Sean Astin shared stories of his 30-year acting career at Wizard World Comic Con Fort Lauderdale. Currently appearing on The Strain and voicing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Raphael, Astin answered questions about his fan-favorite movies and living the life of an actor.
Astin is most known for his portrayal of Samwise Gangee, arguably the real hero of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Astin recalled six intense weeks of training, ranging from sword fighting to dialect coaching. He likened it to the old days of Hollywood, as learning continued throughout filming.
Astin said filming LOTR was the hardest thing he’s ever done in his entire life. There were 16-18 hour days, sometimes six days a week. “Just when you’re thinking you can’t go on anymore, you can,” he said of the grueling pace. But for all the hard work and long hours, Astin was proud of the end result of the Oscar-winning film.
“My development, my soul, my spirit was affected by the entire experience,” he said.
But Astin’s training began long before filming on the epic trilogy. He spent his whole lifetime training and perfecting his craft.
Astin grew up in Los Angeles, the son of well-known actors Patty Duke (Oscar Award winner and television star) and John Astin (the original Gomez Adams from The Adams Family). However, he never felt any pressure to enter the world of acting. He said he was privileged, in that he had a tremendous amount of love and support. It was only when he finished college and just before filming the Lord of the Rings, did he feel pressure.
“It’s important to respect your heritage and I started to feel the impact,” he said of the undertaking and importance the films would have on cinematic history.
Astin shared some tips for aspiring young actors in the crowd. He advised them to work on perfect body movement, as the body is the actor’s instrument. He also encouraged aspiring actors to follow what they are passionate about. “People who are passionate, find a way.”
When asked about the a sequel to pop-culture classic The Goonies, Astin replied, “Yes…” followed by a long pause, “…someday.” Astin has been asked the same question time and time again, in the 30 years following the film. Just as the film’s Goonies never say die, Goonies fans continue to show the love for the ’80s flick. “There’s something in it that inspires people to get tattoos of Sloth.”
At one point, a response trended on Twitter, so he responded, “#Goonies 2 I shall return.” However, sarcasm doesn’t come across well on the Internet. Astin deleted the tweet and issued a statement to quell any rumors the long-sought sequel was a reality.
And while Astin confirmed there is no sequel in the works, it is something both Richard Donner and Steven Spielberg have expressed interest in. But Astin admitted it’s really hard to bottle the magic from that time. He is confident there will be another Goonies movie, whether it’s a reboot, a true sequel, or a new generation of Goonies. If he is asked, he would love to do it.
“The reason I know it will eventually get made is because people want it to be made.”