Texas native Matt Bomer is flying high these days. When our Lance Avery Morgan first caught up with him in the 2000s, Bomer had just landed a few key roles. Then came HBO’s Emmy sweeper The Normal Heart that placed him firmly on the map as a cool guy to know.
His latest project The Last Tycoon is a dramatic series on Amazon and from shooting his hit television series White Collar, to his film work and all the way to the Broadway stage, he seems to be making all the right moves. Here he reveals what it’s like taking up Frisbee golf while in Austin, to having a Dallas Cowboy football player dad to going to high school with movie stars…
Lance Avery Morgan: Matt, I became an instant fan when you did Flightplan.
Matt Bomer: Thanks so much. Part of its success is that it plays on our fears, which Hitchcock did so well. Plus, I got to work with producer Brian Grazer, which can be a little intimidating. I admire his work so much.
LAM: Speaking of big talents, what was it like to work with Jodie Foster on that?
MB: We had a blast. It was a great experience for three months. Eighty five percent of the movie takes place on an airplane, a set that looks like the new Airbus. Jodie is amazing. A really incredible person. Peter Sarsgaard is great to work with, too.
LAM: The Last Tycoon, your series on Amazon seemed like a cool show in be a part of. What was the best part of it for you?
MB: The best part was that there were the wonderful people to worked with behind the scenes, as well as in front of the camera.
LAM: Your dad, John Bomer, is a former Dallas Cowboy star. Did you play a lot of sports growing up?
MB: Oh, yeah. We were always throwing the ball around. I played everything…football, track, and to be honest, I was only pretty average at all of them. I loved living in Texas – the people, the manners, gentility – and great cooking at my grandmother’s.
LAM: So many famous people have come from where you grew up in the Houston area – Rene’ Zellweger, Jaclyn Smith, Dennis Quaid. Is it something in the water there?
MB: It’s crazy, isn’t it? There’s also Lynn Collins (True Blood) and Lee Pace, who is in Halt And Catch Fire. As you know, coming from Texas is like coming from another country. There’s a sense of community. Plus, being a Texan also breeds a healthy sense of competition, which helps if you pursue life in the big city.
LAM: Was it a shock going from small-town Texas to the Big Apple?
MB: I went to college at Carnegie Mellon, so from Spring, TX to Pittsburgh was a bit of a departure. I’m thankful to have done that first. New York is so wonderful. You walk out the door and there are millions of people doing different things, so it tends to open you up as an individual.
LAM: Do you want to play a superhero in your career?
MB: Hey, as long as there’s criminal activity in society, there’s a need for superheroes, don’t you think? And yes, it would be great to play one sometime.
LAM: What is your favorite thing to do these days to unwind from your acting schedule?
MB: I do yoga. I’m a bit of a homebody. I like to keep it low key and grab a drink with friends. I go to the gym and I also like to play poker. My latest thing is Frisbee golf – which I started in Austin.
LAM: Any advice for those seeking the bright lights of acting?
MB: Look, I’m a kid from Spring, so I believe no matter where you are, you can do it. Find the path to be a working actor. And have to have a mission statement for yourself.