Josh Lucas on ‘The Forever Purge' and Playing the Younger Version of Kevin Costner on ‘Yellowstone’ (2022)

Directed by Everardo Gout (Days of Grace) and written by James DeMonaco (the creator of The Purge franchise), the latest installment The Forever Purge shows what can happen when one night of mayhem and murder is no longer enough. When a rogue group of masked purgers decides not to end the annual Purge at daybreak and instead shows up on a Texas ranch, the family there, along with a Mexican couple, find themselves having to band together and fight back, if they have any chance at survival. The film stars Ana de la Reguera, Tenoch Huerta, Josh Lucas, Cassidy Freeman, Leven Rambin, Alejandro Edda, and Will Patton.

During this 1-on-1 phone interview with Collider, Lucas, who plays Dylan Tucker, heir to his family’s ranch in Texas, talked about what made him want to sign on for this film, how familiar he’d previously been with The Purge franchise, the way he views his character, what made this such a challenging shoot, and the Purge looks. He also talked about how enduring Sweet Home Alabama has been with fans, nearly 20 years later, his experience on the TV series Yellowstone, and what he’s currently shooting now.

Collider: How did this movie come your way?

LUCAS: I got a call from this director, Everardo [Gout], and I didn’t know his work, but I watched a bunch of his work before I read the movie and I was like, “Wow, this guy’s an artist.” What’s really interesting about him is that he was raised by Luis Buñuel, who many people would say is one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, up there with Fellini. He wasn’t just his godfather. He literally grew up in his house, raised by him. I think he still lives in Luis Buñuel’s house, to this day. It’s actually pretty amazing. He is really interesting.

Josh Lucas on ‘The Forever Purge' and Playing the Younger Version of Kevin Costner on ‘Yellowstone’ (1)

How familiar were you with the franchise? Had you seen any of the movies? Had you seen none of the movies? Have you seen some of the movies?

LUCAS: There’s no reason not to be just totally honest with you and blunt, but I hadn’t seen any of the movies. I didn’t know anything about them, other than the premise of them. Frankly, I’m not a genre person. Genre movies, frankly, scare me. I’m just one of those people who’s maybe a bit sensitive to it. So, I knew the premise and I knew that they were very violent. When I went back and researched the whole thing, it was quite interesting. I knew Ethan Hawke. I worked with him when we were kids and have a lot of respect for him, and the fact that he had done one was interesting to me. It validated it immediately. And then, I went back and read all of the New York Times reviews of all the different films. I was quite surprised to hear how fascinatingly political they are, straight up, and that they were pretty well-respected. I also knew that this one was standalone, so I didn’t necessarily have to go back and watch all of them, back to back. I dabbled in what they were and understanding them.

It was also clear from my conversations with Everardo that his idea for this movie was what he referred to as “hiding diamonds in a storm,” which I had never heard before. He was like, “That’s what I want you to do with me,” and I thought that was so interesting. And then, when I saw Everardo’s work, I knew he was a real filmmaker. So, that’s how it started. You do a movie like this because they’re going to pay you a ton of money, but the reality is that Blumhouse doesn’t do that. I was like, “Wait a second, they’re not gonna pay me any money to do this movie?” Then, you have to figure out why you’re doing the movie. I was really doing the movie because I thought the script was fascinating. I thought the idea of Mexican characters, Mexican actors and a Mexican director, and telling the story through that perspective was very interesting to me.

(Video) These Are The Yellowstone Cast's Actual Partners

Throughout my career, I’ve thought about why I wanted to do something. Am I doing it because I love the story? Am I doing it because I love the filmmaker? Do I wanna go to the place the movie is being made? Am I doing it because it’s a money job? There are these weird equations, particularly the longer I do this work and the more it’s about leaving my son. It’s a very complicated choice to go do a movie when it’s gonna be away from my son. But I really believed in the script and Everardo and the actors that he’d already hired. Frankly, this was a very difficult movie to make. It was not pleasant. It was painful and troubling, on a daily basis, because the experience of making it is rough. That’s all there is to it. It’s violent. The character was completely complicated in a way that was hard to wrap my head around and justify. And yet, I thought that the transition that he went through is so interesting. It was a tough movie that was very, very hard to make.

