Published on October 19th, 2013 | by admin
Dolph Lundgren Interview … 28 years of action!
Welcome to Impulse Gamer Doph! I’ve been a huge fan of your movies growing up and films like THE PUNISHER, UNIVERSAL SOLDIER hold a special place in my childhood heart, especially MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE.
Was there ever any plans for a sequel for that film?
No, this was made when Canon Films got in trouble towards the end of that picture and they had some huge financial difficulties. I did do those type of super hero films before they were mainstream and back then they were considered stupid to play some sort of toy, super hero or flying on a disc. Obviously now, it’s neat and every other movie is a super hero movie. As with Masters, I heard they were going to do a remake.
You’ve starred in over 40 films, what have been your favourites?
Personally for me, it’s probably Rocky IV because it was my first big movie and it had a lot of meaning and memories. It was also a big change in my life. Then it would be Universal Soldier with Van Damme as it was the first time I starred or co-starred in a bigger movie but I also did a couple of movies in between there. I’ve also done some directing which I enjoyed and of course The Expendables because it reunited me with Stallone and working with another bunch of actors… you knows action legends which was a nice thing to be part of.
I also get to be Gunner Jensen [The Expendables 1, 2 & 3] who’s a crazy character, gets to drink and shoot people [laugh] … scream at the top of your lungs [laugh] It’s all these great things and it’s kind of fun as it’s a release to show up on set because playing my character is kind of satisfying. There’s a lot of other movies as well like I Come in Peace and The Punisher. The Punisher had some real fighters from Tokyo who thought they were coming to a real fight and didn’t know it was a movie. It was the 80’s [laugh]…
I’m not sure what the plans are but I do know there are some plans and they’re talking about Expendabelles with chicks… maybe Gunner can show up there. So I’m not sure what the plan is with Gunner but I do enjoy the big screen version with all the other actors in it and I believe that’s what the strength of the product is. You get to meet all these heroes or legends so I think Gunner belongs with the rest of the crew there.
Blood of Redemption is being released in Australia on the 6th of November on Blu-ray and DVD, what kind of story can we expect?
It’s kind of a crime drama where I play this body guard to a crime boss who’s come back to resolve an issue. It’s sort of a who done it mystery with murder. It had a great assemble of actors in it which I enjoyed and it was a little different.
What was it like playing Axel in Blood of Redemption?
When I moved back to Los Angeles after The Expendables, I decided to try these different roles to play some characters closer to myself. Gunner is a little bit of myself but he’s crazy and over the top so characters like Axel are more realistic.
You directed your first picture in 2004 with The Defender, what’s it like being more involved on the other side of the camera?
There’s a huge difference because when you’re directing, it’s on your shoulders and you’ve got time and budgets to work with and you get the producers on your ass all the time. The satisfying part is that you get to move the audience and figure out how to engage and entertain them. You also get to work with the movie production crew which is different than working with just actors. There were a couple of films where I did a few pictures back to back and I ran into a rough ride on the last one I did. I directed 4 and took over a fifth one and then I released that I don’t want to direct unless I can produce as well.
Because if you can only direct, unless it’s a big movie like Expendables, you kind of know it’s going to end fairly good because there’s too much money involved and they’ll get enough talented guys to help put the film together if you’re not doing it. But when you directing, especially starring and directing, you put so much of your soul into that but the producer has the final word, he can change the final cut and it really hurts because of all the work you’ve put in. It happened to me and I said screw this, it’s not going to happen again unless I can produce.
So I took a break from the Expendables series and now I have a film that I’m producing next year in Thailand [Skin Trade] and when I direct next, I want to produce something about Sweden or Scandinavia because I have a connection there. But when you’re producer, you’re the only one who can screw it up and it’s up to you to make it turn out good.
You’ve studied, lived and filmed movies in Australia, do you have plans to visit our country again?
I shot the Punisher there six years after I studied in Australia and I’ve been back for some publicity tours since then but I haven’t spent time down there for awhile. I still have friends down there in the martial arts and when you’re 22-23, it’s your informative years and you absorb things a different way so I have a special feeling for Australia as I know what’s it like to live there and I know the people. I would go back if I could.
