Not such a bad guy - it’s all an act

FOR many, trying to get inside the head of a serial killer would be beyond the imagination, but for Bowral actor Vincent Stone it's all in a days work.

Stone has been in the acting industry for the past 20 years, appearing on television sets in Superman Returns alongside Kevin Spacey, in popular TV series such as Love My Way and in countless commercials.

Most recently, he was cast in the main role of an independent Aussie thriller that forced him to tap into the darker side of life.

The Backpacker, directed by Dion Boland, tells the story of Vincent Malek.

He's a man who's grown up constantly rivaling his brother and is sent to boarding school and denied the love and affection of his parents.

Malek becomes a malicious psychopath who hunts backpackers for sport and it's this sinister plot that forced Mr Stone into weeks of research, trying to uncover what makes serial killers tick.

But he said to hone in on that type of character he draws on a darkness he said, "everyone has got".

"Everyone has got some darkness inside them they can tap into," he said.

"But I found out a lot about how they tick ..."

In the script, Malek has already killed his victims five years before the film opens, but it soon becomes a "cat and mouse chiller thriller" when an Afghan soldier returns home (Nathan Waring) to hunt Malek down for killing his sister.

It becomes a deadly adventure but it's not "a gore fest or a murder fest".

"I didn't have to kill everyone in sight," Stone said. "It's a story of revenge that doesn't quite play out."

Acting isn't Stone's only talent.

During his 20s he made his debut in the modelling industry before moving into music in his 30s.

He was signed with Sony and knuckled down on his talents before deciding acting was the path he wanted to go down.

In his two decades before the cameras, Stone said he was often cast in the role of the bad guy or the guy you wouldn't trust, but to him it wouldn't matter what role it was, he was in it for the acting.

"I like being able to make people feel something," he said.

"I love to have an effect on someone and I love words ? you can play with words ? in the delivery and the way something is said is often the most powerful thing you can do."

When he's not in front of the camera, Stone is behind them sharing his experience with children.

He works with Short Films and runs many workshops at youth centres in and around the region on filmmaking to show them what goes into a film and how it's done.

"It gives them the experience of the filmmaking process," he said.

"I show kids how to develop scripts and shoot short films."

The Backpacker has premiered in Canberra and appeared at the Independent Film Festival and the Tamworth Independent Film Festival.

Stone said the film was now appearing at country cinemas around Australia and he hoped to see it come to the Empire Cinema in the future.

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