Actor Jaylen Moore talks to TV STORE ONLINE about ESCAPE PLAN, THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE as well as his work on the television series Homeland and The Tonight Show.
TV STORE ONLINE: There's probably not a chance in hell of one getting a little "Wolf Boy" out of you today....
JAYLEN MOORE: Laughing...What are you talking about....(Wolf Howl)
TV STORE ONLINE: Nice! That's it. I've got to ask you about your appearances as Wolf Boy on the The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien [2009-2010] from a few years back...You stole those skits from Conan!
JAYLEN MOORE: Thanks! Let me just say that it was so sad when they took back The Tonight Show from him. I just want to say that. Because Conan is a great guy. I worked on seven episodes with Conan and all of that was improved. The concept was just that they wanted to spoof Taylor Lautner from TWILIGHT [2008-2012] and that I was going to play "Wolf Boy". When I heard that, I was in. I think I got to come back so many times because the writers loved me because I made Conan break. After that first appearance, one of the writers came up to me and said, "Conan never breaks in a sketch". So I took that as a compliment. Conan is hilarious and anything he does just makes the audience laugh. If you watch Wolf Boy, he does this thing with his hands. I didn't know what I was doing. I just put them up on instinct. I just went to this other place and I started staring at Conan. Finally he broke and said, "Look at the way that Wolf Boy is staring at me!" I just locked in on him. When the director yelled "Cut", I just dropped to the ground and I lost it. I was cracking up. Afterward, Conan came up to me and shook my hand and said, "That was great. The fact that you didn't break on that...I don't know how you didn't." Being Wolf Boy on Conan was one of my favorite roles that I've done actually.
TV STORE ONLINE: What about the stuff with Conan and your chest muscle flexing? Didn't Conan call your muscles "Chesticles"?
JAYLEN MOORE: Laughing....I just did it. It was just a choice I made. The Director loved it. They liked it because Conan and I could play off of it. It was just all improvisation. What was really funny about it though was how Conan would make that very "grossed out" face when I would do it, but afterward he would say, "Hey, How do you do that"?
TV STORE ONLINE: Do you do research for the roles you get?
JAYLEN MOORE: Absolutely.
TV STORE ONLINE: How many hours of research did you do for Wolf Boy?
JAYLEN MOORE: Laughing...Hours and hours! I had been preparing for Wolf Boy my entire life...laughing
TV STORE ONLINE: ESCAPE PLAN (2013) comes out tomorrow and we're so geeked about it here....We've gotta ask you about working with Sly and Arnold?
JAYLEN MOORE: Listen...The script for ESCAPE PLAN is great. It's so well written. I mean, it's about an underwater prison. It's a great idea. Originally it was going to be called THE TOMB but they decided to change the name. Stallone, of course is awesome. Arnold is awesome. I grew up just like you. I grew up loving these guys. This is 'Rambo' and this is 'The Terminator' in the same movie. My character is 'Console Guard Clemmons'. They gave me a name tag that read "Clemmons" and I thought that was a really cool ass name. They could've named the character "Jones" or "Smith". I got to work really close with Jim Caviezel. He was really great to work with. He was kind of a quiet guy at first, but then we started to have some fun. Arnold was really fun to watch work because he's always telling jokes to the cast and the crew. It was like watching him as if he was campaigning to be Governor again.
Also, I got to work with Vinnie Jones. He was great. He's a total crack-up. He's so funny because he would be in the middle of telling you a funny story and then the director would call for him to shoot a scene. In his scenes, he would turn into this sinister character and then when the Director would say "Cut", Vinnie would walk back over to you and without missing a beat pick back up where he had left off in his story...laughing
TV STORE ONLINE: You'll be appearing in a few episodes later this season of Homeland on Showtime.....
JAYLEN MOORE: I have two favorite shows on television. Homeland [2011-Current] and Game Of Thrones [2001-Current]. After I finished watching Season Two I asked my manager if there would be anyway if I could get on the show. So after waiting for the right role to come up, I went in for an audition and I play a character that will be coming up later this season named "Eric Baraz". That's all I can tell you right now, and if you're a fan of the show you don't want to know anything else about it anyhow. So make sure you watch.
TV STORE ONLINE: Is "Eric Baraz" a terrorist or is he C.I.A.?
JAYLEN MOORE: I can't say...laughing
TV STORE ONLINE: You got to work with Director Keith Gordon on one of the upcoming episodes of Homeland...
JAYLEN MOORE: That's right. He's such a cool guy. Now, remember, Keith comes from an acting background and he worked with Rodney Dangerfield in BACK TO SCHOOL . When I met him for the first time I pulled up a picture from IMDb of Keith and Robert Downey Jr. from BACK TO SCHOOL and he got really embarrassed. He said, "Where did you find that? " I said, "It's the internet." He was great to work with. He really knows what he's after and I learned a lot from working with him.
