Mark Wahlberg is not just an actor, he is one of the most prolific producers in Hollywood. In fact, he exec-produced so many shows on HBO, such as Entourage, Boardwalk Empire, How to make it in America and Ballers, that he was dubbed Mr. HBO. In this interview with me for the BBC, he tells me that he doesn’t wait for acting jobs to come to him, he seeks out projects and if he likes one, then he insists on producing it himself. Over the course of his career, he has produced all the movies he starred in. “I’d like to have a creative control and carry a lot of the responsibility that ensure a return on the investment,” he says.
Showbiz is not the only business the double-Oscar nominee is involved in. He invests in several businesses, including catering and sport with interests in a restaurants chain, The Wahlbergurs, and the Barbados Tridents franchise. But he says that he is first an artist.
This year, he is releasing two fact-based movies dealing with recent American tragedies. The first is “Deepwater Horizon,” which deals with the explosion of the eponymous oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2012 that killed 9 crew members. “When that happened, everybody was focused on the environmental disaster and marine life, but no one spoke about the loss of human life,” Wahlberg remarks. So, the movie focuses on the crew members who fought that fire and those who lost their lives due to the negligence of their employers.
The second movie is “Patriots Day,” which follows the events before and after the 2013 Boston Marathon terror attack, which was perpetrated by two young Chechen Muslims. In spite of the difficult subject matter, the Bostonian actor says that the film delivers a message of love over hate. “I hope this movie will have an impact on people around the world, and its message of love spreads everywhere.”
A devout catholic, the 45-year-old actor attend his church daily, but he respects all religions and has friends from all faiths. “It’s all about unity and love,” he says. “I think there is a lot of craziness going on in the world, a lot of phobias, fear and finger-pointing.”
The question is: will Wahlberg succeed in spreading his message of love across the world in the Trumpisim era? “I don’t know what Trump is talking about,” he sighs.