Exclusive Interview with Hellboy’s Douglas Tait
If you enjoy fantasy shows and movies like I do, chances are you’ve seen Douglas Tait in action and not known it. Douglas has been seen in Grimm, Teen Wolf, and Legacies and this weekend you can see him as Gruagach in the new Hellboy. Read on to learn about his experience filming in Bulgaria, what the Gruagach suit was like, his pretty fantastic Frankenstein idea and more!
I am very excited to see Hellboy. How did you got involved with the project?
The FX makeup designer, Joel Harlow, referred me and I was hired based off his referral and my body of work.
Are you a comic book fan? Were you a fan of the Hellboy comics before getting involved with the movie?
I was never into comic books, but I have always been a fan of comic movies, and I was certainly a big fan of the Hellboy films prior to this one.
Can you tell us about your character, Gruagach?
Gruagach was once a shapeshifting warrior who is currently trapped in the body of a stunted boar because of Hellboy. He now seeks revenge on Hellboy because of this humiliation. Joel Harlow designed the character and it’s all practical FX.
The pictures I’ve seen of him are insane! Can you tell us about the costume process?
It was a full suit with an animatronic head. It took less than an hour to get in the suit, and the head. The head was the last thing to go on me. It was attached to a battery pack for the servos to move in the face. The head weighed about 50 pounds and would get extremely heated while I was in it. There was a fiberglass skull cap that went on my head like a helmet, and the Gruagach head was attached to this skull cap. The head looked amazing even when it was just sitting on a table.
If I remember correctly, you filmed a lot of the movie in Bulgaria. What was that filming experience like?
Yes, we filmed a few days in Somerset, England and the rest of the film was shot in Bulgaria. I enjoyed filming there. The food was great and things were extremely cheap. The crew was really talented. Nu Boyana Studios is huge and the sets looked great; I was amazed at how good the local set builders were. Yariv Lerner, son of Avi Lerner, runs Nu Boyana, and he is a really nice guy. It was a great experience.
You have played all different kinds of monsters and fantasy characters over your career. Is there a “monster” that you would love to bring to life?
I got my start in high school playing Frankenstein at Universal Studios in Hollywood. I have always wanted to bring to life Frankenstein’s Monster in a big Universal Film. Guillermo Del Toro, are you reading this??
Kind of going off of that, because you’ve played so many monsters/fantasy characters throughout your career, do you have a personal acting “bucket list” of roles you’d like to play or are you content with just playing a variety of monsters from here on out?
I enjoy playing monsters, but I am definitely not content with only that. I play a lot of roles out of makeup, but they haven’t been in films as big as Hellboy, yet. My bucket list would be to act opposite my favorite actors like: Sean Penn, Christian Bale, Matthew McConaughey, Joaquin Phoenix, Tom Hanks, and others, in well written comedic/dramatic roles out of FX makeup.
Looking through your IMDb page, there are credits for not just acting, but also stunts, producing, directing and more. Is there any aspect of the entertainment industry that you’d like to do more of?
In the future, I would like to do more projects as a director. My passion is acting, but I will direct more in the future and give my talented friends opportunities.
Lastly, our website is called Talk Nerdy With Us, so we like to ask what do you nerd out about? It can be anything from theater, to sports, to the art of acting!
I am a real nerd about acting! I study great actors performances and I’m continually working on my craft. I want to be a master. I truly love it and nerd out about it daily!
Head to the theaters this weekend to see Douglas in Hellboy! Make sure you follow Douglas on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.