Getting to know Hugh Dillon
The ''Durham County'' star talks guns, Canada, and punk rock
What drew you to the series?
I read those scripts like you read any great novel. I found them hypnotic and addictive. I thought, I’ll read a couple and then I’ll read a couple tomorrow. But I couldn’t put them down. The characters are so well written. I play [cop Mike Sweeney], who wants to start over and do all the right things, and he’s not catching a break.
What’s it like to film in Montreal?
We start in the fall when winter’s coming in and everything’s dying. I don’t speak French, so there’s a disconnect. The days are getting shorter, it’s darker, it’s ghostly, and then you’re shooting this dark, ghostly TV show. It’s an odd reality.
With the show’s ghoulish plots — murders, affairs, kidnapping — what’s the vibe like off the set?
There’s an element of dark humor in [Laurie Finstad Knizhnik’s] writing. It’s what saves you when you’re filming this kind of material. But I also go to the shooting range after [filming]. It relieves a lot of tension.
You’re a singer-songwriter, too. How does that world fit into your acting?
I played in a punk-rock band for a lot of my life and then got into acting 10 to 15 years ago. But I’ve recently been able to get my night job back. I’ve had some songs in Durham and just signed a deal with Warner records in Canada. It’s great to have this rock & roll outlet. It’s always saved my sanity.