We continue our conversation with Brandon Routh and Sam Huntington, who met and became friends when they starred together in Superman Returns, as Clark Kent and Jimmy Olsen.
Recently, Routh has had a recurring role on TV’s popular series Chuck, and Huntington is starring in SyFy’s Americanized version of the British success Being Human, playing Josh, a werewolf.
In their new movie Dylan Dog: Dead of Night Routh portrays Dylan, an unusual detective in New Orleans, and Huntington plays his zombie assistant, Marcus.
Did anything creepy happen on set in New Orleans?
Brandon: I don’t know if anything creepy like ghosts or paranormal necessarily, but we did shoot the scene that’s in the big power plant and it was very eerie because it was a huge structure and it was decrepit and rusty all over.
It had been flooded really bad and we probably all got some kind of toxicity from being in it for several days. I actually got cut on one of the bars in a fight scene, and had to get a tetanus shot.
Sam: Remember that cemetery we shot in? Because of Katrina, I think there was a lot of damage done. All the cemeteries in New Orleans are above ground and this one had been hit pretty hard.
I think it was in the 9th Ward, in kind of a bad part of town, and a lot of their crypts were open so you would see stuff in the crypt. There’s a scene where I have to crawl out from underneath one of them and I was laying in the dirt on top of this crypt. It was so awful, so gross. So, that was creepy.
How much do you guys watch playbacks on the set?
Sam: I think we watched some dailies on Dead of Night which was brand new to me. I’d never been exposed to dailies before like that. I know on Being Human we’re not allowed to watch playback.
It generally slows down production and also, if you have to second guess what you just did, then you don’t have faith in the director. If they’re comfortable with it then you should just move on. It’s not your job.
Brandon: Unless you’re having a sensitive day and, as actors, we have sensitive days. When it’s physical though, that’s important. I got used to watching playback when we were shooting Superman Returns because so much of what I did for months on end was flying stuff, so it was all about the movement and the choreography.
I wanted to make sure my arm was doing the right thing and my face didn’t look silly if I had some emotion while doing all those other things. I used it as a tool that way sometimes.
Sam: Definitely. Fight choreography is important if the punch isn’t landing.
Brandon: Or you’re making a silly face when you punch.
Are you through with Chuck now?
Brandon: Through with Chuck, yeah.
Did your character, Shaw, die in it?
Brandon: Actually we don’t know what happened to Shaw. The Buy More [store] blew up and I was handcuffed and knocked out, but who knows if they dragged me out or not.
Is Being Human on hiatus right now?
Sam: Yeah. We’re about to start shooting again. So, I’m really excited and can’t wait to see what they come up with for season two. We start again in July so I’m literally in the process of packing up my house and moving my family back to the East Coast which is wild.
Any jokes yet about your character killing the vampire, because that happened in the British version of the series?
Sam: I hope that happens! I’m just kidding. We’ve been joking around the whole time about what would happen if I was turned into a vampire or got killed and turned into a ghost so I could be literally a ghost, vampire and werewolf.
I think I might be the only one that could potentially happen to. But (in the British series) it’s a mercy killing, right?
I think what they wanted to do ideally was to start and land in a similar place in season one that they did in season one in the BBC series, although we landed in a similar but different place. I think the idea is to have season two be completely our own show.
Bryan Singer seems to be having this nostalgic look back, what he could have done differently on Superman Returns.
Sam: Oh really?
Brandon: Yeah, I’ve been reading that.
In retrospect, how do you feel about it now?
Brandon: I loved the movie, I’ll stand by it. Did it do everything that everyone wanted; that every fan boy and girl wanted? No. Do I think there should have been fighting in it, yes, it would have been great to have some fighting.
Would I have liked to see more of Brandon as Superman flying, versus CGI Superman flying, yes, because I just think that pulled me out of the film a little bit. They did an amazing job, but there were still some shots were not as good as the real think, honestly.
And I’m six years older now than I was then, I’m so much more mature, so I feel like I could have brought even more reverence and more maturity to the character than was there when I was 25. But other than that I’m really happy with it. Maybe I would have recast Sam.
Sam: Yeah, that’s what I was going to say. I don’t know who played Jimmy Olsen but that kid was terrible. No, actually I feel the same way as Brandon.
I actually would be hard pressed to look back at anything that I have done in my career and not say, ‘I would have done that a little different,’ because hindsight is 20/20, but that being said, we were committed to that film. I loved making that movie and I loved the way it turned out.
Obviously there are things that you’d change but it is what it is. Honestly, I didn’t have the burden that Brandon did, I’m playing an iconic character, but not the Man of Steel himself.