From the outset, he was our favorite for Tom. I kept his headshot in my backpack with a few others while we were still casting, and I just kept going back to it. When I went back to watch his audition tape again, Vanessa just looked at me and said, “There’s your Tom.” She was absolutely right.
The part of Tom Stone was not an easy one. First, he’s in every single scene. No other actor was required to be on set for the full three days of shooting, but except for a few camera angles Tom was needed at every moment.
Thomas also had to portray a man in two extremely different moments of his life. For half of the film, he’s in jail and angry with the world, his situation, and even himself. For the other half, he’s a mystery to the audience and a threat to a teenage girl. It was a complex part, and Thomas and I sat down just after he was cast to go over the script and talk about what the character was going through in detail and how to approach it.
What I loved about that first long meeting was that Thomas clearly understood the part, and what I was trying to do with it. He brought a new perspective, which helped to round it out and take Tom from being a character to being a person.
Thomas is also just a really great guy, on every level. He was fun, he was game for anything, and he was hilarious. He patiently sat in the makeup chair for who knows how many hours while Kelley painted on his tattoos and made him look older. He was just wonderful to work with, and I can’t wait to see him up on the stage here in DC.
Photo Courtesy of Katie Neff