Moments With Mercy - Interview With Paul Greene!

Hey everyone, back to share another interview with you!  This one was actually a first for me since we did it over the phone but it was a lot of fun!! Without going any further let me tell you a little bit about Paul Greene.
"Greene's first notable role was in the MyNetworkTV telenovela Wicked Wicked Games,  His other acting credits include guest roles in series such as Freddie, Shark, The Wedding Bells, My Own Worst Enemy, and NCIS, CSI, HBO,s The Newsroom, Greene made his major-picture debut in Sofia Coppola's 2010 film Somewhere. He also has appeared in over 100 television commercials. He has most recently worked in several Hallmark movies, and the Hallmark series : When Calls The Heart."

And now for the interview:

1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Sure. I am a Canadian living in Los Angeles with my son Oliver, and Kate Austin, my girlfriend. I travel to Vancouver for a few months of the year to shoot When Calls The Heart. So I live mostly between those two cities, Vancouver and Los Angeles. But I grew up in a really small town in Alberta and I remember at about 16 watching a movie that made me want to act, so I put myself in acting school at 16 years old. Found my way somehow to New York City, Toronto, London, and all over Europe when I was in my 20s. And I was studying in New York with some really great acting teachers. I got my SAG card with the Screen Actors Guild 25 years ago? I was doing commercials in New York City, but always wanted to get out to LA. It wasn't till my son was born in New York that I decided to move the family from New York City - we lived in New York City - to Los Angeles, about 12 years ago. I decided to put all of my effort and all of my chips into one basket and go for acting. I let go of my other career for that. I was always dabbling, but I decided to just cut it off and go for it. And so that was 12 years ago, and the best hardest decision I made because I had a young family - my son was only 6 months - and I had a very, very successful career before that. I just completely left, one hundred percent, to start from nothing, at 30, in LA. And here I am 12 years later and have never been happier, and certainly never been busier! I seem to go from movie to movie, from series to series now, and it's what I've always dreamed of. The next chapter for me is directing but I'm learning along the way, studying in school for directing, and also shadowing different directors while I work. Between movie shoots I shadow directors on set to learn more about that because that's eventually where I want to go.

2.  What attracted you to the role of Carson Shepherd?
Well, at first they sent me two roles at the very beginning to look at, and the other role didn't speak to me like this did. I've always loved helping people with nutrition and fitness and giving advice on how to be healthy, and so I've always wanted to play a doctor. He was well fleshed out and I got to add a lot to him. He had a very tragic back story of losing his wife on the operating table and I wanted that challenge of dealing with that and bringing that to my character. I knew about When Calls The Heart because my mom and my girlfriend started watching it over Christmas, and they just got so hooked on it. I kept walking by and going, "What is this show?" I had met Erin, Jack, and Daniel at the TCA, which is a big press event that we go to to promote our movies. And also, the writer, Janette Oke, is from the same town that my grandma and grandpa were from. Janette actually knew them when they were in their teens. I spoke to Janette about this at a Hearties-- (who I love!)-- and I'm sure hearties will read this, and I'm so grateful to the Hearties. I had the chance to meet 500 of them at the Hearties Family Reunion last year and looking forward to the one that's coming this year. So, also, saw Janette there for the first time and she knew my grandma and grandpa by name and so there's a lot of serendipity, a lot of arrows and roads were pointing towards me taking this character that they offered me. And I love Hallmark! I think at that point I had done maybe 4 films for them, and they already had been very loyal to me. I wanted to continue working with them and be a part of that family. They made me feel very welcome right off the bat in Hope Valley. The fans were incredibly open to me coming to Hope Valley, and receptive of Carson and my character. So those are some of the reasons that I chose to play Carson.

3. What is your favorite character that you've portrayed?
That's a tough one because I take every role I do very personally. I feel there's always a lot that I have in common with the characters and there's also differences that I am very opposite to them. So I like playing characters that are opposite to me and challenging for me too, to go into a world where I've never been before. I never played a doctor before at this level, so I'm enjoying Carson probably the best so far. Just because I get time to go into him, with so many episodes - and believing for many seasons to come for this show and for Carson. So I'm going to choose Carson because I love his journey and his healing of his past with his wife, and where he's headed. And I get to bring my own personality to him, and also discover new things about Carson and share that with the fans of the show and with the world because now the show's literally being shown all over the world.

