Previously perhaps best known as Calvin from ABC Family’s “Greek,” Paul James can now be seen as Sean Egan on HULU’s “The Path.” The show is now airing on Wednesdays with the first season finale coming up on May 25th.
Wingman Magazine: Your new show, HULU’s “The Path,” has to do with faith and “The Movement.” Care to elaborate on that a little bit? And how does your character Sean Egan come into play?
Paul James: It’s less about the particulars of The Movement, it’s not a show about why it’s bad to be a part of these types of groups, but more about the choices you make and the people that are drawn to them. Usually the reasons have to do with personal tragedy or how people grow up one way and then start thinking for themselves or whatever challenges you go through in life, really. It’s less about the sensationalism of being in a “cult” and more about relatable situations, a family drama type of show. Before the show starts, my character Sean joins The Movement due to a personal tragedy. When the show opens, Sean is what is called a novice, the lowest rung of the movement. He is very wide-eyed and excited to be there.
Wingman Magazine: What kind of research did you do about cults, or movements?
Paul James: I thought about reading about actual cults, but I didn’t want to have any negative thoughts going into filming. It’s hard to read those books and not say, “what were they thinking?” I was raised a Christian Scientist, which is not a cult but is a definitely specific way to be raised. I used some of my own history of my religion as a kid to inform my character on the show. We live in a crazy world now and one can imagine wanting to live a simpler life, I just used that as a jumping off point.
Wingman Magazine: When reading a script, what makes you think “ yep I want this one?”
Paul James: When I got the pilot, I thought it was one of the most well written scripts I have ever read. Just hands down, automatically it was that great. The way she, (Jessica Goldberg) revealed character in the pilot was masterful. Pilots can oftentimes can be extremely clunky in how they introduce people and their backstories . Reading this one, it was just amazing and gripping and every script was the same way. When I got to the end of each script, I just wanted to read the next one right away.
Wingman Magazine: The Path started on March 30th.and then what for you? Are you heading back to start filming season 3 of The Last Ship?
Paul James: Yeah, I am. I don’t think it’s a big surprise or anything. The two shows filmed at the same time on different coasts so I couldn’t do as many episodes of The Last Ship as I would have liked but I do pop up toward the end of the season. I will say Season 3 of The Last Ship is going to be insane, make sure you tune in.
Wingman Magazine: What did you want to be when you were growing up?
Paul James: Hell I always wanted to be an actor when I was a kid, it’s only now that I want to do ten other things. I may have wanted to be a fireman at one point and I definitely wanted to be an X-Men for awhile.
Wingman Magazine: How did you come upon acting? Is there any one film you saw or character you watched that made you want to be an actor?
Paul James: I watched a lot of movies when i was kid. My mom was into old movies, so I watched a lot of those back in the day. The movies that I loved were The Thin Man movies. It was a series of about 7 movies with William Powell and Myrna Loy. Basically they are two rich drunks and they solve cases by accident. I have watched those movies like 12 times each, they are so good. I heard recently that Johnny Depp was maybe going to remake them. Truthfully though I got into acting more because of doing theater and not wanting a 9-5 job. The movies I loved as a kid weren’t necessarily what you would call well acted films though Falcor is doing work in Neverending Story.