Kieren Hutchison Exclusive Interview

Kieren HutchisonKieren Hutchison charmed fans on One Tree Hill as Andy, and then moved on to a role in Wildfire. His latest role as Jake on Monarch Cove is coming to an end, so we caught up with the Kiwi actor to find out where we can see him next.

THE STAR SCOOP:
You’re a kiwi actor [from New Zealand]. How hard has it been for you to break into more mainstream roles?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
It was fairly difficult, because it entailed physically moving here, staying. I [came] out, start[ed] auditioning, which is tough. You’ve got to come out here, and get an agent, and then support yourself while you’re waiting for the jobs. It was something that I’d always wanted to do. I really enjoy traveling, it’s kind of like a lifestyle choice.

THE STAR SCOOP:
Do you have to learn to act without your accent? Do you get to use it?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
Some of that was happening in New Zealand, too. All the way through the nineties, they were doing Xena: Warrior Princess and Hercules, and shows like that, that were American productions shot in New Zealand. So a lot of us local actors would get hired but you had to learn straight away to sound like an American to get the job. So I guess I had a bit of background in that. It’s a lot easier doing it when you’re hearing it, when you’re surrounded by [it].

THE STAR SCOOP:
What have you taken away from [your] past experiences on [One Tree Hill and Wildfire, and now Monarch Cove]? How has each one helped you move into the next one?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
One Tree Hill
was the turning point in terms of getting work here. That was a great thing. I ended up playing a New Zealander on that show, which was kind of fun. I got to use my own accent, which I enjoyed, it’s more free. That was good. I mean, that was a good show because it was working with Moira Kelly, who is a really good actress and I had a lot of story lines with here. That was out of North Carolina, which I had never been to, so I really enjoyed that. But in terms of leading on to the next thing, I think it shows the industry that you’re working, you’re not just a guy from a different country who wants to work. Actually, Wildfire and One Tree Hill have a similar audience too, I think. Then Monarch Cove was sort of independent of both of them, that was a little bit later on, just through the auditions and everything. I’m not sure if there’s a complete link between all three of them, apart from just starting to work and that helping get your face out there Monarch Cove was fun because it was more of a telenovella, so it was never gonna go for multiple series’. It was just going to be fourteen episodes, more of a mini series, the story ends, you know? I’ve never done anything like that before.

THE STAR SCOOP:
New Zealand has always been a [great] place to visit, but that’s where you’re coming from. What place is your dream place to visit?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
To visit? I just love traveling. I actually really want to go to Japan. I haven’t been to Japan yet. I traveled quite a bit throughout Europe, I did the backpacking thing. In terms of a place to live, in all honesty, I think I’ll probably end up back in New Zealand with my wife. It is a really great place, the scenery and everything. It’s really kind of got it all down there.

THE STAR SCOOP:
Is it hard for [actors] from New Zealand to get a [real] career? Was it difficult for you to make the decision to come here?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
It’s the kind of career you want, too. A lot of actors are really happy to stay in New Zealand, work on local projects, do theater, do the odd American thing that comes along. It’s kind of a lifestyle choice as well. I was working in my early twenties in New Zealand. I always had the idea that I wanted to [come] here. It’s not much of a culture shock for us, because we group up watching all the American TV shows. When you arrive in America, it feels really familiar, like you’ve seen it all before, even if you’ve never been here. I didn’t agonize about the decision. I thought it’d be kind of fun. And it has been, it’s been a great time.

THE STAR SCOOP:
Have you achieved any of your goals? Where are you in your plan?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
I don’t know if there’s a plan [laughs]. The plan was to come here and start working, which I’m doing, which is good. I want to keep working. I want to do this for the long haul, acting for the rest of my life if I can, which takes a certain amount of success, I guess. I sort of take it one job at a time. I’d like to do more movies. I’ve only done a couple of movies in my time, pretty small movies. I wouldn’t mind stretching out into that. That depends on where the jobs come from.

THE STAR SCOOP:
What’s going on for you now?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
I’m still auditioning, really. I’m about to do pilot season. I’m just trying to get the next job. I just got back in the country about three weeks ago from Australia, finishing Monarch Cove. Getting ready for next year, really. There’s nothing definitely on the horizon right now.

THE STAR SCOOP:
What advice do you have for our readers from other countries, like you, who want to get into this business?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
I guess the main thing is, especially with acting, with all of the friends I have in the acting business, anything like that…the common thread I sort of find is that it’s almost more of a vocation, if you know what I mean? It chooses you rather than you choose it. If ever you’ve seen anybody who’s only half-heartedly into it, it takes more energy than that. It’s got to be something you kind of need to do, because you like it that much. It would start from the point of, if you can’t think of anything else that you want to do, that you really have to be an actor, then that’s the starting point. And then it’s just about wanting to be good rather than coming out to L.A. and wanting to be famous. You might be setting yourself up for some heartbreak if that’s the way you’re approaching it, rather than you coming out here because you want to work and you want to be good and you really care about movies and TV. You just sort of need to do it. I think that if you have that base, then you’re just putting your energies into it, and you’ll make your own opportunities. And don’t be scared, it’s not that daunting, you know? You just come out here, you make friends, you do your thing, if it doesn’t work out, you go home. At least you tried. I don’t know why it’s terrifying if you don’t succeed or anything. I think trying’s more important.

THE STAR SCOOP:Is there a last message you want to get across?

KIEREN HUTCHISON:
As far as the fans go, look, if anybody is watching these shows and sees the link that I’m the guy that was on those shows, then I think that’s great. I hope they enjoy the work. I’m just hoping to keep doing it. I’m really happy if anybody is following my career. I’d like to say hi to them, basically, you know? It does feel like you’re in a bit of a vacuum. It’s not like theater where you’re standing in front of 300 people and you’re getting this reaction. When you’re on a film set, you go away to some place, and you work for a few months, the audience is a really separate entity. I think sometimes it’s easy to sort of forget that. It’s nice whenever you get letters. I think that’s great, cool, for me [laughs]. I think that’s a nice thing. I hope they like it. Ultimately that’s what I’m doing it for, you’re doing it because you want to do this with your heart but also if nobody’s watching, then kind of what’s the point?

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