Discussing the Expanse with Christopher Charles
(Voiceover work) Hundreds of years in the future. (intense music starts) A detective and captain come together to investigate the case of a missing woman. (intense sound effect) Things are different than now. (pause) Humans have conquered the solar system. (sound effect) Mars has become an independent, ruling planet. (intense music picks up with sound effects and music stops) I had a conversation with my friend actor Christopher Charles. We had a nice cup of coffee on Mars. Oh, wait…that’s a plot to a television show. My bad. Only goofing around folks. However wouldn’t it be cool to go to Mars? The story above will make sense shortly.
1. What was it like growing up in Winnipeg Manitoba?
Growing up in Winnipeg was great! I grew up doing a lot of reading, swimming, Kung Fu, and chess. I was fortunate to have two loving parents who took me to activities, taught me a lot about myself and the world around me. My siblings came a few years after I did and it was always cool hanging out with them and supporting them in whatever activities they did. Winnipeg gets very cold in the winter and I thought -30 and -40 temperatures were normal. In any case, we bundled up and went along our day. I had a wonderful upbringing.
2. Tell us about how you ended up switching from sports to drama?
Ever since I could remember I’ve always loved sports. My dad’s love of sports got me hooked and was intensified when he took me to a hockey game. This was followed by going as a family to football, baseball, and hockey games which were some of my favorite memories as a child. Since Winnipeg at the time had few major professional sports teams I followed them as well as other teams in various sports that I liked. All through elementary and high school I played volleyball, basketball, track, and badminton. I knew my professional sports playing days were over when I got cut trying out for the football team. When I got to university I had no idea what I wanted to do as a career so after stumbling and thinking about what I want to do with my life, I signed up for a theatre course at University. The rest as they say is history.
3. Can we discuss how you took an intro acting and you landed a big role in a big play? Can you tell us more about the play you were in?
My first year of University was a disaster. I took too many courses and did little school work. Chasing girls were more important than chasing grades. Going into my second year I needed to figure things out so I signed up for a theatre course. I had done a little bit in high school but only to meet girls as there were no girls anywhere in my private all guys high school. I went to a random audition and booked a role. The play was called Landscape of the Body by John Guare, a story about a woman’s unfulfilled life and her early death. I played Donny, one of the main character’s best friend. By landing that role, I was one of two first-year theatre students to land a role in a mainstage play; roles usually saved for second and third-year theatre students. I knew that after that play being an actor was something that I wanted to do as a career for the rest of my life.
4. What sort of hobbies do you enjoy doing outside of acting?
I love to play hockey! I was a late bloomer at the sport starting at 27 but since I’ve played in over 150 competitive games in Toronto and Montreal. In addition, I got back into the land of competitive chess after a long hiatus and participate in tournaments when able. I also love to read, travel, walk, and follow both the competitive Starcraft 2 and Super Smash Bros Melee scenes.
5. Where can we see you next?
After my main theatre show, I got a couple of leads in different plays, participated in my cities fringe festival, and other independent theatre shows. Since there were so few film opportunities in Winnipeg for me I moved to Toronto. After auditioning for what seems like a thousand times for a thousand different things I have done many national commercials (Sprite, Purolator, The Government of Ontario, Fountain Tire and more) and I’ve been a lead on one of the largest web series in the country (IRL: The Series). As of now, I have a feature film and a television show in development (paused due to COVID-19) and will be on The Expanse (Amazon Prime) in Season 5.