10 Things with Bruce Langley
Your career in the industry just got started not too long ago. What made you decide to be an actor?
The short answer is, it’s something I’ve always been interested in. I managed to nab myself the lead in the school play when I was 5. I think a fairly apt illustration of my proclivity for this glorious occupation would be that in primary school everyone would go play football on the fields but me and one of my buds would go to the adventure playground section and play. It seemed to me to be far more interesting to work with the possibilities of one’s imagination vs who can kick a ball into a net. Everyone plays when they’re a kid. The difference is, I haven’t stopped.
Which actor’s body of work influenced your decisions as a performer?
I can’t say there’s been one solid actor I could pick out as a main influence, but rather the stories I was exposed to. My grandad used to sit me down on his knee and tell me war stories. I would sit there for hours imagining everything as he told it. It was real to me. Those are some of my earliest memories. They set me up for a fascination with stories, storytelling, and people. Perfect addition to a life of play.
What was the first project you booked and how did you react when you landed the job?
Well if we’re not counting the 5 year old school play…I was in as much theatre as I could be throughout my time at university. I believe the first theatre piece I was cast in was ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. When I got this job, I was just on my way back from collecting a couple of suitcases worth of stuff for hosting kid’s parties (my weekend job at the time) when I got a call. I couldn’t get to the phone as my hands were full. 5 seconds later, another call. I stopped, answered the phone and it was my manager telling me I got the role. Form that point on, I think I’ve been in a kind of constant trance-ish state. I called my family, they were suitably thrilled, I was closer to punch-drunk.
You’ve done mostly films until now. How much different is the process between film and television?
Most of my work before American Gods, was in theatre. There are a few practical differences. Usually, no rehearsal time on set for example, shooting out of sequence means you have to be ready to jump to wherever your character needs to be out of chronological order, sometimes on very little warning. As far as the difference between film and TV goes, with this show in particular, the divide is close to imperceptible. The sheer scale of this show is staggering. Essentially, every episode is its own feature film. There’s a small army of people working on it. Having discussed with some of the more seasoned cast members the consensus seems to be that film and TV are becoming more and more similar on a practical level. One tends to get more outlandishly interesting writing on TV at this stage, but who knows what the future may hold.
As you already mentioned, you’re on American Gods on Starz. How were you first introduced to the series and what were your reasons for wanting to jump on board?
My initial proclivity for the show came in the form of the gold plate gift of character that the Technical Boy is. There is just so much to play with him. The writing was clearly world class and quite simply I was having so much damn fun playing with Techboy, that every further audition I did was yet another gift. Playtime.
On the show, you play the role of Technical Boy, which is drastically different from the original Tech Boy in the book. What do you enjoy most about bringing this character to life?
Yes, he is very different from his original iteration, and quite right to. Neil’s spoken about this before, but technology; our relationship; our perception of it and the role it plays in our lives have all changed exponentially from 15 years ago when the book was released, where once people saw a long leather coat wearing, matrix synonymous nerd, people now see the cutting edge; Mark Zuckerberg; iPhones; artificial intelligence. Techboy is a direct reflection of our ever and rapidly changing relationship to technology and its relationship to us.
With that in mind, the character himself is ever changing, evolving. In a constant state of flux, progress, updating, if you will. This is incredibly fun to play with, as an actor. Keep your eye out for Techboy’s ever changing costume and look. Its never the same in any two scenes. Reflective of our relationship to the internet and tech in general, it’s all about the new, the latest update.
Audiences are excited to see the series play out. What can you share with us about what we can expect in this first season?
For a start, it doesn’t pull any punches. Chances are, if there was an issue you thought really struck home in the book, we’ll be exploring it in the series. We get to see a lot more of many of the characters. In the book, certain characters might only pop up a couple of times. In the series, we get to explore their story in far greater depth. This includes Ricky Whittle’s ‘Shadow Moon’, Emily Browning’s ‘Laura Moon’ and Pablo Schreiber’s ‘Mad Sweeney’. There’s always more to see so keep your eyes peeled.
If you weren’t working as actor, what career path do you think you’d be on right now?
I’d be doing whatever I had to do to get back to working as an actor.
When it comes to fashion, who are some of your favorite designers and what style of clothes appeal to you the most?
Before the show, I was in a situation where I couldn’t really afford to buy new clothes. Or, rather, my priorities were heavily weighted on going to as many acting classes as I could. New top vs a chance to get better at what I love? Easy choice. I think its safe to say I’m still finding my style after I had my world rocked by Techboy with regards to fashion. Hey, if you have any recommendations, by all means give me a shout 🙂
We look forward to seeing you on American Gods. What other projects do you have coming up?
Actor’s prerogative, one never really knows. Quite exciting really. A few things in the pipeline, but for now, I can say with certainty that I’m also incredibly excited about the series. I’m quite sure it will be keeping me busy for at least the immediate future. A prospect I’m likewise, very excited about.
Facebook: Bruce J Langley
Photo Credit: Starz Entertainment, LLC. & Jo McLintock