Growing up in a small village in Québec, Canada, Troy Mundle had a fascination with film and television. He remembers being a small child and frequenting the local drive-in to see Star Wars when it was released, finding himself enchanted with what he was seeing. He knew at that moment he wanted to one day make movies and create all new worlds for others to escape to as he was so captivated by.
Now, Mundle is living that childhood dream. As an internationally sought-after actor, he has starred in many award-winning productions, such as acclaimed films Cheer Squad Secrets, Cock, and Exhibit Man, to name a few. He has been recognized for his work on many prestigious film festivals around the world, including FilmQuest, where he won Best Actor, the Leo Awards, where he was nominated for Best Performance by a Male in a Short Drama, Vancouver BadAss Film Festival where he took home Best Actor, Miami Web Fest where he won Best Comedy, and many more. He has worked alongside top Hollywood talent, such as iconic wrestler turned blockbuster actor John Cena and SAG winner Danielle Brooks on HBO’s new series Peacemaker. However, it was making the series Bucketheads where Mundle truly went full circle, starring in a Star Wars fan-film after being so fascinated by the franchise as a child. It was truly a dream come true.
“A chance to put on a Stormtrooper kit and play Star Wars. You’re basically living out your childhood dreams. Star Wars just taps into everyone’s hearts and takes you right back to fond youthful memories,” says Mundle.
Bucketheads: A Star Wars Story follows a squad of Stormtroopers who are transporting a POW with valuable information from Yavin 4, but getting off planet will test their mettle.
“This story shows how we sometimes have to look within and question whether or not some of our core beliefs remain true and whether we have the courage to change,” says Mundle.
Mundle came onto the project after being approached by Writer and Director Marco Bossow. The two had worked together on the hit show Single & Living in Vancouver, so Bossow knew that Mundle had the acting chops to take his idea and bring it to life.
“Troy is not only an amazingly versatile actor who always goes the extra mile to truly embody his character, he is also a genuine human who is delightful to be around. Troy puts in the work to create nuanced performances. He has a deep understanding of what makes people tick and can adjust his performances on the fly. Directing Troy is always such a rewarding experience,” said Bossow.
In the Star Wars fan film Bucketheads, Mundle plays the leading character, Stormtrooper TK-423, an increasingly disillusioned soldier trying to avenge his past who tracks down a traitor that could swing the tide of war, but when a revenant re-enters his life he must desert every ally he thought he had in order to save his humanity.
Playing the most vital character in the series took a deep level of commitment and passion from Mundle, who had to convey such deep emotion while wearing the masks of the stormtroopers. However, Mundle’s performance remains truthful and grounded.
“One challenge that I did have to get used to was how limited movements were in the kits,” Mundle describes. “The kits were built by the 501st and had to adhere to specific guidelines, which meant that the space between the joints can only be so big. When you move in the kits, your skin can get caught in the joints creating what they call ‘amour bites’. I, being steadfast in my decision to move agilely, regardless of how constraining the kits were, came out at the end of the shoot pretty black and blue and bruised around the joints.”
They filmed Bucketheads in the middle of a paintball field in Surrey, British Columbia. The trees and environment looked very similar to the Star Wars planet Endor, so Mundle found it easy to transport his mind to this other world, bringing audiences with him. His outstanding performance greatly contributed to the film’s 2.5 million views on YouTube, and to the 12 awards and 8 nominations the film has received at international film festivals and award ceremonies, such as the Oscar-qualifying South by Southwest Film Festival where it was an Official Selection. It also took home the Gold Award for Best Short Film at the LA Shorts Awards, one of the world’s largest short film festivals.
“Having been part of the production since the beginning has been such a tremendous experience and we are just getting started. We will be back to camera in February to continue shooting the series and I’m very much looking forward to getting back and working with everyone,” Mundle concludes.
If you haven’t had the chance yet, be sure to check out the first episode of Bucketheads here.
Photo by Kristine Cofsky – The Portrait Sessions Photography