Australian Brett Whittingham, has appeared in numerous TV series, but most recently he won the Best Actor Award at the Cause film festival for the the short, “Last Seen Alive” from writer/director Dan Walls. We spoke to Brett about what’s next for coming up his year and is opinion on the changes in Hollywood.
What sort of role did you play in the film ( that you won the award ?)
I play a man who is trying to cope with the loss of a child and finds a grief soul-mate in the form of a empathetic gas station attendant played by Neelam Choudhary. It’s a heavy going but beautifully written role about coping (or not coping) with the loss of a child.Where did you study acting?I studied at WAAPA but actually did my diploma in Broadcast Performance. I thought it was a more stable career choice to be a journalist. After two years as a TV journo, I found it somewhat artistically unsatisfying so went back into acting and never thought about stability again, which is probably why I don’t own my own home and rent a dog.
What’s your career highlight to date?
I did a stage tour with the late Ann Phelan. Given we lost her recently, I’m privileged I had the chance to work with her. There have been many other highlights, including performing in the Green Room Award winning production of The Laramie Project with some of my best friends or producing my comedy web series “Project Management” with a wonderful Perth actor, Olivia Hogan.
Are you influenced by any actors in Hollywood?
It really is a golden age of production with streaming services so there are some amazing performances coming out. Not only from new talent but also veterans who are finding new avenues. I’ve just finished watching “The Morning Show’ (or “Morning Wars” as it’s called here). The cast is incredible but Billy Crudup is superb. His characterisation is just so engaging! Would love to have that level of quirky insight to come up with such an amazing unique approach to a character.
Currently, Hollywood is changing and becoming more streaming focused than the theatrical release, are you a fan of this change?
I’ll be totally honest and say that I rarely go to the cinema these days. The jury is still out if I’m a fan of the prolific offering of streaming. As an actor, it’s great cause it’s widened opportunities, but I feel as an audience we are in danger of becoming siloed. There is so much content with niche appeal, so it feels like the days are gone where you would sit at the pub with everyone arguing about the same movie. For example, Dirty Dancing is absolutely not a classic (cue hate mail).
What roles can we see you in next?
Now that’s a very good question! I’m continuing to work on a couple of web series ideas included an animated short form show…..in other words I am totally open for offers!