According to young Houston actor Chandler Canterbury, getting the role of Jamie in the sci fi flick The Host wasn't all that difficult. "I sent a tape to the casting director. The casting director sent it to Andrew [Niccol], the director, and he liked it," he tells us. Simple, right?
Of course, the fact that he's been starring in hit films for the last seven years might have a little something to do with it. (Canterbury appeared in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button with Brad Pitt, After.Life with Liam Neeson and Christina Ricci, and Repo Men with Jude Law, among others.)
Canterbury learned he got the role on Christmas when he opened a book-shaped gift; it was the script with a note that said "You got the part!" on it. "That was a pretty cool way to find out," he says.
Written and directed by Andrew Niccol, The Host stars Saoirse Ronan as Melanie Stryder, a young woman who's taken over by an alien being when Earth is attacked. Unlike other humans, Melanie is able to retain a bit of her consciousness and communicate with the alien that inhabits her body. Canterbury plays her younger brother, Jamie. Jake Abel and Max Irons also star.
Based on a novel of the same name by Stephenie Meyer (yes, the writer behind the Twilight saga), The Hostis set to open in Houston theaters today, March 29.
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Asked about life on the set, Canterbury says the hardest part is keeping up with schoolwork. "You have to get dressed then go do your scene and then as soon as the scene is over you have to go right to [the classroom]. That was a little hard, but the set was actually a pretty fun set."
Unlike many young actors, Canterbury says he's not sure if his future includes acting. "I don't see acting as a job. I don't think of acting as the main focus in my life." Some kids say, 'Oh, I'm going to be acting for the rest of my life.' I don't know what I'm going to do, I'm just 14 years old."
He might not be sure about a career in acting, but Canterbury has plenty of upcoming projects. "I'm attached to a few films," he tells us. He has a leading role in the upcoming Standing Up, which features Val Kilmer and Radha Mitchell. The film is based on Brock Cole's young adult novel The Goats.
Between promotion tours and filming, Canterbury returns to Houston where he lives with his family. And like most Houstonians, he complains about the weather. "I miss the people in Houston, but I don't miss the weather," he laughs. "I don't miss the weather at all."