Supporting Actor: Sam Rockwell

Hollywood Award honoree

To play the wrongfully imprisoned Kenny Waters in “Conviction,” Sam Rockwell says he “chased after this part. And I don’t usually do that.”

Years before the film went into production, the actor had seen a script, and even though “it was going through different phases, I actually called (director) Tony Goldwyn, rallying for the part. I just had an instinct about it and knew it wasn’t going to be easy to do it. It was going to be hard work — and it was going to pay off.”

Rockwell says the difficulty wasn’t in finding the core of this charming prankster who had long had run-ins with the local police and ended up convicted of murder: “He would get into trouble, but it was more that trouble found him.” The tough part for Rockwell was “that the scenes are ‘He’s going to get out,’ ‘He’s not going to get out,’ and this could be repetitive if I didn’t find different ways to do these circumstances. Then you realize it’s a true story and it actually happened and what a rollercoaster ride it was for him, and you get more information and it’s real and you paint in the fine lines.”

Rockwell’s career has encompassed everything from no-budget to ‘Iron Man 2’ and for him, “everything is ‘Hamlet,’ you know what I mean? But you never know. You have no control who is going to see it or what response it’s going to get. But every time you do something it’s life and death. For me.”

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