Richard Hatch Interview
Richard Hatch Talks About The New Galactica And The Genesis Of His Involvement
By: Robert Falconer (HNR Senior Editor)
Date: April 18, 2004
Source: Hollywood North Report
Note: This is a snippet of an interview with RICHARD HATCH where AARON DOUGLAS asks him some questions. . To read the full interview, click HERE.
Robert Falconer: You mentioned Chief Tyrol previously in our conversation. Aaron Douglas, the actor who portrays him, is a big fan of the original series, and was hoping you could answer a couple of questions for him.
I’d be happy to.
Aaron Douglas: First, Richard, I’d like to thank you for your work and all your efforts on behalf of Battlestar Galactica over the years. I think you know how much it means to the fans to have someone so available. And a personal thank you for entertaining me while I was growing up and finding my way…not an age shot, a fact!
Looking back, has your career path taken the form that you originally envisioned? I know we make the best choices we can with the knowledge available to us at the time, but looking back with 20/20 hindsight is there anything that you would have done differently? And how do you view your career ambitions now, compared to when you first began as an actor?
Thanks, Aaron, I appreciate that.
Very interesting questions. Looking back on my career with hindsight-which is often 15/20 or 10/10.often better than 20/20-and the choices I made and what I would have done differently, I would have to say that one of the hardest lessons I learned, was learning how to say “yes.”
People will tell you that you need to be discriminating about your choices as an actor, and I agree with that, but the problem in my case was that I was a very idealistic actor. I was always looking for something-and I know I’ve said this umpteen times before-that would be very meaningful and challenging for me as an actor, as opposed to playing the same old one-dimensional clichéd characters. But, metaphorically, it’s like looking for the perfect relationship. If you’re waiting for it to show up, it rarely does. The secret is to get out on the dance floor and start dancing, and then step by step you’ll probably meet the person you’ve been looking for all you life.
But if you don’t get out there and start the process of opening up to opportunities, you’ll never get to that opportunity you’re looking for. In my case, I was always waiting for the opportunity to do what I wanted to do. I was frustrated doing a lot of parts that, for me, didn’t turn out the way I wanted them to. I wanted roles that had depth and would challenge me as an actor. For example, when projects came to me after Battlestar Galactica , I started turning them down because I was waiting for something that would really, really touch me and have meaning to me.
And the lesson I learned was that the more projects I turned down, the more writers and producers I upset. They felt their projects were wonderful because they had put a lot of time and energy into them, and when they submit them to an actor and he says, “no,” they feel rejected the same way an actor does when he doesn’t get a job. Well, when I said “no” enough times, all of a sudden these people didn’t want to hire me anymore.
Aaron Douglas: I’ve really come to appreciate the devotion of the fans. Does it still surprise you how extremely dedicated they can be, and do you still appreciate that dedication after all these years?
Number one, I don’t think there are any fans in the world that are more dedicated than sci-fi/fantasy fans. The industry doesn’t really understand the depth to which fans love their stories and characters. Sci-fi fans all have their favorite stories and characters, and once they fall in love with a particular story or group of characters, they do so forever, and the actors who have been fortunate enough to be in such a beloved project have a family for life.
To be able to travel the world and have thousands of fans come out to see you, to support you, and to say thank you, it’s extraordinary. Let’s face it, when you’re an artist, one moment you’re up, one moment you’re down one moment everybody wants you, the next moment nobody wants you. But even if the industry may not be hot on your trail, the fans still look at you and remember your character with tremendous love and affection.
And you know, all actors are fans of somebody. Actors are often fans of movies and stars that they saw and loved. So even when you become famous, you can never forget the fact that the moment you meet someone that you grew up with in the movies, like George C. Scott, for example, you’re no longer Richard Hatch the star, you’re the star struck Richard Hatch. I’ve been on both sides of the equation numerous times.