Growing up on an English estate has peppered Callum Turner with opportunities across the modeling and acting world, but most recently he finds himself entwined in the world of magic. The latest to be part of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is Turner acting as Theseus Scamander, a powerful Auror that hunt Dark Wizards. The role takes him through the streets of 19th century London accosted by strange beasts, and foul magical spells. Turner shines in his new role and can thank years of television and living in Chelsea to explain his exuberance and charm across this star-studded flick. The English actor speaks with The Laterals and comes off as confident, poised, while being self-aware and humble.
With a long history of acting in the UK how would you describe the differences with US production?
There aren’t many too many differences to be honest. I suppose maybe the biggest difference is the craft table.
Your roles have run a gamut. From reckless racer in The Town to a love interest 20 years your senior in Leaving, it seems you take some risky roles. What type of roles do you enjoy the most?
When deciding roles, I always consider the director first, followed by the creative team. While the specific role is important, it’s almost the least interesting factor for me. I always try to envisage what kind of film this is ultimately going to be.
Drama seems to make up most of your filmography, but you have the chance at adventure and fantasy with this latest installment in the Wizarding World. Are there any particular scenes that you are proud of?
The entire film is something to be proud of. I can’t identify one particular scene. Everyday was a gift. I loved working and exploring the Wizarding world and the mythology that J.K. Rowling created.
Unlike much of your previous work, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald uses a lot of green screen. How did you like the experience?
Working against green screen is a medium in and of itself. You have to use your imagination. I had a positive experience even though not every actor enjoys it. David Yates created an intimate atmosphere on-set so when I was acting on green screen, it felt like an independent movie.
A lot of big names are in this new feature film. Did some of the seasoned actors offer any advice?
It’s more being around people that I’ve admired for such a long time. I’m getting to do that a lot and it’s a real blessing as an actor. To get to learn, sometimes just through osmosis and watching them, from people who are at the top of their game.
The Wizarding World has created this universe where the fans can get pretty engrossed. Is that something you are excited about, or do you appreciate your privacy?
I love the fans. They’re so accepting of me, even before they’d seen the film! They’re purists and that’s exciting, when the love is genuine you realise you’re in this huge extended family that I feel incredibly lucky to be a part of.
Do you have any plans to take on more acting roles in the United States?
I’m particular when choosing my roles, and with that comes patience. If I’m lucky enough to continue down this path, then I’ll follow the work anywhere.
I was recently stationed in Oxford for two months for work. Do you have any tips for someone visiting London?
There’s so much London has to offer. Besides the typical tourist attractions, if you want to breathe London and appreciate the cityscape, I recommend you walk from SoHo through to Waterloo on a sunny day.
Best place to eat in Chelsea?
Easy. La Familia, hands down.
Barney’s New York, Beverly Hills
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