Get to Know Brenton Thwaites
Brenton Thwaites plays Jonas in the forthcoming Walden Media/Weinstein Company adaptation of Lois Lowry’s The Giver. Though he’s not exactly a household name yet—at least outside of his native Australia—his star is on the rise, with several high-profile films scheduled for release in the year ahead. While you’ll have to wait until August to see him tackle the all-important role of the Receiver of Memory, here’s a little Thwaites primer to tide you over in the meantime.
- Thwaites, who has said he knew “even as a little kid” that he wanted to be an actor, got his first big break in 2011, with roles in Australian TV series SLiDE and Home and Away.
- From there, he snagged a lead role in Lifetime’s “contemporary remake” of the 1980 cult classic, The Blue Lagoon. Dubbed Blue Lagoon: The Awakening, the telepic aired in 2012. Before landing the part, Thwaites had never even heard of the original film starring Brooke Shields. “I think it was good I hadn’t heard of it. It gave me a chance to think fresh and just have my own ideas about it,” he said in an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald.
- Last year, Thwaites headed to Alabama to shoot Oculus, an independent horror movie about two siblings who return to the scene of their parents’ murder to destroy an antique mirror they believe to be responsible for the gruesome crime. The film earned positive reviews upon its premiere at the Toronto Film Festival in September, and opens wide April 11. (Click here to watch the trailer. )
- Thwaites recently touched down at this year’s Sundance Film Festival to promote his latest project, The Signal, an indie sci-fi thriller about three brainy college students on a cross-country road trip that gets interrupted by a seemingly otherworldly encounter. The Hollywood Reporter praised the film as “beautifully executed.”
- This spring, Thwaites stars opposite Angelina Jolie in Maleficent, a dark retelling of the classic tale of Sleeping Beauty. “She is stunning, absolutely beautiful. I had a great time working with her,” Thwaites told the Sydney Morning Herald. Maleficent is scheduled for release May 30. (Click here to watch the trailer.)
- Finally, on Aug. 15, it’s Giver time! Thwaites is part of a talented ensemble cast, alongside Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, Taylor Swift and Katie Holmes. Bridges, who has been trying to bring Lowry’s revered dystopian novel to the big screen for almost two decades, had only the highest praise for his young costar. “We were so lucky to have Thwaites play this role. He does a beautiful job,” he told Entertainment Weekly.
Despite his successes, Thwaites, who has described himself as “very shy,” hopes to maintain a low profile. “I haven’t had the whole “famous” thing happen to me yet, and I hope I never will. I like to sneak away in the corners and hide a lot,” he told CNN.
Unfortunately for Brenton, we’re guessing his days of hiding in corners are numbered.