Halloween ♦ X-Men ♦ Red Serpent ♦ Chopper ♦ Troy ♦ Son of the Beach ♦ X-Men: The Official Game(voice)
Tyler Mane constantly breaks boundaries and defies expectations. Certainly he’s got an undeniable physical prowess, but the actor imbues a tangible humanity into every role he plays, whether he’s donning the mask of Michael Myers in Halloween and H2 or the crown of King Ajax in Troy. He can be the villain or the hero, and that versatility is what makes each one of his performances memorable.
It’s been quite the road from Saskatoon, Sasketchawan to Hollywood for Tyler. In 1986, he officially began his professional wrestling career. Studying with the legendary Hart family, Tyler developed a formidable presence that would see him dominate rings in the NWA, NCW and around the world for years.
However, wrestling was just the first big step in Tyler’s journey. “I was a tall skinny kid with glasses and braces who was always picked on,” he reveals. “I felt like an outcast, and I decided I was going to do something about it. I dreamt of wrestling and acting as an action star. I was digging acting before anything, but I knew I needed a stepping stone to get there. Wrestling gave me that.”
Tyler formally hung up the wrestling boots in 1999, and he fully immersed himself in acting, realizing his dream. As Sabretooth in 2000′s big screen adaptation of X-Men, he finally ripped right through pop culture in a big way. “When we were filming, I knew we were doing something big; I just didn’t know how big it was going to be. It was another nice bridge to where I am today. It felt pretty badass.”
Things got even more badass when Tyler sunk his teeth into classic Greek Mythology alongside Brad Pitt and Eric Bana in the 2004 hit Troy. Tyler goes on, “King Ajax is one of those phenomenal characters in history that you hope you get a chance to play, and I was lucky enough to do.”
Soon after Troy, Tyler formed a bond with Rob Zombie with his turn as Rufus in The Devil’s Rejects. That relationship inspired Rob to pen his take on Halloween with Tyler in mind for Michael Myers. Together, they created a darker, deadlier and deeper character.
Tyler adds, “I like the fact that Michael Myers is a tormented, tortured human being. The way he expresses himself is through violence. In H2, he’s out amongst society, and he’s still wearing his mask with the big beard that I had. He’s always hidden himself and withdrawn from society. In my mind, Michael was trying to reunite with the only family that he know–Laurie Strode (Scout Taylor-Compton). I wasn’t approaching it as I’m trying to kill her. His only connection to humanity, so to speak, was Laurie.”
The character became much more intricate in Tyler’s deft hands, but he still conjured a viable darkness on screen. “Every kill was someone who tried to get in Michael’s way and stop him from reuniting with his family. There might have been one or two thrown in for laughs though,” laughs Tyler.
He’s a powerful presence and he takes over the scenes he’s in, but there’s a genuine emotional element to everything he does. That’s what makes Tyler’s Michael Myers so real. Tyler will be slashing through Hollywood again with the official launch of his production company, Mane Entertainment. The company’s first two projects, Compound Fracture and Penance Lane are well underway.
He explains, “I started up Mane Entertainment because I wanted to create quality projects at a reasonable price. Instead of waiting around for projects, I figured I’d build my own from the ground up. I want to have an active hand in the whole piece instead of simply acting. I went from the small-town kid to a wrestler to an actor to a producer with my own company. The next step is for me to be the visionary at the helm
Ultimately, it’s always about giving back. Whether Tyler’s dominating a scene in a film, overseeing production on set or hosting his monthly show The Mane Show, he leaves audiences with a part of himself.
“I want people to enjoy anything I’m involved in. I want them to escape reality. I hope they get taken away by the performance and the film.” That’s the aim of all great performers, and Tyler’s doing it. – Rick Florino
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