How did you get started in the movie business?
Well I was singing in a band for many years, doing gigs all over Sydney and around. Until pokie laws were laxed and the Sydney Olympics happened, so they shut down a lot of venues in favor of gambling and Olympic fever. And since Star Wars had moved their production to Sydney I knew I had to get into it. So I scored an agent and got accepted into drama school.
How did you get cast as Lampay Fay for Revenge of the Sith?
I was trying to get into Star Wars somehow. I even tried to be a guard of some sort. Until one day I got the call from my agent. Actually I missed the call because I was involved in a theatre production. But I had a feeling I new what it was about. A tremor in the force. I returned the call a day later hoping it wasn’t too late. And as it turned out auditions were on the next day. I turned up and sat around with six other tall people. Waiting our turn to be escorted to the creature shop. As we left another six tall men arrived and as we entered the creature shop another six tall men exited. The aim was to find people who resembled Bruce Spence’s physique. I was one of the lucky two.
What are your specific memories from the set during filming? Do you have any anecdotes from your time on the set and the filming of your scenes? I’d like to hear as much as possible of course!
I have very fond memories of my time on the Star Wars set. I had to come in regularly and test out the costume or parts of the mask I wore in the platform scene. So I got to see a lot of things being prepared, it was utterly fascinating. My time spent wondering around the creature shop won’t soon be forgotten. Then there were all the different costumes I saw being made and finally the filming itself. Becoming a character like Lampay Fay and immersing myself into the Star Wars universe was something I always wanted to do. And being in a scene with Obi Wan Kenobi was a thrill. I was particularly happy that I got to work with Bruce Spence. He’s a legend.
Yes there was. More of an alternate scene, as the dialogue managed to survive and was dubbed to the end of the Utapau platform scene. It was a set in a golden room and you got to see a closer look at Lampay. So more delicate make up was needed. This scene was filmed as a pick up.
How did George Lucas direct you? And what impression did he make on you?
In the platform scene there wasn’t much other than positional things. But the Utapau room scene was a little more intricate. I was shown a previz of the scene and told to go out in the centre of a big green screen sound stage and do it. I got given my marks and my eyelines and we did a few different takes. George seemed pleased, he only wanted it a little faster and then to a number of angles and finally he said “Perfect”. He came across like a calm easy going guy. George and everyone on set seemed to be having a great time.
Were you a fan of the Star Wars movies before you got cast?
Absolutely. I have a lot of figures and still keep up with the latest news.
How do you look back at your Star Wars work, and what would be your best memory regarding Star Wars?
For me it was a dream come true. The whole experience was fascinating to me I absorbed as much as I could. I’m glad I could be a part of something that was very influential to me when I was growing up and continues to be. I’m also very honored to have been chosen to do my part for the saga. It is one of my most cherished achievements. If I had to pick a favorite memory it would have to be, meeting Obi Wan for the first time in costume.
As an actor, do you have a dream you'd like to achieve movie-wise? If so, what would that be?
Other than more Star Wars. Hmmmm. Yes, funny enough. I’ve always wanted to one day star as Strahd Von Zarovich in the adaptation of Vampire of the Mists. He is cool character and I like Christie Golden’s work.
What are you currently up to? Do you have new projects?
At the moment I am filming an Indie Aussie horror called The Tunnel. It is part of the 135k project and has been getting a lot of press here in Australia. Mainly because of its format. It should be available by the end of 2010.
And after that I start work on a film called Frozen Moments which is being directed by Kiwi director Craig Newland. It should be coming to theatres around 2011.
Is there anything you want to say to the readers? Here is your chance!
Just the usual “May the force be with you all”.