Alynda Wheat and Alicia Dennis
April 07, 2014 12:00 PM

>People

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Your character Mat in the indie drama The Mend is an aging loner. He’s a pretty dark guy …

This is a guy who has let go. It’s fun to watch and fun to play, but the reality is those kinds of people are painful to be around.

How much did all his dysfunction affect you?

I don’t consider myself a method actor by any means, but I can’t help but bring it home. I wish I could let it go more!

The movie starts with an emotional scene with 13-year-old Cory Nichols. Has becoming a dad changed how you interact with kids on-set?

Becoming a father [to Noah, 21 months] has changed absolutely everything in my life, period. And it’s making me think I want [roles] that help me be more of the parent I want to be. I want to be part of things that are more the things I see my son responding to and enjoying. I’m learning more from my son than I think probably my son is learning from me. That is what is so mesmerizing and beautiful about being a parent.

You are going through a tough divorce from your wife, writer Jessica Henriquez.

Divorce isn’t something I’d wish on my worst enemy, even when in our case we have managed to do it amicably. We will be connected forever. Fully. We have both worked hard to be great friends. We are the most connected broken family I have ever seen.

How did you decide to become an actor?

I was a 9-year-old hiding in a sand dune behind our house in Charleston, S.C., where they were shooting a movie, and it was magic. Right then I knew it was my life.

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