It’s only been a few years since Portland-honed actor-cum-musician Joe Haege packed up his life in the Rose City and fled south toward the bosom of Los Angeles.
At the time, Haege had received indie film kudos for his turns in local music videos—Menomena's fantasy wrestler short for “TAOS” being one of the more notable—as well as playing a lead role in the nearly wordless Field Guide to November Days, which was filmed entirely by bicycle. It was assumed that Haege’s departure was sprung from a desire to pursue his passions for acting in a land practically built for it.
Small cameos in Portlandia notwithstanding, Haege’s role as Matt, one-half of a recently separated couple, in Field Guide turned out to be a bittersweet example of art imitating life. Despite Haege’s deep regional roots as the frontman-thespian of Portland art punks 31Knots (originally formed in Chicago in 1997), Tu Fawning and his own solo project, Vin Blanc/White Wine, a broken relationship and a need for something new drew him to L.A. in 2011.
“I had been in Portland for 15 years and in a relationship for eight, which had just ended...”
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