New talent and Lost Girl actor Aren Buchholz talks to us about his upcoming movie “When The Ocean Met The Sky” and what’s next for him.
Check out our exclusive interview with Aren Buchholz below:
To start off, can you talk a little about how you got into acting and entertainment?
It started off as just something fun to do, with no real aspirations for a career, but my passion was always there. For as long as I can remember, I always loved performing, whether it was homemade skits, on stage, or filming short films with my best friends; I just plain loved it. I grew up in a place where there wasn’t a ton of professional film projects taking place, so most of my training was on the stage, doing high school plays. However, the cool thing about Saskatchewan, the province in which I grew up, is that high school drama took place in competitive festivals. Much like the show ‘Glee,’ but minus the singing, we would prepare a play for the year, present it in Regionals, hoping to win and then move on to Provincials, where we would vie for the championship. It was some of my most cherished memories from that time in my life and I owe my love for the art to those great experiences.
Has anyone influenced or inspired you as an actor?
My coaches and teammates were especially big influences on me at that young age, and helped lead me down the path to becoming an actor. My whole family was very supportive too; when it came time to decide which avenue to take in life, my parents told me to do what will make me feel happy and fulfilled in life. It can be such a hard industry at times, so having that support system means the world. I looked up to a ton of actors growing up as well, although in those younger years, because I was such a goofball, I think I was influenced mostly by the great comedians, John Candy, Chris Farley, Mike Myers, Jim Carrey, just to name a few. But even then, it was always sort of a pipedream, and it wasn’t until I went for my first audition, and landed a recurring role on a locally filmed Space Network show called ‘Rabbit Fall,’ that I realized, I could really go after this. I could make this dream a reality. And that’s when I made the decision to fly out to Vancouver right after high school graduation to pursue my career.
You’ve worked with some amazing names over the years. Is there anyone you would love to work with someday, if you could pick anyone?
I have been very fortunate to work with some fantastic actors and I get giddy thinking about working with more in the future. That is such a hard question, to just pick one because my list is endless it seems. I’m going to say Edward Norton, his performances never cease to amaze and inspire me. On a comedic note, I’ll go with Will Ferrell because doing a scene with him would be thrilling and equally terrifying. His improvisational skills are mind blowing and it would be such a wonderful challenge to try and keep up.
Can you talk a little about your role in the recent film “When The Ocean Met The Sky” and what attracted you to it?
‘When The Ocean Met The Sky’ is an independent feature film I worked on a little over a year ago, which is now taking part in the festival circuit. It tells the story of three estranged brothers who must venture to a remote location in order to receive their inheritance, due to a stipulation in their late parents’ will. I played Jordan Holmes, the youngest of three brothers in a dysfunctional family. With his parents recently passing, and his two older brothers hating each other’s guts, Jordan has a broken soul. He tries so hard to mediate the battles between them and diffuse the tension with his positivity and sense of humor but his efforts are often extinguished by his brothers’ shared animosity towards each other. As I’m sure the youngest of any family can relate to, this is extremely difficult, to have your voice heard. I too am the youngest in my family so I could closely relate to him and I think sharing so many common traits led me to fully empathize with his situation. It allowed me to organically transition from innocence to his jaded apathy later in the film. It was such a delight to be able to work through the emotional arc of Jordan; I’ll never forget the experience. The script for the film was actually written by two of my best friends, and they had written the role of Jordan specifically with me in mind, so it was an honour to play him!
The plot is described as three brothers going on a wilderness adventure trek. Did your athletic background help you at all during production?
It definitely helped, but I had no idea how rigorous the hiking would be. We wanted the film to be as natural and realistic as possible, so the production team specifically chose locations that would test our limits and exhaust us throughout the shoot. There’s one scene specifically I’ll never forget. The boys reach a certain destination where they think they might be lost because they come across a large foreign object in the middle of the woods. Now, this object is actually a popular site that people can hike to, to check out, and it’s normally around a 45-minute hike through thick brush. But with our equipment and camera gear, it took nearly twice that. We woke up at about 4:30 am, drove to the trail, hiked for an hour and a half (carrying heavy camera gear), filmed for 12 hours, and then hiked back out of it. It was one of the most exhausting days of the shoot, but also one of the most rewarding. The whole crew came together as a team that day and it was an unforgettable bonding experience. We were indie filmmakers, doing what we love.
What did you enjoy most about filming the movie?
That is probably what I enjoyed most about filming ‘When The Ocean Met The Sky.’ Yes the story and characters meant a lot to all of us, but the experience of actually going out for a 20-day shoot, with a small crew, hiking some of the most rugged, scenic terrains in the world and bonding with everyone to make this passion project come alive, was just undeniably remarkable. During our wrap party, we sat around eating nachos, and each of us went around in a circle and shared our favorite memory of filming the movie. And it was unanimous that it was a frustrating, and demanding shoot at times, but mostly it was just one of the most incredible experiences of our lives that we’ll always cherish, and I personally can’t wait to make more independent films like it. Because I think it really shows on screen, that we were a family of filmmakers, out to tell a story and affect people.
Finally, is there anything else you’re working on? What can your fans expect from you next?
I’m currently shooting a Lifetime movie starring Bella Thorne, Daniella Bobadilla and Israel Broussard, named ‘Perfect High.’ I can’t say much about it at the moment, but I can tell you the movie is about teenage drug abuse, and I play the supporting character of Rick, who just happens to deal the drugs! Haha it’s been a really fun shoot so far, the cast is great. In March ‘When The Ocean Met The Sky,’ will be playing in Green Bay, Green Mountain, Kamloops and Tampa Bay (Gasparilla International Film Festival) if anyone wants to come and check it out!
Thanks so much to Aren Buchholz for chatting with us!
Be sure to keep up to date with Aren by following him on Twitter @ArenBuchholz.