With the advent of so many hit television shows today, we are not surprised that we have discovered some of Hollywood’s greatest talent. Sebastian Roché has made our list of Rising Hollywood Stars with the exceptional mastering of his craft, his unique charm and abilities, as well as his rugged good looks; he is on track to become Hollywood’s next big thing. Roché appeared as the recurring character Mikael, an original vampire and the father of The Originals, on The Vampire Diaries for the The CW. From 2013 to 2014, he has reprised his role as Mikael in the spin-off series The Originals. You can also see him in A Walk Among the Tombstones with Liam Neeson.
Originally from France, Sebastian had an unusual upbringing, when his Father quit his job and decided to set off on a sail boat to travel the world, from France to the Mediterranean, to the Caribbean and South America, Sebastian was in for a life journey unlike any other. This one of a kind experience has influenced and molded Sebastian into the artist he has become today. At only 12 years old, he had already lived a thousand lifetimes filled with a diverse range of circumstances others only dream about.
Beverly Hills Magazine: When did you discover your passion for acting?
Sebastian Roché: As a kid I always loved imitating people, dressing up in costumes, and being funny for others. I remember feeling as though I was really living through what I was playing out. I had such a vivid imagination that I truly believed I was in the situation I was portraying. It was then that I knew I was a born to perform.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What is your process as an actor and how do you prepare for a role?
Sebastian Roché: It really depends on the role; each one is different. It has a lot to do with the writing and the script. I find that sometimes the role just jumps off the page, and it is written so powerfully, that there is not much preparation needed. For example, my role as Mikael, the Father in the Originals on the CW, is the Father of the Original Vampires. I related to this role personally because he has been immortal for a thousand years, and I feel like I have lived so much as well that I automatically connected with this character on a deep level. So becoming him was very natural to me.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What is your opinion of “Hollywood”?
Sebastian Roché: It’s very much a business and it needs to make money, as does everyone in the business. I find that the studio system is focusing so much on tent pole films, that there is a lack of films with rich artistic value. I wish there were more films made, perhaps with lesser budgets, but more character driven plots. An example of this is the film Godfather which is a classic; a very well done film that everybody loved.
Beverly Hills Magaizne: What are some trends taking place in Hollywood?
Sebastian Roché: I think television has taken the front show, because I believe people are seeking more character driven shows to watch. Hollywood should take more risks with casting new faces, and be a little less narrow-minded in the development of the people and products they create. I also think older generations are being left out. The 49-75 age range who are more sophisticated viewers also need content that caters to their perspectives.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What is your dream role?
Sebastian Roché: I would love to play HAMLET. That is one of the most perfect pieces of English literature ever written. I really enjoy the drama genre, so any characters I can play that allow thought provoking concepts and messages. I want my roles to challenge me, where they can be intellectual yet commercial at the same time.
Sebastian Roché: It all starts with the writer. From the script comes the entire language of the show. Then casting is crucial. I believe the actors are just as important as the producers and directors. The actors become the assets of a series. When a show or movie is cast well, the personalities of the actors evolve the characters and that’s what builds the show. That’s what viewers are watching, the characters. Great directing requires great casting.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Why are television and movies an important part of society?
Sebastian Roché: People need to be stimulated and sometimes seek an escape from their everyday lives. People are also influenced greatly by what they watch, and I think that shows represent thought provoking and culturally formidable concepts that reflect true life.
Beverly Hills Magazine: As an actor, do you prefer acting for films or TV Shows?
Sebastian Roché: I really just love working, whether it’s theater, television, films, or even voice-over acting. It’s all the same to me. I’m a performer at heart.
Sebastian Roché: I believe that I serve a great purpose; especially to the writers of the work…I serve their words and bring them to life. Especially in theatre, when performing Shakespeare, where I feel that my purpose is in keeping history alive. I also find my personal joy in performing. If my joy can somehow be translated through my roles, and be contagious to viewers then I’ve done my job. Sometimes you can influence someone greatly by a particular performance; you change the way they think or the decisions they make. It’s a really powerful medium. I believe if you can change one even one person’s life by what you do in this world, it’s enough.Beverly Hills Magazine: Have you discovered a purpose in what you do?
Sebastian Roché is certainly changing people’s lives with his work and what he chooses to represent in each of each roles. His wealth of life experiences lends to his depth of character in each of his performances. It is this that makes him a very powerful actor indeed. Sebastian Roché makes the exclusive list of Rising Hollywood Stars by no mistake. His fortitude, his commitment to his work, and his unmatched perspective make him a force to be reckoned with.