Best Known as Liam Court from “90210,” Matt Lanter has made a huge move in his career entering the SciFi world on “Star Crossed.” In an exclusive interview, Lanter sat down to discuss his “90210” days and how “Star Crossed” is the must watched show of the season.
Q: How did the role of Liam Court come about, and what was is it like to be a part of the cast of “90210”?
Lanter: It was something I will always cherish. I made some great friends and some memories that I will always have. It’s interesting to be a part of a show like that for so long; you only share that bond with other cast mates that you have been working with. They’re the only ones who really know what it’s like to be on a show like that for that long. It’s definitely something to be proud of and I’m always going to have that.
Q: How was it to go directly from “90210” to “Star-Crossed,” so quickly?
Lanter: It was literally one day. We found out around like 2 p.m. that “90210” was not coming back; which was honestly a bit of a surprise since we had a finale episode written that was a bridge to season six, and we had already done the paper-read and then we started filming fragments of that episode. Then we found out we weren’t coming back, so they scrambled to rewrite the finale episode to make it a finale … literally within two hours, we had my managers on the phone with CW. CW has been awesome.
Q: What drew you in to the character of Roman on “Star-Crossed”?
Lanter: I read several scripts and “Star-Crossed” really jumped out at me, and at that time it was called “Oxygen.” It was really different from “90210,” which is what really drew me in. I was really looking for something different, after five years of doing the same, I was looking for something else, and that’s what really excited me about it. A SciFi drama was really exciting for me as a fan, and Roman was a very strong character, as is the story.
Q: Within the first pilot episode, the characters show a lot of relatable elements, such as bullying, and being integrated into a new school.
Lanter: It’s a complicated pilot, that’s for sure. That’s one of the things that is really interesting about our show. It’s so layered though, and there are so many elements to it, way more than just the romance element. The social issues of equality and racial equality, bullying, and all of that is there in the story and I think people are going to be surprised to see that. I think a lot of people are going to be tuning in thinking it’s a show about aliens and romance; but they are going to tune in and get something way more, they are going to get a very real story. I think it’s a very mature story, and I hope people can keep up with that, because there’s a lot going on in the first episode and even into the second, because there’s so much stuff we’re trying to set up; the romance, the political power stuff, fighting for the inequality.
Q: How do you go into playing a character that is not human, and living in a crazy environment?
Lanter: Roman’s a character. He’s got the same feelings, the same emotions, and the same ability to love and hurt, hate and cry. That’s an advantage to me as an actor because those emotions are played the same in a human character. They’re honest and they’re real. As far as the other stuff, like how do you approach playing an out of this world character? Well obviously I’ve never been put into an internment camp, but you can do a lot of research of how it felt. It’s also kind of freeing, because I’m free to build my own character.
Q: So what is “Star-Crossed” really about and what can fans expect this season?
Lanter: In a nutshell, it’s a story about seven teenagers that are being put in a high school integration program. These aliens have been on this Earth for ten years now, and society knows they are there. This is a world where two species exist now, and how we live from there on out. Roman with this integration program goes to school and reconnects with Emily who saved him when he was a boy. There’s an immediate connection there, that Roman sees Emily as hope. There is so much bad things happening around him … he sees her as hope in all of this.
As far as the rest of the season, when people watch the show, people are going to have to put down the computer and the cell phone and just watch it, because it’s a very detailed story and there’s so much to grasp on to. We’ve got a lot of really cool stuff coming up this season. You’ll see how the integration program continues and develops and the acceptance or the non-acceptance of the aliens, and hate groups between the different species. It’s mind-blowing.
Q: Is there anything else you would like to say to your fans?
Lanter: I promise them that this show is so fun to immerse yourself in because it’s real and extravagant and wild at the same time. It’s a fun thing to lose yourself in every week, and I promise you that you will get invested in these characters, and you’ll care about them and the story that’s happening around them. You’ll root for some of them, you’ll hate some of them, and might even feel the same about some of them in different ways. There’s a wealth of fun and excitement on this show. So stick with it, and I promise you will be rewarded. I’m on Twitter and Instagram as @MattLanter.
“Star Crossed” premieres Feb. 17 on The CW at 8 p.m. EST.
Photo Credit: Skip Bolen/The CW
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