Eclipse News – USA Today : Eclipse spawns a new star in Xavier Samuels
Remember last July when we heard Riley was casted. We saw his previous work and were wowed by him. Its bound to happen anyway with the talent he has and we’re so glad it did. YEAH XAVIER!!!
When Australian actor Xavier Samuel shipped off an audition tape to Twilight producers, insta-fame seemed oceans away.
“It’s kind of strange because you send them off into oblivion and you don’t know if anyone watches them,” says Samuel, 26.
That was last year.
Fast-forward to the Eclipse premiere, where thousands of fans are not only screaming but are screaming for him. “It’s kind of 360 degrees of hysteria,” Samuel says just hours before the Los Angeles premiere of the third film installment of Stephenie Meyer’s blockbuster series. “The sound (of Twilight‘s fans) does really knock you off your feet.”
Samuel steals not only the first five minutes of one of most anticipated movies of the summer, but much of its finale. He plays newborn vampire Riley Biers, who, alongside vengeful vamp Victoria, leads a bloodthirsty army of young vampires with one goal: killing human Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) and those who protect her.
Hailing from Adelaide, he now joins Hollywood’s short list of hot young Aussie men in the spotlight, including brothers Chris Hemsworth (Star Trek) and Liam Hemsworth (The Last Song), and Sam Worthington (Avatar).
Joining the ranks of Robert Pattinson, Stewart and Taylor Lautner, “I ought to feel ostracized, but everyone was wonderfully down to earth,” says Samuel, who found battling a CGI werewolf in the wilds of Canada more challenging than making friends. “You’re just working with a piece of fur on the end of a stick just kind of poking you,” he says with a laugh.
The son of parents who teach history and English, the dry-humored Samuel, whose younger brother Benedict is finishing up acting school and whose sister Bridget is an opera stage manager, cut his teeth playing Hamlet in college, later appearing in a smattering of movies on the film festival circuit, including Newcastle, September and The Loved Ones.
Mom Maree now keeps tabs on his Google status (a quick search for her son’s name snags upward of 900,000 hits). “She’s kind of made it her mission to monitor the info on me on the Internet, which is an impossible task,” he says.
That includes the rumor that Samuel ditched his supposed band to follow his film career. “Completely untrue,” he says, though he did tote his acoustic guitar to Vancouver to relax between shoots and workouts. “I don’t have a burning ambition to be a rock star or anything,” he says, instead listing other musical favorites: The National, the Very Best and the Magnetic Fields.