loves the bad guy
By Tim Bullard
He’s not as nasty as he seems on film.
As caddies finished setting golf bags on the cars in the circle yard of The Dye Course Clubhouse Monday, photographers might not have noticed Col. William Tavington in the celebrity lineup. That was his screen name in “The Patriot.” Jason Isaacs shot Mel Gibson’s family in that film.
Born June 6, 1963, in Liverpool, England, he graduated from the same school as did Lawrence Olivier, the Central School of Speech and Drama. He graduated from Bristol University with a law degree. The man who played Lucius Malfoy in the Harry Potter series will be back in “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” in 2007, directed by David Yates on the J.K. Rowling series.His Tavington character was based on a real guy, Lt. Col. Banastre Tarleton who beat Brig. Gen. Isaac Huger in Moncks Corner today many years ago, April 14, 1780 in a night march began at 10 p.m. the night before. Swamps ruled out a flank attack. Tarleton, like Tavington, believed civilians should be punished for choosing sides in the Civil War.
What was it like to film in South Carolina and is this a great state to film in? “It was fantastic actually. I haven’t been back since we shot ‘The Patriot,’ and it bring back a lot of memories. What I remember the most is being adorned in some of the most beautiful environments I’ve ever seen, the sun coming up and coming through the trees, and I’m sitting on a horse as big as a building. “I just remember the people and the food. I remember trying not to get fat,” he said. “It’s incredibly hospitable. I suggest people get their stomachs stapled before they arrive because people will try to force feed you deep fried food for breakfast.” There were scenes shot in Rock Hill. “We shot in Charleston, and we played golf in Myrtle Beach and played Kiawah Island. It was a big golfing movie. Mel played, and I played.”
He has not seen “The Passion of the Christ.” “It wouldn’t be my favorite film to see, being Jewish,” he said. He was a miserably evil man against Mel Gibson in that movie. “When it’s well written, ‘The Patriot’ I think was a beautifully written part because people keep walking up to me, particularly here, you know, people keep on going, ‘My God, I hated you. I wanted you dead.’ I love playing parts that get a reaction from the audience. Everyone knows that I was in those films because I live in their nightmares.” Look for him with Jennifer Aniston in “Friends With Money.” “I’ve got a lot of indies, ‘Nine Lives.’ A comedy film called ‘Tennis Anyone?’ about the celebrity tennis world,” he said. The actor said it is his best bad guy role yet. “If that’s possible. I’ve got Harry Potter 4 in the can. I’m just about to shoot a series in Rhode Island called ‘Brotherhood’ for Showtime.” He can talk about the new Harry Potter movie. “It’s funny because you sign a big confidentiality agreement when they send you a script which you do for most scripts, but the thing about Harry Potter is it’s one of the best known books in the world, so there’s not much you can keep secret. I play Lucius Malfoy again.”
What about Tom Riddle or Voldemort?
He’s the dark lord that everyone says he is the one you can’t speak his name. “Voldemort is the great evil wizard you’ve been waiting to see for four books. Well he turns up in the shape of Ray Fiennes, and you won’t be disappointed.”
Look for Isaacs in “The Chumscrubber” with Glenn Close this year about a group of kids who kidnap a boy thinking he will lead them to stolen drugs.
You last saw him in “Elektra” which was released on DVD a few weeks ago.
Remember him as Hook in “Peter Pan” in 2003? He was in “The Tuxedo,” “Windtalkers,” “Sweet November,” “Blackhawk Down” and of course “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.”
Isaacs did not watch the wedding of Prince Charles. “No. My invite must have gotten lost in the post,” he said, smiling. “I can’t believe it because I sent a present. I’m going to try to get it back. I didn’t see it. For most of the British people that I know, the royal family are more of a tourist attraction. Like very few of the people who go to Disneyland, nobody I know has ever been to Buckingham Palace.”