Charlie Hunnam was at the Fox party for the Television Critics Association this summer. His FX show Sons of Anarchy is entering its final season this week, and the FX and Fox families always intermingle. So with a party that crowded, full of both network and cable show stars, I was able to corner Hunnam by the bar and ask him about his upcoming Guillermo del Toro movies, the horror movie Crimson Peak and the just announced sequel Pacific Rim 2.
Of course, talking Sons of Anarchy isn’t bad either. There’s only 13 more episodes for Jax (Hunnam) to pick up the pieces of what Gemma (Katey Sagal) wrought, so SPOILER WARNING if you have not caught up on the first six seasons yet. Sons of Anarchy airs Tusdays at 10PM on FX.
Nuke the Fridge: How does it feel to be in the home stretch on Sons of Anarchy?
Charlie Hunnam: You know, it’s bittersweet. I love doing the show and it’s been an amazing, amazing experience, but it’s also good to be leaving on a high note, while we’re still so passionate about the show and excited about it as opposed to flogging it to death. In that regard it feels like the right time, but it’s definitely sad. I miss it tremendously.
Nuke: What do you need for Jax before the end?
Charlie Hunnam: I think for him to have a little bit of catharsis with the whole Tara situation, find a little bit of peace with that would be very good for him.
Nuke: Do you think peace is really ever in the cards for these guys?
Charlie Hunnam: Certainly not easily.
Nuke: Sons of Anarchy began with the SAMCRO manifesto by Jax’s father. Could that come back into play in the last season?
Charlie Hunnam: We’re six episodes in now but not so far. I feel like Jax really went through his cycle of trying to understand his father and really make peace with it, so I feel like we really played that storyline out. There might be some mention of it or some look around and postmortem of the things Jax has learned, the way his philosophy differs from John’s but I don’t think he’s really too concerned with honoring his father’s legacy at this point.
Nuke: Do you think it was Kurt’s plan all along that Jax would abandon his father’s mission, or was that just the direction it naturally took?
Charlie Hunnam: I don’t know, and I don’t know if he even is. Maybe it will come back. Maybe it’ll play a really significant role in the second half of the season. I just don’t know.
Nuke: Where does the season premiere pick up?
Charlie Hunnam: You’ll have to tune in and find out. Basically it picks up 10 years after.
Nuke: You have a very healthy movie career going. When Sons ends, would you look at another TV show offer?
Charlie Hunnam: Absolutely. I really enjoy working in TV. I like the pace of it. I like the immediacy of it. Really it’s an actor’s medium more than filmmaking in a weird way. So yeah, I would definitely consider doing another show.
Nuke: What were some moments in the past six years that maybe stretched or pushed you the most?
Charlie Hunnam: Kurt really pushed me a lot and I felt fairly often I was being stretched. There are some big, big moments like Opie dying and Tara dying spring to mind. Certainly it wasn’t just those big dramatic climax moments that were hard to play. Kurt is very demanding of his actors. He requires us to challenge ourselves pretty frequently.
Nuke: What has been your relationship with the Sons of Anarchy fans over the years?
Charlie Hunnam: My relationship’s been really lovely. I’m a very private person and don’t really have a huge social life outside of work, but whenever I go anywhere, people seem to be very genuinely enthusiastic and very kind about the show. So it’s nice.
Nuke: On the movie side, we hear Pacific Rim is going to get a sequel. Have you already talked about Pacific Rim 2 and do you have high expectations?
Charlie Hunnam: Yeah, I just did another film with Guillermo so we had some conversations about it. I don’t know if it’s definitely going ahead.
Nuke: Well, you’ve got a release date.
Charlie Hunnam: We got a release date, got a script ordered but it’s Hollywood. You never know until you’re on set, but they seem very, very enthusiastic and excited about it. I’ve talked a little bit with Guillermo about the story he wants to tell and it’s pretty badass.
Nuke: Think you might go to the Kaiju world this time?
Charlie Hunnam: Can’t tell you that.
Nuke: Doing Pacific Rim, Crimson Peak and possibly Pacific Rim 2, is it like you never stopped with Guillermo, or are these Sons of Anarchy breaks in between?
Charlie Hunnam: No, there wasn’t anything between Pacific Rim and Crimson Peak because I took the hiatus off with work because I needed a break. So yeah, it’s pretty nice.
Nuke: Is there a technical skill you have to learn to make the scares of Crimson Peak work? You have to really be on this mark and the lighting’s going to be here?
Charlie Hunnam: Not really specifically for that stuff, but Guillermo is an incredibly technical filmmaker just generally, so I certainly had to hone my film tech skills working with him.
Nuke: Is that a very different character for you in Crimson Peak?
Charlie Hunnam: Yeah, really different. It’s kind of a very sweet, shy, quiet, dorky dude who doesn’t get the girl.
Nuke: Did you get to change your physical appearance for that? Because in some movies you look like Jax just because you have to stay consistent.
Charlie Hunnam: Yeah, within reason because it always has to be a little bit of a compromise. I was coming directly back to Sons, but clean shaven and I kind of coifed my hair 1900s style.