The only answer is that I don't know if we will see him back. I would love to go back. It is such a finely tuned machine out there. Everybody on the show is just tremendous. That's obviously why it's such a hit. They're just brilliant. But I don't know if we're going to see him again. I'm hoping there’s, because obviously we've seen Frank in the alternate universe, but it'd be fun to see him in this universe. It’d be fun to kind of explore what he'd be like.
Actually, she's from Montana as well. We grew up together. Her brother and I were best friends growing up and her mom was my geometry teacher in high school and her dad was my baseball coach. We've known each other an awfully long time, so it seemed the right thing to do. We were best friends, and it's always a good thing to marry your best friend.
Right, right, unless you’re Leontes.
[Laughs.] This is true. [Laughs.] That's right, that's very true.
Was it “The Patriot” that gave you the taste for acting?
It was quite a bit before that. My mom was working nights when I was younger at a nursing home and my dad was at Montana State University. … I'd go to the university with dad and just hang out back stage with actors.
And to be honest with you, I thought that was kind of what people did. I thought people told stories and also, being such a tight community of people, a lot of them were involved in this thing called Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, which Joel Janke directs and runs, they were a family to us. So we hung out with these people for years and years and years when I was a kid. I just thought that’s what people did. They told stories, they rectified things with sword fights, and they enjoyed life.
So I thought, “Why not give it a shot?” What was great was I had parents who said if you want to do it then do it. They didn't turn me away from it. So I was really fortunate there. A lot of people don't have that support. But I think my dad knew. He said, “I can't say no because I did it as well.” So it was probably from those years being a boy growing up in the theater in Montana and hearing Shakespeare in the Park and watching my dad do that with his friends.
What were your first professional gigs?
I think the first thing I did when I was a kid was a Maxwell House Coffee commercial with George Strait. [Laughs.] And I did a Wrangler Jeans commercial, and then “The Patriot” came to town.
The director was a guy named Dean Semler, who was actually a [director of photography]. He DP’d “Dances with Wolves” and “Water World.” And then he went on to do “Apocalypto” with Mel Gibson. He kind of took me under his wing and said, “Look, you can do this for as long as you want, just keep your head on your shoulders and work hard and you can do this.”
I never forgot that it wasn't about being in the right place at the right time, which it can be a lot of the times. Don't get me wrong, but he really encouraged me just to work harder and never kind of let go of that. Even in those months and months and months you think, “This is the right job,” then you have a meeting and a screen test and it doesn’t go anywhere and you think, “Oh man, what am I doing wrong?” Even in those times I think back and just think, “Keep your head down, keep working.” That was very encouraging for me.