Josh Lucas on ‘The Forever Purge' and Playing the Younger Version of Kevin Costner on ‘Yellowstone’ (2)

How do you view your character? Did you see him as someone who is a little bit racist, or did you not see him that way?

LUCAS: You can’t deny that he’s racist. The reality of what I saw him as, is a replication particularly of white America and that he is how so many white Americans see themselves, which is that they don’t recognize their own inherent racial bias. He justifies it, but so many Americans, and particularly white Americans, are stuck in that concept of, “I’m not racist. I just have these thoughts.” He’s a fascinating example of that and of America, particularly a white American male . . . The movie is hitting on some really complicated ideas and the character, straight up, is one of those people. It’s scary to play that because you’re having to put a mirror to it and to what it is to be a white American, particularly a white American upper middle class guy, and see it through that lens. I do think (franchise creator) James DeMonaco is a pretty brilliant dude in what he’s doing and how he’s attempting to use genre.

When you shoot something this horrific, does it feel different when you’re shooting it during the day, as opposed to the stuff that you had to shoot at night?

LUCAS: That’s a really interesting question. Acting is such a weird job because we often work at night, and nights are rough. When you’re working nights, your brain struggles. I do think that there’s a power to the concept of the Purge happening during the day. It takes away that nocturnal mindset, but it doesn’t make it easier. It might even make it harder, in some ways. Nights suck because they’re so hard on your body, especially the older you get.

Josh Lucas on ‘The Forever Purge' and Playing the Younger Version of Kevin Costner on ‘Yellowstone’ (3)

In a lot of ways, people think of you as the charming romantic comedy guy, primarily because of the impression that you made on people in Sweet Home Alabama, and those are not really attributes that would help you in something like The Purge. Is it cathartic for you, in any way, to tap into that kind of darkness, or is it just always mentally and physically draining?

LUCAS: I wouldn’t say this guy’s a bad guy. He’s not at all. There’s a heightened atmosphere to the character, in terms of the way I feel like I was representing certain elements of America, like we talked about before. You’re almost trying to maybe take elements of that Sweet Home Alabama sweetness and the reason why people love Jake and that character and the way that movie has stayed with me for all these years, and turn it on its head, in a way. You’re maybe using those good feelings that people have for me and that character. Maybe it takes a little bit of the sting with this character. He also changes, which is interesting.

That’s a movie that you made nearly 20 years ago and it’s a movie that I still watch, anytime I pass by it on TV. Are you surprised that that’s one of the projects you’ve done that has held up for so long and that people seem like they will always love it?

LUCAS: What’s funny is that, if you go back and look at the Rotten Tomatoes rating of Sweet Home Alabama, it’s something like 20%. It got horrifying reviews. I remember, at the time, being quite surprised by that. I didn’t necessarily think it was gonna be some classic, but I did think it was a really fun, special movie that had a great heart. What I’m surprised by is the fact that it still stands up the way that it does. It’s still so enjoyable and there’s still a real sense of interest in it, like you, and like so many people I know that say the same thing. Consistently, I have men come up to me and say, “Dude, I don’t like romantic comedies, but I like that one.” I agree.

Josh Lucas on ‘The Forever Purge' and Playing the Younger Version of Kevin Costner on ‘Yellowstone’ (4)

I like it because I don’t like typical romantic comedies and that movie is a little bit quirky and weird and strange, which made it much more enjoyable.

LUCAS: You’re dead right on. Andy Tennant, who directed that movie, is a really interesting guy. He’s got all of those quirks and eccentricities and shadows in the corner of his life, and so does Reese [Witherspoon] and so do I. I think we all wanted a little bit of that in the movie. I like that you like it for that reason.

One of the things I love about this particular Purge film is that you have that gauntlet sequence where you just have to keep making your way through everything, with a tank, explosions, and all of the shooting. What’s it like to do something like that? How long did it take to shoot all of that?

