Interview with Jeremy BullochMay 23, 2014
Jeremy Bulloch is best known for his smallest role as the universes most feared bounty hunter, Han Solo’s arch enemy and the Sarlacc pits last meal (SPOILERS!). Of course I am talking about one the most popular character in the Star Wars universe, Boba Fett.
While attending SuperFan Comic Con recently in Toronto, I had the amazing opportunity to be a part of a roundtable interview with Jeremy Bulloch and other members of the media. He mostly discussed Star Wars, as to be expected, but also told us about upcoming projects and his desire to visit the Star Wars: Episode VII set in England during filming.
Media Member: I remember seeing you at Fan Expo in 2012 and you were already really, really busy and swamped. Since Disney’s acquired Star Wars, the excitement has returned. How has your life changed? What has that done for you?
Bulloch: Well my life has changed in that you get invited virtually around the world. It’s a lot of “would you appear in Australia? Would you come to Chicago?” It’s daily. Other than that, people are suddenly doing amateur films, and there are some very skilled people out there who make their own films. Mainly your life is just much busier. I mean, I love still playing Cricket, love playing football but I’m too old now. But I love being in the garden, just doing normal things. The grandchildren, so that’s important as well.
Jeff Fountain of InGenre: Are you still amazed the popularity of Star Wars after all these years?
Bulloch: It’s just incredible. Every day someone might phone you or get in touch with you and say “Mr. Bulloch, we’re doing our own movie and we’d like you to play the lead.” and I’ll say, “well that’s interesting, what’s the film?” And they will say, Star Wars. I’ll say, oh yes of course Star Wars, I know that one. They’ll say, “I’ve got a script together, and were wondering if you’d like to play the part of Boba Fett?” Well I’ve already played that part, but thank you. So the eagerness is terrific. Because of the films, people are loving meeting you because of the, now they say, iconic character. I just feel very lucky because, in the evening, for two weeks of the filming, I was in the theatre as well, I had just gotten into a play. So I was doing theatre and film at the same time. That’s lovely, I think how lucky I am, doing two jobs at once.
Media Representative: Can you tell me the experience of being able to impact so many generations? Having fathers and grandchildren all having the same interest in Star Wars?
Bulloch: I think it’s something that we will probably never see again. My father, who hated me being an actor, said to me, “this is incredible. At last you’ve got a proper job.” And he was talking about Boba Fett. “That’s a good part,” he said. It’s still the smallest part I’ve ever played in anything. Yet, there you are, a few lines, a scream and into the Sarlacc pit. But it was incredible wearing the costume because when you walk onto the set, you just stand and I discovered that the weight of the gun would be much better if I could support it on my arm. And someone said “That looks really cool. I like the lazy way you’re holding the gun.” I said, “no, the gun is heavy, that’s the reason I’m carrying it like this.” But, it’s something that’s unlikely to happen again… certainly not in my time. You might not see a character like this again either. I am very fortunate to be part of it.
Sean from Geek Chic Elite: Are you surprised that Boba Fett is such an iconic character after all this time, and considering he hardly had any screen time?
Bulloch: It’s extraordinary. People don’t stop you in the street because they might not know you with the mask off. But it’s extraordinary when they hear the actor Jeremy Bulloch is here and they say “….You’re joking. Boba Fett’s here!” And this is from a grown man, a 40 year old, in charge of a company. One man asked “It’s my wife’s birthday; I was wondering if you can surprise her, by knocking on the door and saying I’m Boba Fett?” I said “no I’m not going to do that, because that’s silly.” I just feel every day I wake up that I am very fortunate. It’s given my wife and I enough time to travel. When I went to Japan, we had four actors and 9 times out of 10 they want Boba Fett to go to the event. Even after Darth Vader. So I suppose Darth Vader and Boba Fett are the two most popular. Mainly to chat to people.
Jeff Fountain of InGenre: it’s funny you mentioned that, when I was younger and I had Star Wars action figures, my friends and I would line them up and pick who we want. Everyone would pick Boba Fett. Do you have any idea why Boba Fett just grabs people like that?
Bulloch: I think because he’s not a bad guy. He’s misunderstood, I suppose. And I think there’s a storyline somewhere, where he was probably with Han Solo; they probably fought together and then something happened, and they each go their separate ways. Just looking at the Slave 1, I mean there are so many gadgets on it. I used to show off; put the belt on, just during the day because to me it was like Clint Eastwood, but in space. The gun comes out and you can be as cool as you like and it’s great fun. If you can’t have fun, I mean you need to be serious about your job and what you’re doing; but you have to have fun playing a character like Boba Fett.
Media Representative: I’m sure you expect this, but can you tell us anything about the new Star Wars?
Bulloch: The safest thing I can say is that I’m happy they have started. There’s Peter Mayhew, Kenny Baker mentioned. Kenny is probably thrilled to bits because they can use motorized R2-D2. I think it’s especially great that those two are back. Boba Fett… I don’t know, he’s dead. All the people who say he can come back, but in the storyline, he’s in the Sarlacc pit. Gone, that’s it. It would be lovely to say, “ladies and gentlemen, I have some news for you… I’m playing Boba Fett again.” I’d love to be saying that, but that’s not happening. It would be nice to visit the set, if that becomes possible, because it’s being shot in England. That will take you back to all those days you arrived at half past 4 in the morning and go, “another day, put the helmet on, that’s all I have to do.” Whereas Mike Carter, who played Bib Fortuna — a great character by the way — he’s 3 and a half to 4 hours in makeup. So I was very lucky I didn’t have much to do.
Sean from Geek Chic Elite Do you have any projects in the works?
Bulloch: I’m doing sort of a voice thing right now that’s called Max Adventures doing these strange voices. There’s also a television project that is in the very early stages called Cold Embrace. Interesting script — it’s a little bit up and down. I get asked to do lots of different bits.
For more information on Jeremy Bulloch, including upcoming appearances please visit his website at
www.jeremybulloch.com. A very special thanks goes out to Jeremy Bulloch for his time as well as Super Fan Comic Con for this opportunity.