A good comedy’s very hard to make, so good comic writing I really enjoy.
As an actor, I like to get a bit of momentum going with a character and kind of work a bit quicker. I mean, not crazy-fast, but, you know, five or six pages a day is a nice pace.
As an actor, my background is in the theater and I feel that my strong suit is period work, but I actually didn’t do much of it at all, until the last three or four years. I’m loving it!
Even in the depths of dreadful situations, there’s usually something rather comic, or something you can laugh about afterwards, at least. So, I do look for the comedy in those things.
I do probably 80 or 90 per cent of the cooking at home.
I kind of have an interest in all history. And I suspect it comes from being Irish – we like stories, we like telling stories, which makes a lot of us lean towards being writers or actors or directors.
I love doing comedy. You don’t get many good comedy scripts. They’re rare. But, I do love playing comedy. Even in drama, I like to try to find the humor because I think it’s very human.
I played trombone for 10 minutes, and then I was in an accordion band in school for even less.
I suppose I look for humor in most situations because it humanizes things; it makes a character much more three-dimensional if there’s some kind of humor. Not necessarily laugh-out-loud type of stuff, just a sense that there is a humorous edge to things. I do like that.
I usually look at things like that from an audience perspective first, then have a closer look at the specific character they’re talking about me for.
If you’re playing the a historical character that’s in the public consciousness, then obviously you’ve got to make an effort to look like that person and there’s a huge amount of historical record there that you have to kind of comply to.
In the past I’ve worked with directors who saw very much their scene in their head and knew exactly how they were going to cut it.
It’s interesting because I haven’t done a lot of period work in the past, but I always wanted to because I’m interested in history.
My old manager of the Irish National Theatre said ‘Don’t worry about being a star, just worry about being a working actor. Just keep working.’ I think that’s really good advice.
Normally when I’m sent a script I’ll read it through to see how it hangs as a story and then I’ll go back and read it through again and look at the character.
Talking about the show reminds you of things that you went through. So it’s fun. When the show was on, I couldn’t have handled it. I didn’t want that direct connection.
There’s no reason not to be in television now. You get to live at home and you’re not on the road all the time, they pay you decent money, and the writing’s good. You’re not compromising for it, you know.
Well, I’ve always been a character actor, you know, and you always get your share of character actors who are bad guys.
Well, I’ve always been a character actor, you know, and you always get your share of character actors who are bad guys. So it never surprises me. And if it’s good writing, you can find your way into the part well enough.
Which is good, in a way, because the danger in doing something like STAR TREK is that you end up in that pigeonhole and you’re doing that the rest of your life.