LUCAS: That was not easy at all, to say the least. That was rough. It was one of those sequences where they talked about it for a long time. We prepared and rehearsed it for a full day a two. And then, the shoot of it was a couple of days as well. It was relentless. With the noise and the movement, it was one of those experiences where you were like, “Whoa, this is heavy, dangerous filmmaking.” They told all of us, “We’re gonna do this and we’ve gotta get it right. We don’t know how long it’s gonna take because until you get it, you don’t got it.” The reality was that it wasn’t something that you could just do over and over, in terms of the resets and the explosions and the damage it was gonna do physically, to the set but also because you were gonna get beat up by it physically. I think we only did maybe six or seven takes before that was finally it, and each time, you got a little bit more whacked, but there was a real sense of achievement, honestly, in what we were attempting to do. It was one of the reasons I was so fascinated to work with this [Everardo] . . . These are incredibly physical filmmakers. You’re really in a movie that’s a physically daunting, painful experience, to get the authenticity that he was after.

Another thing that’s really important and vital to this franchise are the Purge looks, and in this one we get Purge bunnies, Purge cowboys and Purge construction workers, among various other things. Was there a look, costume, or mask that most stood out for you, or that you found most creepy?

LUCAS: Because of that scene where I’m walking through the stables and those guys come out at me, and it’s the same dude who has been working on the ranch, that one struck me. Maybe it’s because I’m dealing with it so straight in my face. It’s pretty easy to pretend to be afraid when the images that are coming at you are palpable and terrifying.

What are you currently working on?

LUCAS: I’m doing something called Long Slow Exhale, which is a really interesting story. It’s a fictional story about a sex scandal that happened with a national champion female basketball team in Atlanta, Georgia. The creator of the show is a woman named Pam Veasey, who is a really interesting showrunner that’s been around for a long time and had this idea in our head, from when her kids were both attempting to become NFL players. She was looking at the landscape of what would happen if somebody falsely accused one of her kids of something, so she ran with that idea. It’s a very complicated story. It’s from the team that did Big Little Lies, and it’s very, very interesting.

What it was like for you to take on playing the younger version of Kevin Costner on Yellowstone? Is that weird and daunting to do?

LUCAS: Anytime you’re playing a personality that’s iconic and real, it’s harder to do it when the person is an actor. I’ve had it happen a couple of times. With Don Haskins for Glory Road, I had the real coach there with me, helping me through it. It’s an amazing challenge. I got a call from Fred Schepisi, this really cool Australian director, who wanted me to play the younger version of Paul Newman in this TV series that we did quite awhile back, called Empire Falls. With Kevin, it was different because it was Taylor Sheridan. I really like Taylor. I think he’s a fascinating, amazing screenwriter and storyteller. I sometimes find these people in my life who I’ll reach out to and say, “Look, I’ll be an extra for you,” and Kevin is one of those people. I was very, very honored to go do it. I really find Taylor’s work extraordinary, and Kevin is an icon for a reason.

Josh Lucas on ‘The Forever Purge' and Playing the Younger Version of Kevin Costner on ‘Yellowstone’ (6)

It seems like that would make it more intimidating.

LUCAS: Luckily, he’s not there when I’m shooting. We’re almost kept separate on purpose. Taylor and I talked about the idea of The Godfather. When [Robert] De Niro was playing Brando, he wasn’t attempting to look or act like Marlon Brando. He was attempting to play the character. That’s what we talked about.

Do you think that you’ll ever show up on Yellowstone again?

LUCAS: Please write it, I would love to. I really would. I really liked doing that show. There’s even been some talk of doing whole flashback episodes. That is my hope. I don’t know if or when that’ll happen, but I’m open to it, that’s for sure . . . It’s one of the most beautiful shows that I’ve ever been a part of, in terms of the landscapes. Even getting to set can be extraordinarily challenging, where you’re like taking an ATV to a horse, and then taking a horse to set. It’s the best.

The Forever Purge is now playing in theaters.

He is best known for his roles in various films, including American Psycho (2000), You Can Count On Me (2000), The Deep End (2001), A Beautiful Mind (2001), Sweet Home Alabama (2002), Hulk (2003), An Unfinished Life (2005), Glory Road (2006), Poseidon (2006), Life as We Know It (2010), The Lincoln Lawyer (2011), Red Dog (2011), J. Edgar (2011), Breakthrough (2019) as well as the Ford v Ferrari (2019).. After the divorce from the love of his life Jessica Ciencin Henriquez , Josh has since been busy growing his career.. Lucas is a father of one son known as Noah Rev Maurer who was born in June 2012.. Actor Josh Lucas, (Ford v. Ferrari, A Beautiful Mind, American Psycho, Sweet Home Alabama) just wrapped up 2 hours of recording voiceovers for numerous 30-second advertising spots for The Home Depot at Studio A.. Lucas starred alongside Reese Witherspoon in the romantic comedy which was released in the year 2002.

