If he’s not breaking hearts in Evelyn: The Cutest Evil Dead Girl at the Toronto International Film Festival, then he’s trying to save the day alongside Harrison Ford’s character in K-19: The Widowmaker, and from here, Joshua Close only has eyes for making the best of his already aspiring career.
In the film festival, he co-starred in a short film called Evelyn: The Cutest Evil Dead Girl, a Dr. Seuss styled story about a girl who wants to find friends among the living. The film got him a fair amount of attention, and gave him the chance to attend the festival for the first time, even if he did find it overwhelming. “I’m not really into schmoozing.”
At the festival he also found himself beside some of the biggest names in the business and even though he had the chance to rub a few shoulders, he didn’t lose his head for a second. Is he blasé though? “I’m exactly blasé,” he said. “I saw Dustin Hoffman, and I kind of saw Philip Seymour Hoffman, and it’s not like a star-struck feeling, it’s more like admiration. Like, I completely admire them and I completely admire their career choices. That’s exactly the kind of path I’m sure many actors want to take, and me being one of them.”
In his big feature film work of the year, K-19: The Widowmaker, he got another chance to run with the big names in the business, working with Ford and Liam Neeson, as the Russian Junior-Aid Viktor, but some of his best moments working beside Ford ended up on the cutting room floor. “We had a lot of scenes together that actually got cut out of the movie… he [Christopher Kyle] actually wrote a scene for us. We had a few things together that didn’t quite make the final reel.”
Still, the role was a great step for Close, who had to train with the Canadian Navy to learn Fire Fighting, Flood Fighting, and Radiation Training to better play his character. Learning from the other actors was probably a more valuable lesson however, as Close said, “They are just such a talented group of actors. They know exactly what they’re doing, or at least they pretend they know what they’re doing at all times, kinda thing, you know what I mean? Like, they just have such a knowledge of what’s going on around them and how to get into character and all that kind of stuff,” to which he added, “And just such a pleasant trio to work with.”
He didn’t make it out of nowhere though. He studied at Circle in The Square in New York, appeared in “Undressed”, an MTV soap-opera-type series where he played a pathetic boyfriend who can’t please his girlfriend (“Of which I know nothing about so I had to get into the complete character for that. I had to go around and pretend I was completely sexually incapable.”), and guest starred in “Blue Murder” where he got to play a total “bad ass”, which he said was amazing since it was his first chance to play a bad guy.
From here though, he’s not sure what will come next. Film prospects have dried up a little, but instead of sitting and waiting for something to happen, he’s decided to take matters into his own hands. Along with another friend in town, he’s working on a script for a feature film which he says is getting bites from Hollywood already. For a 21 year-old who only graduated from high-school 2 years ago and hasn’t written before – that’s pretty ambitious!
That just makes you wonder, where does he see himself in 10 years? “I just want to sort of surround myself with greatness.”
So far, I’d say it’s working.