After rising to fame as the sinister Draco Malfoy in the “Harry Potter” films, actor Tom Felton returns to the screen, playing Logan, an unwitting passenger on a spaceship bound for a distant planet, on YouTube’s “Origin.”
“Harry Potter,” “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” and “The Flash” actor Tom Felton doesn’t quite remember the origin of his YouTube (iOS, Android) obsession.
“It must have been some silly cat video or a dog skateboarding or something along those lines,” he told Download.com. “But for me, personally, music is the thing that brought me to it on a regular basis. Between the guitar instructional videos and live performances, I find it to be a great discovery tool for new artists and obviously great for instructional videos, if you want to learn how to play something.”
Now, as YouTube attempts to become an emerging TV platform like Netflix (iOS, Android) and Amazon Prime Video (iOS, Android), Felton is thrilled to be one of the faces on one of its first original series, “Origin,” watchable starting Nov. 14 with a YouTube TV (iOS, Android) or a YouTube Premium subscription.
On the chilling new 10-episode sci-fi series about a group of strangers, struggling to survive after finding themselves stranded on a spacecraft bound for a distant planet, the actor plays Logan, a hotheaded Californian with a very foul mouth.
“I think YouTube is definitely going to put themselves in to be one of the heavy players of the game,” he said. “I think maybe they have an arsenal of tools that other platforms don’t have — they have the data to know what global audiences want to see, not to mention that YouTube is the No. 1 place that people go to watch videos and always has been since the days of early Internet. So you can say they’re competing with these other markets, but they’re also creating a whole new one, I think. And one that hasn’t been seen before, so it’s a very exciting company to be working with right now.”
It was also getting to work with the show’s creator, writer, and executive producer Mika Watkins, whom he describes as a “young, fresh talent with a brilliant mind” and her novel story idea that drew him in.
“It felt like a concept that we heard before but delivered in a very different way,” he said. “I like things set in the near future, where it still feels like the earth that we know that our passengers are leaving behind. Even though it’s a ‘sci-fi thriller,’ as they say, it still feels more rooted in humans than anything else. That and the multinational aspect of it I thought was brilliant. In the first three episodes, half of each episode is either in Japanese, English, or French. I don’t know that many shows that have done that successfully, so that was a really exciting prospect as well.”
Download.com also talked to Tom Felton about the apps that excite him, why he doesn’t ever need to leave his bed to go on an adventure, and why he thinks apps are destroying our planet.
What’s the one app that you use the most?
I suppose it would be a photography editing app. I just use the one that comes with the iPhone most of the time. But I do a lot of editing of pictures or videos. I record lots of musical ditties, with just a guitar and pick the old phone up and record for two or three minutes — just me rambling freestyle for my friends and family. So I use an app called Videoshop (iOS, Android) to cut it up and put borders and text in, etceteria.
What’s the last app you downloaded?
There are a couple of good recent ones. I downloaded Zillow (iOS, Android), the property app, for looking at properties. I got DocuSign (iOS, Android) for signing documents. Oh, I got the Oculus headset the other day, so I was playing around with Oculus Go. That’s a bit of a trip. I was fishing in bed for three hours last night. Oh, Bandsintown (iOS, Android) to see which bands are in town.
My favorite and least favorite app right now is one called Moment, and it tells you how many times you picked up your phone and how long you’re on the phone and which apps you’re using. It’s rather shocking when you’re up in the five- or six- hour mark for a week. You go, “I gotta put my phone down.” And I find it beautifully ironic that you need an app to tell you you’re using apps too much. Fantastic, my phone is telling me I’m on my phone too much. This is the epitome of irony.
When you wake up in the morning, what are the first apps you look at?
News, I suppose. I just flick through the Apple News thing. I use Headspace (iOS, Android) quite a bit recently. Headspace is a nice sort of guided meditation app I’m enjoying.
If you could invent your own app, what would it do?
Well, actually, I’ll tell you, but you can’t steal the idea. My idea is something called Reactogram. So the idea is you send messages to your friends, and, like Snapchat (iOS, Android), they can only see it for 10 seconds or whatever and immediately it films their response and sends it back to you. In a way, you can’t think about your response. You just react and it automatically films, so you get natural reactions, i.e., Reactogram, thank you very much. It’s genius.
If there was an app that could save civilization, what would it be?
An app that got you off your phone would be pretty good. That’s half the problem in the first place. That is the issue, that we think an app is going to do this. It’s apps that got us into this trouble.
I don’t know, an app that tells you how many resources you’re using, or, even better, how many resources you’re wasting. If there was an app that told you how much water you’re wasting from leaving the tap running, that could be pretty handy to guilt trip you into being a better eco-warrior. Yeah, that’s not bad.
You mentioned that you’re an iPhone user. Why iPhone over Android?
Habit, I suppose. I bought an iPhone eight years ago and haven’t switched since. It’s not through trying them both out or having a problem with the other; it’s just laziness, I suppose. I don’t know, I like the iPhone. They seem to work well most of the time.