From Home and Away to Hollywood, Daniel Webber has grown into one of our stars to watch

“It’s been a hell of a ride."

Every Western has its share of horseback scenes, involving cowboys, gun fights and wild chases – but when Daniel Webber was filming season two of Billy The Kid in freezing conditions in Canada, the action became more dangerous than the Australian actor had ever encountered. 

“We were shooting in winter, which makes riding dangerous, because you can’t see the ground,” Daniel, 35, tells TV WEEK. “You don’t know if you’re about to ride through a hole or onto a frozen creek bed.” 

Daniel Webber, portrays Jesse Evans, is frequently on a horse in Billy The Kid.
Daniel (far left) plays Jesse in Billy The Kid.
(Image: Stan)

Billy The Kid follows outlaw Billy (Tom Blyth), who gets caught up in the Lincoln County War from 1878 to 1881 alongside gun-toting gang leader Jesse Evans (Daniel). 

Evading the law together, the pair are best friends in season one, but in season two find themselves at odds as their alliances in the conflict shift.

“In season one, nearly every scene I had was with Tom,” Daniel says. “Now, Jesse is unshackled. I had so few scenes with Tom [this season] that when we did come together, it was tense and climactic.” 

Daniel says filming scenes in minus 43 degrees in Calgary proved tough. 

Daniel walking alongside Hunger Games prequel star Tom Blyth.
Daniel stars alongside Hunger Games star Tom Blyth.
(Image: Stan)

“It feels like it would be back then [on the American Frontier in the 1800s],” he says. “It ramps up the action and adds a whole other dimension.” 

When he was growing up, Daniel’s family raced endurance horses, and he’d competed in his first event by the age of 10. While his riding prowess may have been an asset, coming from a family of tradesmen, there was no clear path into the world of film and TV. 

“There was no road map into acting,” he says. “It’s been a process of stumbling along the path and getting very lucky.”  

Starting out in small roles in Aussie TV dramas such as All Saints in 2008 and Home And Away in 2015, Daniel continues to value the on-set experience those early gigs gave him.

One of Daniel's founding career moments was on Home and Away.
He worked in Aussie soap, Home and Away.
(Image: Supplied)

“From Home And Away, I learned to do good work quickly,” he explains. “That stands you in good stead, because when you get into the machine that is Hollywood, it can move incredibly fast, and if you don’t keep up, you get left behind.”

But now Daniel has worked his way into the industry, he’s scored some meaty roles, starring as Lee Harvey Oswald – the man who assassinated President John F. Kennedy – opposite Hollywood heavyweight James Franco in the 2016 science-fiction thriller series 11.22.63, and with Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe in the 2020 prison drama Escape From Pretoria.

The actor even partied hearty with legendary US rock band Mötley Crüe to prepare for his role as Vince Neil – the band’s lead singer – in the 2019 biographical film The Dirt

“There was a lot of pressure on that role,” Daniel explains. “The world those men inhabited was a drug-fuelled, hedonistic dreamscape. It was a wild experience, and filming felt like three months of the world’s biggest party.” 

Wanting a project that was just as rewarding and challenging, the actor waited three years before his next role. 

“I passed on a lot of jobs, and was basically broke when Billy fell into my lap,” Daniel recalls. “I’ve never looked back. It’s been one hell of a ride.”

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