Actor James Wolk, 25, says selling ladies’ shoes helped prepare him for the role of bigamist conman Bob Allen in the new drama Lone Star.
“Bob’s greatest tool is the ability to make people believe in him,” says Wolk, who at 12 began selling shoes in his father’s store.
“I learned the ability to connect with people. They aren’t going to buy unless they’re comfortable with the person they talk to.”
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In Lone Star — which premieres tonight on Global — Bob’s gift for gab has landed him a wife who is part of a billionaire Texas oil family that Bob hopes to fleece. Add to that another wife and con in a small town, and Bob’s got a lot on his schedule.
Yet, trouble only begins to brew when Bob develops a conscience and starts having true feelings for his two families. Soon, he’s scheming not only to make money, but to fix the damage he’s done in both his lives.
According to Lone Star executive producer Amy Lippman (Party of Five), casting a relative unknown like Wolk opposite acting heavyweight Jon Voight (who plays an oil company patriarch) wasn’t the original plan. Still, Lippman thinks there’s a real advantage to having someone new on screen. “There will never be another moment in time where people won’t know who he is.”
Lippman says the show can only work if the audience sides with Bob, who is “doing something really immoral” even while he’s trying to make things right. Still, Lippman says Bob’s scheming and lies won’t ultimately make or break the show.
“It’ll be successful if you can interest audiences in those two marriages —something that isn’t always related to a secret or a lie.”