TV STORE ONLINE: You also have a role in the upcoming THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE (2013)...How did that come to you?
JAYLEN MOORE: Well, the truth is...I'm a very physical actor and I like to do my own stunts. So I got hired on THE HUNGER GAMES because they needed actors who could do their own stunts. My role isn't really a secret. It's on IMDb.com and they have my character listed as "Peacemaker" but his name is actually "Peacekeeper". I worked with Patrick St. Esprit who plays "Romulus Thread" and while I'm dressed up in a helmet and cool threads I'm his right-hand man.
TV STORE ONLINE: Rewinding a bit....Where do you think your interest in acting comes from?
JAYLEN MOORE: My dad grew up in Afghanistan. He told me that when he was growing up there that they couldn't get their hands on American movies fast enough. So he's a big film buff. Growing up we watched everything together. He loved all genres of film. For me, what sparked my interest in acting was when I went to see Tim Burton's BATMAN (1989). I was just blown away by Michael Keaton and Jack Nicholson. Did you know that Nicholson went to an asylum and studied what goes on in a place like that to prepare for that role? I was so inspired by BATMAN that when I got home from seeing it, I ran upstairs and got into my mom's make-up and painted myself up like Nicholson. My dad came into the bathroom to see what I was doing. He went and got his video camera. My sister was involved in dance, so she had all of these costumes around. I found a costume and my dad and I started to reenact scenes that we had just seen in BATMAN. We did it until midnight. I remember my mom saying, "C'mon, it's time to go to bed." My Dad said, "What do you mean? We're filming Batman right now." That was it. That was what sparked me. From there I did pretty much everything performance related that I could do.
TV STORE ONLINE: What do you think that you saw in that Jack Nicholson performance in BATMAN that was so inspiring to you?
JAYLEN MOORE: I don't know. It was probably that I saw my Dad in him. My Dad has a laugh that's very big and he's really good at facial expressions just like Nicholson. My Dad wanted to be an actor as a kid when he was growing up in Afghanistan, and now he's living that dream through me. My Dad is really my hero. Someday when I have some power over casting on a project I'm gonna put my Dad in a movie and give him a couple lines. He can say them in English or Farsi or whatever.
TV STORE ONLINE: Being a Nicholson fan...What are your Top Five Favorite Jack Nicholson movies?
JAYLEN MOORE: That's tough. He's done so many great movies. I'd have to include BATMAN of course. Then, THE SHINING  and ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST . I loved him in CHINATOWN . I really enjoyed him in ANGER MANAGEMENT  as well. I don't know, because that list could go on forever. I'm such a fan of his work that I feel like I know him.
TV STORE ONLINE: With all of these great things that you've worked on in 2013....Where do you think it will take you? Do you have any optimism about that or hope? What would you like to happen next? Are there roles that you really want to get or character types that you'd like to play?
JAYLEN MOORE: I don't know where it's going to take me. It's taken so much work to get here that it's almost better to just submit to the power of the universe and see where it takes me. My dream though would be to have a career like Hugh Jackman has had so far. I mean he's so great because he can do everything. He can do something like LES MISERABLES (2012) and then go and do WOLVERINE (2013) and then go and do something so phenomenal like PRISONERS (2013). He's incredible in PRISONERS. He does it all. I like that he can go from a musical to a big action movie. That's really awesome because I love musicals too. I did a bunch of musicals in high school and I've always loved them and I'd love to do more of them. I'd really like to be on Broadway. We'll have to see where all of this leads. It's been a fun ride. I mean, I didn't know that Wolf Boy was coming and look what happened there....laughing
TV STORE ONLINE: Hopefully what will happen soon is that Conan O'Brien will have you on his show as a guest and then after you're done with the interview he'll invite to do Wolf Boy as an homage to the good old days...
JAYLEN MOORE: It's funny...I was just talking about this the other day with my wife. I said to her that I'll know when I've really made it once I'm a guest on Conan's show...laughing I'd love to be on The Ellen Degeneres Show [2003-Current] someday too. I love Ellen. I think she's so funny. I try to watch her show every chance I get.
TV STORE ONLINE: Would you dance with Ellen if you went on there?
JAYLEN MOORE: Of course! I already have it planned out. I'd be a dancing machine on her show. I just love her.
TV STORE ONLINE: Then what about AZTEC WARRIOR (2013)...You've got a great role in that upcoming action comedy. What can you tell me about that?
JAYLEN MOORE: Nothing! I want to tell you so bad but I can't. It's going to be a big film. I worked with Luis Guzman on it. It is this cool graphic novel good vs. evil kind of thing. It's going to be one of those awesome fanboy films. It's done by Scott Sanders who did BLACK DYNAMITE . People are going to love it.
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