PERRY MASON: Interview mit Matthews Rhys und Tatiana Maslany

PERRY MASON mit Matthew Rhys im Juli bei Sky

Basierend auf den Romanen von Erle Stanley Gardner startet am 31. Juli 2020 die HBO-Serie PERRY MASON mit Matthew Rhys („The Americans“, „Brothers & Sisters”), John Lithgow („The Crown”) und Lili Taylor („Six Feet Under – Gestorben wird immer”). Produziert wurde sie unter anderem von Robert Downey Jr. („Avengers“, „Iron Man“). Die achtteilige Serie ist immer freitags um 20.15 Uhr in Doppelfolgen (wahlweise auf Deutsch oder im Original) auf Sky Atlantic HD zu sehen und auf Sky Ticket, Sky Go und über Sky Q auf Abruf verfügbar.

Zum Trailer hier lang

Interview mit Matthews Rhys und Tatiana Maslany

PERRY MASON wurde inzwischen von HBO für eine zweite Staffel verlängert. In der Hauptrolle ist Matthew Rhys zu sehen, von dem wir dank SKY gemeinsam mit Tatiana Maslany ein exklusives Interview bekommen haben. 

Q: Matthew what traces are there in this Perry Mason of the lawyer he’s one day going to become. What kind of journey does he go on to become a lawyer?

Matthew: To me, that was one very simple linear track and we see I think in the second episode, what for me was one of the great justifications why there’s a great injustice, it’s done to a younger Perry Mason. This is my own building of what that trajectory was, which is that it serves as a great sense of justice or kind of right and wrong for him, and that he cannot live either side of it.

It has to be that one thing that is the right thing, the thing that just has to be done, and that’s what I think spurs him into becoming a defense attorney that he can’t sit by and see an injustice happen or the preview a party to something that’s unjust. Where he has a hand in the outcome of what that justice should be. So the big one great element to me is that he has an incredible black and white sense of what’s right what’s wrong. He has an incredible gray areas as to how he achieves what’s black and what’s white.

Q: I couldn’t stop to think about how similar the reality of 100 years ago was our reality the economic crisis, the corruption of the police, their racial issues. I was thinking why we’re not learning anything my our past, what’s your take on that?

Tatiana: Systems exist to protect the people who have built those systems and there’s witnesses here in the States immense struggles against the powers that be that have profited from these systems for centuries. And people are unwilling to look at that because it threatens their comfort, it threatens their power, and it threatens their ability to do whatever they want.

So, it’s horrific that we’re still in this space of trying to dismantle systems that have existed for so long. But, at the same time, reflect what is changing right now. And I think seeing this show in context with what’s happening right now that changes are happening that that voices are being heard is very bolstering and exciting and especially in reflection back to the themes continuing to be relevant in this show.

Matthew: No, I would just wholehearted agree. I firmly believe what Tatiana just said is that if we watch this show, without this moment, this glimmer of hope, that there is going to be a change. If there wasn’t that and we watch this show, I think it’d be incredibly depressing. What spurred these moments of change are equally as tragic as they are depressing, but from that if this trajectory of change which we hope remains then the ideal is to look at a show like ours and go oh look, it is changing. We live in hope.

Q: Tatiana your character is based on Aimee Semple. She is just like sister Molly on Penny Dreadful. I’ve noticed an influx of angelical characters since the election and I was just wondering, why do you think that is?

Tatiana: That’s a really interesting question. Wow. I want to think on that, but I think that what sister Alice represents for so many people is like we were talking about, and this is not necessarily in response to the election, but she offers hope in a way.

I think what sister Alice and what Amy’s simple Macpherson’s kind of mandate was, everyone is in it together and everyone has a place here. So I think people really respond to that when they’re in crisis and needing of hope. But I think that’s such a great question. I don’t know that I have an answer for it.

Q: You guys did a great job as usual. I just want you to know as actors If you did some research, if you watch some documentaries, some movies, some TV series to help you get into your role, or if you went to the show just normal without any research before.

