Jackson Puts His Fans First
Known best for his work as Jasper Hale in the Twilight saga and for his musical talents with his group 100 Monkeys, one would suspect that fame and exposure like that would take its toll on any young actor. But thatfs not the case with Jackson Rathbone. One of the nicest and most affable guys in the entertainment business, Rathbone is a young man who is more concerned about his fans, his co-stars and the quality of his work, than sitting back and resting on his laurels. With an all ready packed schedule, I was more than impressed when Rathbone found the time to sit down with me to talk his latest indie projects, Cowgirls 'N Angels and the upcoming Girlfriends, and the importance of his fan base when it comes to career decisions.
You're sharing the spotlight together with Bailee Madison and James Cromwell in Cowgirls 'N Angels. But given your jam packed schedule with Twilight, 100 Monkeys and your other endeavors, how do you find the time to fit everything in?
[Bailee] is the real star! I like to keep myself busy. You know that old saying, "Idle hands are the Devil's play." But this script kind of floated my way through my manager. I read it and I fell in love with it. I was familiar with Bailee and her work, Don't Be Afraid of the Dark, and other films that she's done. She is just an incredible young actress. And then they told me James Cromwell was going to be in it. As a young actor, you're like, "An old veteran that I look up to! Maybe I can try to learn something." That's what I try to do. I try to learn as much as possible. And I wanted do a family film so the stars kind of just aligned.
And you get to be with horses.
Which I do love. I grew up riding.
So why, a good ol' Texas boy and playing a cowboy, don't we get to see you doing some riding in this movie?
It's not about me riding. It's about these girls, the Sweethearts of the Rodeo, the trick riding. I can't do trick riding. I can ride a horse. I can get on a horse. I don't look like I don't know what's happening. [Launching into a hilarious cartoonish parody of laughter] "Oh, lookey here. I have no idea! What's a horse?" This movie's about the trick riding and family and this little girl Ida discovering who she is.
You've been consistently working in one of the biggest franchises in movie history - Twilight. Does that give you the freedom to choose and do smaller roles in films like Cowgirls 'N Angels?
I should say so. Definitely. It's been an amazing experience. Anytime you do any project that people see [laughing], regardless of whether it's a franchise, an indie film or a tv show, I think it's a blessing. As an actor you need an audience. What Twilight brought me was an incredible fan base and incredible audience that just really love those films. And I grew to love the fans because without them, honestly, I'm nothing. They are everything. It's an amazing experience.
Do your fans follow you from project to project, including your music?
I hope so! Do ya guys? Do ya? [laughing] Like I said, I hope so. That's actually something I keep in mind whenever I'm looking at new projects. I always keep in mind the fan base that I am lucky to have met and shake their hands, sign their autograph books, take pictures with. This is the blessing. So whenever I look at a project, I think, "What would my fan base think? What would they think about this?" I've turned down movies because I don't think it's a film I would want to show to people. I've seen some horror films - I like horror films and I'd like to do a good one - but, there's one that came my way that I was really close to doing, but I was thinking about my fan base and I don't want to show them these things. I want to show them something different. I want to show them different sides of my personality, some kind of eclectic range.
With Cowgirls 'N Angels you definitely get to show a different side of your personality. And you have another indie coming up in July called Girlfriend.
Yes! Girlfriend! That will show me in a completely different light as well. I acted. I did the music with my band 100 Monkeys. And I produced it. It's about time we get that movie out. It's been a long time in the works. We got tied up with distribution for awhile. We've been fighting to get it out there to show it to the world. That's a film that I really, really believe in. It's an R-rated drama. Our lead actor, Evan Sneider, is just one of the biggest powerhouse actors I've ever worked with. He has Down's Syndrome and he's extremely high functioning. You meet a kid like that, with a passion like his, and you're blown away. Suddenly life turns upside down and you look at everything else and go, "Wow! You know what? This is the most amazing job in the world because you get to entertain people and make dreams come true." So, I'm actually developing another project for Evan right now. I've been working on it for two years trying to find the right screenwriter. But I think I have the right guy and we've had our first draft. We're doing a second pass of the script and then we'll shop it around.
Credit => Movie Shark Deblore / Via => JRathboneFB