Actor Lachy Hulme is in the enviable position of being able to knock back offers he receives, but it was a colleague who convinced him to say yes to visiting US show Preacher.
“I say no to pretty much 90% of the things I get offered,” he tells TV Tonight. “It’s got to be a good fit. It’s got to be something that I really want to do and it’s gotta be something that I would buy a ticket to see. But I am eternally grateful that I got a kick up the bum and told to actually do this, because I had such a good time doing it.
“I don’t regret anything I’ve passed on. I really haven’t regretted anything I’ve said ‘Yes’ to.”
“If you say no I’m never talking to you again!”
Hulme had mentioned the casting offer in passing and was planning on tuning it down, but word travels fast. By the time he got home there were 10 missed calls.
“He said, ‘Let me tell you something. I’ve never missed an episode of that show. It is my all-time favourite television show. And if you say no I’m never talking to you again!'”
Hulme rang his agent to accept an offer to play Italian-American gangster, Frankie Toscani from Bensonhurst, Brooklyn. The season filmed in Melbourne marks the last for the AMC drama starring Dominic Cooper, Joseph Gilgun and Ruth Negga.
‘This is the most batshit insane television show ever!”
Describing the premise of the hard-drinking, chain-smoking preacher who becomes infused with an extraordinary power, is something of a challenge.
“When I read the scripts I thought ‘This is the most batshit insane television show ever, and it all makes complete sense!’ The internal logic is faultless. And one of the great things is that every single thing a character says they are going to do -my own included- they do it. No character actually lies. Liberty kills the truth in Preacher and it’s a joyously, batty world. It’s very dark, very violent and very funny,” Hulme suggests.
“I’ve never seen so much fake blood used on a set, in my entire life!”
“Every single thing my character does is crazy. But I’ll give you a little hint. I’ve never seen so much fake blood used on a set, in my entire life!
“Man! Like gallons of the stuff, which is great fun! And full prosthetic make-up, a lot of weapons, a lot of gore, a lot of funny moments and dialogue.
“I’m involved in two huge fights. That was an extraordinary experience too because the Preacher fight scenes are justifiably famous.
“The athleticism and the grace Dominic and Joe bring to these fight scenes was extraordinary, and there’s me, clod-hopping, trying to keep up!
“It was sweaty work but the proof will be in the pudding.”
As the series inches closer to its finale, with God’s endgame for the universe beginning to click into place, Jesse, Tulip, and Cassidy make their bloody way to the Most High. Fans can expect to find characters trapped between heavenly prophecies, with hellish prisons, and all-out nuclear war.
Also featuring are Ian Colletti, Graham McTavish, Pip Torrens, Julie Ann Emery, Mark Harelik, Tyson Ritter and Aussie Noah Taylor. A handful of other local faces are expected to be spotted. Hulme talks of money on the screen, when he isn’t getting excited about the big-budget filming.
“Usually as an experienced Australian actor you think ‘I’ll be lucky to get three takes so I better make it count.’ Whereas of course the Americans have a lot more time, a lot more money. So you do have the luxury of several takes to get things exactly the way everybody wants them,” he continues.
“They bring a lot of the toys with them.”
“One of the things I like -because I’m such a movie nerd- is when you’re dealing with the bigger budget American projects in Australia, they bring a lot of the toys with them.
“We were working with a crane on this called the Scorpio. There’s only five of them in the world and they extend about 100 feet out and the camera can do 360. You’ve got about 20 operators for this piece of equipment.
“So you get an extreme close up on one actor’s face, it pulls back 100 feet in the air and comes back on to another actor’s face. It just looks incredible.”
Preacher will screen in Australia through Stan. Hulme also confirms he has a project in development with the streaming service, who previously screened Romper Stomper.
“I reckon Stan should be given five props all the time, because they are putting their money where their mouth is. They don’t have to do what they’re doing.
“The whole company is set up to take tremendous risks and those risks are paying off in spades.”
Preacher screens Monday August 5 on Stan.