The Aurora screenplay was specifically written with dynamic English film, television, and theatre actor Robert Boulter in mind. He's best known for a recurring role as Kieron Fletcher on the BBC series Casualty, turns in the theatre productions Mercury Fur and Citizenship, and the film Donkey Punch. Though he's had his hands full wrestling extra dimensional cryptids these days, Robert took a few minutes to answer some of our questions about filming Aurora.
The creators of the film have stated that they wrote this film around you as an actor. Then they made you the villain. What exactly are your friends trying to tell you? You did such a convincing job with this role, are you afraid of being typecast?
I think it's quite a special thing to have something written with you in mind. Once I got over the shock of the character I was ludicrously excited that I'd get to play something so outrageously unusual! I'm sure now the seal is broken there'll be a flurry of offers coming in for me to play a time travelling Nazi. I've told my agent to only allow the ones that are set in the wild west to come through to me.
You spend a lot of time on the stage; what do you feel are the differences between performance on stage or on film? Do things like character back story, for example, get approached differently? How does that apply here?
The main difference between stage and film is the chance to make mistakes. With film, you can try a bunch of different things on set and the decision as to what the audience ends up seeing can be made later on by the director. This can allow you be quite playful. In theatre, you live and die by what comes out on stage. If you forget a line, or freeze, or someone else forgets a line, or something out of the ordinary happens then you're completely exposed and you have to react and deal with it in the moment. Both are exciting, in very different ways.
What do you remember about the filming?
Shooting this film was hard work; it was an ambitious script and we had a lot to shoot in a small amount of time. Luckily we were surrounded by a team of people that made it immense fun, it was a real family environment and there was talent everywhere you looked.
I will never forget stepping on the Aurora set for the first time. I’ve only ever seen those western towns in films, and I never thought I'd get the chance to visit one, let alone film in one. I never realised how much I wanted to play a cowboy until that day. I could argue that I played a sort of space cowboy, but I'm fairly sure it won't count. I’m lobbying hard for Aurora 2: The Enlightening, where our Nazi comes back and decides to reject his Nazi ways and become a heroic cowboy.
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Robert Boulter between takes filming Aurora