The Aussie champion of performing dark characters, introducing a man who need no introduction of course the artist himself, John Noble. Whether you know him from Sleepy Hollow, Lord of the Rings or of course Fringe, we humbly await at MCM Comic Con 2015, with a pen and pad for this man smiling from ear to ear, and looks like he’s ready to answer our questions with his heart warming and bellowing voice.
So what’s worst of the comic cons, the blistering heat of San Diego or the showers of London?
(Laughs) the times I’ve been here hasn’t been at all bad, but in San Diego we don’t see the rain we sort of land and get whisked away to different parts of the court. I remember once I was there with Anna Torv (Fringe) and she said ‘John! Lets run away!’ so we sneakily got outside of the hotel, went for a coffee and sat on a perch of grass as we are giggling at how cool we were and then the executive director yells ‘Guys seriously what are you doing out here!”
We’ve really missed Fringe too!
I’ve been quite lucky with the roles I’ve had, for example the experience on Lord of the Rings was a once of a lifetime, I will never expect to repeat that! And of course Fringe, with the character was a gift to any actor but also a concept with the relationship created, it was a total joy; I’ve done many great roles but that one (Fringe) was remarkable.
What is it about genre shows that appeal to you as an actor?
They keep offering them to me! (laughs) Well I don’t know, I’ve been back on stage doing non-genre shows. I am offered really interesting and complex characters and I don’t think of them as ‘genre’ at all, they are fascinating characters given the freedom to roam, Denethor, Bishop etc. they are all extremes of abnormal behaviour but to extremes and to me that’s a joy.
In Fringe, people play multiple characters all the time, but Walter was a multiple character every five minutes! For you as an actor how tough was it from angry to happy to father figure?
Just like a real human being, cos that’s what we’re like, we change like quicksilver with the chemicals running through our bodies to create different sensations, but also Walter got to play 30 roles of himself, even in the main story flashbacks/flash forewords. I used to say to the camera operators ‘Could you tell me if I’m in the wrong character!’ (laughs) it all happened so fast there wasn’t enough preparation time.
Did you enjoy some of the crazier moments with Walter?
Loved it! The more that the writers and I got to know each other, the more they would present things to me and I’d go ‘Yes!’
As a mature actor, how does it feel to have a flux of interest from people who may have not seen your earlier work and your overall career legacy?
I think its a very positive story, we never know really, you know how we get through periods of our life being depressed or ‘I’ve turned 40 my life’s over’, and you keep slogging on and sticking to certain principles somehow hope leaves a turn. But really I’ve had a good career, I was in films and theatre with Lord of the Rings pulling me forward and that’s kind of what you need in this industry. And also America has been very kind to me to spread my wings, it’s a big market so there was room for me, I feel incredibly lucky it’s like a testament to not giving up. All of us can say I’m tired, I’ve had it, look at my face! It’s not what it used to be but its an attitude, and with age you have to be physically fit minded too.
Speaking of which, Maggie Gyllenhall made commented for being criticised for being ‘too old’ for a role, what are you views on this sort of ‘sexism of women’ getting older?
I don’t want to be too insulting about that attitude, but it exists in the youth culture. But I do remember looking at the list of Emmy nominees a few years ago and they were all women in their 40s/50s and I thought “Someone is telling the wrong story here”, so those female actresses that can ‘stay with it’ are now having really fantastic careers and the actresses we know and love most are those women in their 40s/50s and a very good young ones in their 30s/40s. So it’s changing.
Do you believe there is longevity then?
I believe there is if you’re a really good actor and if you’ve gone through your life believing you’ll cruise through this because you’ve got good youthful looks, it won’t last.
For you it certainly did!
Thank you very much, I was hoping someone would say that (laughs) I once played a role as a cross dresser once, but the worst part about it was he had to come on stage naked in the first scene, and I had just put all this weight on and (sniggers) it was so shocking, but its certainly a good way to lose your ego.