Forrest Goodluck was 15 and living at home in rural Albuquerque when he auditioned for The Revenant. A year later, he was filming his big-screen debut next to arguably the world’s biggest actor, Leonardo DiCaprio. Now, aged 19, he’s building on the exposure, so he can tell stories in front of and behind the camera – starting with his role in Sundance success, The Miseducation of Cameron Post, which is out today. ASOS Magazine (get your hands on the full print edition here) caught up with him to talk about his Native American heritage, working with the greats and his hopes for the future.
STYLE AND CULTURE
FORREST GOODLUCK'S STYLE FILE
By Sam Higgins, 8 September 2018
What were your first steps in acting?
I was 12 when I started auditioning for open casting calls in New Mexico. There are opportunities for actors, especially with the Western thing that’s happening. I got looped in with some really talented filmmakers from the get-go.
How important is your identity?
Being Native gives you a unique view. Since you’re the original people from the continent, there’s pride and love for your country. But look past any American textbook [and you] realise how awful the treatment of indigenous people was. It gives you a balanced perspective. Be grateful you aren’t extinct but know this land has given so much to you and being able to give it back is [important].’
How was it working with Oscar-winning directors and actors on The Revenant?
A lot of people are star-struck around actors but every time I was with [director] Alejandro Iñárritu and [cinematographer] Chivo [Emmanuel Lubezki] I was nervous because they were the superstars to me.
What should people get from your films?
Films that are true to the world around you are stronger than films that are trying to prove something. Mine are more real. If you watch the take and there’s a fake moment, I’m like: “No. Cut. Do it again.” Then I wait till that moment could exist in reality. The story comes first. You need to do films that matter to you and to people who need the escape.
Tell us more about The Miseducation Of Cameron Post and what to expect...
It’s like a beautiful painting of people all knowing that they deserve an identity. Adam, the character I portray, was special because I don’t think this Native character has been portrayed in modern cinema. It’s mentioned he’s Native, but he goes beyond that. [He is] this little s**t – dry sense of humour – who’s hilarious and totally himself.
And the film won the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance!
It was incredible. The night came and we’re all waiting [to hear the result] and then my dad comes and he’s like: “This other film won the prize.” Thirty minutes go by, we’re all sad thinking it had lost, and then he says: “No, actually, Cameron Post won!” [He had misread the winner]. I was like: “What!?”
What’s up next?
I’m shooting Blood Quantum, directed by Jeff Barnaby. It’s a zombie film but the catch is that only Native American people are immune to the outbreak. It’ll be controversial, but I hope we get the right people angry!