Henderson plays a weird version of himself
"I hate talking about myself, I find it such a boring topic," says Martin Henderson. "I'd much rather talk about other things." Unfortunate, then, that he's on the phone to discuss his role in local comedy Auckland Daze in which he plays, well, himself.
It's not quite the Martin Henderson of real life, however - he says it's a "weird version who likes to sit around and talk about himself a lot".
Not a case of art imitating his life then, but irritating it.
"It's a parody of self-centred actors always talking about themselves and their careers," Henderson says. "So it was actually kind of weird, I kept saying to [co-creator and lead actor] Millen, 'this isn't me. I would never talk like this or say these things'."
Improvisation was a key part of the filming, done more than a year ago while Henderson was on a flying visit back to New Zealand from his base in LA. He says improvising was "terrifying to begin with but ended up being a lot of fun".
And as viewers would expect from the show that features a male model, a stand-up comedian and a dwarf, things quickly descended into inappropriateness, and Henderson became a "totally uncensored, politically incorrect version of myself".
For an actor now used to the conservative ways of Hollywood, he says this no-holds-barred approach was very refreshing.
"I loved it. I was like 'sign me up for season three, man! That was so cool'."
He might not be able to let loose in his roles over there, but the US has been reasonably kind to Henderson - he's starred in movies, including The Ring, Bride and Prejudice, Torque, and TV shows like Off the Map, and the upcoming The Red Road. And it's not a case of having to live there for work; he says he loves the lifestyle Los Angeles affords. He lives on the outskirts of LA, in the mountains towards Malibu - an area which he likens to Auckland itself.
"It's a good way to live. You can be over there and enjoy yourself without having to be really connected to the whole business of the Hollywood lifestyle," he says. "I call it the Titirangi of LA. It's very similar - lots of hippies and nature- loving people."
Sunday Star Times