Stories / April 2019

JOIVAN WADE: A MASTER OF MOTIVATION

The BRIT-schooled Londoner Joivan Wade on method acting, superheroes and the path to creative freedom.

  • fashion director Veronica Perez

  • by Nick Scott

  • photography Hamish Brown

He was, to say the least, a shoo-in for Variety magazine’s 10 Brits to Watch in 2019 feature. Having become a familiar face on British screens with a role in the soap opera EastEnders, as well in the English-speaking world with appearances in Doctor Who, Joivan Wade has since hit the big time: in last year’s American action-horror flick The First Purge, a gritty franchise prequel about a society blighted by annual 12-hour periods of state-sanctioned anarchy, he played vengeance-seeking dealer Isaiah; in this year’s spin-off DC Comics superhero series Doom Patrol, he portrays a half-human, half-machine coming to terms — in the style of Frankenstein’s monster — with his duality.

The Rake caught up with Joivan during one of his regular visits to his native London, and found him to be a man on a mission that goes well beyond critical plaudits and box office receipts. “I don’t believe that filmmaking is being taken advantage of if there’s not some kind of message that is being relayed,” he tells us, and we’d bet a tidy sum that he proves, over the decades to come, as good as his word.

Youre a stylish guy Was todays shoot all in sync with your own style preferences? Totally. Every outfit I saw, it was like, I would wear this. Which designer created that? 

Youve done plenty of gritty realism in your career, and now youre donning a superhero costume. Is it tricky to act in? [Laughs] Ive never done anything like it. The suit is almost as heavy as it looks. When it comes to the cybernetics side of my face, I cant physically see through that eye while Im acting because its covered. Theres a magnetic rubber gasket glued to my face every morning, which a mask is then fixed on to. Theres no peripheral vision or depth of field Ill do a scene where Im playing baseball and the balls coming at me at 90m.p.h., and with one eye you cant gauge when its actually at the point to swing. 

 

 

Tags