Jamie Hector is a busy man. Best known for portraying the ruthless drug lord Marlo Stansfield on The Wire (which recently celebrated the 10 year anniversary of its debut on June 2), the actor has made appearances in movies such as Max Payne and Night Catches Us and a variety of TV roles that have only added to his celebrated cult status. Now Hector has been busy with another venture that he feels passionate about: his non-profit organization Moving Mountains. This past Saturday, Hector held his annual paintball tournament at NYC Paintball in Long Island City, New York, where BET.com took a moment to talk to the icon about his organization and what fans can look forward to next.
What sparked you to want to start Moving Mountains?
I was part of an organization called Tomorrow’s Future Theater Company when I was younger, which changed my life tremendously. It was one of the things that gave me direction and I wanted to start something for kids in the community and outside of the Brooklyn community also to come and exercise their skills, talents and abilities — just to grow and develop. Moving Mountains is the place to do that. And I was inspired by them and they inspire me so it’s a win-win situation.
What made you want to do a paintball tournament?
It’s fun. It’s exciting. It brings people together. They can enjoy themselves and go back home and talk about it.
What type of success stories have you had since starting Moving Mountains? Is there any story that stands out?
The unity. The growth. The push to college — 98% are in college or entering college because they know it’s a must. Those that came in that didn’t know about five-year goals or planning, they have plans, goals and vision now. Just constant success. They’re booking work on Law & Order and a television show on BET with Larenz Tate. This Thursday night we had a showcase. It was amazing. This is going to be the pick right now. If anybody wants talent in film, television, theater, this is where they’re going to come pick.
When you did Night Catches Us you portrayed DoRight Miller, a character that has similarities to Marlo. Do you find yourself drawn to characters like that or do you interpret them with your own style and technique?
Well, in the film that I’m in right now, Blood Ties, I’m actually a detective. With me, Domenick Lombardozzi, Clive Owen, Mila Kunis, Zoe Saldana, James Caan. Given the opportunity, you get to flex your muscles. Night Catches Us was brilliant. I loved it. Do Right, me, Kerry Washington and Anthony Mackie was fun. I had a good time doing it. I think the similarities with Marlo, I guess, was the strength — the strength that he exudes. DoRight I consider a protector. Marlo I consider a sociopath.
When you filmed Season 5 of The Wire, did you expect Marlo to get the ending that he did?
I didn’t expect anything. [Laughs] 'Cause at any given moment with every script we received it could have been the last day. It’s The Wire. No man is safe. But when it was written, the way it was written, with actually Marlo coming out on top, it was like, oh, wow. This is how it happens sometimes. And they stuck to reality. Reality on television. [Laughs]
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