Almost a decade later, he found even brighter fame on Lost's mythical and mysterious island. Premiering on September 22, 2004, the show was an immediate hit, and so was Fox, who has regularly earned awards and nominations, including a 2006 Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actor in a Drama. The role came with a major side benefit: Fox, his wife, and their two children had to move to Oahu. He tells me his daughter's first reaction was emotional. "We were still in California, and I was just telling her that we were going to be moving to Hawaii for at least a year," he says. "She started crying. I was not sure where that was coming from. I said, 'Baby, what's wrong?' And she said, 'Daddy, these are tears of happiness. I'm so happy to be going; I'm crying tears of happiness.'?" Things got even better from there. Here's the life Matthew Fox and his family found after arriving in Hawaii to get Lost.
How did you discover Oahu? My daughter's nine, so it would have been about eight years ago. The first time we ever came to Hawaii, we came to Oahu to spend about a week with a couple we had met in Los Angeles. They have been family friends for almost 10 years now. We both had young children at the time, and we just hung out and enjoyed the island. They had some friends here, so they showed us around a bit, and we did some surfing and generally just kind of fell in love with the place. Since then, we have been coming pretty much every year - you know, at least once a year for a vacation. My wife and kids had fallen in love with it so much that we used to sort of joke about what it would be like if I got a job and shot here.
Where did you stay the first time you went there? We stayed at what I think is called the Ihilani now, over on the west side of the island. That was the first place that we ever stayed. It's a big resort. Very nice. I think that is where all the NFL players stay when they come for the Pro Bowl. It has some man-made lagoons. It's a little manicured, but it's beautiful.
What do the kids like to do there? Where do you take them? They spend all their time in the ocean or in the pool. We have both. It's the first time that we have ever had a pool. And we have the ocean 25 yards in front of the house. They love it. My little boy has just turned five, so he has been here for a couple of years. He actually learned to swim here, and he is just a fish now. He spends lots of time out in the waves by himself; we watch from the beach, but he is really totally fearless and has a ball. My daughter has always been that way about the water. They spend a lot of time outdoors, which is great to see. I really feel great about that.
Where do you start your day? I have my favorite little coffee shop that I go to every day. It's in Kailua, right next to where I live. It's a few minutes' drive from my house, and it's a family-run joint. It's called Muddy Waters, which I think is, like, the coolest coffee-shop name. With that name, as you might imagine, they play a ton of blues music, which is great because I'm a big music fan and a big fan of the blues. They constantly are playing great music in there, and they also have live bands that come in on Friday and Saturday nights occasionally and play music outside. It's a really cool place, and they make great coffee too. I'm sort of a standard-coffee guy. I don't go for all the really fancy stuff. I'm more for sort of a house brew with cream and sugar, but their coffee is good. There are a bunch of nice people in there. They know me and I know them, so it's no big deal when I walk in there. Sometimes I take my kids in there, and they get chocolate milk and stuff.
What's your favorite beach? My favorite beach is the beach that I live on, Kailua Beach. I think it is totally underrated. Lanikai Beach is the beach that gets all the press on the east side. Lanikai Beach is more crowded because it has this massive reputation of being the really hot beach. Kailua Beach never has anybody on it. It's much wider. You actually get some waves coming in; Lanikai Beach has reefs all across it, so there are never any waves coming in. It has a sandy bottom, so it's great for the kids.
What are some of your other favorite haunts? I'm a huge fan of Lanikai Juice Bar. They use all fresh fruit, and they just make really incredible, really healthy smoothies and juices. I love it. It's a family-run thing, and all the people that work there are really cool. It's a nice place to go to get something for breakfast. We go with the kids to Lanikai Juice quite a bit. They really enjoy that, and that's always fun. They get geared up for that.
What are your landmarks on Oahu? My favorite place is Kualoa Ranch. We shoot up in there a lot on Lost, actually. I think it's considered to be sort of a sacred place for the Polynesians. It's absolutely beautiful. Ka'a'awa Valley is just unbelievably pretty. It's a really big, open valley that you don't see until you drive right past the mouth of it, and then this incredible valley opens up and goes way back into the island. It's just really, really beautiful, and it has a really special feel about it.
Can you hike there? Do you drive through it? What do you do there? Well, I'm not quite sure. I've always spent my time in there with the production, but I think it's privately owned by a big ranching family that's been there for many, many years. I'm not sure about the restrictions on getting in there. But it's certainly worth it if you can get in. I know you can do tours up in there from that ranch. I see people on horseback all the time, and I see people up there on four-wheelers. So there is definitely somebody taking tours up through there.
Do you like to drive up to the North Shore? I do the North Shore drive all the time. Yeah, it's a pretty drive. My favorite drive is down around the southeastern part of the island, where the road is winding around all these cliffs. It's absolutely beautiful. That's my favorite drive. Any opportunity I get, I make that drive and then stop. There are a lot of turnouts, and you stop and you are up on these cliffs, looking out over the ocean. There are a lot of places where the surf is huge, and it hits these cliffs, and the waves will spray up in the air, like, 40 feet. It's just really powerful and majestic, open and beautiful.
Okay, where do you eat? Well for sushi, you go to Sushi Sasabune, which is the best sushi restaurant on the island, in my opinion. It's on South King Street. It's, oh my goodness, it's just the best fish there is. They don't do any cooked fish there at all. It's all raw fish. They are pretty strict about how you eat the sushi. They have pretty strong rules about that, but if you follow the rules, it's the best fresh fish you are ever going to eat in Hawaii. I think Sushi Sasabune has a really charming ambience.
What are the rules? Well, you eat sushi in one bite. You don't put soy sauce on certain sushi, because they have prepared their own type of sauce. They just have a couple of rules; you follow those, and you will be okay. I usually just eat a lot of baby bluefin tuna; they do fantastic tuna and albacore. They also have the most incredible crab rolls. I order off the menu and sort of pick the things I like.