Oscar-nominated actor Thomas Haden Church discusses moonshine, Disco-flavored Conway Twitty, and his new FearNet webseries Zombie Roadkill.
Any real-life ranger experience?
My ex was a park ranger in Massachusetts during college. I periodically asked her about the nuance and protocol of rangers when we got close to shooting. But given the fact that the guy is desperately fighting for his survival, I threw out the rules of decorum and decided that even though he happens to have on a uniform, his sole purpose is to kill as many zombies as possible.
Is fire the preferred method for killing zombies?
I think fire is widely regarded as a complete method for extermination. I know cutting their heads off is hands down the most circumspect but setting them on fire is pretty reliable.
Any roadkill from your 2000-acre Texas ranch looking for revenge?
You drive around enough on winding Hill Country roads and unfortunately you’ll clip more than your share. I don’t shed too many tears running over rattlesnakes. I grew up hunting but haven’t in 10 years. I mean, I’ve got pet deer. One named Sissy is 10 feet from the window right now, waiting to be fed some Fig Newtons. She’s been on the Tonight Show twice. Both Conan and Jay.
Ghosts on the ranch?
Nanny, my cattle partner’s 101-year-old grandmother, said cowboys used to drink shine and take prostitutes to a draw just behind my house. She said I should take a metal detector there because ‘there’s no telling what those cowboys lost when their trousers were down around their ankles.’ That’s a verbatim quote.
One of the old ranchers I met at the Vanderpool store brought a mason jar full of moonshine. It was horrible. Corn liquor’s made from turpentine and instantaneously changes the nitrogen level in your blood chemistry. That’s where that saying “Strip the paint off” comes from.
You auditioned naked for Sideways. Anything scare you?
I got my start in radio and remember Conway Twitty’s disco phase. It would just melt your eardrums.
Your character fights a zombie bunny. Any undead critter you wouldn’t want to meet?
A zombie grizzly bear would probably ruin your day.
Download the podcast for the extended interview:
7 Questions With Thomas Haden Church