Beloved multi-talented actor Allan Hawco delves into the epic world of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan and shares his goal of finding his next passion project
Allan Hawco calls us from an airport. He’s about to board a flight to New York City where he, alongside stars John Krasinski, Wendell Pierce, Noomi Rapace, Michael Kelly et. all will attend the premiere of the second season of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan.
Small Screen Arena
The Amazon Prime spotlighted epic action-series is the latest in a long-line of adaptations of the Tom Clancy character. Hawco found himself perusing through the Colombian jungle in the summer of 2018 as Coyote, a member of the Krasinski’s Ryan’s squad.
But first, the travel. This writer just returned from a vacation, the returning of which required three flights in a 15 hour period. So what does Allan Hawco think of flying?
“I like to travel a lot. I sleep as soon as I get down and then I wake up. Normally when we land, wherever that is, however long it takes. It’s very rare that I’m awake. I realize how lucky I am,” he jokes.
Television has been good to Hawco. From gracing screens across the world as Jake Doyle, to his recent turns in Jason Momoa led Frontier and a starring role in the Lisa Moore adapted best-seller Caught, the small screen is an arena Hawco has shined in for years now. He has no disillusions about how important a role in a Tom Clancy franchise is.
“It’s one of those franchises that’s kind of a part of the culture (in America). It’s this thing for an actor, like their Hamlet, or James Bond I should say,” he laughs.
“So that’s fun. I had a really interesting experience filming that show in Columbia. There are planes, there are helicopters there, boats, water, jungle, a lot of action, a lot of activity. And it was really fun to be on something that has this epic size of a production.”
And Hawco has tackled big projects before, to be sure. But Jack Ryan, with a bonafide Hollywood star in Krasinski at the lead, and a massive production budget behind it, was a different beast entirely.
“It was the biggest thing I’ve ever been part of in terms of size,” Hawco admits. “It was ginormous. Just the scheduling and the moving pieces. You know, they shot on three or four different continents. It’s like the scale of this thing is like nothing I’ve ever seen. It’s pretty amazing.”
The role of Coyote presented a rare opportunity to put the military training Hawco received on the set of Canadian drama Hyena Road to good use.
“It was a lot of fun to be playing a Navy SEAL,” he admits. “I trained with the Canadian military on Paul Gross’ film Hyena Road years ago and a lot of that came into play and was very helpful for me in this production.”
“When we did Hyena Road we didn’t have movie advisers. We had soldiers training us and hard on us to make sure that we didn’t make them look stupid. And obviously, we have personal pride in not wanting to represent our armed forces in the wrong way. So we all worked super diligently and I really loved that kind of stuff. My character is a Navy SEAL team guy who is a part of a contingent to help Krasinski and Wendell Pierce and Michael Kelly in a secret operation they’re doing.”
We ask if the transition from television to film – Hawco’s recent film credits include Weirdos and The Child Remains – presents certain challenges. Hawco, a jack of all trades who cut his teeth in the theatre, credits his background with preparing him for almost anything.
“The way that I came up is in the theatre. So you trained in the theatre at a level that’s so intense that really prepares you for kind of any aspect of any challenges that come your way in the work. And you’re just often so happy to be working, how hard you’re working doesn’t really matter.
“You’re in the theatre, you work nine hours, rehearsals every day. And then when you get into production when the show opens you’re doing eight shows in a six day week. Going to a movie set or a television set really is quite relaxed in comparison to that.”
With a talent as versatile as Hawco – a multi-threat actor, writer, producer, and all around art enthusiast – the question of what’s next always creeps up.
Canadian audiences will see him appear in the Global drama Departure. His guest role of Captain Donavan in this thriller in the skies epic sees him join a cast including Archie Panjabi and the legendary Christopher Plummer. Expect that to hit sometime in early 2020.
From there, who knows? A sophomore season of Caught is nearing completion, with the immediate fate of Frontier up in the air as of press time.
But for Hawco, a consummate professional who immerses himself in every facet of the acting business, finding passion projects is the new endgame.
“I really want to focus now on the kind of work that’s going to satisfy me,” he shares. “The thing that’s going to make me feel like I want to jump out of bed every morning and get to work. And whether that’s producing our own things or acting on other people’s shows, that’s just kind of what my focus I think would be over the next few years maybe. You never know. We’ll see. I’m writing one show that I’m interested in that we’ll see if it strikes with people who are the buyers. But we’ll see.”
Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan is available to stream now on Amazon Prime Video.