4. If you could make a movie with any actor/actress who would it be?
That's funny, who would it be?! You know, I love Jeff Bridges so much. I'm a huge fan of Jeff Bridges, that would be great. I did get to work with Kathy Bates already, which was a highlight.  She was so, so incredible. But I think I'm going to go with Jeff Bridges He loves music, he's funny.

5. Can you tell us about any current projects you're working on?
Yeah, of course.  I'm currently on Angel Falls, which is a Christmas film for Hallmark channel. We're one week in, we've got about another week and a half to go. It's going to come out this Christmas, it's called Angel Falls, and it's with Rachel Boston.  It looks like we're getting Beau Bridges (who is Jeff Bridges' brother), to play a very amazing character and I love Beau Bridges, too!  Also working on the When Calls The Heart Christmas Special, which is airing Christmas Day.  And When Calls The Heart, which airs In February next year - going into the remaining 10 episodes of that. We're starting next week.  Those are my projects right now.  And I'm currently working on something with my girlfriend, and a couple other projects in development.  One's a Christmas movie and the other's a romantic comedy. So several things at once. 

6.  What do you like to do in your free time?
I like to explore whatever place or city I'm in. I love going into nature and camping. I love doing anything at all with my son. Usually nature, camping, I love sports. I play beach volleyball and basketball. I love moving my body. I'm a big fan of yoga and have a daily practice. I read, and play my guitar. I keep pretty busy! But I love reading and I love music so I always have my
guitar with me - it's here in the car with me. Always looking to write and read. And usually too, I'm always on a project so I'm diving deeper into my study. I work with a great coach in LA so I'm always discovering more about my characters so that I can bring more to the screen.  When I'm on a project like this, I'm listening to the script and reading the script and then writing all about my character. That's a big part of what I like to do.

7.  What is your favorite part of being in Hallmark films?
My favorite part of being in Hallmark films is that we're putting out a good message to the world in a time when the news and the media, there's a lot of violence and negativity and fear. I think the reason Hallmark is doing so well with their ratings and viewers are flocking to the channel is it's always a family friendly message and a good healthy story, so people aren't afraid to have Hallmark channel on. No worries if the kids come in or grandma comes in.  I like the message, getting to do healing in the world, not promoting pain or promoting violence or propagating more fear. We're actually a place to go where people can relax and have a feel-good movie as a bit of a break from the insanity that the rest of the media throws at them. 

8.  What do you hope people take away from watching When Calls The Heart?
Well, When Calls The Heart has a great sense of community where everyone takes care of each other and even if someone messes up, they're given another chance. Even though it's a heightened Utopian sort of town where everyone seems to be very loving and optimistic, hopefully people can take a bit of that Hope Valley into their lives and back to their own community and realize that we need each other. Without community, people become very depressed and lonely. It's so important to have a strong network of friends that are actually there and show up and are reliable and are in service to each other, and I think Hope Valley really does that. They really take care of each other. And that's why I love playing Carson, I'm the defender - and a protector as well - of that town. I feel that responsibility as a doctor, and with a town to take care of, and that community. But I hope people really get a very strong sense of family, community, and optimism. That they can take that into their life, and hopefully, make the world a better place.

9. What is something most people don't know about you?
I used to play my guitar on the subways in New York City for almost 8 years. I would sit on the train and pick my guitar. A car packed with a hundred people, and I would sing Gospel songs, songs about God, songs that would make their day brighter. I would never take money. Sometimes I'd pass out a little piece of paper that would give them a place to go, like the church I was going to. So if they were troubled or homeless, they could be taken care of. That was a big part of my life. 

Paul, thank you so much for doing this.  It was a blast and I had so much fun chatting with you!  Readers, I hope you enjoyed.
~Mercy

Comments

  1. Paul Greene's a great guy. He's genuine and down to earth. He is good to his fans. I love his movies and I love him on When Calls the Heart. He is real.

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  2. Thank you for this interview. Carson became one of favorite characters on WCTH last season, and it's wonderful learning about the real man behind the part. So thankful he's a Godly man, and one that emulates God's own heart. LOVE him!

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    1. Your welcome! I loved doing it!! I agree. It was so neat for me to learn more about him and get to talk to him personally...
      ~Mercy

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