You need to come back and film something here.
Yeah, I would love to!
You mentioned martial arts, what’s your training regime involve now? Do you still practice Kyokushin Karate?
I’ve cut back a little on my martial arts because the sparring is kind of tough on your body but I still do it during the week but it’s kind of a different regime now which is more maintenance. I do weights twice a week maybe, one heavy day and one medium day. I do some slimming, cardio and use a weight vest of 20 kilos which is pretty good and is hard work, especially walking in the sand for 20 to 30 minutes to get a good work out.
I’m also doing a bit of rehab like core exercises and balance to keep me going. It also depends on what kind of film you’re doing and if I’m doing Expendables and knowing I’m standing next to Terry Crews whose one of those guys with the huge arms [laugh] so then I do more shoulders and arms, use more weights. At the moment, I’m playing a life guard in SAF3 and although I do lift some weights, I do more swimming now as I require a different body structure which is more leaner.
You’re currently in South Africa, what are you working on over there?
I’m working on a series called SAF3 which is the first time I’ve done dramatic television and is a series about lifeguards and rescue operations set in Malibu but filmed in South Africa… go figure. I play the leader of this unit and basically we rescue people on and around the coast. It’s different than doing films and is more dialogue heavy and every episode has a rescue theme which builds on the relationships between characters.
It’s interesting and I’m learning from it.
You’ve played both heroes and villains, which is your favourite and why?
They’re different and playing a hero is more difficult because it’s closer to you but playing a villain, you can live out your fantasies such as being bigger and crazier that you can’t do in real-life [laugh]. In one way it’s more fun but recently, I’ve preferred playing characters a little closer to myself to show different parts of my personality that people haven’t seen yet.
With the Expendables series, who was your favourite co-star and why?
That’s a tough one because there’s so many [laugh] and I don’t spend much time with them all like Arnold because I don’t have many scenes with them. I’m mostly with either Randy Couture, Terry Crews and now Wesley Snipes who is in the new one and I like him a lot, he’s a cool guy and I like his character. There’s also some good chemistry between me and Stallone, especially visually and I’m not sure if this is because of Rocky but there’s something. He’s fun to do scenes with as we have a good connection.
Out of all the action stars you’ve worked with who was the least “actiony” as in who chickened out of stunts more or who couldn’t actually fight in fight scenes?
[laugh] I can’t say anything negative about anyone but yeah, some are more action than others. In Expendables, most are quite physically capable like Sly, Arnold, Randy Couture and all these guys. Harrison Ford is flying the chopper and he’s like 70 years old and won’t be running around doing roundhouse kicks and I won’t be doing that when I’m 70 either [laugh] But I’ve been lucky working with a lot of actors who are physically capable, especially doing fight scenes with them.
But what’s going on today with all these super hero types movies is that a lot of the actors and they’re good actors can’t do fight or stunt scenes as there’s five or six doubles and a lot of effects to make it work. I mean people know about it but they don’t care as much so I’ve been fairly lucky with guys who can move.
With Jean Claude Van Damme, you caught up with for the Universal Soldier 3 and Expendables, was that the first time you saw him since you both starred in the original Universal Solder?
No I haven’t seen him much, before that was at a charity even in Austria but I like Jean Claude but he’s had his ups and downs. He’s a smart guy and very clever when it comes to fights and I hope that he can revive his career and do some more work.
What do your family or your daughters think of your movies?
You know I’ve insulated them from the Hollywood BS but they’re starting to realise how much hard work it is. They’ve been on film sets like the Expendables and also openings and premiers. I’ve given them a taste of it which I think is enough. One of them wants to become a model or maybe an actress but who knows. I’m trying to keep them in school until they’re around 20 and then we’ll see. They enjoy it but don’t watch too much of my older movies. They like the new ones and kind of appreciate the work that goes into it, especially as they get older.
Thanks for your time Dolph and all the best for future work.
Thanks buddy, I appreciate it.
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