Matthew: The research I did was, the great pivotal moments I found for Mason were the first world war which I researched. And then I did a little bit of research on the depression, especially how it affected LA or didn’t effect LA as that became the kind of boomtown at that time. And then it was Tammy Gardner, and there was a great influence in creating Perry Mason.

There was a defense attorney in Los Angeles by the name of I can’t remember…God, I know I researched him clearly as you can tell. And he was, I’m gonna shout his name soon, but he was the man that kind of was doing the big you know the oj simpson trials of the time, the sensation trials….I was my extensive research.

Tatiana: Yeah, I mean, I read Aimee Semple Macpherson’s book, her kind of sermons are written in a book, she’s got a collection of sermons. I watched a lot of videos of her and listened to audio of her. And then I also watched, “There Will Be Blood” for that kind of the hysteric, the hysteria that a preacher can kind of elicit from an audience and there was somebody else that I was watching.

Oh, I watched some like Tina Turner, I don’t know. It was just like anybody who’s a good, you know, kind of incredible showman. I was watching, for inspiration. And then reading about the time period as well.

Q: Did you look at any point at the standard Gardener original novels or short stories and whether there was any value in them? And for both of you, the original Perry Mason was a kind of a case of the week, this show is obviously not, this is a really complicated long arc. Can you talk about the script as a complete not as chapters but as a complete pace where you felt it began for you and were when you were filming the final components of where you felt it had taken you?

Matthew: I purposely didn’t go to the novels because I’ve done a few adaptations now. We have invested slightly too heavily in the novels, and kind of muddled my brain and you start playing things that aren’t in the script, but are in the novel. So I wanted to keep it a little cleaner, and a little more linear and kind of go right this is the script.

This is we’re going to work from and not anyone, anything, an influence that might not necessarily be in the script, because I’m not that smart. I love the fact that they didn’t do, you know, over eight hours, they didn’t do a case every hour, that he was going to be one long case that allows an audience to really invest and also allows all the characters in it over eight hours to go through a hell of a journey as I think we all did.

Tatiana: I think this sort of like procedural or like the case of the week thing requires you to kind of jump to a sort of very, sometimes maybe it’s simplistic sort of end result. And what I love about this show is that as much as the characters are all fighting for what they want, and have a clear trajectory, there’s also a lot of conflict in it. And there’s a lot of contradiction. And where we end up where sister Alice ends up is, is quite ambiguous. And I think that the audience will glean from it, and I think that to me, is compelling television.

Q: Matthew, I got a little uplifting question here for you. You’re a fantastic criminal detective. You were happen to be a detective in the world we live in right now. Where would you like to scoop around?

Matthew: That’s a good question. God, what is it? Where would I like to snoop around? What are you talking in relation to solving something or being Detective or just generally somewhere I could snoop around?

Q: Well to snoop around, they’re like, interesting enough to find out what really is going on.

Matthew: Right now we have a lot of subjects but they are all playing out in front of us. There’s very little snooping that needs to be done. Obviously, there’s a lot of…I mean, you know, listen, there’s a part of me that obviously would like to snoop around the upper echelons of government to see if it is really bad as we think it is.

I’m trying to think of something more kind of personable that might be more enjoyable to snoop around. But I can’t think of it. I’m sorry. I’m blanking because I have the attention of a goldfish. But Tatiana will give you a far more informed answer.

Q: So both of your characters and a lot of characters in the show are dealing with the past of Perry Mason. We haven’t seen the characters. They both have traumatic experiences in their past that inform the way they act right now. How did you feel about the way that the trauma was portrayed? Both of you…

Tatiana: Interestingly, that was something that came up halfway through the season. And it wasn’t actually something that a sister Alice’s backstory was alluded to, but never actually explicitly just discussed with me. So it was interesting then to find this extra layer to her halfway through the season, we were filming it, and I felt that it spoke to a lot of why she was so outwardly in control and so outwardly focused on connection and reaching, and God as a reason for why things happen.

I think there was a real justification for the pain that she had experienced by saying that sort of idea of like, God only gives you as much as you’re able to cope, whichI find very difficult to actually digest. But I think that what made her hold so hard to her faith, there must be a reason why this happened to me. And I must do something with it. And I think that’s like a big survival coping mechanism that she was living with.

