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Eric Bruneau talks about starring in ‘Dusk for a Hitman’

Canadian actor Eric Bruneau chatted about starring as Donald Lavoie in the new movie “Dusk for a Hitman.”

Eric Bruneau in 'Dusk for a Hitman'
Eric Bruneau in 'Dusk for a Hitman.' Photo Courtesy of Saban Films.
Eric Bruneau in 'Dusk for a Hitman.' Photo Courtesy of Saban Films.

Canadian actor Eric Bruneau chatted about starring as Donald Lavoie in the new movie “Dusk for a Hitman.”

It was co-written by Martin Girard and co-written and directed by Raymond St-Jean.

Aside from Bruneau, it stars Benoît Gouin, Rose-Marie Perreault, Sylvain Marcel, Simon Landry-Desy, and Joakim Robillard.

The synopsis is: Hitman, Donald Lavoie (played by Eric Bruneau) faces an impossible order: eliminate his own family for mob boss Claude Dubois. Detectives offer him a way out by making him their informant, putting Donald in a perilous balancing act between loyalty and survival.

The action film will officially be released on April 19 on digital and On Demand via Saban Films.

“This isn’t a new movie,” he noted. “We shot it three years ago, actually. It came out in Montreal a year ago, and now it is coming out in the United States.”

Taking on the role of Donald Lavoie

On portraying his character, he said, “I play a guy, Donald Lavoie, who really existed, and he still exists. He is the first criminal who created the Witness Protection Program in Canada. It didn’t exist before him.”

“It was pretty exciting and grueling to play him because I was trying to get as much information as possible from people who knew him. The big challenge was to be able to bring the public with me because he was doing so many things that were awful. I had to find a way to crack the code to find the humanity in him,” he elaborated.

“The more that I spoke with the police and the people who knew the guy, I realized that he was abandoned by his father when he was a kid, so he was trying to find his own father. I approached him from that angle,” he explained.

“When he met with Claude Dubois, who was the big mob boss, he decided that he wanted to be the best hitman in the world because he was like a father figure to him,” he said.

“Then, when he became the informer, he became the best informer in the world. Those were the angles that my director and I used to play this character,” he added.

The digital age

On being a part of the digital age, he said, “It’s a great thing, especially to be in those years. As an actor, when you have context like that, it is always easier for you to dive in. The digital age is fun.”

For young and aspiring actors, he said, “Just keep working, you have to be present. You need to get into a room. I know it’s hard because these days, we do a lot of self-tapes and that is hard because you don’t have any connection with a director, and you don’t have any notes.”

“One of my favorite actors, the late Philip Seymour Hoffman once said, if you have a chance to practice your craft, ‘just get there and do it.’ That way, you can get better and better,” he noted.

“Try to get as much experience as possible because you cannot buy experience. Try to be there, work your lines, and at some point, you will be able to book something,” he said.

“So, get there, go and see theatre shows, and act. There is no other way,” he added.

Philip Seymour Hoffman

Speaking of Philip Seymour Hoffman, he praised him for being a phenomenal character actor, who had a wide range of roles. “Philip was playing so many different characters; he wasn’t stuck on the A-list thing,” he said.

“If a role was interesting for him, he would do it. Philip was amazing in everything he ever did, and even if he wasn’t the lead, he was always able to create something,” he added.

Stage of his life

On his latest endeavors, he shared, “Right now, I am writing the third season of a TV series that I am producing here in Montreal,” he said. “I also have a little daughter, so I am taking care of her. I am writing and having ‘me time’ and family time. You need time to love.”


Regarding his definition of the word success, Bruneau said, “Success is a very personal thing. Success is in the eyes of how you look at yourself.”

‘Right now, it is about working with great collaborators, directors, and actors. It is not about me; it is what I am doing with the people around me, and what you have to build. You can’t calculate it,” he explained.

Closing thoughts on the movie

For his fans, he concluded about the film, “It’s a fascinating story. It is more than a story of a hitman, it is a story of redemption, and the interesting thing is the guy that it is based on is still alive today. He is so smart, and he is someone who is from the street. Now, nobody knows where he is, and once again, it’s a story of redemption.”

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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