Before the Cineplex got hostile with Hostel, there was the equally chilling Turistas, in which a pack of young, nubile folk take a very bad detour down a very bad road while backpacking through Brazil. Thing is, Turistas is just hitting theaters now, though it's sure to slake any horror buff's thirst for a bloody, tense time. TVGuide.com spoke with Josh Duhamel, who stars in the pic, about his rumble in the bug-infested jungle, the fate of NBC's Las Vegas and, of course, his Fergalicious lady love.
TVGuide.com: I'm thinking the Turistas shoot was either sun-kissed and full of soft, warm sand, cold drinks and beautiful people, or bug-infested and dysentery-tainted. Or was it somewhere in between?
Josh Duhamel: It was somewhere in between, depending on the location. The beach stuff obviously was beautiful and fun, but the stuff in the jungle sucked because we were all barefoot walking through it.... It was definitely not an easy shoot.
TVGuide.com: Who was more game to jump off the waterfall, you or Melissa George (Alias)?
Duhamel: They wouldn't let either one of us do it, for insurance reasons or something. So it was stuntpeople.
TVGuide.com: What was the toughest aspect of the shoot, aside from the bugs? The underwater work? They must have had you in those caves a long time, to get all the coverage they would need.
Duhamel: Yeah, it was a challenge, but also an adventure. Looking back at it now, it was more fun than I thought it was while actually doing it. I like the way it turned out because you can definitely make those comparisons to Hostel — and ultimately all of these movies have the same formula — but at least in Turistas there's a real reason for [the bad things that happen].
TVGuide.com: Yeah, I was thinking this had to be filmed at the same time as, if not before, Hostel.
Duhamel: We actually finished shooting before they did. When I saw Hostel, I was like, "Oh, my god." There are some of the same story points even. I don't know how that happened, who took whose lead, but....
TVGuide.com: Have you warned friends and family how rough the film can be?
Duhamel: Yes, they are well aware.
TVGuide.com: This is not a date movie.
Duhamel: Not necessarily. I mean, the first half sort of is, until things go... bad.
TVGuide.com: So you've done comedy (Win a Date with Tad Hamilton!), horror and you have the big-budget Transformers movie coming up. Is there a plan here to get the highly marketable fare out of the way, and then delve into some heavy drama?
Duhamel: Yeah, ultimately that's what I want to do. I'd like to be able to pick and choose what I want to do, but I don't have that luxury. Hopefully someday I will.
TVGuide.com: Give us a taste of Transformers. Amaury Nolasco (Prison Break), one of your costars, told me that you all had a ball doing it.
Duhamel: We did. It was definitely the biggest thing I've ever been a part of.
TVGuide.com: Who is your Captain Lennox in the scheme of things?
Duhamel: He's the captain of the special-ops team when we first encounter Vortex, who incinerates their base. The six of us get out alive and try to get communication back to the U.S. to tell them what's going on. We then try to figure out how to beat these things.
TVGuide.com: Did the film require a ridiculous amount of green-screen work?
Duhamel: Almost none, actually. Everything was shot, like, out in the desert or in downtown L.A. I don't know how they did it, but I was expecting a lot more green screen than we did.
TVGuide.com: Turning to Las Vegas, how has everyone been liking the Friday-night time slot?
Duhamel: I prefer Mondays myself — there's more of an audience — but what are you going to do? It's NBC's choice, and they get to decide what they want to do.
TVGuide.com: When I spoke to Vanessa [Marcil], she said NBC must have had confidence that yours is the kind of audience that would follow.
Duhamel: And they did for the most part. The numbers aren't as big, if only because not as many people are at home watching. I mean, are you watching TV on Friday night? I'm not.
TVGuide.com: There's a big two-parter coming up called — I'm afraid to ask — "Delinda's Box"?
Duhamel: Yep. "Delinda's Box," Part 1 and 2 [airing tonight at 9 pm/ET, as a two-hour special]. Basically Delinda gets kidnapped and held, and Ed has 12 hours to take $50 million from the casino floor. He can't tell me what he's doing, but we end up finding out, and it ends up turning into this whole thing. From what I hear, it turned out really well.
TVGuide.com: That little NBC show Heroes staged a few scenes at the Montecito earlier this season.
Duhamel: Yes, they did.
TVGuide.com: But they created this nasty security-boss type who was spying on people. I was like, "Does Danny know this chick works for him?"
Duhamel: Wouldn't that be funny? See, what I would like to do is go on at 10 pm, after Heroes, and go back to Monday night.
TVGuide.com: But then Las Vegas would have to get a bit CSI-edgier and less Love Boat-y.
Duhamel: That's fine. Believe me, I wish they would go in that direction.
TVGuide.com: I have to be honest, dude, I was a little concerned when you started courting Fergie....
Duhamel: Why were you worried?
TVGuide.com: The girl seems pretty hard-core. I feared she would chew you up and spit you out.
Duhamel: [Laughs] C'mon, I'm tougher than that! We've been together two years, man.
TVGuide.com: Would people be surprised by her off-stage persona?
Duhamel: Probably. Probably. She's definitely not what you would expect.
TVGuide.com: Not as much the arm-folding, representing poser?
Duhamel: No, no. [Laughs]
TVGuide.com: Every time she puts out a new video, I look for you in the background. Like, "Did Josh get a cameo this time?"
Duhamel: No, no, there will be no rubbing of the ass.
TVGuide.com: I asked Vanessa if, in her opinion, you in fact do get "drunk" on Fergie's "trunk."
TVGuide.com: She said something like, "Um, Josh appreciates all women."
Duhamel: Oh, wow. What's that supposed to mean?
Send your comments on this Q&A to firstname.lastname@example.org.