Aussie Star Luke Mitchell On Going From Ramsay Street To Hollywood
The actor made the leap from Aussie soaps to starring in the 10 All Access legal drama 'The Code', but it all started on a tennis court.
From an early age, Luke Mitchell and his siblings were all about tennis. "I had tennis blinkers on," he told 10 daily, "Dad got us into it from 4, 5...6 years old, we were going to tournaments most weekends, travelling around the state but also nationally."
It wasn't until Luke was about 19 that he finally began to look at the amount of time he was investing into tennis, "I woke up one day and realised I was working way too hard for not enough result, I had to take the blinkers off and find out who I was as a person outside of the sport."
Stumbling into an acting class in an attempt to push himself out of his shell, the first shot at acting "scared the absolute s***" out of the now 34-year-old, but there was something that was buzzing around his head, "I drove away from that first class on an absolute high."
From there he began to invest in acting more, moving from the Gold Coast to Melbourne where he worked at a gelato store at Luna Park, going to acting classes and eventually finding himself as a resident on Ramsay Street.
"That was validation, you know, that maybe I could be an actor. I relished every moment on set, every time I was there I was like 'This feels good, I like this... this is me'."
After working in the industry and having just wrapped on H20: Just Add Water, Luke moved in with a few co-stars including Cariba Heine, who had also just finished working with Rebecca Breeds on Blue Water High. The pair met at Luke's housewarming, not realising that he had just booked a stint on Home and Away where she had been starring as Ruby Buckton.
"I was the new kid to the city, new kid to the show, and we started working with each other the next week... but things turned out well," Luke said of his now wife.
The pair moved to the United States after Rebecca booked a pilot at the end of 2012, due to shoot early the following year. "We got married in January 2013, went on our honeymoon and then we went straight to Los Angeles for Pilot season," Luke said.
"I went straight into auditions and a whole new world," he said of the jump from Australia to Hollywood, "It's completely different, you just have to jump in and hit the ground running and make it work."
Being away from friends and family he said he was lucky to have Rebecca by his side, "It's an interesting world to navigate and I think it helped a lot to have each other. It's like we're both headed in the same direction, let's do it holding hands."
Her show was picked up and Luke booked a job soon after, and the pair have been working in the states for the last six years.
"Every job I've done since, I've learned and grown... it's still feeding that self-grown that I clicked with from the very beginning."
Now, Luke stars on the 10 All Access series The Code as John "Abe" Abraham, a former Marine who was wounded during his service, who becomes part of a group of military lawyers.
"The story revolves around six characters that are judge advocates, they're the best of the best," he explained, "They're Marines first and lawyers second."
Luke went to several Marine Corps events in the lead-up to and during the early days of shooting, trying to immerse himself with veterans as well as reading Nathaniel Fick's One Bullet Away.
"There's a habit for Americans to say 'Thank you for your service' to returning veterans, but that's more about them," Luke said, "It's just a statement. You say it and then you feel good, walk off and the veteran is still dealing with what they have to deal with."
"It should be, 'Thank you for your service, how can we help you?' You know, they've gone to fight for us and now need to integrate back into society as a changed person. I found that really interesting."