Tom Hopper started his career on the stage but has since made appearances on various television programs. However, in 2010, he broke through when he played the heroic knight Sir Percival on the BBC series Merlin, which lasted for two seasons. Since then, he other major television role is that of Billy Bones on the hit series Black Sails. He has done his share of films including Tormented, Knights of Badassdom, and Northmen: A Viking Saga.
His latest film, Kill Ratio, has him play ex-CIA agent turned liaison James Henderson as he must stop a very dangerous situation from a military regime in a small Eastern European republic. WFG talks to Hopper about his experiences on the film.
First of all Tom, thank you for taking the time out of your schedule to talk about the film. I got to see the film and really enjoyed it. You definitely drove the film.
Oh you saw the movie? That’s great!
Let’s get right into it. What attracted you to Kill Ratio?
I think more than anything, it was an opportunity to do something modern-day because I’ve always done stuff that’s period. And I was excited about the idea of doing something modern, and when I learned it was modern, it was something that I was intrigued about. Then when I saw the script, and saw the fun action elements to it, I was thinking, “Wow, I can have so much fun with this”, and also, I got to shoot a lot of guns for a few weeks (laughs) and I thought that was pretty appealing.
How would you describe your character, James Henderson?
James Henderson doesn’t take himself too seriously. He’s in his early 30’s and has lived a crazy life being in the CIA, ex-military, ex-Special Forces and now he’s “blue list” so he’s gone through a lot. So any danger he faces, he has no fear of dying so it is quite interesting with any human character who thinks he’s just this regular guy who works at the tech company. And when all the stuff goes bang, he’s relatively calm about everything. So for me, it was quite fun to play this character because it doesn’t come around because he has this alter ego as opposed to his regular life. He’s pretty much a complex guy.
What was it like working with the rest of the cast?
They were a lot of fun. It was a really nice cast. We shot the film in Dublin, Ireland and everyone was great. It was a team effort. I had a lot of fun with Lacy and Amy. Amy is a very funny girl and she came up with a lot of her own ideas and lines. I like to do that too so we had a lot of fun messing around with that idea. Also Brian, who plays Vorza. I have to say he’s a physical guy for his age, he’s an older guy but for the level of physical stuff he was doing, he’s a fit guy. He’s physical and I always really appreciate when other actors are keen to do the physical stuff as I am because they have the best shots and it everything looks slicker. It was a lot of fun, I really enjoyed it. Everyone did a great job.
Paul Tanter (the film’s director) was really brilliant and did a good job at helming the whole thing. Making movies, it’s something hard to keep things on course sometimes and he did a brilliant job at doing that.
Were you doubled for any of the film’s action sequences, because it sure looked like you held your own, especially when fighting the bad guys using hand-to-hand combat?
(Laughs) I always get asked that, even when I got there, Paul asked if I did my own stunts. And I did everything and I am pleased that I can do that because as I said, it looks better. I don’t like it when I’m told I can’t do something. It’s like, I don’t know, I feel like someone’s chopping off my balls because I want to do everything. When people are watching, I want them to see that I’m doing all of that. So, yeah it’s nice to be doing all of that.
Could you see yourself reprising the role in perhaps a sequel or even playing a similar type of character because in my opinion, you truly drove the film and made it such a fun film to watch?
Oh that’s great, thank you! I would love to do a sequel, especially if it’s the same team getting back together to do it. But also, I would love to do characters similar to that, especially with the action and the light elements, comedy elements to it. It’s all the stuff I want to do, so yeah if it’s a role similar or even a sequel, I would definitely be up for it.
Finally, what is coming up next for you?
I got the next season of Black Sails coming up. Right now, we’re in between seasons and I’m working on something which I would love to talk about, but unfortunately I can’t but I am excited about it and I would definitely would love for you to interview me again when this project comes out.
Once again Tom, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to talk about Kill Ratio, coming to theaters on December 9.
It was great talking to you!
Kill Ratio will be released in theaters on December 9, followed by an immediate VOD and iTunes on December 13 from XLrator Media. A special Thank You goes out to Katrina Wan PR for making this happen and to Tom Hopper for the wonderful chat!