Q: So you, didn’t get the scripts for the whole season before shooting it?

Tatiana: No one did. I didn’t. Did you Matthew?, Actually I quite enjoy that. And I think it actually keeps for me personally because I can over intellectualize things. Yeah, it keeps me in the present moment. And it keeps me like, you know, where we’re like, as human beings, we’re contradictory.

We behave one way even though this is who we were yesterday. And you know what I mean? Like, that’s what separates us from computers. So I think it’s exciting to have those sort of things sort of added on later.

Q: Um, it’s interesting that you’re both won Emmys for kind of late seasons of very beloved shows, almost like a result of public demand. Uh, you know, year after year people realized that your work was amazing. They gotta win something. So I was really wondering, how has this development kind of shaped the way that you approach your career and, maybe the way that you choose roles leading up to do Perry Mason, of course, which is, prestige kind of miniseries, HBO was wondering about this trajectory.

Matthew: For me personally, It hasn’t changed. What has always been my interest in doing this as a career, as a professional, is that to tell interesting stories and to play characters that interest me. The luxury of a successful career is to play people you want to play and tell stories you want to tell if that’s afforded to them.

I think that’s as good as it’ll ever get. And, that’s all, that’s it certainly continue that and propel that in a way that you’re offered parts and people and stories to play that interest you and you want to play.

Q: I’ve read in the New York Times that you were a bit skeptical when you were approached in the beginning. So Matthew, why did you change your mind? And this is also to Tatiana. What made you decide to do this series?

Matthew: Well, yes, I was skeptical because initially, when I was told they gonna remake Perry Mason, you go, who’s gonna make remake Perry Mason, in fairness, you kind of know it’s not gonna be the Perry Mason that grandparents or parents knew and loved.

Q: Did you see it?

Matthew: No, I kind of remember it being on but I can’t remember it, ever watching it. And it was the meeting with, a team down in the writers eye that immediately changed my mind and intrigued me and attracted me that I was like God, this is going to be something incredibly interesting. And it was.

Tatiana: I had no experience with Perry Mason prior to this and reading the script, I remember laughing a lot out of excitement, like out of joy of these characters and how interesting and I don’t know, I love a weirdo. And this show is just littered with weirdos. Knowing that Matthew was going to be playing Perry Mason,

I was just like, this is going to be such an incredible thing to be part of and acting is going to be at the center of it and character is going to be at the center of it. And so I was just thrilled to be part of it.

Thanks for the interview!

Darum geht’s in PERRY MASON

Los Angeles, 1932: Die „Stadt der Engel“ boomt während sich der Rest der USA langsam von „The Great Depression“ – der großen Wirtschaftskrise – erholt. Der berühmte Verteidiger Perry Mason (Matthews Rhys) hat immer noch unter seinen Kriegserfahrungen in Frankreich und an den Folgen seiner zerrütteten Ehe zu leiden. Mehr schlecht als recht verdingt er sich als Privatdetektiv. Ein missglückter Entführungsfall, den Mason lösen möchte, offenbart ihm, wie zerrissen Los Angeles trotz des Booms ist, und führt ihn zur Pfingstkirche und zu der mysteriösen Predigerin Schwester Alice (Tatiana Maslany).

Die Romane von Erle Stanley Gardner – ganze 82 an der Zahl – wurden bereits von 1955 bis 1967 als US-Fernsehserie verfilmt, damals mit dem kanadischen Schauspieler Raymond Burr in der Titelrolle. Die Neuauflage mit Matthew Rhys als Perry Mason hat mit der damaligen Serie aber kaum etwas gemein. Neben Hollywood-Star Robert Downey Jr. fungierten auch dessen Ehefrau Susan Downey, sowie Amanda Burrell, Ron Fitzgerald, Joe Horacek, Rolin Jones, und Timothy Van Patten als ausführende Produzenten. Van Patten, der unter anderem bei „Boardwalk Empire“, „Deadwood“ und „Die Sopranos“ Regie führte, ist auch diesmal für die authentische und düstere Inszenierung von „Perry Mason“ verantwortlich.

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