However, most of the people in the series aren't exactly A-list stars, but nevertheless, they've worked on some pretty high-profile movies and TV shows.. However, we think she should've had that breakout moment long before now.. Point of fact, Beck emerged as the series' true big bad in the second season, and after a couple of particularly brutal messages passed between John Dutton and the Beck brothers, the Duttons ultimately put matters to bed in true Wild West fashion in Yellowstone's second season finale.. Still not sure where you've seen Ryan Bingham's face before?. And yes, you've absolutely seen the face of the actor who portrays Ryan on "Yellowstone" before.. Point of fact, the actor's dashing looks and singular charm alone have landed him quite a few gigs over the years.. They're almost certainly what led Taylor Sheridan to cast him as the young John Dutton for the flashback scenes in "Yellowstone.". Of course, "Yellowstone" fans are well aware that hasn't always gone well for the Dutton kids (or John, for that matter).. Frankly, just about every character on the show has played that part at one point or another.. There were a lot of new faces entering the Dutton Yellowstone Ranch orbit in Season 4 of "Yellowstone.". For the most part, it isn't trying to be.. He did, however, deliver memorable turns in MTV's "Catfish: The TV Show" and the Freeform teen drama "Good Trouble.". As you might've guessed from her last name, the actor who plays Teeter on "Yellowstone" is a bit of a Hollywood legacy.. Early in her own acting career, Eden has already proven herself a talent to be reckoned with, earning her first legit film credit with a supporting role in the well-received 2012 indie "Ruby Sparks."

During this 1-on-1 phone interview with Collider, Lucas, who plays Dylan Tucker, heir to his family’s ranch in Texas, talked about what made him want to sign on for this film, how familiar he’d previously been with The Purge franchise, the way he views his character, what made this such a challenging shoot, and the Purge looks.. Collider: How did this movie come your way?. LUCAS: I got a call from this director, Everardo [Gout], and I didn’t know his work, but I watched a bunch of his work before I read the movie and I was like, “Wow, this guy’s an artist.” What’s really interesting about him is that he was raised by Luis Buñuel, who many people would say is one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, up there with Fellini.. Had you seen any of the movies?. Had you seen none of the movies?. And then, when I saw Everardo’s work, I knew he was a real filmmaker.. The movie is hitting on some really complicated ideas and the character, straight up, is one of those people.. Acting is such a weird job because we often work at night, and nights are rough.. We don’t know how long it’s gonna take because until you get it, you don’t got it.” The reality was that it wasn’t something that you could just do over and over, in terms of the resets and the explosions and the damage it was gonna do physically, to the set but also because you were gonna get beat up by it physically.. It was one of the reasons I was so fascinated to work with this [Everardo] .. I’ve had it happen a couple of times.

Life hasn't been entirely easy for Dutton, who has seen his share of hard times over the years.. You've probably seen his face before, though, because Josh Lucas has been a steady presence in Hollywood for roughly three decades now.. Here's why young John Dutton from Yellowstone looks so familiar.. That break came a few years later, when he landed another choice role among another impressive cast.. For most of the American Psycho cast, the film was a springboard to bigger and better things professionally.. Of course, Sweet Home Alabama was hardly Josh Lucas' first turn in a big time movie.. The year prior, in fact, the actor had delivered memorable work in a Best Picture winner, and done so opposite a lauded performer at the absolute top of his game.. It was a welcome surprise, then, when the actors found themselves sharing the screen once again 20 years after they appeared together in American Psycho .. That moment came in a film that featured yet another critically lauded performance from Bale: 2019's full-throttle biopic Ford v Ferrari , which saw him playing an impetuous race car driver by the name of Ken Miles.. While both Damon and Bale delivered show-stopping performances, Lucas' weasely turn as the smarmy Beebe remains one of the most memorable in the entire film, if only because it found Lucas once again holding his own while sharing the screen with Bale.

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