As a longtime fan of Orlando Bloom’s work, I was thrilled to get the opportunity to conduct an extended hourlong interview with the busy actor about his career earlier this week. The primary reason we spoke was for his fantastic work in directors Ludwig Shammasian and Paul Shammasian’s new film Retaliation. If you haven’t heard of Retaliation (which is now available to rent on Amazon), it’s completely understandable. The movie is a true indie production where all the people involved were working because they loved the material and not for a paycheck. Also, it’s tough subject matter, as Bloom plays an adult victim of childhood sexual abuse who is forced to confront his past when his abuser moves back to his town. While the entire film does an excellent job building the world and making everything feel real and believable, it’s Bloom’s performance that turns this film into something special. He plays the character of Malky as a tortured soul trying to move forward while always being stuck in the past and you’re constantly unsure of what might happen next.
Even though Bloom has done some great work over the years, his work in Retaliation is near the top. While I know the subject matter is tough and not easy to watch, Retaliation is definitely worth your time.
In addition to talking about Retaliation, Bloom also shared what it was like making Rod Lurie’s The Outpost (another excellent performance in a fantastic film), getting to work with Ridley Scott on Kingdom of Heaven and why the director’s cut is a superior version of the film, why he had so much fun working with Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant on Extras, what it was like making Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings, why he’s excited for the upcoming LOTR Amazon series that he’ll be watching as a fan, why he was disappointed he couldn’t attend the Oscar ceremony when Return of the King won all the awards, and why he signed on for Amazon’s Carnival Row and why fans should be excited for Carnival Row season two. In addition, he shared the differences between West End and Broadway audiences, which movies he’s seen the most, his favorite ride at Disneyland, and a lot more.
Finally, for Carnival Row fans, Bloom told me they were three weeks from being wrapped on season two when the pandemic forced the production to shut down. But instead of making everyone wait for them to finish filming, Amazon is planning on releasing the first five episodes of Carnival Row season 2 and then adding an extra episode when they go back to finish the shoot. So they would release five episodes and then down the road the final four.
Check out the entire interview below and further down the page is a listing of everything we talked about including some key time indexes.
- What TV series would he love to guest star on?
- Does he have a favorite ride at Disneyland?
- What movie has he seen the most?
- Has he seen a TV series all the way through more than once?
- Does he still use the lessons he learned in acting school?
- What are the differences between West End and Broadway audiences?
- How did he get involved in The Outpost?
- How having someone recognizable in his role adds to the suspense in The Outpost.
- Why The Outpost is an important movie.
- What Retaliation is about and who he plays.
- How Retaliation is a true indie production and everyone involved was their for the right reasons.
- How Retaliation is an uncompromised look at these characters.
- Why he wanted certain scenes to be adjusted to more accurately reflect his character and the place.
- Was he able to get away from playing Malky at the end of each day or did the character stay with him when he left set?
What it was like filming a very difficult scene where the character penetrates himself.
- How he wasn’t sure Retaliation would ever see the light of day.
- The responsibility of playing a character dealing with this kind of abuse.
- 30:45 – Kingdom of Heaven director’s cut talk and how the extended edition completely changes the movie.
- How he watched the theatrical cut the day before he had to do press and was stumped on how he was going to talk about the film.
- Why he was so excited to land Kingdom of Heaven.
- Why Ridley Scott is such an inspirational director.
- How Kingdom was his first leading role.
- How he left drama school and went right into Lord of the Rings.
- 39:05 – Shares a story about staying at a hotel in Spain and the screaming fans outside and how nothing can prepare you for that level of fame.
- 42:45 His episode of Extras and how it came about.
- Why he was very nervous making the episode.
- How many takes were ruined from some of the stuff he said?
- 46:15 – Does he have an honorary passport to New Zealand because of The Lord of the Rings?
- How much of the entire trilogy had they shot before The Fellowship of the Ring was released?
- Why making LOTR felt like a giant student movie.
- Why he was disappointed he couldn’t attend the Oscar ceremony when Return of the King won all the Awards.
- 52:30 – Is he looking forward to watching the upcoming Amazon Lord of the Rings series?
- 54:50 – Carnival Row
- Did he know each season would be eight episodes when he signed on?
- What attracted him to the material?
- 56:15 – How they were three weeks from being done filming Carnival Row season 2 when Covid hit.
- How Amazon is planning on releasing the first five episodes of Carnival Row season 2 and then adding an extra episode when they go back to finish the shoot. So they would release five episodes and then down the road the final four.
- Why making the first season was a challenge.
- 57:45 – Why he’s excited about Eric Olsen being the new showrunner on Carnival Row season 2.
- How Carnival Row season 2 is bigger.
- What did he learn making the first season that he wanted to take into the second season?
- Did they get to build a cool new set for season two?
- How they were originally going to shoot in Croatia but now they are building everything in a huge soundstage due to Covid.
- Where did he learn how to not blink?