Video:Watchmen - Jeffrey Dean Morgan Interviewwith Rebecca Murray
With 'Supernatural,' 'Grey's Anatomy' and now 'Watchmen,' Jeffrey Dean Morgan's building up quite an unusual resume of playing characters who die. At the 2009 WonderCon, Morgan admitted it's not something he's planned out - it just happens that way.See Transcript
Transcript:Watchmen - Jeffrey Dean Morgan InterviewRebecca Murray from About.com Hollywood Movies at the 2009 WonderCon.
Jeffrey Dean Morgan - 'Edward Blake'/'The Comedian' in WatchmenYou know what? They stole my question out there [during the Q&A with WonderCon attendees] because I was going to ask you about dying in everything. What's up with that?
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "I don't know. It's a weird coincidence. I'm not exactly sure how that's worked out like that."
You don't look at the script and go, "Oh good, he gets to die."?
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "As a matter of fact, when I first opened the script… I didn't see the script first, I saw the graphic novel. And they're like, 'You know, Zack wants to meet you about the role of The Comedian.' And I knew nothing about this graphic novel going in. And so I got the graphic novel sent to me and I got to page 3 and I was like, 'Are you kidding me? That's like a day's worth of work.' And then obviously it was, 'Keep reading, you idiot,' and I did. But I don't know how that works out. It's definitely not a conscious decision on my part to play dead or dying people. I try to pick it based on a bunch of other criteria. It's just worked out that way."
I can't believe when I came out of the screening that people were actually cheering for him. He's not a character you should be cheering for. How did you get into that?
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "I don't know. I had this amazing kind of graphic novel, the source material, to kind of draw off of. The amazing thing is that every time I read it – and I've read it so many times I could probably recite the damn thing by heart – I didn't hate this guy. And so I think that was the trick in playing him. The challenge as an actor was to try and make that translate to the script because really, you know, based on the actions of Edward Blake you certainly shouldn't be cheering for him, you know? But there was something about him that I found fascinating – this charisma, this almost sympathy that I had for this guy. And that's what I wanted to play. That's what I gravitated to in this role because it's easy just to be a psychopath. Well, maybe not easy…but trying to be a psychopath and yet make him likeable, that's a whole other ballgame."
Was it easier once you got into that costume to get into the psychopath part?
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "Oh yeah, I hated it. I mean, look, the costumes were great. Michael Wilkinson, Quantum, you guys did an amazing job. But what a pain in the ass that thing is to wear."
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "Yeah, yeah, yeah. Getting into it took me six hours a day. I couldn't move. Doing these sequences you're either freezing or you're so hot you can't stand it. And you know, it made me want to kill people by the time I was in it every day."
So it was good for you.
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "Yeah. So the psychopath part…I'd be in makeup and costume for 10-12 hours a day before I'd work a 16 hour day on set, so I was ready to hurt people like immediately. It worked out perfectly. Put a cigar in my mouth and I was ready to go."
What was your reaction the first time you actually saw the finished film?
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "I've only seen it once. I was stunned. Visually, it is so stunning and not to mention this is a graphic novel that was deemed unfilmable. Even when you're shooting, you just don't know what the final product's going to be. It's impossible to tell. You don't know what's going to happen in the editing room. You don't know how the visual effects are going to actually turn out. So when I first saw it…I just want to see it again, really. I've only seen it that one time and it's visually stunning. I think the essence of the graphic novel is there. I think what Zack did it's just a beautiful thing. It's just an amazing piece of film."
And I imagine you just had to have a lot of faith and trust in Zack Snyder's vision to go along with this, right?
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "Absolutely. He was the captain of this ship. There's no doubt about it. You know, he was such a fanboy – if I can use that term – of this particular novel and his enthusiasm was so contagious that we all caught it, which is great because this was a hard movie to shoot. It was six months in the winter in Vancouver. These costumes were nuts for all of us. And to have someone like Zack who created this Watchmen universe for us to live in, you know, all props go to Zack. Any accolade this film gets for anybody's performance or what this film looks like, everything goes to Zack."
Have you left him behind now – Edward Blake? Is he gone?
Jeffrey Dean Morgan: "I think there's a little bit of a dark side in everybody. I have mine, but it's not quite as dark as his."