Marc Menchaca has made quite a name for himself these last few years with roles in TV series such as Netflix’s “Ozark” and HBO’s “The Outsider” playing troubled characters harboring dark secrets. Marc is the kind of actor whose performances stay with you long after they have wrapped due to the intensity and realism that he brings to each and every role. In John Hyams survival thriller ALONE, Marc once again slides into a nefarious role as The Man, an individual who is much more dangerous than appearances would perceive. For the release of the film, I had the chance to speak with Marc 1:1 where he discussed everything from what draws him to playing complicated characters to the excitement of filming a fight scene covered in mud.
In ALONE, Jules Willcox plays Jessica, a grief-stricken widow who flees the city in an attempt to cope with the loss of her husband. When Jessica is kidnapped by a mysterious man (Marc Menchaca) and locked in a cabin in the Pacific Northwest, she escapes into the wilderness and is pursued by her captor.
Hi Marc, thank you so much for speaking with me today! To start things off, what can you tell us about The Man?
Marc Menchaca: I would say that The Man is trying to survive by feeding an addiction while hiding it from his real life.
You’ve played other complicated characters in roles such as Jack Hoskins in “The Outsider” as well as Russ Langmore in “Ozark”. What draws you to those kinds of roles? What research goes into those roles?
Marc Menchaca: I don’t know…I’ve always been kind of drawn to playing damaged people. I just think they are a little more fun, a little more complicated and I get to work on it myself before I get to work. I wouldn’t say research, I think it’s more of crafting the moment that I cling to and then building from there.
The majority of the film takes place in and around a desolate wooded area. What were some of the challenges you faced filming in this environment?
Marc Menchaca: Just being out in the Pacific NW was a challenge in and of itself; while at the same time, being a beautiful challenge (laughs). One thing that I think made it easier for us was that we decided that we were going to shoot no matter what. If it started raining or whatever, we were going to continue shooting. We just dealt with it as we went. We used the Pacific NW for what it was and it was great, I loved it.
How was it working so closely with Jules Willcox and did you spend a lot of time getting to know each other prior to filming?
Marc Menchaca: We spent plenty of time together and made sure to have fun times outside of it. Not until we stepped on set we would turn the other corner. We needed the levity outside of it. We did get to spend quite a bit of time together so it was great.
One of my favorite scenes of the movie took place when you and Jules end up having a fight scene surrounded by mud. What was that experience like?
Marc Menchaca: It was a long day but we had fun doing it. I think that’s all we shot that day. It was pretty tiring cause I didn’t have a stunt double because I wanted to do it. I got padded up on my back when I needed to and everything. We definitely spent a considerable amount of time in the mud, none of that was makeup, it was just how we ended up. We were caked in mud. We were in a field that had been raining that just came about naturally as we started and then kind of caked on us throughout. It was one of the coolest fight sequences I’ve ever done just cause it was…obviously, you have to choreograph some of it but John wanted to make it as real as possible without any super-human moves that [Jules] had to do.
For more on ALONE, check out our review here. ALONE is now in theaters and On Demand. **Editor’s Note: Nightmarish Conjurings does not condone seeing movies in theaters at this due to the pandemic. Please consider VOD and/or Drive-In options.