Interview: DREW FULLER from THE CIRCUIT & ARMY WIVES

Drew Fuller

Recently, Daemon’s TV took part in a conference call with DREW FULLER who plays Kid Walker, on ABC Family’s original movies, THE CIRCUIT and who also plays Travis LeBlanc on ARMY WIVES.

Drew Fuller talked about what attracted him to the project, the differences between his characters on The Circuit and Army Wives, and more.

Don’t forget to watch The Circuit Sunday, June 8, at 8pm on ABC Family, and Army Wives Sundays on Lifetime at 10pm.

For now, enjoy the interview below.

Can you talk about the film, the plot, and your character a little bit?

Drew Fuller: The plot, the heart of it, it’s a family movie about a reconciliation between a father and daughter who had an estranged relationship, due to the fact that he chose his career over his daughter. I think along the way finding that redemption, there is this wonderful—it’s a family story. With my character coming into play, I’m kind of the bad boy of racing who’s winning all the races. He’s kind of the hottest thing under the sun right now. I think he’s all about the fun and having a blast and winning races. It’s just pure adrenaline for him, him being a kid. Yes, it’s just this fun film about NASCAR and family.

How much driving did you actually get to do in preparing for the role?

DF: When I originally got the job, it was under the guise that I’m going to get to go there and do a lot of driving and it was going to be driving school before we actually shoot anything. Right then and there, I was down for the cause. I wanted in. I’m obsessed with going fast and I love racing. I race motorcycles, it’s like a big hobby of mine. So the fact that to be able to do this, to do what I love mixing my job and my passion outside of work, it was awesome.
And so I got up there. We did some racing school and it was mostly I’d say 80/20 stunts. I would have liked to do more. I would have loved to do all, but with time and insurance and stuff like that, we weren’t able to indulge my fantasies of racing the car that much. But at the end the guys who had trained me had offered to enter me in a couple of the races up there, so I took that as a big sign of confidence and I was flattered by the whole thing.

It looks from the previews that you and Kylie have a bit of an attraction to each other. So for your character, is it mostly about the racing or if you get to know more about her pretty quickly?

DF: I think it’s both. I think in any job, anyone who excels at their chosen profession is a turn-on. It’s very sexy for a man or a woman. So I think, here he is winning all these races and then there’s this up and coming girl who not only is a fantastic driver, but also beautiful to look at. That’s the complete package. So initially he’s drawn by her cockiness. I think he sees a little bit of Kylie in him and the fact that she’s extremely intelligent and sexy, it’s a complete package, so I think that’s the draw for him to her.

Do you guys actually compete against each other?

DF: Absolutely, yes, in any racing, it starts off as kind of a friendly rivalry and then push comes to shove and all of a sudden, she starts winning more than she should or making it too close for comfort. So then all of a sudden, he turns it up a little bit more. And then it turns into, all right, what is this? Are we in a serious relationship? Are we just having fun? Because if it’s just fun, the only thing that matters is winning in the end with the racing.

What attracted you to the project initially?

DF: The racing, absolutely. I think that was a big part of it. NASCAR has something like 89 million fans. Just the attraction of NASCAR, the attraction of getting to race a car around a track, I love playing cocky, fun, just indulging in all impulses. It was a fun role. The scrip made me smile. I love what I do so much and I really do look at it as a big blessing. So I want to make sure that everything that I do, I’m attracted to and I’m doing for the right reasons.
This turned out to be one of the most amazing working experiences I’ve ever had. The cast was incredible. I ended up forming, I feel like, lifelong friendship with a bunch of the cast members and the director who I absolutely love. It just turned out to be such a blessing and such an amazing experience and one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been.

How has this experience been different from other experiences that you’ve had with different shows?

DF: Each job that an actor does offers a new set of circumstances, whether it be location, director, fellow actors, whatever, the material itself. This was like lightning in a bottle, the right place, the right time, great cast, awesome director, the setting was stunning. And like every weekend, Billy (Campbell), Paul (Rae) and Tommy (Lioutas) and I got in my car. We did road trips and we ended up sleeping on a tall ship one weekend. We were just all bouncing all over Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. It was just a really fun experience. We were all just thrilled to be there. And to race cars, it was just a good time.
I’m not saying that all my other jobs aren’t good times because they are. I don’t want that to come across. But specifically talking about The Circuit, I just have the fondest memories of working on it and with the actors.

Do you have a dream role that you’d like to play one day or you maybe you have already played it?

DF: No, absolutely not. I think the beautiful thing about being an actor is that you’re never going to know it all. There’s always going to be something you can learn, no matter what. I’m learning new stuff everyday or a director is going to challenge me and tell me to do something that I had no idea prior to that. Like he’ll go, “Why don’t you do it like this?” And I’ll say, “Oh, God, that’s really interesting. I didn’t even think about it that way.” I’m always learning and I’ll never know too much.
As far as my dream role is concerned, there’s a bunch of dream directors that I’d love to work with. Hopefully I’ll find the right role with those directors and we’ll have an amazing collaboration. I think that’s a dream role, collaborating with some people who I absolutely respect and study religiously.

So who are those directors? Can you mention a few?

