Your upcoming movie Lion - in a few words, what is it about,
and what can you tell us about your character in it?
is a brutal movie with a great message in it, it is not just about violence, but also about love. My character, Jeff, is a jerk,
drunk, violent and ugly, not exactly what you think at when you are
thinking about a family guy.
did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much Michael
Segal can we find in Jeff, actually?
was very confused when Davide told me about Jeff, because usually I play
good guys or bad guys but with a great heart and Jeff is such an
asshole... Hahaha, there is nothing of Michael Segal in him, but there is
nothing of me in none of the characters I played in the past. Acting
allows you to live another life and I don't agree with actors that need to
put their own feelings or story into their characters.
How did you get
involved with the movie in the first place?
I watched Davide's old shorts and was very attracted to this Italian guy who
works in Spain, so I wrote to him to let him know that I was an actor
and... one day he asked me to be Jeff.
What can you
tell us about your director Davide Melini [Davide
Melini interview - click here], and what was your collaboration
is unbelivable. He is always kind and polite, never anxious, never angry.
He walks through the set like he was there to watch what they are
doing, but when we're ready to shoot he changes his mood and becomes a
machine. I felt at home on his set. Really. It was a very positive
What can you tell us about the shoot as such, and
the on-set atmosphere?
set was very well-organized. I counted about 25 guys exept for the actors.
Everybody was a master in his own field, and that turned out to be very
comfortable, because everybody was just relaxed and concentrated on their
job. No rush, just the time it takes to do it in the best way.
Any future projects you'd like to
projects? I actually have 30 movies to do, but in this field everything
can be born and die in less than a day, so I really don't like to mention things
that I am not sure of.
What got you into acting in the first place, and
did you receive any formal training on the subject?
Lewis. When I was a child I watched a movie with him. I was 6 and decided
that I wanted to make people laugh. Then I grew up in a very different way,
and comedies are not so easy to find in the independent movie industry. Of
course I received a training in acting. 5 years in Italy and the USA, and I am
specializing in other stuff right now, on and on... stunt, horse riding,
sword fight, martial arts and so on... Never stop learning! It's
unbelivable that there are actors that never studied... Everybody wants to
be an actor, but not everybody is so lucky to be chosen for a movie with
no particular talents, and not everybody is so smart to think that if you
want to be a professional, you must study.
can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Lion?
worked for many Italian directors and Lion is my 42nd or 43rd
set... I am used to act in English language productions, and the movies I am in are mainly
distributed arouznd the world.
the years, you've worked with cult horror director Ivan Zuccon [Ivan
Zuccon interview - click here] quite a few times - so what is it
like working with him, and how did you two first meet even?
is one of the best director I ever worked with and we are good friends.
He's like a brother to me, so working with him is like to be in family and
there is great respect first of all. We first met many years ago, while I was doing an acting school and as a final exam we did a short movie, and
Ivan was called to shoot it.
through your filmography, one can't help but notice that quite a few of
your films are of the horror variety - is that a genre you're at all fond
of, and why (not)?
love every genre of movie. The most important thing is that a movie can make you
feel emotions... love, hate, fear, bravery, fun... you ought to feel alive after watching a movie. The horror is the most frequent in
independent industry, because there is more business around it. I really
would like to do a comedy after all that horror or action... or even a
I've read somewhere that you're also
a trained bodyguard - does this influence your acting in any way,
definately. I always trained in close quarter combat, weapon handling,
martial arts, fast driving and a lot of action sports like sky diving, skiing, scuba diving... I am an action actor and I don't need a double or
a stuntman doing the dangerous stuff.
How would you describe yourself as an actor,
and some of your techniques to bring your characters to life?
am a very sensible man despite my appearance. I can be really passionate
and don't like to use my personal feelings to make my characters live as
many do. I usually study the character and become him, recreating him from
scratch, giving him birth like he is a real man, and when I act if the
character for example has to cry in a scene, he is the
one who really suffers and not me. This technique preserves me from being
hurt by their story.
(and indeed actresses) who inspire you?
McConag... Meconaghwa... McConerw... Robert De Niro hahahaha.
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
many to name just one, but if you aimed a gun at my head I'd say Ghostbusters.
... and of course, films you really deplore?
many to name just one... a lot of sequels or remakes actually... some ideas
are simply great and they already did the perfect movie in the 80s and
there is no need to do something different now.
website, Facebook, whatever else?
I have a website, http://www.michaelsegal.altervista.org,
and a fan page too on Facebook,
for the interview!