Interviews - Movies

Matt Austin – Unlocking the Power

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Q.  What are the current projects that you are working on?
A.  I am in the very final stages of self publishing an illustrated children’s book called The Whale That Ate The Elephant.  I am directing a film called Dirt, a feature film, it’s an improvised feature film.  Also, adapting a screenplay based on my play In Between.
Q.  You’ve been involved with “Power Rangers: Space Patrol Delta.”  What made you want to be a part of this project?
A.  Because they offered me the gig.  I love kids and I have always worked with kids, I was a camp counselor and all of that kind of stuff.  I auditioned for “Power Rangers” and they offered me the part, which was basically all of the Power Rangers are kind of super heroes and big-muscled risk takers.  My character was kind of the underdog and the comedic relief.  He’s kind of like the Ross from “Friends” on “Power Rangers,” he’s like the underdog that always comes through when everyone needs him too.  So, I thought that kids would really identify with that character and it would be a lot of fun for me to play the comedic relief.
Q.  What kind of physical regimen do you have to go through for the role?
A.  When we first got there, we shot in New Zealand, we had two weeks of what was called Kaleechi Camp.  Kaleechi is the stunt leader of the entire group of stunt performers that we had there.  He’s worked on some major, major films.  So, for about six hours a day for the first two weeks we had intensive flexibility training and learning some of the fighting combinations. Then it was a combination of our own stunts and the stunt performers mixing in there for all of the stunts for the show.
Q.  Do you have a most memorable moment from filming this project?
A.  Just when we wrapped, because we moved down there for eight months and we really got to be quite a close knit group of people.  They said that we had gotten the chemistry between the five of us, it has kind of been the tightest that it’s been in quite a few years.  So, we spent all of our time together so the last day of shooting we were all going to split up and it was going to be the end of that kind of family.  So, that was a pretty big moment.
Q.  Why was the show filmed in New Zealand?
A.  New Zealand has brilliant locations and it can look like any where in the world.  It can look like Japan and it has beautiful oceans.  The studio was there and it was cheaper for them to shoot there and have access to locations like twenty minutes from each other.  As opposed to shooting in LA or Canada where it would take a couple hours or days in travel time to get there.
Q.  Besides acting and directing and writing, what are some of your other passions?
A.  I play my guitar and when I was five or six I played piano.  So, I am starting to get back into all that so I like to play in front of an audience with my original songs.  To play with a band behind me would be amazing, I have never done that before.  I’ve just played around the camp fire with my guitar so playing in front of an audience with a band backing me would be brilliant.
Q.  What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
A.  Read, I guess read and take lunches with the friends I don’t get to see on a regular basis and hang out with my girlfriend.
Q.  What is your latest obsession?  Are you into any particular sport, book, music group or activity?
A.  I guess my new obsession, that is my older obsession, which is hockey.  I’m really excited to be watching the leagues again.
Q.  How did you get involved in acting?
A.  I was kind of asked in my high school to be involved in a play.  There weren’t that many kids interested in drama and the teacher said I had a natural knack for it.  He asked me to audition for the play and I got the lead.  Then I went to a university for a year for film and journalism and dropped out to try and see what I can do and tried out acting.
Q.  What would you like to say to your fans and supporters?
A.  That I really, really appreciate that they watch the show and that they are interested in the things that I am doing. That’s why I do it, as much as I do it for myself, I really like to entertain people and make people laugh or inspire people.  If that’s the kind of feedback that I’m getting from them, than I’d like to continue to do that.  I hope that they continue to want to allow me to do that and watch me for the future and the growth of my career.

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