DF: I think first foremost, it’s Fernando Meirelles. He did “City of God,” as well as “The Constant Gardener” and he has a new film coming out called “Blindness.” I think he’s just one of the most incredible directors out there. Yes, who else, I love Bryan Singer. I think he really does interesting and great work. I like his smaller and darker films. The list is endless really, not endless, but there’s a lot in my head of who I really want to work with.

Who is your favorite NASCAR driver in real life?

DF: Interesting question. It’s funny because I wasn’t a big NASCAR fan before and then doing it and learning about it, I’m definitely more of a fan now than I was. But I probably say Jimmy Johnson, he’s pretty awesome. He’s from California, and then there’s the sentimental favorite. Everyone loves Dale Jr. But I think definitely Jimmy Johnson.

Do you think that Kid Walker has any similarities to your “Army Wives” character, Trevor?

DF: Absolutely not. Trevor, he wears his heart on his sleeve and he’s really genuine and really earnest and he means everything that he says. And there’s no games with him, no games at all. He is just a good old Southern boy with really strong morals and values and Kid is all about the game and all about the chase and loves to be mischievous and loves to have people second guess everything that he’s saying. So it’s been actually really exciting to kind of go from one role to the other and then back again to Trevor.

You also mentioned you did some of the races and some of this intense stuff that you performed.

DF: Just being in the car, look, you’re going really, really fast and the engines are really loud. You can’t even hear your own voice when you’re screaming at the top of your lungs into the radio. So you’re trying your hardest to keep the car on the track and not from spinning out and hitting the brake at the right time and then accelerating out of the turn at the right time, so you don’t spin out and crash into the wall or whatever. So every single part about it, I have a real healthy respect for it and I enjoyed it and I look forward to getting back in a car again soon.

Which of the characters, Trevor or Kid, which one would you say that you’re more like in real life?

DF: I think there’s a healthy bit of Trevor and Kid that make up me and it’s like we go through the history of all the roles that I’ve played. Each character I’ve ever played has a little bit of me in it, but there’s no character that I’ve played that has been Drew, not even close. But there are parts of Kid’s personality that I definitely see in myself and there’s parts of Trevor’s personality that I see and so on and so forth all the way back to one of my first jobs.

What’s been your favorite role so far in your career?

DF: I think it would have to be what I’m doing right now. My favorite role is usually the role I’m working on at the present moment. I think that’s just because I’m in it and I’m living it. Right now I’m living in Trevor’s world and being a member of the United States Army. Having two kids and knowing what that’s like and go over and fight in Iraq and come home and what that’s like, I’m enjoying it so much, especially because again, it isn’t me. It’s awesome, it really is. It’s a lot of fun.

How did you prepare for that role? Had you been around the military growing up at all?

DF: No, I hadn’t. I read the book that the show is based on and I started to just pay more attention to what’s going on or at least how the media is portraying what’s going on over in the Middle East and asked a lot of questions and was able to go up to Fort Bragg and shadow a specialist and I play a specialist on the show. I was able to shadow him and ask him a billion questions about his day to day activities and routines and where he goes from here and what he does in a mission in Iraq and all of that. It’s closing your mouth and keeping your ears open and your eyes open and just listening as much as possible, if that makes sense.

What was the rest of the cast like in “The Circuit”? How was it working with Michelle Trachtenberg and Billy Campbell and everybody else?

DF: It was incredible, it was absolutely incredible. I had the best time with them. I think I formed lifelong bonds with all of them. Billy (Campbell), Paul (Rae), Tommy (Lioutas) and I, we were just flying all over the place, like I said earlier. We were all over Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island and every weekend, it would be some new adventure and stay out all night on the weekends and just enjoy. It was lightning in a bottle, just perfect timing with the most wonderful of people. I knew Michelle prior to going into the movie and our paths had crossed hundreds of times in Los Angeles because we both live there and run around in the same circles. She’s just absolutely lovely and just has the most fun on set.

What are some of the main differences between working on a series like “Charmed” and on a drama like “Army Wives”?

DF: I think the big thing is Charmed, we’re talking about mythical things, like dragons and creatures, it’s all fantasy. It’s all make believe. The character Trevor is a very real and timeless character for what’s going on right now in the world. I am playing a serviceman in this country who is serving this country in Iraq and who is supporting a wife and kids back home. That’s a really pressing and real issue that’s going on.
What I love about our show, Army Wives right now is that we’re telling it from a woman’s standpoint where when the husband or wife leaves the house, how it affects the families at home. I think with everything that’s been going on in the world right now and the unrest in the Middle East, it’s really important that we are portraying these men and women as accurately as possible. We hold ourselves, all of us, the whole cast of Army Wives holds ourselves to the highest standard in regards to making sure that we’re getting everything right because these are real people we’re portraying.
There might not be a Trevor LeBlanc in the Army who is a specialist, but I am portraying a specialist who’s in the Army who is supporting a wife and two kids and who’s going on his first tour. And that’s going to be 18 months long where he’s not going to be able to see his family. And that is tough and it takes a special type of person to stay faithful to him and vice versa. If the woman was in the service and her husband at home with the kids, it’s very serious. This is a really serious subject matter, whereas Charmed was just kind of fun and happy and no one took themselves too seriously.