Callan McAuliffe is an Australian actor who recently had his American film debut in the Rob Reiner directed “Flipped”. Moviehole’s Mike Gencarelli had a chance to talk with Callan to discuss his role and what he has planned for the future.
“Fiipped” is your American film debut, tell us about your experience?
It is awesome to be in an American film. I have done things in Australia, like commercials and things like that but I have never been in a feature film. It was also my first American audition which was insanely nerve wreaking. I did five auditions and they I auditioned with Madeline (Carroll). Rob (Reiner) thought I was right for the role. Originally people were saying that I shouldn’t do it because I am Australian and the money issue would have been tough, plus I didn’t have a visa. Rob really pushed though and tried to get me in the film. I thought it was amazing. As soon as I got on set it was a fantastic experience. Everyone was so fantastic. Rob Reiner knew exactly what he wanted. He knew how to tell you if it was bad and if it was good. I think he also has most of the same people working with him on all of his films. Everyone knew each other really well. Because the set had a lot of kids, Rob tried to keep it as kid friendly as possible. Rob has this swear jar and you had pay $20 dollars if you swore on set. We sort of kept the swearing on the set to a minimum. I ended up owing nothing. I did my swearing off set [laughs]. I think I was owed a couple of hundred dollars though for not telling on people for when they swore in front of me. If they swore in front of me I said “Can I have $10 dollars of the $20 dollars you are not going to put in the pot and I won’t tell on you.”
How did you get the role of Bryce Loski in ”Flipped”?
Like I said, I did some acting prior. I was recommended to my American manager, Nicholas Bogner at Affirmative Entertainment. Before I met him, he sent me an audition for “Flipped”. I taped it and sent it back over. We didn’t think think a lot of about it. I figured it was my first American audition. Then we went over to meet him and found out I got a call back. So while I was there I did like four more auditions for the film.
Were you a fan of the novel by Wendlin Van Draanen?
I never heard of it or read it prior to getting the role. Out of respect I actually did read it. I really enjoyed it. It is not the particular genre that I like but it was really good. I read the novel and the script at the same time while on the plane heading to the set.
What is your particular genre?
I am really in fiction and the sort of stuff that doesn’t happen in real life. You can experience things in real life. I like the fantasy, sci-fi and that sort of stuff.
How did you feel the character was between the book and the film?
They had written the character very close to how he was in the book. Everything stayed pretty true. There are always going to be things different for example in the “Harry Potter” and “The Lord of the Rings” series. You can’t always translate everything. I think that due to the simplicity of the novel and the film, they were able to able to translate most of the stuff. It stays really true to the book.
Can you tell us about your role in ”I Am Number 4″?
I cannot say too much but I can say my name in Sam and it is an “alien-ey” action film. It is a good contrast from “Flipped”. It is directed by D.J. Caruso. Steven Spielberg and Michael Bay are producers, which is fantastic. It was a thrill to work on. It’s also got Alex Pettyfer from “Strombreaker” and “Beastly”. It’s got Teresa Palmer who is also Australian, so that is awesome. So its got two Australians in the film. It also has Dianna Agron and Timothy Olyphant. Really great line of cast.
How was it like working with Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg?
I haven’t met either of them yet [eagerly awaiting that meeting]. They are doing all the cool stuff behind the scenes. D.J. Caruso was really cool to work with.