A Warren native will be among those chasing Colin Farrell when a big-budget remake of the science fiction tale ''Total Recall'' opens nationwide on Friday.
Brooks Darnell, who was known as Darnell Rodgers when he graduated from Warren G. Harding High School in 2000, plays Spencer in the film directed by Len Wiseman and costarring Jessica Biel, Kate Beckinsale and Bryan Cranston.
Darnell, the son of Darnell and Doreen Rodgers, said his focus was on sports more than acting when he was growing up in Warren, although his mother encouraged him to memorize and perform monologues. After placing in an International Model and Talent Association competition in New York City at age 16, he had a chance to study at San Francisco's Conservatory Theater School, but he opted to pursue an athletic scholarship at Youngstown State University instead.
Special to the Tribune Chronicle
Warren native Brooks Darnell appears in the new film ‘‘Total Recall.’’
''I didn't have the confidence to go any further with it (at the time),'' Darnell said. ''It was unknown to me.''
After two years of college, he decided to pursue a career in front of the camera, first working as a model and then acting. Darnell was splitting his time between Toronto and Los Angeles when he went to a casting call for ''Total Recall,'' which was filmed in Canada.
He described his character as ''a bad a- nerd,'' Darnell said. ''He's a computer guy, but he's a bad a-.''
He's part of the second wave of soldiers who bust in on Farrell's character when he is at Rekall, a place where customers go to get memories implanted. It's not a big part, but he has a couple lines and a big-screen closeup as he's punching in information on a backpack/computer to track Farrell's whereabouts.
Despite not having a large role, Darnell said he was surprised at ''how giving Colin, Len and Kate were, especially as a novice feature film actor that I am. Len and I had to talk my scene out. We talked for close to an hour. It propels the story forward, and we had to get it right.''
He also remembers the food.
''We ate like kings,'' he said. ''There were four-, five-course meals.''
Darnell is in Los Angeles now and hoping that the exposure in a movie opening in more than 3,000 theaters on Friday will lead to more work. Nothing is signed yet, but Darnell said he is in talks to appear in a movie starring Samuel L. Jackson and Ed Harris that is slated to begin filming later this year. But like most actors, he's dreaming of bigger things.
''I'd like to do the type of projects that Will Smith does, projects that you can bring your children to and projects that really really make you think about life,'' he said. ''I'd like to have that range of projects ... I think every actor wants that kind of career.''