Norman Reedus admits that he is best known, to date, for his role in Boondock Saints and the sequel. What fans might not know about Reedus is that he is an accomplished artist, sculptor and photographer. Reedus was injured in a brutal car accident in 2005, but recovered and later starred in the films Pandorum and Red Canyon. This actor is not afraid of challenges or challenging material, as he plays Mac, a man who bears family secrets. Have a read of this interview taken by myself with Reedus and find out about this actor’s many other pursuits, like pissing off PETA.
(Michael Ross Allen) Where are you coming from right now, New York?
(Norman Reedus) I am in New York, just waiting for a snowstorm. I am fixing a salad for my son, Mingus. I am putting some dishes away, too.
(MRA) The last film I saw you in was Red Canyon. That is the most recent film I have seen you in. I have seen you in Boondock Saints and Pandorum.
(NR) I really get identified with Boondock Saints, alot. That film really spread by word of mouth. That Red Canyon was a really crazy movie. You liked that one, eh?
(MRA) I liked the action in that film. There seems to be some dark themes in that picture, too, like incest.
(NR) That is what that movie was really about, incest, murder, and covering up secrets. The film is about forgetting the things that you did. My character had a lot of defense mechanisms in place.
(MRA) I reviewed Red Canyon for my site and I had a question about the ending. Was your character, Mac related to the two other central characters, Regina (Christine Lakin) and Devon (Tim Draxl)?
(NR) Yes, he is. It is really crazy, right?
(MRA) The ending really got me, in that one.
(NR) Yeah, that is not a movie I would want my mom to see. She is always like, why can’t you do one of those simple, little romantic comedies with Jennifer Love Hewitt? You know those movies? I go, I would love to go to Hawaii and make little jokes, or hold hands. I never get offered those roles.
(MRA) Those films are too simple, though, in a way. I know the ending before it happens.
(NR) Yeah, but I would love to have one of those paid vacation movies, though.
(MRA) I was re-reading your bio’ and I see you have a background in painting, sculpting and photography.
(NR) Yes, I have done shows in London and Berlin. I have done shows as a painter. I have been doing shows for the last two years. I was not just doing photography. I had a show, recently, in Frankfurt, Hamburg. I had another show in LA. I am gearing up for one in Miorcha. I am doing a book of my photography, right now.
(MRA) What would you consider is your primary career?
(NR) I don’t know. It is weird. I do not even live in LA and I have an acting career, but I really enjoy sculpting.
I was talking to my friend about Heidi Klum. I met her for just a brief second. She walked in to my exhibit and she screamed. I had a life sized statue of myself made out of eight pound polyurethane foam and I made a giant sized plexi-glass box. I put the sculpture in the box and filled it with rats and she saw the sculpture and was: “aaahhh!”
(MRA) I think that would freak most people out.
(NR) It was weird. It was full of bugs and rats. The next morning they called PETA on me. It was crazy. None of the rats were hurt.
(MRA) I read that you were involved in an accident in an car accident in 2005. How did the accident affect your career?
(NR) I went to the Berlin Film Festival. I had just done a German movie called Antibodies and the director, Christian Alvart, who I was also involved in Pandorum with, and between those two films there was the Berlin Film Festival and when I got there I got a call from Michael Stipe. He said: “I am playing tonight. Do you want to come to the show?” I had just got there and so I went to the show. We were supposed to meet some people from the festival after the show in the lobby and I never showed. I took his car [Michael Stipe], but I wanted to take a taxi, but he was like: “no, take my car.” The driver drove like three feet and an eighteen wheeler rammed us. I went out through the window and I woke up in a hospital. I had this big German lady hovering over me and wiping me down. I now have a titanium eye-socket, but really the only thing it left me with was a scar over my left eye. The accident dropped me out of the picture for awhile.
A friend of mine actually ended up making a film about my experience called Meet Me in Berlin.
(MRA) I have seen Pandorum and I have interviewed the screenwriter from that film, Travis Milloy.
(NR) Yeah, and Christian is a really good director, too. It was well-written. It was a lot of fun to do. I was shooting Boondock Saints at the same time in Toronto and Berlin.
(MRA) I also heard that there is a ten year anniversary for the original Boondock Saints. Can you tell me a little bit about that?
(NR) Yes, they are having screenings of the film all across the country, at different theatres. Yeah, it is a reunion. It is going to be a bit of a blow-out.
(MRA) Boondock Saints II came out last year. Was it fairly easy for you to get back into the role of Murphy, or was it more challenging this time around?
(NR) That film was about to happen for so long that when it started to happen I could not believe it. I was like is this really happening? I practiced the accent, but I had a thicker accent in this one because my character had been in Ireland. Once you start shooting it is like riding a bike.
(MRA) It must be just like reuniting with some old friends.
(NR) Yeah, the thing about that movie is it is the people’s movie. It spread through word of mouth. I get stopped almost everyday about that movie. It is kind of overwhelming. It is kind of like going back home.
(MRA) I have also read that you recently completed Night of the Templar.
(NR) Paul Sampson is an old friend of mine and he just asked me to do it. If a friend of yours can raise the film and cast the part then my hat is off to him.
(MRA) What are some other projects that your are working on, or have recently completed?
(NR) I just finished Meskada. That will come out pretty soon. It has a really good cast. I just did Robert Redford’s The Conspirator. We shot that in Savannah. I play Lewis Payne in it. The film is a historical piece about the assassination of Lincoln.
(MRA) Do you have any final words for you fans, including me? I know you have a lot of fans in the independent world.
(NR) Yeah, I have been an up and coming actor for twelve years now.
(MRA) I think you are established at this point. I consider you established.
(NR) I am established, or the next big thing! It is kind of great. There is no place where I would rather be, but when you go up there is nowhere to go but down. I would like to say thank-you to all of them, for keeping me afloat and for staying interested.
(MRA) I have really enjoyed all of your films like Red Canyon, and Boondock Saints, or Pandorum.
(NR) I live in New York, so I don’t live in LA and I don’t get many opportunities to audition, like all the other actors. I have a son here and he goes to school. I don’t want to leave New York and audition with a bunch of people. I am kind of lucky that I have a career at all. I am just happy to be working.
(MRA) To close out, I just want to say thanks for doing this interview today.
(NR) Thanks buddy, you have a great 2010!
Some of Reedus’ painting and photography can be found at the official Norman Reedus fansite:
Get this to 200 notes please :)
- How did you get the role?
- Norman: I did the pilot season in LA for the first time. I read a bunch of pilots, and this was the only one I really wanted to do. It was the best by far. I actually read for Merle's part at first, but then the Daryl role opened up. I heard Frank Darabont created this character from scratch - he wasn't in the comic book. I did cartwheels to get this role. I basically slept with Frank to get this role [laughs].
- If the zombie apocalypse were to hit for real, what would you do?
- Norman: I'd probably break into a Lamborghini dealership, steal a purple Lamborghini, and drive around like a maniac. Naked. Maybe I'd start burning things to the ground - just go insane. Nah, I'd probably just curl up in a corner and cry. I'm just trying to sound tough. But I would like to do crazy things. As long as I was naked.