Max Ryan on Death Race


Max Ryan comes off as a pretty cool guy. Funny and down to earth but also having a bit of a dark look and feel to him. Sporting a mohawk and having his face covered in cuts and blood all seem to come with the territory of being a mass murdering Neo Nazi in Paul W.S. Anderson’s Death Race. After watching Ryan film one of the final scenes in the film, he had some time in between takes and answer a few questions: Can you tell us a little bit about your character?
Max Ryan: My character is a Neo Nazi and has an entourage of Neo Nazis around him. Kind of bold, skinheads. All deviant type of guys. Quite ruthless. Basically, I am the nemesis for Jason. So we have three or four fight scenes, which is quite cool. Even though it is stage fighting, it still gets pretty heavy out there. There has been a lot of stunts so its very hard. It’s not any kind of formal martial arts. It’s kind of brutal steel on skin.

CS: Can you talk about how you got the role?
Ryan: Basically, I was in Poland, Warsaw. I was doing a TV series and I got this audition and I did a tape where I put myself in an industrial area like this. I emailed it across the states to my manager and they sent it over to the casting and then casting sent it over to Paul and the studio and you know, they showed interest within the first few days and it was about 10 days later where I get the call and it was like “Can you get on a plane?” and of course I can get on a plane… where? (Laughs)

CS: What is it like wearing all this makeup?
Ryan: Oh this stuff? Well you should see my girlfriend. This, it really helps tremendously you know what I mean? And the clothes. Which is good because the scheduling and filming for me has been realistically… besides the murder scene in which is at the start of the film and here we are at the end where this is realistically the finale and through the story it has been building and building layers upon layers when you get to this point in the film its like you have become part of… well I won’t say part of the character because he is a mass murder (laughs). Are you still alive? (Laugh) Ah it’s a good day, a good day.

CS: How long does all this take?
Ryan: Oh, well, it takes about an hour and a half. You know we have tattoos as well. A lot of tattoos. But usually it takes about an hour, hour and a half.

CS: Is this all from the accident?
Ryan: No, I had a fight as well. The fight before this race. I have a fight with Jensen, Frankenstein, Jason’s character and we are in the garage, I kind of trick him, I kind of walk past his bay and he is having a conversation with one of his guys and I am going to take him right here. And he walks after me and I kind of coerce him into my garage and as he comes in I have three guys with me which is kind of handy (laughs). So he kind of puts me on my back and just goes off and it is like he gets really nasty and one of his guys comes in, helps him, diverts him, he manages to get free, takes out two of my guys and we just have this brawl, so I get quite a lot of bruises from that as well.

CS: What type of driving do you get to do?
Ryan: A lot of simulation because movies like this, it is all about insurance. But we do everything we can do. I don’t think that’s saying we are in car flips through the air four times to be completely honest with you. I am a tough guy, but I mean I am not sure I am that tough.

CS: So you have done some action films before. What types of lessons have you learned?
Ryan: Get a better job. Be a lawyer. Property developer.

CS: What type of research are you doing for this? I am not saying you are going around doing some mass murdering but are you visiting some penitentiaries?
Ryan: Minimalistic, you know? Just trying to keep it real. Just a regular guy that doesn’t realize he is killing people. A bit like myself really.

CS: So no hanging out with Neo Nazi’s?
Ryan: Oh yeah, they are part of my friends (laughs). No, no, there was no hanging around Neo Nazis.

CS: Are you doing an American accent for this?
Ryan: It is sort of a neutral American. Non-descript really. You do not know where I am from. One minute I am here, one minute I am there.

CS: How about the hair?
Ryan: The hair? Yea, this is mine. You have something against it? Speak to my lawyer.

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