‘9-1-1: Lone Star’: Rob Lowe Thinks He Excels as Owen Due to Show ‘Just Writing’ Himself into Role

by Jonathan Howard

When playing a role, actors can become completely different people. Rob Lowe has played many roles. The best are able to reimagine themselves as a new person. Read the script, pick up on the character, and execute. However, some roles are more true to the actor than others. Lowe, star of 9-1-1: Lone Star, knows what it feels like to have a role written FOR him.

Since kicking off the 9-1-1 spinoff, Rob Lowe has done well in Lone Star. Lowe plays Owen Strand, a firefighter from New York City. After his son, also a firefighter, has a life-changing moment that convinced Owen the two needed to go down south. So, the two end up in Austin, Texas. Owen’s son T.K. is brought along to keep him out of further trouble.

When Owen and T.K. get down to Austin they find a fire department lacking in personnel and resources. Rob Lowe loves the character and detailed how Ryan Murphy pitched the role to him. Lowe explained Murphy’s pitch was, “‘He’s an athletic, adventurous, rugged, brave firefighter who cares very deeply about skincare.’ That was the pitch!” The narcissism attracted Lowe to the role of Owen.

“It’s [the role] also this great dichotomy of a traditional action-oriented first-responder character who also has a streak of larger-than-life narcissism about him.” The character of Owen throughout 9-1-1: Lone Star is this balance of seeking justice while retaining this self-obssessed, self-image. His skin care routine, how he is viewed at the station, making sure his family is taken care of despite other factors. All those play into the role Rob Lowe plays as Owen.

‘9-1-1: Lone Star’: Owen Made for Rob Lowe

While there have been roles written for specific actors in the past, the role of Owen on 9-1-1: Lone Star, was made for Rob Lowe. Not only that, the role is largely written as a self-insert for Lowe. Essentially, the actor plays himself, but exaggerated of course.

While talking with Entertainment Weekly in 2020, Lowe described how Ryan Murphy writes the part. “I will get entire scenes and I’m just going, ‘Oh my God, he’s just writing me!”‘ Lowe exclaimed in the interview. When you have a close relationship with the writer and his family, that makes sense.

For those wondering how close Murphy and Lowe are, don’t worry. The 9-1-1: Lone Star star talked about the closeness his family has with the Murphy family as well as Brad Falchuk, another writer for the show.

“I’ve known Ryan forever, and Brad and I are very close friends — his wife, Gwyneth Paltrow, is the godmother to one of my sons — so they know me too well at this point.” With such a close relationship with the writers, it is no wonder Lowe loves his role so much. It is written just with him in mind by the people who know him best.