Joel Tobeck
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"I found all the different scenarios and diverse versions of events really intriguing," says Joel Tobeck of his attraction to CHANNELLING baby.

Writer/Director Christine Parker had him in mind from the project’s inception: "I knew from the beginning that Joel would be the perfect Tony," she says.

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"Although he’s a grown up man he has a sort of innocence, or child-like quality that is really attractive".

The prolific actor admits to bringing much of his own personality to the role and to finding elements that connected him to the younger actor who played his character as a boy.

For the story’s truth to be revealed Tony must confront his past. Tobeck sees this as the key to his character: "Tony has had a lot of things happen in his life that I don’t think he’s had the chance to deal with properly. He’s got a wicked imagination that gets the better of him. Although he’s incredibly centred he doesn’t know how to use it to the best of his ability".

Rapidly becoming one of New Zealand’s most accomplished actors, Tobeck received the 1997 New Zealand Film & TV Best Actor Award for his role in "Topless Women Talk About Their Lives". Additional film credits include Niki Caro’s "Memory and Desire", selected for Critics Week at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival; "The Grasscutter" and the short films "The Summer the Queen Came" and "Old Bastards".

His television credits are numerous. Familiar both nationally and overseas through his role in the top rating drama series "Hercules", his performance in the tele-movie "The Chosen" also drew critical acclaim.

He has worked extensively with "Once Were Warriors" director Lee Tamahori in the commercial arena and on many New Zealand drama series including "True Life Stories"; "Plainclothes"; "Cover Story" and the highly popular "Shortland Street". The actor is also well known to theatrical audiences following regular appearances in Theatresports and roles in "Clown Show", "Votes for Women" and "Comedy of Errors" among others.

Tobeck found the calibre of the cast in CHANNELLING baby stretched him as an actor: "It was a good challenge for me to keep myself up to par with everyone else; pushing myself, but not so far that it would look contrived. Staying within that boundary. It is a movie not about action and great explosions, but four people and four different versions of events and the emotions involved in that."

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He believes that "the audience will find the whole story fascinating from the beginning. It keeps you wanting to know, not who’s right or who’s wrong, but what actually really did happen. It’s very emotionally charged but not too drawn out – it fires along."

Are you a fan of Joel's? - check out the Joel Tobeck Fanclub


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Copyright 1999 Oceania Parker Ltd
Last modified: August 15, 1999