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Lewis Williams
as Ox Lawson

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Lewis Williams as Ox Exclusive interview with Lewis Williams who played Ox Lawson in Heartbreak High
 

You sent in your questions through our 'ask the cast' feature, and now the time has come for Lewis to get in the Heartbreak-High.com hotseat and answer all your questions.....

Hi,
I'd like to know something about the location. Was the
warehouse at an other location then the school ,or was
it just in a part of the school building ?( because
when they moved to an other school, they got an new
warehouse too) And where was the sharkpool? Was it at
an other location?
Thank you for your time.

Bernardo, Germany.

Good question. What happened was the school where they shot originally was no longer available as their lease was up, I think and so they moved everything to an entirely new location and as a consequence the whole look was obviously different. In order to help people identify the show they rebuilt the “Sharkpool” and “Warehouse” on the new site but made it look the same as the original.


Lewis,
Was it really hard keeping a straight face during a funny scene.
Samantha from England

I am not sure what scene you are thinking of but I was having a good time all the time. If anything when it came time to doing the scene keeping a straight face was the furthest thing from my mind. You have to remember the actors have already read the scene and in order to remember and do it justice one must have gone over it many times with friends then when it comes time to shoot it you rehearse the scene with the person then it may take several attempts (for the others) to get it right (I was of course a one-take-wonder). So by the time you arrive at where you are its already second nature and you have to search desperately to find something different in the scene to make it funny. This is where Heartbreak High was really good as it allowed for some ad-libbing to take place at times and this was what made it fresh because there wasn’t excessive rigidity in how everything was to be executed. This made it unpredictable and so enjoyable for all involved.

Dear Lewis,

How did you find working with the Heartbreak High cast?
Did you have any favourites? On the show, you had a storyline
that was about your character Ox wanting to join the army,
and so did Kurt (Jeremy Lindsay Taylor). Was that scene fun
to play?
Are you still active in the acting business?

Sincerely,
Angélique Middendorp from the Netherlands

I loved it as over the years I grew to know everybody there not just in front of the camera but also behind and appreciate how everyone’s contribution and hard work came together to form what I consider to be an awesome show for the market they were targeting.

In terms of favourites it probably came down mostly to those with whom I acted with the most as everyone was receptive and friendly. It also had to do with who you knew the longest and so in terms of that the people I knew still from the old Heartbreak High days were Callan and Lara but I soon got to know and like Jeremy after doing the episode with him. I also knew John Pollard prior to Heartbreak High days through Community television and his sister. I also liked Peter Sumner who played the headmaster, as he was very supportive of me when I was just starting out on the show.

Was the part fun, yeah of course wouldn’t you like to have been in Heartbreak High?

Am I still active in the industry yep, I am getting some work in different Australian shows like Home and Away you would have heard of and others you wouldn’t have heard of, also some advertisements, but I would like to be doing a lot more. I regularly present a volunteer youth television show we have over here called “Chaos” which is quite different to acting but certainly complimentary to acting. This is a completely unrehearsed show with interviews and bands and reviews etc. It goes for about 2 hours. I am also fully employed as a teacher in a High school near Bondi beach (which you may also of heard of.)


How was it to work at HBH?
Weren't you offended when Callan/Drazic called you names?

What have you done after HBH?

---- from Rik Runge

Tell you the truth some of it was a bit hard going as I am not the sort of person who is called names at least to my face, very often, and if it does occur it doesn’t last very long, I see to that. You also have to let it affect you also in order that there can be some reality in expression, body language etc even if you don’t have anything to say verbally. This also allows in this instance Callan to sense some reality and react accordingly. That’s acting from my point of view and at the end of the day Callan was a top bloke with whom I got along grandly.

Hi,
My name is Magdalena and I´m from Czech Republic.

Question for "Ox": What was your work with Rel Hunt like?

Thanks for your answer.

Rel was good value also as was the case with most of the cast. I remember him not liking to watch the rushes, which struck me at the time and stayed with me, as I am the opposite.

My name is Alexandra, I'm a French girl. Twenty-four old. I would like talk with Lewis Williams. Playing OX, can you say me what are the relationships between the other actors.
and what is the girl do you prefer in HBH.

I think I sort of mentioned the answer to this in previous questions. I got along well with everybody and like anybody the longer you knew someone the better. I should mention that Tai Nguyen and I were good friends long before either of us acted on Heartbreak High as I went to school with his sister and we live only a street away from each other.

When you appeared as a guest character, your storylines were often associated with the fact that Ox was big. Did you ever think that the character could have been developed more and given other storylines?

Yeah, I thought and would have liked to have seen them develop the character of OX. I was stoked though that they asked me to return to the show for the episode where I was joining the army. It was then I realised that in my absence from the show that my character had dropped out of school, alas, never to return. I was happy that the character was quite juicy as I was a novice to acting and was intrusted with a challenging role full of complexities, which was great. Its funny when I was asked to do the episode where I was joining the army I had already arranged to leave the country for the first time and had bought my ticket to Vietnam where I was going to stay for a month. So when I asked when they wanted to shoot it and found it conflicted I had to make the decision of whether to do the episode or continue with my original plans. You of course know what decision I made.

What was it like returning to the show to do the episode with Jeremy Lindsay Taylor? Did you catch up with people who you worked with previously, e.g. Rel Hunt?

Returning to the show was unusual as there had been a lot of changes in front of and behind the camera so I was overjoyed to see people I knew from before. In many ways I liked the old school setting more as there was more character to the environment. The old school had a rough inner city feel to it and this came through in the acting and scrips. The new school was more modern and so somewhat sterile and situated in the northern beaches, which gave it a different, feel overall. Not to mention that I could be at the old school in 15 minutes from where I live. You may be interested to know the old school no longer exists it has been flattened and made into units.

Yeah I caught up with people whom I knew from before which was good as they had just arrived back from touring England and Spain if I recall correctly and were full of stories of their travels which given that I was to have embarked on my own expedition overseas was interesting from that point of view and also from the point of view of how they were received as its funny when your just sitting in the sun waiting to do your next scene and hearing of all these people who turned out to see them.

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