Interview with Kanin Howell

Kanin Howell has been in the business since the age of 5, following in the footsteps of his father who has over 30 years in it. Kanin has previously appeared in the TV series “True Blood” and is currently featured in “The Young and the Restless”. Kanin has appeared in movies like “Dances with Wolves” and “Pearl Harbor” and has worked with actors like Robert Duvall in “Secondhand Lions” and Ernest Borgnine in “Aces ‘N’ Eights”. MovieMikes had the chance to talk to Kanin and he discuss his passion for movies and how he is planning on taking over Hollywood.

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Mike Gencarelli: Your father has been working in stunts for over 30 years and you have worked as many films doing stunts. When did you know that you wanted to follow in his path?
Kanin Howell: When I was younger, my dad doubled Murdock on “The A-Team”. I was running around on the set hanging out with Mr. T. All I knew was movie sets. When I turned 5, my dad got me in a little movie called, “Vice Versa”. That is when I got my SAG card. From then I doubled a few movies and did stunts. I doubled for an Indian in “Dances with Wolves” and I fell off the back of the horse during the movie. It was kind of more following in my dad’s footsteps. I wanted to do everything that he was doing. When I got to be a little older in high school, I got too big to double the kids. I started thinking about other avenues of the business. I really wanted to direct. I got into an acting class to learn how to direct people. I worked with Dee Wallace Stone and I ended up falling in love with the craft. I said this is what I want to do.

Mike Gencarelli: You mentioned directing, do you have any plans?
Kanin Howell: No, I completely did a 180. I used to watch movies from a director’s point of view and now it doesn’t even cross my mind. All I’ve been thinking about is acting. I am immersed completely in the acting world.

Mike Gencarelli: Which do you enjoy more being behind the screen doing stunts or in front of the screen acting?
Kanin Howell: I prefer the acting. I have kind of fell away from the stunts, it is how I started and it is my background. It helped me open a lot of doors and I embrace it and I am proud of it. I am kind of moving on to the next part of my life.

MG: How was it working on “True Blood” as the character Chuck?
KH: Yeah Chuck! [laughs]. It was fun. I got to go to Louisiana. Alan Ball actually directed one of the episodes. It was freaking great. Everyone in the cast was so great and welcoming. We went out and partied and it was like a big family. I wish I was back on it, I really miss everyone there. It was also fun in the episode where we burned down the vampire’s house. It was the episode that Alan Ball actually directed. They found this old house it was there for 150 years and was actually an old whore house. The city of New Orleans could not get rid of this house so the company bought this house for like a $100 dollars or something like that and they burned the thing to the ground and the city couldn’t be happier.

MG: You are recently starring in “The Young and the Restless”? Tell us about that and your character Frank?
KH: I am actually shooting another episode this week. It’s good. I can not say too much but in my first three episodes, I am in jail messing around with Nick Newman. I honestly do not know where the story is going but I am excited. Anything I do know I really can’t say. Frank is a character who is looking out for himself and who will manipulate whoever he needs to. We shoot one episode a day. It is like a machine. The process is great for my technique from Dee Wallace Stone. I get to practice a lot, it works out good. It is fun everyone is really nice and asking me when I am coming back.

MG: What has been some of your favorite projects that you have worked with so far?
KH: I mean I have worked with so many great people. “Secondhand Lions” was a blast with Robert Duvall, just to have him kick my ass was great. Seeing Robert work was great even when he wasn’t on screen he had things prepared. Just to be around someone like that it was amazing. Working with Ernest Borgnine in “Aces ‘N’ Eights”, I play his killer and its is oh my God amazing. I am like the guy that killed John Wayne in “The Cowboys”. I get to work with a lot of great people and directors.

MG: What else do you have planned for the future?
KH: Got a lot of stuff cooking. I read for a feature last week. I also read “Sons of Anarchy” for a guest starring role yesterday. I am attached to a feature called “The Willow and the Bee”, that is coming up. That is my next big project but I am definitely reading for stuff in between then.

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