New interview & Twelve Years a Slave update

Iconic Interview has a new interview with Garret. In it, he talks about everything from Deadwood and The Sarah Connor Chronicles to Any Day Now and Twelve Years a Slave. Snippets below, and you can read the whole article at the link.

On Raising Hope:

Iconic Interview: Raising Hope is really idiosyncratic and I can’t think of anything else like it. What do you think makes this unusual show so successful?
Garret Dillahunt: I think it’s because it’s good and funny and people can identify with it in some way. I don’t think it’s far-fetched to assume that. This family is not a rich family; they have a hard time getting by, but you wouldn’t know it. They still find a lot of joy. They’re idiosyncratic, but loving. I think that’s how most families are, really. Everyone thinks their family is the craziest family in the world. [If you ask], they’re like, “My God, my family’s crrrazy!” So I think it’s not far from home for everybody.

Any Day Now:

The film champions the causes of equality and fighting discrimination. Did you have those ideas in mind when you worked on the film?
They’re there in the script; I think I just tried to play the character and let the story tell itself. I think sometimes actors can get in trouble trying to play a theme, and in fact it might even be less powerful if you do that, than if you just fulfill your obligation to the story. If it’s a good story, that scene and that point will be driven home even harder. In this case, it wasn’t too difficult, just because Alan’s really easy to play with. He’s a real open guy, he’s a real joyful guy, and a real creative guy, so the set was a safe place. We could all have our horrible wigs on and horrible suits on [laughs] and still feel like we were real people. I’m proud of it. I think it walks a fine line; if you’re not careful it could get really sappy, but I think we avoided it.

Twelve Years a Slave:

What do you have coming up that you’re excited about?
I’m pleased about Looper. I think Looper went well; it was a cool movie. Next fall Twelve Years a Slave will be coming out. It’s Steve McQueen’s new movie. He’s a great dude and I was sort of stunned by that cast. You name someone that you enjoy, an actor on screen, and they’re in that movie.

What is it about?
It’s a true story about a man who was kidnapped, a free black man in the North, played by Chiwetel Ejiofor. He was kidnapped and re-sold into slavery. He disappeared from his family, from his home, and was gone for 12 years. It took him 12 years to escape or get back out. It’s really cool; it’s Plan B again, Brad Pitt’s company, and he makes an appearance in it, and Benedict Cumberbatch and Paul Giamatti, everybody.

Who is your character in the film?
I play this guy, Armsby. He’s a poor white guy who actually labors in the fields with the slaves. So that was going on, which I didn’t know. Obviously, he wasn’t treated as cruelly as the slaves were treated. He sort of befriends the main character there.

So the film will be out this fall – not sooner, and hopefully not later. There has been some speculation that it will premiere at Cannes, but the festival lineup usually doesn’t get released until mid-April, so we probably won’t know until then, or see any reviews until May.

That said, the film has been screened in several places in recent weeks and a couple of early reports surfaced online. From the looks of it, they stuck pretty closely to the book:

It was great, but it won’t be for everyone. Fassbender was standout, and owned every scene be was in. Pitt only had two scenes, but role was key to the plot… and Ejiofor had a lot of big and emotional scenes. Fantastic. Probably head into the direction The Master did with awards or it could get totally snubbed all together. Very raw, emotional, violent/brutal and tough to watch at times. In a way it was kinda like McQueen’s There Will Be Blood, I’m just unsure if the Oscars will go for a movie like this. Different than I was expecting… but definitely not a bad thing. A lot of the star roles are quite short.
Dude: Really would like to know what Spike Lee will think of the film. More N-words than Django, and Paul Dano even makes his own N-word song! – Movie Pilot

As I told my comrades here at S&A, I’m sure Twelve Years A Slave will generate a lot of discussion within the black community. I certainly don’t expect it to make anywhere near the box office that Django Unchained did. Not because of its quality – McQueen doesn’t disappoint – but, again, these are 2 very different films (one was made strictly to entertain; the other – while its story of perseverance and triumph will move and even entertain you – will most certainly challenge you in ways the other did not). As I said a couple of months, if you were overwhelmed by the so-called realistic, disturbing violence in Django Unchained, you’re not ready for Twelve Years A Slave, which, if you’re familiar with McQueen’s past work, and you’ve read the novel its based on, or read the script, is far more brutal than anything Tarantino showed you. (…)

the film is brutal and really dives into the horrors of slavery. There were no Black women dressed up like pets and there was no Dr. King Schultz (a White guy that the White audience could identify with as being cool and not a racist). Not to say all the White characters were evil racists, just saying there was no White Savior that had a huge part. The story was mostly Solomon’s and really focused on Slave life. So I understand that it was going to be uncomfortable for many. A lot of Blacks lambasted it for not being inspirational or for not being fun and being too brutal. – Indiewire

^ Hit the links for more.