Kellan Lutz attends "The Legend Of Hercules" premiere in New York City. Credit: Laura Cavanaugh/FilmMagic
Movie-making can be a dangerous business, and Kellan Lutz has the scars to prove it. So naturally when we sat down with "The Legend of Hercules" star, some good-natured "Jaws"-style show-and-tell was in order.
I was going to ask about scars, if there are any stories you want to share of your favorites from filming. Oh yeah. I have a some on my knees that I can't really show you because I'm in my jeans, but for "Arena" every time I'd get tasered I'd drop to my knees and get dragged away. Also in "Arena," we'd be fighting, and the other guy had butcher knives. We'd be fighting and they'd have rubber ones for the wide shots, but then as they came in closer they'd give him real ones. I had a full-on shirt, but we still got close enough that now I have two lines right over my nipples. Like, he could've cut my nipples off. For "Hercules," just my ass. I have two raw lines there [from horseback-riding]. I also have a little one [on my hip], you can't even see it. That's because they had the real sword when Scott Adkins and I were fighting, and he just stabbed me. It's like, you have armor and you think it's going to protect you, but it's movie armor.
And not a movie sword, unfortunately. Yeah, yeah. What else do I have? I'd really have to think about that. I'd really have to just take a shower and look. I have always wanted to get tattoos. I got to wear tattoos for "Expendables 3," which was such an awesome experience — just putting them on, and I got to design them a little bit. I just felt, like, badass with tattoos. But … to actually be an actor who has to cover those up, it's tough. That's why if I got one, I would have it somewhere less visible. Some girls don't think about it — and girls are always in bikinis or dresses, so you can always see it. You have a lot of tattoos, though.
I do, yes, but they're not for everybody. I think they're hot. [Laughs]
They showed us an incomplete version of the movie, as you know. Does it worry you at all, having people see it before it's finished? I never really thought about. I like the movie, and I saw it in its very roughest stage. Of course I want someone to see it in its best stage, but we're on a timeframe as well, we had to show it. I thought it was great as it is, and that means it can only get better with the more work that they put into it. You know, I wish the whole movie was there because there's a lot of stuff on the editing room floor that no one will ever see, I think. We shot probably a three-hour movie, and for it to get cut down to 87 minutes, I was floored. Then you watch it again and it works. You have to trust the powers that be. They'd rather have an 87-minute movie that just shoots fast than a three-hour movie that's like a long "Gladiator," where there's slow moments for development. I think audiences are getting harder to entertain. You really have to have these quick movies.
What was it about this approach to the Hercules story that appealed to you? Like, Hercules has always been— for me, because I am a man of faith, it kind of represents Jesus. You know, he's born of a mortal woman — Joseph didn't impregnate her, God did, much like Zeus did [in this]. And Jesus was kind of a demigod, so to speak. So for me, the crucifixion scene and him being a hero to the people really just spoke volumes to my heart, bringing this character to life.