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Taylor Kitsch may be best known as Tim Riggins, the rough-around-the-edges football player in NBC’s Friday Night Lights. But he’s about to be transported to leading-man fame when John Carter releases into theaters on March 9.
Kitsch plays the titular character in Disney’s adventure film, which is based on the Barsoom series from Edgar Rice Burroughs. John Carter is a down-on-his-luck Civil War vet who is mysteriously transported to Mars, where he is thrown into a conflict between warring nations.
“I love it,” Kitsch said at the premiere of playing John Carter. “You love a flawed character. I think those are the most fun to play and to dive into.”
Kitsch’s character, who starts out as a very defeated man, is often conflicted about helping the Martian nations, although a princess of one of the nations (played by Lynn Collins) continues to beg for his help.
“The arc of John Carter is incredible and for me as an actor the more you can dive into it, the more fulfilling it will be,” the Canadian actor added.
The role was physically challenging because Kitsch’s character can literally leap tall mountains (because of the lower gravity) and has to fight some serious extraterrestrial bad guys.
Kitsch, who will also star in Peter Berg‘s upcoming film Battleship, told THR that a scene in which he is chained to a boulder and thrown into an arena to fight giant, blind beasts was especially challenging.
“That was a six day shoot, that scene, and that was a pretty grilling one,” he told THR.
John Carter, helmed by Wall-E director Andrew Stanton, also stars Willem Dafoe, Thomas Haden Church and Bryan Cranston.
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