Henry Rollins calls his acting career a ‘punk rock fraud’ before SXSW premiere of ‘He Never Died’

The film sees the former Black Flag frontman in his first leading role

Former Black Flag frontman Henry Rollins took part in an ‘In Conversation’ session at SXSW in Austin, Texas yesterday (March 17).

Rollins was there to discuss his lead role in He Never Died, a feature film which received its world premiere at the festival later in the day. Though he has acted before, this marks the first time he has carried a film largely on his own, appearing in all but two of the movie’s scenes. Rollins spoke about his acting career, saying his work on screen and doing voice-overs was ‘insurgent’. When asked about accusations of ‘selling out’, he commented: “I’m an insurgent, this is punk rock – no-one knows that I cant act! This is the most amazing punk rock fraud I’ve perpetrated.”

“Thankfully the script was really strong,” he commented of the new movie. “It’s called He Never Died and it’s about a man who cannot die and he’s bored, because he’s done everything and eternity’s a drag!”


Click below to see a clip from the film, which was written and directed by Jason Krawczyk, and which sees Rollins playing a cannibal who is tired of living forever. “At this point he watches TV and tries to sleep, because he’s just so bored of life,” said Rollins. “There’s a lot of weird humour in the film which drew me to it – there’s also lots of wonderful violence… I had to basically Botox my emotions to do the part, because he’s so droll. It ended up being this horrific and funny film.”

He added of his character, who has lived for hundreds of years: “What if your bucket list was nine miles long but you had checked every box, sometimes even twice. I live very urgently because I’m trying to get stuff done, but the guy in the movie is the opposite.”

The spoken-word star and radio show host also discussed his global travels during the hour long session and also his frustration with his home country. “I get very angry at America, just because it should be so much better than it is,” he stated.

Of his love of work, he commented: “I like employment, I believe in it. I like having a job and a place to go. I don’t want to smell the roses, I want to powerwalk by them… Stress is good – it keeps the snare drum skin tight. I don’t thrive in dull moments.”