Breakers: profiles


James Stewart…

When James Stewart was invited to audition for a role in Breakers, he decided to do so more as an experiment than anything else. During in his final year of University in Queensland, where he studied a Bachelor of Arts in Drama, he had worked mostly in theatre and had no experience of television at all.

After a recommendation by an agent who had seen him perform in a play, he thought, the audition would be great experience, giving him a chance to meet other agents. He was stunned at the result! "when I got the part, I couldn't believe it," say James. "I thought, 'Oh my God! I knew I could graduate any time, but I might never get an offer like this again, so I took it. It's all so new to me, but I'm loving it. I'd always thought my heart was in theatre, but I love my job, and Alex is such a great character to play."

James says Alex is a bit of a flirt who falls in love as soon as he comes across a woman he likes who also like him. "He just doesn't stop and suss out the situation first," says James. "He has so much to learn. But he is changing all the time. There's a place for him to get to and I hope he gets there eventually."

James' only regret at joining the cast of Breakers is leaving his family—including his twin brother to whom he is very close—behind in Queensland.

…as Alex Markham

Alex, 19 is a wild child. His mother Kate has done everything humanly possible to give him a stable upbringing, but his instinct for rebellion has always got him in to trouble.

At 16, he finally forced the family to do something about him. A warning from the police about his misdemeanors and his girlfriend Lucy's descent into anorexia as a result of never quite knowing where she stood came at the same time as Alex's father in England made his first contact with his son in four years. Paul acted quickly. He literally gave Alex an hour to pack his bags and drove him to the airport, a ticket to London thrust into his pocket. Now Alex is on his way back and everyone is on tenterhooks to see how he behaves. But while Alex has aged three years, he has matured ten. He's smart, communicative, considerate and charming. In his own eyes at least, he's a different person from the bad boy who went away.

That's fine, but some people have longer memories than three years. When things do go wrong for Alex—especially when it's not his fault—the charming, mature, self confident persona starts to crack under the strain and, however briefly, the Alex of old returns.