Callan Mulvey (Rush, Bikie Wars: Brothers in Arms, Underbelly) admits to being frequently cast as rogues, villains and shady characters, but has no problem with them because the roles are endlessly interesting.
“I tend to play Russian characters, Americans, British,” he tells TV Tonight.
“I guess I just have that mug. But they’re fun to play. They’re interesting and multifaceted and the challenge is -no matter what the character does – to try and find a reason why they do what they do.
“The ultimate goal is to make the audience empathise: ‘He’s an arsehole, but I get why he’s an arsehole….’
“Nobody ever thinks they’re the villain”
“Nobody ever thinks they’re the villain. They think they’re doing the right thing and they can justify their behaviour.
“But underneath their behaviour is trauma or pain or something akin to those elements, which we’re all driven by.
New Zealand-born, Sydney-raised Mulvey relocated to LA around 6 years ago and has enjoyed consistent work including 300: Rise of an Empire, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Warcraft, Outlaw King, Avengers: Endgame and Power. But rather than engaging with a throng of Aussie expats, he keeps low key.
“Unless I’m working, I’m a bit of a hermit. I don’t tend to get out much. I lead quite a boring life if anyone was t olook at it, which is fine with me. But I’m certainly in touch with other Aussie mates and some who are all over the globe,” he explains.
“He doesn’t know that she’s the ex of his nemesis”
Mulvey’s latest role is as retired police officer-turned-truckie in ABC’s Mystery Road.
“He’s a very regular, hard work guy in a trucking company and he genuinely falls in love with Mary (Tasma Walton) and doesn’t know that she’s the ex of his nemesis,” he explains.
“He went into the coppers because he genuinely wanted to make a difference. But he ended up losing his family because of it. He became deeply disillusioned by how he was treated by the police and feels he was discarded.”
Aaron Pedersen returns as loner detective Jay Swan. Also featuring in the second TV instalment are Sofia Helin (The Bridge), Jada Alberts, Rob Collins, Ngaire Pigram, Mark Mitchinson, Ursula Yovich, Rhimi Johnson, Gary Sweet, Fletcher Humphrys, Joel Jackson, John Brumpton, Eve Morey, Stan Yarramunua and Tasia Zalar.
Filming took place last August in Broome, WA.
“The locations were incredible”
“The locations were incredible, with truly epic landscapes and bold, contrasting colours, turquoise waters, red earth,” Mulvey recalls.
“Everybody was very generous and collaborative. It was a fantastic experience.
“I just jumped at the chance because of (producers) Greer Simpkin & David Jowsey. The scripts were great, it has Warwick Thornton & Wayne Blair directing, as well as Aaron Pedersen who I worked with on High Ground.
“It was a no-brainer.”
Mystery Road returns 8:30pm Sunday April 19 on ABC.