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Aidan Turner: The vampire craze is coming to an end

posted: January 18th, 2011 in Career, Interviews

Irish actor Aidan Turner, 27, played vampire Mitchell in BBC supernatural drama Being Human. He has also appeared in period drama Desperate Romantics. He is about to star in the forthcoming Hobbit films, the prequels to the Lord Of The Rings trilogy.


What’s the appeal of Being Human?
It’s quite accessible – the characters might be a vampire, a ghost and a werewolf but they face quite everyday situations. People can understand what’s going on and relate to the humanistic sensibilities in the show – it’s not set in a completely fantasy universe.
It’s the third series. Is it really accessible or is it a convoluted genre show where casual viewers have no idea what’s happening?
You can always get what’s going on. They try to integrate themselves into normal society and try to be as normal as possible – that’s the ideology behind it. A lot is about the banal stuff they get up to so new viewers can get into it. Some people are cool with jumping in midway through, others might want to have a glance over the second series box set.
Are people getting fed up of vampire shows?
We got on the train early – I think we were out at the same time as the first Twilight film. There’s a fad for something every decade. I think we’re coming to the end of this vampire buzz. We’ve had a massive comic book hero run over the past ten years too. I’m looking forward to seeing what the next fad is. I think as long as we don’t flog it to death we should be OK and, when the time comes, wipe the blood from the chin and step away from the plate.
What inspired you to become an actor?
I was really into films when I was younger but I feel like a bit of a phoney sometimes – I started acting because I didn’t know what else to do. I filled in all these university application forms and honestly didn’t want to do any of the courses. I spontaneously signed up to a part-time acting class at the same time. Then I did a full-time course, then went to drama school. When I started there I realised it’s what I wanted to do. Being around committed people was very inspiring.
What films did you like?
Spielberg as a kid but when I got a bit older there were loads more – the Danny Boyle movies, the Irish guys Jim Sheridan and Neil Jordan. My dad had a small part in Michael Collins, driving a vintage car.
You’ve just started filming the Hobbit, haven’t you?
Yes, we’re all off to Hobbit boot camp. I’m not sure what it entails but I think it lasts a few weeks and gets us all fit for filming.
The Lord Of The Rings films changed the careers of most of the actors who appeared in them. Are you prepared for the same happening to you?
I don’t speculate too much about the future. That’s the thing about this job – it’s so fickle. You take the jobs, you read the scripts and, if something interests you and you like the people who are working on it, you go for it. If not, you take a break. I could be back in Ireland, Britain or America afterwards. It’s so variable but very exciting.
Were you a fan of the films?
I saw them at the cinema. It’s not my favourite genre but they are all masterpieces. I’m a huge fan.
What are you going to spend the money on?
I don’t know – there are more important things than money right now. I’m not an extravagant person. You don’t get a chance to spend money when you’re working on a TV show. I like travelling so I took my cousin to Disney World recently and went to Amsterdam.
Have you ever had a supernatural experience?
No, I don’t believe in that rubbish, so bring it on. I want to spend the night alone in a haunted mansion. I wouldn’t say I’m sceptical because that word implies the truth is out there when there is no truth out there.
Which dead celebrity would you like to talk to in a séance?
JRR Tolkien, that’d be handy. I’ve got a couple of questions I’d like to ask him right now.

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