Your new movie Legend
of the Red Reaper - in a few words, what is it about, and what can you
tell us about your character in it?
Love, destiny, and demons. I play Adonis, a 500- year-old warrior king, whose
beloved and headstrong daughter, Aella, is humanity's annointed saviour, the
Red Reaper. She's fated, like Moses, to lead her people to the promised land
but not able to enter it, which is terrible for her because she is in love
with the Prince.
What did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how
much of Tom Nowicki can we find in Adonis?
Well, all the
hair is mine…I think I was lucky, preparing to play Adonis, that this
kind of fantasy-epic is NOT something I read or watch a lot of, so I wasn't
starting with any legendary kingly performances in my head. I had
recently been playing a bunch of fathers in various productions whose
"kingdoms" were in trouble, and who had to turn to difficult
offspring for any hope of salvation. Proof was one, and a brilliant play
by Dennis Lehane, Coronado, was another. And I imagine blood is blood,
even when its loaded with supernatural properties. So it was kind of a
matter of establishing the familial bonds, and then letting them get
How did you
get involved with the project in the first place?
called with an audition, and I went.
can you tell us about Legend
of the Red Reaper's creator/director/star Tara Cardinal [Tara
Cardinal interview - click here], and what was your collaboration
Huh…the Judge has placed a gag order on all of us
until the trial is over, so… HAH! Just messing with you. Tara has more
energy and spirit than about fifty women on Adderall, and a truly
liberating understanding of the creative process. She can, also, you may
have noticed, take hit after hit after hit and keep bouncing back, ever
stronger. I wanted to drink her blood.
Do talk about the actual shoot for a bit if you
on acid, with alot of slight of hand in there with it because there was
SO little money, and a few grizzled pros grabbing hold of the wheel to
keep it going where it needed to go. Communal living, eating,
drinking---I have to say I have rarely seen as much pure commitment from
a cast and crew, everyone reaching way deep to make this film live. At
first, it was a little awkward for me, I'm accustomed to a more
structured environment, even in experimental theatre, but it became
intoxicating. Even Irv Goodnoff, my old buddy and the DP who
godfathered the whole picture, who could be as cranky an old bastard as
you could get, fell in love with them. Long nights hacking demons limb
from limb felt like being little kids playing knights and dragons or
Any future projects you'd like to share?
pilot for AMC/USA called Line of Sight, directed by Jonathan Demme,
produced and written by Blake Masters, with some help from a bunch of very
cool people from Walking
Dead, Breaking Bad, and Burn Notice. Very very
cool gritty sci-fi story which I can't reveal but have very high hopes
for. And, on the sentimental side, a sequel to Dolphin Tale, wherein I
reprise my role as evil softee Phillip Hordern/Richard Branson (Note to
animal lovers: we're not cutting any more parts off that poor dolphin,
she's safe, don't worry…)
got you into acting in the first place, and did you receive any formal
training on the subject?
Did it to get extra credit in
English class in high school; one audition and it was all over. My
high school had an outstanding theatre program, headed by the incomparable
Anne Derflinger. From there, I studied at Yale, the London Academy of
Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA), Ensemble Studio Theatre in NYC, and with
What can you tell us about your
filmwork so far, and your career highlights?
favorite work so often seems to happen in films and tv shows that hardly
anyone gets to see…I did the pilot for a TV-version of LA
Confidential for Fox, where I played Capt Dudley Smith (the role James Cromwell
played in the film). The script was derived much more closely from the
novels (by James Elroy) which are very dark and complex and evil, and
where it turns out in the end that Smith isn't just a minion of the Devil
but IS the Devil himself. It made the top three on every critic's list
for what to watch in the coming season (2001) but never made it past the
I loved working on The Cape, which was a great little series
about the space program made for MTM and which lasted a season. We shot
it at Cape Kennedy, and I played a Russian cosmonaut, Major Andrei
Mikoyan, who was assigned to NASA to help build the space station.
Everytime Mikoyan showed up, something Russian would go horribly wrong
in space and we'd have to race up there to fix it. There were some
really smart, deep, and heartfelt episodes, tho, which were taken from
the "credible rumours" portions of NASA history, which I'm really
proud of. And it was great to get to play around all the real stuff.
comes to acting, you've pretty much done it all, big productions, small
productions, television, theatre, and even a spot of wrestling. So how do
these different acting experiences compare, and where do you feel at home
Not to seem like I'm taking the easy way out, but
I don't compare them. I'm totally in love with all four, including the
wrestling, which you do for the most passionate audience you'll ever have.
How would you describe yourself as an actor,
and some of your techniques to bring your characters to life?
think I'm a character-leading man, and I'm a pretty traditional
Stanislavsky actor, with a pretty good appetite for make-believe and play.
(or indeed actresses) who inspire you?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
Al Pacino, Gene
Hackman, Stephen Fry, Steve Coogan, Bryan Cranston, Joseph Gordon
Levitt, Joan Plowright, Hellen Mirren, Sandra Bullock,
Emma Thompson, Allan Rickman, Sam Waterston. Emilly Blunt… I could go
on all day
Dog Day Afternoon, Bang the Drum Slowly, Across the
Universe, Dr Strangelove, The Man Who Knew Too Little, Slap
Shot, The Verdict… again, there's so
... and of course, films you really deplore?
website, Facebook, whatever else?
Not really out in the
social media. If anyone has a good word, they can leave it at IMDb, or
send it to my agent at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anything else you are
dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
sir, just thanks for asking me to do this. Hope you all enjoy Legend
of the Red Reaper!
for the interview!