I managed to just slip in the door for the Q&A session for Matt Robinson, best known for his role as the slightly disreputable “Slade” on the television show, The Tribe. Thankfully, Matt had just begun his session, and I didn’t draw down the wrath of the director.
Robinson, a native of London, England, is a relatively new addition to the New Zealand-based show. He has a background in stage theater that has served him well. When asked if he thought that stage acting or television acting was more difficult, Matt said, “Really, it’s two different things. I mean, stage acting gives you a much more immediate feedback. If you flub a line or mumble a line, everyone knows it. But there’s a real discipline to doing television as well. You have to do really well and take into consideration as many things as you would on stage. But I love doing both,” he added, “and really don’t think one’s better than the other.”
When questioned about his character’s somewhat shady treatment of the women in his life, Matt laughed and said, “Oh, back to that old chestnut, are we?” Everyone chuckled and he winked and continued. “Really, I think that Slade is supposed to be a rather ambiguous character. He doesn’t really get tied down. He’s like kind of a Lone Ranger figure. He rolls into town and does whatever he needs to do. It just so happens that he’s found a couple of very attractive women when he comes into this town.” More laughter and catcalls followed.
The question of Slade’s motorcycle came up and whether Matt had to learn to ride the bike or whether he already knew how. “Well, I’d mostly stayed to four wheels,” he said, “But we have a very good stunt coordinator and he really helped me when I needed it. And it’s quite fun really, going haring around town on this motorcycle.” When asked if he wanted to take the motorcycle home with him, Matt grinned and said, “I’d love to, but I think the art department would object and I know English customs wouldn’t allow it. And I can’t imagine what my dad would say.” With this last question answered, I slipped out as quietly as I slipped in, followed by the sound of laughter as the session ended.