ATL-born actor Blair Redford takes a break from filming FOX’s newest Marvel series, The Gifted, to talk with JEZ about playing the role of X-Men’s Thunderbird, his fave city hot spots and more. @blairredford
Growing up in Atlanta, did you have any favorite spots? I used to love going to The Varsity after a Braves game. And up near where I lived [in Woodstock], there’s a really great barbecue spot called Williamson Bros Bar-B-Q.
What about now that you’re back filming in the A? I love One Eared Stag for the burger; it’s incredible. I mean, that thing is amazing. And I try to get my coffee every morning from Octane.
What have you come to love most about your job? With acting, you get to experience different ways of life that you normally wouldn’t. You get to live multiple lives.
Tell us about your role as Thunderbird in Marvel’s new The Gifted series. He’s got some amazing ’80s-action-star one-liners! And I mean that in the best possible way. A big part of the show is persecution and this understanding of a smaller group of people that are just trying to fit in and find their own way and coexist. It’s definitely an underdog story.
Playing a superhero who has superhuman strength and speed must require a good bit of training. It’s a little different than the X-Men films—they’re not giving me CGI arms or anything; they’re trying to keep it grounded. But even with that said, I knew that this guy had to look pretty physically imposing and formidable and be one of the bigger people on the team, so I adopted Hugh Jackman’s diet that he used for the last couple Wolverine movies.
On your rare days off, what do you enjoy doing around the city? I love going over to the BeltLine. This city is really bike-friendly, so I try to ride my bike as much as I can.