So far, Charlie Hunnam hasn’t had time to miss his FX biker series Sons of Anarchy.
Since the show went off the air three years ago, he’s been working consecutively in three high-profile films. He plays King Arthur in Guy Ritchie’s cinematic reinvention King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, and co-stars in the redo of Papillon with Mr. Robot’s Rami Malek.
First up is his biopic role defining British explorer Percy Fawcett in The Lost City of Z. The obsessed Fawcett vanished in 1925 while searching for the mythical Amazonian El Dorado.
Twilight’s Robert Pattinson, with a beard, co-stars as Fawcett’s aide-de-camp on his expeditions. Sienna Miller plays Fawcett’s long-suffering wife and Tom Holland (the new Spider-Man) portrays his son.
Hunnam admits he couldn’t refuse the movie challenge based on David Grann’s 2009 non-fiction book. “I related deeply to Fawcett’s story,” says the 37-year-old at a Beverly Hills hotel suite. “I don’t think I had to reach for who he was or try to make sense of what he did.”
However, neither writer-director James Gray, Hunnam or Pattinson appreciated what they would be up against shooting the key Amazon jungle sequences in various locations in Colombia during four gruelling weeks. The director praises both actors for their determination and dedication while offering special tribute to Hunnam who endured more than just the extreme heat and humidity.
In one scene deep in the jungle, Hunnam fell to the ground and then watched as a deadly scorpion walked over his hand without incident, “but a consultant on set said I would have been dead in three minutes” if it had stung.
“And I had a bug burrow into my ear and it bit a whole into my ear drum,” he says, although he recovered. “Whenever it became tough, though, it invariably helped the film. We didn’t have to act, we just had to exist in those jungle scenes, and I rung every drop out of the experience that I could.”
His on-screen partnership with Pattinson was just as key and unique as the film’s jungle exteriors. Encouraged by Gray, both actors remained apart from each other during their off-screen moments as a way to inform their on-screen relationship.
“He’s an interesting actor and involved in his process and deeply committed,” says Hunnam of Pattinson. “He easily fell into letting the relationship exist just on screen.”
As the headliner, Hunnam also felt an obligation to the Fawcett legacy, which famously encouraged writer Arthur Conan Doyle to pen The Lost World novel and was the likely inspiration for the Indiana Jones character in the Steven Spielberg movies.
“I was acutely aware of the responsibility — I had to bring this guy to life and honour James Gray’s script,” says Hunnam. “That’s why I decided to do everything I could, and leave nothing on the table.”
He’s been that kind of focused performer since the beginning of his career in London. At 18, he landed his first major role in the U.K. series Queer as Folk. After moving to L.A., he earned a recurring role in the series Young Americans and Judd Apatow’s short-lived Undeclared. It was followed by parts in a string of films, including 2002’s Nicholas Nickleby, Cold Mountain the next year, and Children of Men four years later.
Playing Jax in Sons of Anarchy from 2008 to 2014 saved his career from imploding, and finally gave him a reason to be. “I learned so much and became a much better actor who had a purpose,” he says.
That’s why he wanted to pay tribute to Fawcett’s struggle with ‘What does it all mean?’ when the explorer wasn’t on expeditions.
“I can relate to that,” says Hunnam. “I have a little bit of a struggle with that, too, and it’s only when I’m in the process of filming that I am at my happiest and calmest.”
Source : http://news.nationalpost.com/arts/movies/the-lost-city-of-zs-charlie-hunnam-has-found-his-purpose-for-acting-post-sons-of-anarchy