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“Every once in a while it catches me off guard, but somebody will just walk up and [mention] Road To Perdition and I will have no idea how they recognise that,” Hoechlin tells Supanova. “It’s always nice when someone recognises that. It was definitely a movie I’m very proud to be a part of.”
After Road to Perdition, Hoechlin appeared in series like 7th Heaven and Castle before landing a spot as Derek Hale on MTV’s pop culture hit Teen Wolf.
“I was always focused on who Derek Hale was as a person; the struggles he was going through, the things that he was focused on, and I always tried to approach it from that way,” Hoechlin explains.
“The layers that go on top of it, like the werewolf and things like that, those are things you figure out as you go.
“It was a great time and there’s a lot of things that you do pick up and can take with you into future projects. I’m very grateful for that experience.”
Hoechlin explains how the show moved away from the comedy of the ‘80s Michael J. Fox film of the same name and took a more serious approach.
“I think we always said it was a reimagining. The tone we focused on from the beginning was to tell it like The Lost Boys with Kiefer Sutherland, that kind of feel. We always knew it was going to be a bit darker, but one of the things we did early on was remember not to take ourselves too seriously and incorporate some comedy, as you need that in that genre.”
Moving on from Teen Wolf, Hoechlin stepped into the boots of an extremely iconic character, Superman, joining The CW’s Supergirl.
“I tried to make sure that I didn’t treat it any differently to any other characters that I’d worked on,” he explains.
“Obviously you can’t do that and be completely unaware he’s an iconic character, but for me playing the character, you have to treat it as that character is a real person. I’ve always looked at Superman as someone who doesn’t see himself as iconic. I think he is aware of that, but I don’t think he buys into that, he just takes the responsibility that comes with the powers he has. I wanted to make it as removed from that as possible.”
Since it was announced that Jon Cryer would be joining Supergirl as longtime Superman arch-nemesis Lex Luthor, fans have been talking about a showdown between the two giants. “There’s always room for a showdown between Lex and Superman,” Hoechlin chuckles.
“I don’t think it’s happening anytime soon. I mean, as far as anything happening, I answer the phone when they call and say they’ve got something. I signed onto this job in the first place with an understanding it would be for two episodes and that was going to be it.”
During last year’s Elseworlds Arrowverse crossover, fans were introduced to Lois Lane, played by the brilliant Bitsie Tulloch. Since that introduction, a lot of fans have been talking about seeing a new Superman and Lois Lane TV show with Hoechlin and Tulloch.
“I know those rumours have been floating around as soon as those two episodes aired. Honestly, I try not to think about it too much just because there are so many people involved in making that decision that are not me. I enjoyed absolutely every moment of working with Bitsie, she was phenomenal and did a great job as Lois.”
From werewolves to superheroes, it stands to reason that Hoechlin would continue his work in other areas of pop culture moving forward.
“There is a character I am currently working on bringing to life, so at some point, I will reveal that,” he teases. “But presently it’s a question too close to home to give an honest answer, hopefully in the near future I can reveal that… I’m getting more involved in the production and development side of things as well.”
Looking back at his days on Road to Perdition, with all the experience he has now, he has some advice which applies not just to his younger self, but to all actors.
“When it comes to your work, be honest with your ideas, be honest with what you see the characters as. I realise now, there would be no worse thing than to get a job because you went in and presented an idea of a character that you thought they wanted to see and then show up on set and realise you have no idea how to carry this character throughout the whole thing.
“At the end of the day, don’t take yourself too seriously, there will be highs and lows, just ride them out and just realise you’re very lucky to be doing this for a living and meet some great people. Just stay humble.”
Tyler Hoechlin will appear at Supanova Comic Con & Gaming Melbourne (6-7 April) and Gold Coast (13-14 April).