From a 1,000 year old vampire in “The Vampire Diaries” to a man fighting to preserve his humanity over years of terrible imprisonment in “Warhouse”, Joseph Morgan is certainly an actor not afraid to take on the tough roles.
“Warhouse”, co-written and directed by Luke Massey, and co-written and produced by Benjamin Read, it is a gripping, brutal psychological film with a supernatural edge that charts one man’s fight to preserve his humanity and sanity over years of terrible imprisonment. Royal Marine A.J. Budd (Joseph Morgan) awakes in a mysterious house and is forced to fight for his life every day against grotesque inhuman opponents. Trapped alone in an unchanging prison of unbreakable routines, he must kill every day or die himself.
On the eve of the film’s premiere at Cannes Market, we spoke with Joseph about inspiration, TV versus film, the return of Klaus, and joys of Twitter.
How did you become involved with this film?
I worked with Luke on a short film I co-directed with Matt Ryan, he knew Luke from his days in the RSC and so we called him up to ask if he wanted to DP our short. I had an instant creative connection with Luke so when he asked me if I’d be interested on working on a feature with him I jumped at the chance.
What attracts you to a character?
I’m always attracted by a good character arc. A journey that changes the character from the beginning of the film to the end. Warhouse certainly had that. It was also a wonderful opportunity to explore how far someone would go when they were totally alone, when they had no one there to judge them.
This film goes into some pretty dark places psychologically, how do you prepare for that?
I listen to music that has emotional significance to me. I allow myself to be absorbed by the scenario. Mostly it’s convincing myself the situation I’m in is real and then allowing the madness to emerge. We all have a little crazy inside, over the years I’ve learnt how to access it.
Do you think you could survive in a house like that?
I would find it pretty difficult to survive in the Warhouse. I like my alone time but I also crave regular human contact and that is what would drive me mad I think. A J Budd has his training as a royal marine commando to fall back on – Improvise, adapt, overcome. For me it would be much harder.
What made you want to become an actor? Was there a particular film that inspired you?
I had always watched movies and assumed I wanted the job of the character. For example, I watched ‘The Italian Job’ and thought I wanted to be a professional bank robber. Then I saw Brad Pitt in ‘Twelve Monkeys’ and I thought that’s the kind of part I’d love to play. I realized that I wanted to try out being all these different people, not actually choosing one path but dipping into lots of different lives. I’ve also always been an avid reader so a job that was essentially to be inside stories had obvious appeal.
You’ve worked in both TV and film, do you have a preference or enjoy the variety?
I enjoy the variety without a doubt. Both have advantages and challenges. I would also love to do more theatre at some point in the next few years. Perhaps I can persuade Luke to direct ‘The Dumb Waiter’ by Harold Pinter, and Matt and I can act in it. That would be fun!
You’re very active on Twitter, do you enjoy the direct interaction with fans?
I do. It’s really been a wonderful tool to communicate directly with the fans. I’m a fan of so many things myself so I’ve thoroughly enjoyed getting to know everyone who follows me, what books they like, what their favourite films are, it fascinates me how many interests we share.
I have to admit, I am a huge Vampire Diaries fan, and when Klaus was introduced I didn’t think he could live up to the hype, but you have created an incredible character. Please tell me you’ll be back for Season 4?
I don’t think they could get rid of an indestructible 1,000 year old hybrid that easily…
You have a lot of Australian fans (particularly in our office) do you have any plans to travel here?
I’d love to! Is that an invitation?
“Warhouse” premieres at Cannes Market this weekend.
More information about the film please visit: http://www.warhousethemovie.com/