TVLINE | What initially drew you to Sons of Anarchy and the role of Jax?
I grew up in a rough-and-tough neighborhood, so I don’t actually relate to those shows and films about twentysomethings trying to make their way in the world. [Laughs] I just loved Jax. There are a million different dynamics at play within him… This project came at a strange time in my career when I wasn’t getting any [film] roles I wanted… So, I took 18 months off [to work on a screenplay], and then my agent and manager sent me the Sons of Anarchy script. I was surprised it was for a TV show, but I thought, ‘F–k it!’ – and it was fantastic! The idea was so original, the characters were well drawn and the quality of [executive producer] Kurt [Sutter]’s writing was better than the films I was reading.
TVLINE | There was also more depth to Jax’s relationship with Tara.
Maggie [Siff] had an amazing season. That’s one of the richest creative collaborations I’ve ever had with an actor. The way their relationship’s evolved and how close we’ve gotten really translates onscreen; that’s actually one of the things I’m most proud of on the show.
TVLINE | The series has a few more seasons in it … Then what?
I’d like to do it all. I’d love to keep acting. I have a couple of scripts that I’ve sold, one of which I’m writing for myself to star in. Ultimately, I’d love to direct a film. [If I did] more TV, it would really have to be for [cable] or working with someone like Kurt — if not Kurt, directly. Because I would do another Kurt Sutter show.
TVLINE | When all is said and done, how would you like Sons of Anarchy to be remembered?
As a really smart, original, gritty drama… In same way people think of The Sopranos or Deadwood — with reverence.
You can check out the interview in full over at TVLine.com