Being a member of the 'Twilight' wolf pack has its perks. Edmonton's Tyson Houseman has gone from browsing retail jobs on Craigslist to leading a jet-set lifestyle in little over a year, thanks to a last-minute decision to show up to an open casting call for 'Twilight: New Moon' in Vancouver. He decided to audition just for the heck of it, and wound up landing the role of Quil Ateara, a member of Jacob's wolf pack.

Houseman is reprising his role as the wise-cracking Quil in this month's 'Twilight: Eclipse'. We caught up with him to chat about everything from Twihards to what makes him and the other wolf pack members puke.
Being a member of the 'Twilight' wolf pack has its perks. Edmonton's Tyson Houseman has gone from browsing retail jobs on Craigslist to leading a jet-set lifestyle in little over a year, thanks to a last-minute decision to show up to an open casting call for 'Twilight: New Moon' in Vancouver. He decided to audition just for the heck of it, and wound up landing the role of Quil Ateara, a member of Jacob's wolf pack.

Houseman is reprising his role as the wise-cracking Quil in this month's 'Twilight: Eclipse'. We caught up with him to chat about everything from Twihards to what makes him and the other wolf pack members puke.

How did you get into acting?

I really kind of stumbled into it. Before 'New Moon', the only thing I had really done was just high school plays and stuff like that, and really just small parts. A year out of high school I decided to move to Vancouver. After living in Vancouver for about four months, I found the audition for 'New Moon' on Craigslist. There was an open casting call, so I went down and gave it a shot. I didn't expect to get anything out of it. I was really casual, and I think that's what gave me a bit of an edge. I got a call back, and a week later they called me in and said that I had the part.

So why did you decide to respond to the casting call? Are you a fan of 'Twilight'?

Not really. I didn't really know that much about the whole 'Twilight phenomenon'. I hadn't read the books or seen the movie. I knew of it, but I didn't know that it had such a huge fan following. I think the first glimpse of that I had was when I went down to the open casting call. I got there an hour early, and there was already a line up like six blocks long. It was pretty crazy.


At that point did you have a better understanding of what you were getting into?

[Laughs] Yeah, a little bit. It was a little bit daunting.

What were you doing at the time? Why were you looking at casting calls on Craigslist?

I was looking for a job. I had just gotten fired from my previous job [at the Running Room] about a month before, and I just wasn't finding work. I was just looking for some random job in retail, and I happened to see this ad for the open casting call. It really kind of saved my life there.

After you got the role, what sorts of things did you start to do to prepare for filming?

All of the wolf pack guys are really, really buff, so they put us all through training together for about two months leading up to filming. That was really really tough stuff. There were a few times when a few of us actually puked from the workouts. It was a good bonding experience.

Do you and the other wolf pack guys hang out off set?

Oh yeah, for sure. If we didn't have the workouts together we probably wouldn't have gotten to know each other so well.

How has your life changed since you landed the role?

It's been a bit of a whirlwind. I've been doing a lot of traveling, which is something I really, really enjoy. Traveling is one of my favorite things to do of all time. I get to go to a lot of 'Twilight' conventions all over the world.

Have you had any crazy experiences with 'Twilight' fans?

I've had some odd encounters. I remember I was at a bar this one time and a woman came up to me who looked like she was seriously 80 or 90 years old. She came up to me she told me that she was a 'Twilight' fan and that she recognized me. It was such a weird experience. I guess that speaks to how diverse the 'Twilight' fans are.

What are some examples of things that fans have said to you, either in person or online?

Every time I tweet something, no matter what I say – even if it's like "Oh, I woke up funny today", I get at least five people saying "Marry Me, Tyson!" I think that's the one that I get the most. Either "Marry Me" or "Take Your Shirt Off". I don't think I've ever been asked to take my shirt off so much in my life as I do now.

Do you ever do it?

No!

What does everyone back home in Edmonton think of all of this? Were they surprised, since you weren't really interested in acting at all before this?

Yeah. My mom is absolutely crazy about all of this stuff now. I remember after I got the part I called and told her about it and she was speechless for like five minutes. And I was like "Mom, mom, are you there?" And she hung up all of a sudden. And she called back like 10 minutes later and she was completely out of breath and I could tell that she was crying. She said "I'm sorry, I had to run through the office and tell everyone I know." She's a really proud mom.

What can we expect to see from Quil in 'Eclipse'?

Well, you get to see me without my shirt on for a lot of the movie [laughs]. My character is a lot of fun in this one. He's kind of the comic relief. No matter what the scene is, he's got a punchline to add in there.

'Twilight' opens in theaters on June 30, 2010.