Charles Manson in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Mindhunter season 2 played by same actor

Bizarrely, both were released in the UK just days apart

Jacob Stolworthy
Saturday 17 August 2019 12:14
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Charles Manson appears as a character in two high-profile projects released in the UK just days apart – and, in a unique twist, is played by the same actor in both.

Australian star Damon Herriman, previously best known for a role in US drama Justified, is in danger of being typecast as the cult leader: he plays Manson in both Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and the second season of Netflix’s Mindhunter, which was released yesterday.

In yet another strange development, both will be released in the UK within days of each other.

The two projects will show Manson at very different stages of his life.

In Tarantino’s ninth film, Manson canbe seen walking the streets of Los Angeles ahead of the infamous Manson Family Murders, which led to the death of Sharon Tate – played by Margot Robbie – in 1969.

Mindhunter, though, will depict Manson after his imprisonment in the 1980s, with agents Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff) and Bill Tench (Holt McCallany) paying him a visit.

Speaking on Back to One podcast, Herriman revealed what it was like to get into the different mindsets of the same character.

Mindhunter came first. [Charles Manson] is in jail at that point. So yeah, it’s different. Because of that age gap. Manson, in the Tarantino movie, is pre-jail, and he’s kind of in his court jester… out there just living on the ranch and taking drugs and having sex. He’s in that sort of whole cult life world. And then in jail, he’s an incredibly bitter, angry man.“

He continued: “A certain lightness existed in him in the early stuff…he doesn’t feel like the same guy anymore when you see him in jail. He looks pretty pissed off most of the time.

“A lot of his interviews have that sense, where [he’s] just spouting stuff that doesn’t make sense. Other times it does make sense, like a lot of sense. So clearly the guy was mentally ill. I’ve read and watched a whole hell of a lot; I still don’t really know what made him tick.”

Herriman added that Tarantino didn’t ask him about his time playing Manson on the series, produced by David Fincher.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is in cinemas now and Mindhunter‘s second season is available to stream on Netfli.

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