Scoring a role in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby is only the beginning for CALLAN MCAULIFFE. The revival of Young Hollywood is here, and he’s leading the charge.
“I’d go so far as to say [The Great Gatsby] was my favourite film experience so far!”
Hey, Callan! How are you?
It is amazing, the list of directors you’ve already worked with. Rob Reiner, DJ Caruso, Baz Luhrmann. Can you give us other directors you’re dying to work with and what kind of film you’d want to make with them?
I have a pretty long list of films I want to do. I’d certainly want to work with Peter Jackson in a Tolkien adaption. I’m a huge fan of his and of Tolkien’s. I love Tim Burton’s artistic style, and would love to be in one of his films, be it an animation or a live action. Of course every director I’ve worked with, I’d like to do another film.
Working with Baz Luhrmann had to be an amazing experience and The Great Gatsby feels like such a throwback to his earlier films, Moulin Rouge specifically. How was the experience like, working with a director like that on a movie like that?
I’d go so far as to say it was my favourite film experience so far! Baz is such an incredible man, so his sets are always very colourful and exciting, which made it so much fun to be a part of, not to mention his incredible talent!
“[The acting industry is] certainly not as easy as it looks from the outside.”
What was your favorite scene to shoot?
I can’t reveal too much, but one of the scenes involved a wind machine and a lot of flying water!
Did you get a chance to work with Leonardo DiCaprio or compare notes with him as to how you were going to play the two stages in this character’s life?
All the cast with speaking roles were brought together around July last year. We were all flown into Sydney and had 2-3 weeks of read throughs/preproduction via costume, hair etc. I only met Leo on a few occasions during this time, but he was nonetheless a very friendly, easy-going guy.
Style also figures in a lot to Baz’s style. Obviously, it’s very lavish, very detailed. The art direction looks amazing. What about your personal ‘art direction?’ How would you describe your personal style?
I’m very relaxed about appearance for day-to-day clothes. My favorite t-shirt, jeans or hiking pants and beanie are always easy to throw on for the day or casual evening out. For more upmarket events, my style is evolving as I like to mix my favourite shirts with more classic items for special occasions. I am lucky to be given designer label clothes from Burberry, Louis Vuitton and Prada to wear, to name a few. But my favourite t-shirt or an old favourite necklace or my beanie usually end up in the mix as well.
What was your favorite costume to wear on set?
All of the costumes were incredible, but given my personal style, my favourite costume was from my first scene, and it was very, very, very relaxed—as you will see!
“The only time I may need to lie is to not hurt someone’s feelings. However if I have an opportunity to tell the truth so a friend doesn’t walk out looking dreadful in a certain outfit, I’d rather be a good friend and tell them what looks great, than lie.”
What was the most ambitious thing you’ve ever done?
Join the acting industry. It’s certainly not as easy as it looks from the outside.
What’s the worst lie you’ve ever told?
There are too many to count, mostly as a kid! Now the only time I may need to lie is to not hurt someone’s feelings. However if I have an opportunity to tell the truth so a friend doesn’t walk out looking dreadful in a certain outfit, I’d rather be a good friend and tell them what looks great, than lie.
What’s next after The Great Gatsby?
I just finished an Australian project on Julian Assange on the start of Wikileaks. The next projects, I can’t talk about just yet!
Check out our exclusive BTS with Callan below:
Interview by Viva Gonzalez
Photographed by Amanda Elkins
Styled by Adeel Khan
Production Assistant Ani Baez
Grooming Amy Clarke
Video Aldo Lihiang
For the full story, grab a copy of STATUS October 2012 issue