to be on your game, and you really have to know what you’re doing. There’s just simply no time. Uh, so yeah. So, like that. If that answers your question.

AN: Totally does. And the last thing, then I’ll leave you be, ‘cause you’ve got tons of stuff. Fans and all waiting and adoring….

SH: Oh, stop it.

AN: Bernard Pivot does it. James Lipton does. So, I’d like to ask you some of those ending questions.

SH: Okay. Yes.

AN: What’s your favorite curse word?

SH: Uh…definitely “fuck.” Yeah. I say it way too much.

AN: You and me both.

SH: Yeah. It’s a great word.

AN: If you could have one job other than acting….

SH: Chef! Chef. Yeah. Like, I would do that. Maybe at some time in my life, I might do that.

AN: Fantastic. And finally. If Heaven exists, when you die, what would you like God to say to you when you come up to the Pearly Gates?

SH: Uh…um…. What would I like him to say? I would like him to say, “Show me your fuckin’ balls.”

AN: Awesome!

SH: Then I would show ‘em to him. And he would not let me in. And he’d be like, “How dare you. That was a test. You failed. You shouldn’t have shown me your fuckin’ balls.” And then he’d send me back to Earth. And then I’d be a ghost. And…then I’d haunt a vampire and a werewolf. [laughs and smiles] Is that alright?

AN: That is fantastic! Thank you very much!

SH: Thank you very much! That was great, man!

Awkward... Haha!

There's a rather funny story about why my hand is where it is….

Aaron Nicewonger
Aaron@comicattack.net

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