Leaving his mark on screen! Callum Turner delivered a memorable performance alongside Shailene Woodley in The Last Letter to Your Lover, and it was all about connecting with the material.
The Netflix film is based on a historical fiction novel that offers readers two timelines that jump around between the 1960s and present time. Woodley and Turner portray star-crossed lovers that have all odds working against them.
For the Fantastic Beasts star, the forbidden aspect of their romance stood out to him as he prepared for the project.
“When I read the script, I was brokenhearted because of the time that they spent apart,” Turner told ScreenRant in July 2021 about the movie’s message. “What I realized was that you only have one life, and this whole existence is painted in the space of 400 or 500 pages — or two hours now. So [I learned] just to really go for it and don’t hold back. Don’t stand on the edge of the cliff, looking down. Just jump see what happens.”
Turner reflected on the changes that his character was able to go through because of the love he had for Woodley’s character.
“For the first time, he’s able to be himself. She inspires a goodness, by being around her, he wants to improve as a person and finds herself being present,” he noted. “He stops drinking and wants to live a life that he hasn’t understood before. And it’s so inspiring when someone’s able to commit like that.”
Turner previously discussed how his past allowed him to connect with certain roles, including his award-winning portrayal of Shaun Emery in The Capture.
“I was compassionate towards him as someone who can’t stop making the same mistakes,” the U.K. native admitted in an interview with the Independent in February 2020. “I used to smoke so much weed. I was dealing with depression or a frustration, and not having the understanding or the tools to deal with how I felt, so I self-medicated for too long.”
The model, who thought he “definitely stunted something” by smoking marijuana, used that experience to influence the way he approached that role because he recalled it as a very dark time for him.
“The stuff in England is really… you get what you’re given,” he explained at the time. “It’s not like in LA when you go to the weed version of the Apple Store and they’re like, ‘What do you wanna do tonight?’ I was acting, doing films, and smoking weed every day. I never smoked on set but as soon as I got home, I was like a real addict. I definitely missed four years of my life.”
Turner has also channeled the positive parts of his childhood that led him through different walks of life, which now adds to his understanding of a new character.
“It made me very accepting,” he reflected to the Independent. “I grew up around such a blend of different people who I learned from, meaning there’s less of a gap between people, less of a barrier for me to cross.”
Scroll down to learn more about Turner’s journey: